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The Database Automation team is pleased to announce the availability of BDA 2019 Release 1

This release includes product enhancements, security improvements, and expanded platform support. It also includes a change in the version numbering we use for our products.  This blog post will give you all the information you need to understand what’s new in this release.  

Further down in this blog post, you’ll find a full list of all the updates included in 2019 Release 1. But, before I share that with you, I’d like to spend a moment focusing on one of the most exciting updates in this release…. Parallel Patching for Oracle.

 

Parallel Patching for Oracle dramatically improves the experience of patching your databases.  It makes the process faster, easier, and more reliable. 

To explain how Parallel Patching does this, I’ll provide a description of how a patching job is executed moving forward.   Here’s the process that’s followed once a patching job is executed.

  • All databases on a node within the job will be stopped
  • All databases on that node will be patched simultaneously
  • If patching fails on any node (for example due to a missing pre-requisite), patching will continue on all other nodes until the full job is complete.  This ensures that any node capable of being patched, will be patched, as part of the first run of the job.    (Note: In earlier versions of BDA, the patching job would end immediately upon any error or failure leaving the remaining nodes unpatched. Parallel Processing eliminates this issue)
  • Regardless of whether patching fails or succeeds on a node, all services that were shut down as part of the job will be restarted immediately after patching has completed (or failed) for that node.   This ensures the databases are returned to a functional state regardless of whether the patching succeeded for failed, and without having to wait for the entire job to complete.
  • For any job where patching of a node has failed, the job status will be set to “Failed”. This informs the administrator that one or more of the nodes in a job was not successfully patched.  The administrator will then determine the cause of the failure(s), address the issue, and re-run the job to ensure all systems are fully patched.

 

So the takeaway here is that you’ll spend less time managing Oracle patch jobs and your users will experience smaller maintenance windows thanks to this new feature.

 

In our next release, we plan to extend this functionality to work with Microsoft SQL Server.  We’ll also updated the process to dramatically reduce the size of the maintenance window needed for re-running jobs where one or more nodes couldn’t be patched. In the current release, when you re-run a job, BDA will go through the full process of stopping services, attempting to patch, and restarting the services for every node.   In the upcoming release, we are planning to add a pre-check so that BDA will take actions only on those nodes that have failed.  This will dramatically reduce the size of the maintenance window needed for the re-run. 

 

So that’s Parallel Patching for Oracle … but that’s not all we’ve delivered in 2019 Release 1.   Here are the other updates delivered in this version: 

  • Support for Microsoft Windows Server 2019
  • Support for DB2 11.1 (Enterprise Server Edition, Advanced Enterprise Server Edition and Advanced Workgroup Server Edition)
  • Support Windows Server Failover Clusters using PowerShell rather than cluster.exe
  • Multiple security enhancements including updates to gridapp.conf file
  • Support for Java OpenJDK 11

 

Lastly, you’ve probably noticed that we’ve changed method we use for version numbering.   The “old school” method of version numbering that we used previously was devised to communicate the scope of change in a particular release.  A “9.0” release had more change than a “9.1” release.  And that had more change than a “9.1.3” release.   With BDA now releasing updates on a much more frequent and consistent cadence, the “old school” method no longer provides meaningful value since each release contains approximately the same amount of change.    With this in mind, we will now provide our release number in terms of the year of the release, and the release order.  For example, BDA 2019 Release 1 is our first release of the product for 2019.    Our second release will be 2019 Release 2, and so on until 2020 when our first release will be BDA 2020 Release 1.

 

Our entire team is very excited to provide you with these updates to BDA and we are confident they will help you more effectively secure, provision, patch and manage your database environments.   We’re also looking forward to your feedback on this release.  So please share any thoughts or questions you may have here in the Bladelogic Database Automation community.   

 

Thank you for providing us with the opportunity to continually earn your business!   I look forward to hearing from you.

 

 

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One of the key requests we get from customers is for us to deliver the Wrappers for Oracle Patches more quickly.    I’m pleased to announce that starting this month, we’ll be able to do just that.

 

Background:

Prior to today, we would target the wrapper releases to be within 15 days after Oracle releases their patches.   The reason we needed the 15 days between when Oracle releases the patches and when we release the wrappers is that we run the wrappers through a set of very extensive tests to ensure they work as planned. 

What we’ve seen in practice is that due minimal changes in how the Oracle patches work and due to the wrappers being nothing more than simple scripts, it is very rare for the wrappers to have an issue.   And more importantly, when we do see issues, they are issues that do not put database operations at risk.  They simply stop the application of the patch.

 

What we’ll be doing going forward

Beginning with Oracle’s patch releases in April we will implement the following changes:

Uncertified Wrappers (new process): Within 4 business days after Oracle releases their patches, we will make any necessary updates to the patch wrappers, run them through our high-level quality tests, have them available to you for download and notify you with a post to the blog in the BDA online community. For customers who need to quickly roll out Oracle patches, we would encourage you to use these patches moving forward.  As always, we recommend that you test them in your own test environment prior to rolling them out to production, but this is no change.   We have a high level of confidence that these wrappers will work well for you in test and production and with minimal risk to operations.

Certified Wrappers (Current Process):  Within 15 days after Oracle has released their patches, we will have completed our certification testing process.  Assuming there are no changes needed to the wrappers, we will simply post an update to the BDA blog to let you know they are ready for download.

Wrap-up

While the Uncertified Wrapper process is new to most customers, we’ve been using it already with a number of customers including some very large financial institutions.  Because of this we feel confident it will be a benefit to those customers who need to roll out Oracle patches more quickly, but still with high confidence of success.

 

Please feel free to share your thoughts, comments or questions below.  If you want to begin making use of the new process, please just reach out to Support and they can walk you through the process

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Hello,

 

I'm please announce that the BDA team has just released updated CIS compliance content for Oracle 12c and Microsoft SQL Server 2016.   This are available for you immediately download from the BMC download site.

 

If you have any questions or need help, feel free to reach out to support or to post a question here in the community. 

 

Thank you!

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Happy Friday, everyone.  

 

I’m pleased to share that we’ve recently released BDA 8.9.03 Patch 3.

 

This release provides the following updates:

 

Support for Single Instance

  • Microsoft SQL Server 2017
  • Microsoft SQL Server 2019 (preview media)

 

Support for SQL Server Always On

  • Microsoft SQL Server 2017
  • Microsoft SQL Server 2019 (preview media)

Note: BMC Database Automation currently supports Microsoft SQL Server 2019 preview media. This is because Microsoft has not yet released the GA version of SQL Server 2019. BMC plans to include full support to SQL Server 2019 after 2 weeks of its GA.

 

Support for Oracle 18c Single Instance for

  • Windows 2012
  • Windows Server 2012 R2
  • Windows Server 2016

 

Support for Oracle 18c Restart

 

Support to use mediaprep to prepare Microsoft SQL Server 2017 and 2019 (preview media)

 

MSSQL DISA Compliance Database support introduced

 

DISA-MSSQL-2016-Database-V1-R3-807171

 

You can find more details in the documentation here.

 

Please feel free to download and begin use of this new update.   If you have any questions, the support team and I are here to help you.

 

Thanks,

               Eric

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Hi Everyone,

 

I’m pleased to inform you that we have released BDA 8.9.03 patch 2. 

 

Here are some of the key updates included in this release: 

  • Oracle 18c support introduced
    • Oracle 18c Single Instance Provisioning and Patching on Linux target node
    • Oracle 18c Grid Infrastructure Provisioning and Patching on Linux target node
  • Oracle 18c Patch wrappers
    • GIRU-Oct2018-18.0.0.0-Linux-x86-64
    • RU-Oct2018-18.0.0.0-Linux-x86-64
    • OJVM-Oct2018-18.0.0.0-Linux-x86-64
  • MSSQL DISA Compliance Database support introduced
    • DISA-MSSQL-2012-Database-V1-R17-805439
    • DISA-MSSQL-2014-Database-V1-R6-805438
    • DISA-MSSQL-2016-Instance-V1-R3-805576
    • DISA-MSSQL 2016 Database V1 R3- 807171
  • PHP version update to 7.2.10 (OS requirements updated)
  • Guide to BDA MySQL Support updated

 

You can find more information here, on BDA documentation site.   https://docs.bmc.com/docs/bda89/8-9-03-002-patch-2-for-version-8-9-03-842991246.html

 

If you need any assistance accessing, applying, or using this update, please remember to reach out to our Support team for assistance.

 

We are here to help!

Eric Liszt

Updated Compliance Content

Posted by Eric Liszt Employee Sep 25, 2018
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I'm very pleased to announce that we've released updated compliance content.   As part of this release we are extending compliance content to include not only checks at the instance level but also down to the database level.   Below are the STIGs covered by the updated compliance content.  You can download these now from the BMC website.

Please know this is just the beginning  We are already working on additional products and versions that we will be releasing in the future.

 

  • Oracle 12c Database STIG
  • Oracle 11.2g Database STIG
  • Microsoft SQL Server 2013 Database STIG
  • Microsoft SQL Server 2014 Database STIG

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