With the release of ZENworks 2017 Update 4 behind us, we have already started working on our next release, ZENworks 2020, planned for later this year. ZENworks 2020 has a host of new features which we believe would make ZENworks even better. However, today I'll just detail an important change we are planning to bring in ZENworks 2020.
With ZENworks 2017, we started supporting PostgreSQL as a supported DB. For ease of use, we also packaged PostgreSQL along with ZENworks. Many of our customers were already using PostgreSQL in their environment and our support for PostgreSQL gave them a chance to reduce their DB stack. PostgreSQL also provides them ability to scale their ZENworks environment without needing to switch to MS-SQL/Oracle (with Update 4, we support up to 20,000 devices in a zone with external PostgreSQL being used as DB)
Many of our partners and customers have already started using ZENworks with PostgreSQL. With a good uptake and associated benefits to our customers, we have decided to focus more on increasing the scale of PostgreSQL so that it can serve as a viable alternative for customers looking for an option to MS-SQL or Oracle DB's. Additionally, given the open source nature of PostgreSQL and the expertise in the field we believe that PostgreSQL is a great option for our customers that don't already have a database solution. With scalability being better, the cost being the same to you, we've decided to replace our existing Sybase Database solution with PostgreSQL.
To this end, in ZENworks 2020, ZENworks is dropping support for Sybase as a supported DB platform.
So here are some key points to note:
This change is applicable only for customers upgrading to ZENworks 2020. Customers who are on ZENworks 2017 can continue using Sybase till the time they upgrade to ZENworks 2020. They would continue to be supported.
For all customers who are running ZENworks 2017 with Sybase (either one shipped with ZENworks or using their own), upgrading to ZENworks 2020 would be a 3 step process:
Data Migration - In first step, we would prompt and migrate Sybase Data to bundled PostgreSQL DB (or an external PostgreSQL ), while the zone continues to be at ZENworks 2017.
Data Verification - Once migration to PostgreSQL is complete, customer can continue running ZENworks 2017 so as to ensure that things are working fine with PostgreSQL. In unlikely scenario of an issue, it would be possible to revert back to using Sybase as a DB, while the issue is investigated by ZENworks support team. This would ensure that there is no or minimal impact to production environment.
Upgrade to ZENworks 2020 - Once it has been verified that things are working fine with PostgreSQL, customer can initiate the upgrade to ZENworks 2020. Post upgrade, Sybase would be removed permanently and it won't be possible to switch back to Sybase.
Since many of our customers use ZENworks with Sybase DB, we have been tirelessly working to ensure that this data migration goes as smooth as possible. For this purpose, we are looking to test our migration utility using real customer data so that we identify any issues in our lab itself. So here is a call out to everyone using ZENworks with Sybase:
We are looking for Customer DBs to test our data migration process from Sybase to PostgreSQL. So if you are willing to help by sharing your ZENworks Sybase DB, please do send us a mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In order to ensure privacy of your data, we would be happy to sign a non-disclosure agreement with your organization.
Once we are sure that our migration works well, we plan to release the migration utility sufficiently in advance of release of ZENworks 2020. This would ensure that customers looking to migrate need not wait for ZENworks 2020.
I'm sure many of you would still have more questions. Please feel free to post them as a comment to this post or alternatively send us a mail at email@example.com. If required, we'll consolidate all the responses and publish them as another post.