All the organizations that use Oracle Cloud Applications need to undergo release updates frequently. Since Oracle Cloud Applications are ever-evolving, you get updates every quarter. Oracle Cloud quarterly updates consists of new functionality, customer enhancement requests and previous release bug-fixes. Oracle updates are mandatory to apply on a scheduled date.
First, the updates are applied to non-production environment and two weeks later, they are applied to Production.
When is a Quarterly Update Applied?
You can choose from 3 cycles of quarterly updates:
By default, Quarterly Update Application
- 1st Friday weekend: Non-Production
- 3rd Friday weekend: Production
This scheduled cannot be changed or cancelled unless approved by the Oracle. With every release, you need to understand the impact of the latest release on your internal business processes. Given below are some of the recommendations that may ensure seamless release update.
While preparing for updates, you need to review new features from Oracle’s Cloud Application Readiness site. The quarterly releases are named as 2020 Q1 release is 20A, 2020 Q2 release is 20B, 2020 Q3 release is 20C, 2020 Q4 release is 20D, & 2021 Q1 release is 21A. Make sure that you’re downloading the New Feature Summary for the appropriate release period. Each release summary offers information related to functional module updates, as well as any applicable security role changes.
Since each release comes with new functionalities, features and bug fixes, you need functional and technical analysis to understand the impact on the environment. With every update, there is a possibility that a new bug could be introduced or a bug fix could have a negative impact to your business processes. So, you should prepare a test plan that includes test scenarios and scripts, a timeline, effort, and resource plan.
Test, Test and Retest
Every quarterly release comes with some concerns such that
- How will this impact business process and cause interruption?
- How can you ensure that the upgrade is seamless and smooth?
- What will it take to have a repeatable, scalable upgrade process that guarantees success?
Regression testing is the answer to the above mentioned questions. During the first week of the customer’s chosen month, Oracle updates are applied to the test environment. The updates are applied to production environment during the third week of the month. So, users get two full weeks to test the impact of the update in their test environment and identify any major changes. Regression testing is performed to validate critical reports, key workflow approvals, and critical integrations with other applications. In case, you find any issue during testing of your non-production environments, you can send a service request to the Oracle support team to correct them.
For customizations and extensions, you can use Oracle Fusion Test Automation Software like OpKey to set up and validate tests. OpKey offers support for widest range of technologies including desktop, web, mobile, mainframe, JAVA forms, APIs, & Databases. With 400+ web keywords for almost every possible user action, OpKey helps you to automate your web applications. For Mobile Test Automation, OpKey offers 500+ real devices. You can integrate mobile tests to your CD system using OpKey’s out of box plugins.
OpKey is the only Oracle Aware tool that comes with features like autonomous impact analysis, 1500+ prebuilt test cases, 4000+ automation components, & self-healing/ self-config technology. OpKey offers 750+ Test Cases across Oracle HCM based on 500+ reusable libraries, 400+ Test cases in Financial with 175+ reusable libraries, & 350+ Test cases across SCM, Project Cloud and Procurement Cloud to ensure faster deployment and accelerated ROI.
Communicate to End-Users
Since Oracle Quarterly Updates may influence the functionality of the applications, end-users should be informed that they may experience application changes. Oracle offers Readiness Training videos and hand outs for specific feature updates. You should provide these to end users. Test automation software like OpKey runs a comprehensive series of automated tests to validate the features being released against various levels of the environment to deliver technical and functional impact of the updates on the application. With OpKey, it’ll take a week only to perform impact analysis.
OpKey takes 1 week time to sync Oracle Version Upgrade
Day 1 – Test Auto Experts work on Generation of Impact Report across all modules.
Day 2 – Modules where the changes have occurred are located and preparing for the tests.
Day 3 – Business Processes are configured, new sets of test data are added.
Day 4 – 5 Full Regression Testing is performed.
Day 6 – Production Release Results are verified, Issue Resolution and Documentation
OpKey’s fully automated One-Week Certification for Oracle Cloud Updates ensures full business continuity.
With new functionality, Oracle Cloud updates also bring some challenges. Organizations need to perform a detailed review of the update features to improve their business processes and introduce innovation. A thorough automation testing strategy can help you understand the impact of the updates on day-to-day business operations. Continuous Testing platform like OpKey can help you by reducing testing time of Oracle quarterly update by up to 80%.