Why you seriously can’t wait for the second release!

Premier Support for Oracle Database 11.2 has ended 4 weeks ago at 31-January-2015. 

I think most Oracle DBAs are aware of it. And I have stressed the topic about the need to upgrade to Oracle Database 12.1.0.2 a lot in the past months via the blog, in workshops and in discussions and customer meetings.

But there are still plenty of people out there you would like to wait for Oracle Database 12.2, the so called “secondrelease. From looking backwards I can understand this thinking. Neither Oracle 9.0 nor Oracle 10.1 were the best and most stable releases ever. If you waited a while then you could expect at least the first or sometimes even the 2nd patch set for the SECOND release being available. And then most people started going live. And some did wait for the terminal patch set.

But this has changed. You can’t seriously wait anymore for the second release. Why? There are several reasons and it’s fairly easy to explain.

  • Reason 1 – Every release is a full release
  • Reason 2 – Every release has a significant number of changes
  • Reason 3 – Every release has a significant number of new features
  • Reason 4 – Oracle 12.1.0.2 is the TERMINAL patch set
  • Reason 5 – The time span between releases has grown to large
  • Reason 6 – Important application providers will certify Oracle 12.1.0.2

Especially the Reason 5 is very important. You can’t seriously wait for Oracle Database 12.2 as you will potentially see a period with no bug fixing support for Oracle 11.2.

So let’s be honest:
You don’t wait for the second release. You’ll wait at least for the first patch set.
Patch Sets in the past got released roughly 12 months after the initial drop has been put out (please don’t get this wrong: I’m not saying that 12.2.0.2 will be released 12 months after 12.2.0.1 – I just try to project from the past!).

We announced already the planned availability of Oracle 12.2 for H1CY16 (first half of calendar year 2016).
See the Release Schedule MOS Note:742060.1for further details.

And keep in mind that this is a plan and no fixed schedule. So let’s project the usual patch set cycle from the past. Then we may be in the 2nd half of 2017. If you start your tests (I hope you’ll test 🙂 ) by then you may be ready to go live in 2018.

Look at the release cycles:

Oracle Release Cycle

It has grown from 18 months in the past to 45 months for Oracle Database 12.1.0.1. For Oracle Database 12.2 we may be at 30-36 months based on the currently announced plan.

Any further questions?

Be smart and transform from “We’ll go live on the 2nd release only” into “We’ll go live with the current release’s first or terminal patch set!”. This will be Oracle Database 12.1.0.2. There’s a reason why large application providers such as SAP will announce support for Oracle Database 12.1.0.2 soon.

–Mike

4 thoughts on “Why you seriously can’t wait for the second release!

  1. 12.1.2.0.2 is the terminal patchset for 12.1 EE, but how about SE-costumers? They are still waiting for 12.1.0.2 and in the release support for 12.1.0.2 will end somewhere mid 2015, so very soon. So for SE-costumers, it’s without patches in 3 months anyway.

  2. Andreas,

    fully see your point – and I’m 100% with you (which doesn’t help you actually). But at this point the only thing I can recommend: Call your Oracle Sales Rep, open SRs etc. And I have no further information on this topic at the moment.

    Thanks
    Mike

  3. Mike, As I mentioned earlier first release a new versions are not fully developed. You have to be very cautious, especially if you plan to use new features. Some of them will cause serious headaches. For example, we wanted to use the threaded_execution feature, which is the new feature in my opinion. But once you enable this you run into issues with patching for example. None of the opatch utilities are compatible with threaded_execution which requires supplying the sys password (/ as sysdba is disabled with threaded_execution). Also we are trading firm and for us stability is more important than the bells and whistles that comes with new releases. If you have the software for release 7, you could still run it without Oracle support. My 2 cents.

    Sen

  4. Sen,

    I disagree by 100% as every release is a full release. You will see exactly the same good and bad things with the next release as it has a good bunch of new features. And usually things who don’t make it into the base release will be distributed with the first patch set.

    So again, I completely disagree 🙂

    Cheers
    Mike

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