Q&A on Stat 6.2 Upgrade

Have you upgraded to Stat 6.2 yet?

If you have, then you’re already taking advantage of the new features and functions built into this version’s DevOps-friendly approach to application change management. If you’re still waiting, or if you’re not yet a Stat 6.2 customer, I hope this blog post will bring you into the fold.

Stat 6.2 — Jira integration, REST Web Services and DevOps

Stat 6.2 embodies a number of the enhancement requests we’ve received from you recently. After all, there’s no better way to set the future direction of the product than by taking our cues from you. That’s why this release focuses on three areas:

  • Improved automation — With Stat 6.2 you can automate pre- and post-migration (deployment) steps for custom commands. You can automate business rules to do more than just send out email and perform planned migrations using REST Web Services. Those enhancements have been driven in large part by those of you who are implementing DevOps.
  • Improved integration — Many of you have service management solutions like Jira and ServiceNow, and you’ve asked for smoother bidirectional communication with those products (see the screenshot for an example). Stat 6.2 replaces many internal Java calls with a REST Web Services API, in which clients call port 8080, for third-party applications.
  • Improved customer experience — This is a perennial favorite. There always seems to be a way to reduce the number of mouse clicks needed to perform tasks, and we’ve simplified most of our GUI for a better user experience.

Q&A from our webcast

To roll out the upgrade, Quest® conducted a webcast called What’s New in Stat 6.2 with Vahid Rahimi, Yuri Denshchik and me.

In the webcast, Vahid shows you the new features and explains how you can take advantage of them to improve your application change management. Yuri performs an online demo (starting at 28:00) showing, among other things, the new Stat integration with Jira. He shows how Jira can control Stat by creating a change/service request (CSR), completing the task, auto-advancing the workflow and initiating a migration.

Starting at 36:00, we took questions about Stat 6.2 from webcast attendees and answered them in real time. We decided it was worth writing up the answers and posting them here.

  • Can we upgrade directly from Stat 5.8 to 6.2?

Yes, you can. The Stat 6.2 package comes with all required scripts to upgrade from 5.8 (or 5.7) to 6.2.

  • Is there a way to schedule a recurring migration based on release name or ready objects?  Or, does Stat 6.2 require repeat scheduling of a planned migration for each migration needed?

Recurring migration can be part of a continuous integration/continuous deployment (CI/CD) process, so that when a change is ready, it’s automatically migrated.

If you have scheduled a migration, you cannot reschedule it, but you can either initiate it earlier or cancel it. It will still require admin time to go in manually and schedule each migration, but Stat 6.2 is a starting point for integration with third-party tools. We’re working toward automating much more of the process.

Through the API you can view the list of all objects scheduled for migration. A scheduler could use that list to select the migration IDs to plan and implement, then potentially automate the process from an external tool.

  • Is it possible to set a schedule for CSR migration that runs daily at a specific time?

You may plan as many migrations as you want and create a rule for them. That must be initiated from either an integrated third-party tool or through an option in Migration Details that lets you start planned migration immediately.

This is useful for organizations that have a regular maintenance window and want to schedule their migrations to coincide with it.

  • Are there known bugs in this release?

Since the launch we have released hot fixes for a few bugs that customers have reported. Keep in mind that we’ve changed the architecture of Stat a great deal for version 6.2. A few bugs have resulted from our introduction of the REST API and our changes to screen design. We’re confident in our ability to keep up with and resolve them.

  • Oracle 12.2 has online patching. How does Stat 6.2 fit into that new architecture?

We’ve supported 12.2 since Stat 5.74. We use Oracle’s native tool to support patch cycles from Prepare all the way to Cut Over.

As far as migrating your objects, you can migrate them to the Patch or Run edition. In fact, you might want to migrate to both editions if, for example, you’re in a patch cycle but you have a break-fix that needs to get into production. You’ll want to apply your break-fix on production, but you’ll also want to ensure that when you do the cutover or patch, your fix is not overwritten. In that case, you’d want to migrate to both editions. Stat lets you do that.

  • Is there a demo on using Oracle 12.2 with Stat?

Yes, there is. We have Oracle 12.2 and 12.1.3 environments in our demo lab. Contact your account manager or leave me a comment below and we’ll help you schedule a demo.

  • We would like to set up Stat for migrating Oracle Applications Express (APEX) applications. Do we need a separate license?

Although this is outside of the normal function of Stat, it still comes down to a set of objects, so you could add it. In essence, you’re migrating the PL/SQL that generates the APEX, so you can extend Stat to do that, as some of our customers have done. That should not require a separate license.

However, you would need a separate license if you have something outside of your E-Business Suite (EBS) production environments and it’s truly a generic or custom application. If you’re using APEX on another server outside of your EBS environment, then yes, you would need the Stat for generic applications license. They are sold in a 5-pack and are very affordable.

By the way, we’re seeing that as a trend. We have a lot of customers who start using Stat and who see the value in extending automation and integration to other applications in their environment. We see a lot of Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition (OBIEE) and APEX installations — as well as Java applications — where Stat is used to manage changes.

Upgrading to Stat 6.2

If you missed our webcast, What’s New in Stat 6.2, you can still give it a listen. We think you’ll be pleased and eager to upgrade.

I want to emphasize how important your ideas have been in this release. For enhancement requests, we’re very interested in how you use Stat and how you want to use it. Our 6.2 release was very much customer-driven, based on things that I heard as a pre-sales engineer in conversations with customers and prospects, as well as what came in from our community site and our Ideas page. Our product managers and developers review your requests, and many of our enhancements come from you.

We learn a lot from your DevOps stories: how you use Stat, what could improve it, things that work well and things that don’t work well. Keep your great ideas coming!

Let Me Tell You What I Want Next in Stat

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