How to make a complicated migration manageable<br />"You'll lose some, but the survivors come out stronger"<br />
How to make a complicatedmigrationmanageable<br />Implementing Release 9.x at Avans University of Applied Sciences<br />Yo...
Who are these guys?<br />Bert Leene<br /><ul><li>Functional application management
Technical application management
Development
Instructor</li></li></ul><li>Who are these guys?<br />Arald den Braber<br /><ul><li>Functional application management
Technical application management
Development
Teacher in web application development & data communication
Project manager Blackboard migrations
Involved in other ICT-related projects</li></li></ul><li>3 locations in the Netherlands<br />Breda, Den Bosch, Tilburg<br ...
<ul><li>Planning the migration Bb8  Bb9.1
Our goals
Preparation
Testing
After care
List of issues available
The icing on the cake!</li></ul>We'll talk about<br />
First half of 2010<br />Getting to know release 9.1<br />Upgrade our building blocks<br />Develop support materials  see ...
Our goals<br />Preserve the existing Content System data<br />Upgrade during the summer break of 2010 <br />Implement Blac...
Why an hour-by-hour roadmap?<br /><ul><li>To have a good indication of the actual downtime
Availability of staff from different departments
External service partner
Determine the correct and most efficient order of steps
At first we had no idea how long individual steps would take</li></li></ul><li>The bonus we got<br />While thinking about ...
Needed to be smart since we had to go from 32bits to 64bits
Whyre-installapplication servers againafter a successfull test upgrade?</li></li></ul><li>How? <br /><ul><li>Park the Bb9....
These servers were correctly installed and fully tested
Actual upgrade would basically be limited to converting data
No need to install Bb on additional cluster servers a second time during downtime  </li></li></ul><li>The trick we found i...
Step 1: Clone the production data for the test upgrade<br />Old-DB<br />New-DB<br />Old Storage<br />New Storage<br />
Step 2: Setup a 32 bits virtual "throwaway" server withBlackboard 8 and upgrade this server to release 9.1.<br />DB<br />V...
Step 3: 	Clone the Blackboard 9.1 installationon the virtual server to the 64bit cluster servers.<br />Virtual server<br /...
Step 4: Park the 4 application servers afterintensive testing<br />App4<br />App3<br />App2<br />App1<br />
Step 5:  Restore the 32 bits virtual "throwaway" server to it'sinitial Blackboard 8 installation and shutit down.<br />Vir...
Step 6: Shut down the production environment<br />Production<br />
Step 7:  Update the newstoragewith a freshcopy of the latestproduction data.<br />Old-DB<br />New-DB<br />Old Storage<br /...
Step 8: Start the virtual "throw-away" server<br />Virtual server<br />
Step 9: 	The actual upgrade to Release 9.1 on the virtual "throw away" host.<br />Virtual server<br />DB<br />
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How to make a Complicate Migration Manageble

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This is the presentation we did at the Blackboard Teaching and Learning conference in Leeds (April 2011). It's about the roadmap we created to move from Blackboard 8 to release 9.1.

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How to make a Complicate Migration Manageble

  1. 1. How to make a complicated migration manageable<br />"You'll lose some, but the survivors come out stronger"<br />
  2. 2. How to make a complicatedmigrationmanageable<br />Implementing Release 9.x at Avans University of Applied Sciences<br />Your hosts to this presentation are<br />Bert Leene<br />and<br />Arald den Braber<br />
  3. 3. Who are these guys?<br />Bert Leene<br /><ul><li>Functional application management
  4. 4. Technical application management
  5. 5. Development
  6. 6. Instructor</li></li></ul><li>Who are these guys?<br />Arald den Braber<br /><ul><li>Functional application management
  7. 7. Technical application management
  8. 8. Development
  9. 9. Teacher in web application development & data communication
  10. 10. Project manager Blackboard migrations
  11. 11. Involved in other ICT-related projects</li></li></ul><li>3 locations in the Netherlands<br />Breda, Den Bosch, Tilburg<br />24.000 students<br />2.500 employees<br />19 educational units<br />12.000 Blackboard courses<br />Using Blackboard for over 10 years<br />Many custom made Building Blocks<br />Complete Windows environment<br />Special migration team across different departments<br />Amsterdam<br />Bruxelles<br />About Avans<br />
  12. 12. <ul><li>Planning the migration Bb8  Bb9.1
  13. 13. Our goals
  14. 14. Preparation
  15. 15. Testing
  16. 16. After care
  17. 17. List of issues available
  18. 18. The icing on the cake!</li></ul>We'll talk about<br />
  19. 19. First half of 2010<br />Getting to know release 9.1<br />Upgrade our building blocks<br />Develop support materials  see the other Avans guys tomorrow<br />First draft of the road map <br />June 2010<br />Test upgrade with ACTUAL DATA<br />Update the road map to an hour-by-hour road map based on the test upgrade<br />Testing<br />July 2010<br />BbWorld<br />First week of august<br />Actual upgrade<br />Launch of the archive<br />The original planning<br />
  20. 20. Our goals<br />Preserve the existing Content System data<br />Upgrade during the summer break of 2010 <br />Implement Blackboard Learn Release 9.1<br />Give our Building Blocks the NG look and feel<br />Make an online archive environment available<br />Upgrade the serverplatform to new 64bits technology<br />Clean up our environment by deleting old courses<br />
  21. 21. Why an hour-by-hour roadmap?<br /><ul><li>To have a good indication of the actual downtime
  22. 22. Availability of staff from different departments
  23. 23. External service partner
  24. 24. Determine the correct and most efficient order of steps
  25. 25. At first we had no idea how long individual steps would take</li></li></ul><li>The bonus we got<br />While thinking about the roadmap we learned that we could reduce the downtime during the actual upgrade<br /><ul><li>A Blackboard upgrade is mostlyaboutconvertingyour dataset
  26. 26. Needed to be smart since we had to go from 32bits to 64bits
  27. 27. Whyre-installapplication servers againafter a successfull test upgrade?</li></li></ul><li>How? <br /><ul><li>Park the Bb9.1 servers used in the test upgrade
  28. 28. These servers were correctly installed and fully tested
  29. 29. Actual upgrade would basically be limited to converting data
  30. 30. No need to install Bb on additional cluster servers a second time during downtime </li></li></ul><li>The trick we found in steps <br />The initial Blackboard environment at Avans<br />App3<br />App2<br />App1<br />DB<br />
  31. 31. Step 1: Clone the production data for the test upgrade<br />Old-DB<br />New-DB<br />Old Storage<br />New Storage<br />
  32. 32. Step 2: Setup a 32 bits virtual "throwaway" server withBlackboard 8 and upgrade this server to release 9.1.<br />DB<br />Virtual server<br />
  33. 33. Step 3: Clone the Blackboard 9.1 installationon the virtual server to the 64bit cluster servers.<br />Virtual server<br />App3<br />App2<br />App4<br />App1<br />
  34. 34. Step 4: Park the 4 application servers afterintensive testing<br />App4<br />App3<br />App2<br />App1<br />
  35. 35. Step 5: Restore the 32 bits virtual "throwaway" server to it'sinitial Blackboard 8 installation and shutit down.<br />Virtual server<br />
  36. 36. Step 6: Shut down the production environment<br />Production<br />
  37. 37. Step 7: Update the newstoragewith a freshcopy of the latestproduction data.<br />Old-DB<br />New-DB<br />Old Storage<br />New Storage<br />
  38. 38. Step 8: Start the virtual "throw-away" server<br />Virtual server<br />
  39. 39. Step 9: The actual upgrade to Release 9.1 on the virtual "throw away" host.<br />Virtual server<br />DB<br />
  40. 40. Step 10: Be reallypatient<br />This presentation will continue in about<br />30hours<br />Just kidding…..<br />……butbepreparedyou have to waitreally long before the Blackboard installer comes up with the "Upgrade completedsuccesfully" message.Onour system ittookalmost 30 hours!We thinkit was because we have a lot of ePortfolio's in the Content System. <br />
  41. 41. Step 11: This is why the virtual server was called"trowaway server". <br />Virtual server<br />Virtual server<br />Itdidit's job…. <br />....Itconvertedour database to a Bb9.1 database!<br />
  42. 42. Step 12: Get the parked servers and turn themon.<br />DB Bb9<br />App4<br />App3<br />App2<br />App1<br />Production<br />
  43. 43. Great! We got the new Blackboard up and running!<br />
  44. 44. Why is a test upgrade with real data important?<br />Becauseoursfailed!<br />
  45. 45. <ul><li>Problems in our dataset resulted in "duplicate entries" errors during the installation
  46. 46. Our dataset goes back over 10 years and has been modified during many upgrades
  47. 47. Problem was solved by Blackboard and our third party technical service partner
  48. 48. Problem showed us the importance of testing with REAL DATA!</li></ul>What was the problem?<br />
  49. 49. <ul><li>3 weeks delay in our planning
  50. 50. Leaving us less than 2 weeks to test</li></ul>Consequences<br />New challenges!<br /><ul><li>Determine a new planning
  51. 51. Upgrade during the Christmas break?
  52. 52. No access to the building, workremote
  53. 53. Performnew test remote upgrade
  54. 54. Communicationwhennotworking in the same room
  55. 55. Informourusersthey had to waitfor Release 9.1</li></li></ul><li><ul><li>Working remote made the detailed planning even more crucial
  56. 56. Need for a good communication plan</li></ul>Working remote<br /><ul><li>Give people a trigger when to start their job
  57. 57. Report the finishing of a certain step
  58. 58. Report problems or expected delays
  59. 59. SMS/Texting was used to send the triggers
  60. 60. Mail was usedwhen more details were important
  61. 61. Oneperson in the lead</li></li></ul><li>Who/What/When<br />That'swhat was in ourdetailed planning<br />
  62. 62. <ul><li>Blackboard Release 9.1 was installed on new hardware
  63. 63. The old production environment was planned to become the archive environment
  64. 64. This archive environment would remain untouched during the upgrade and would remain available in case of a disaster during the upgrade</li></ul>Risk management<br />
  65. 65. <ul><li>Questions from users  Student assistants
  66. 66. Repair queries
  67. 67. Issues & Bugs
  68. 68. Behind the Blackboard  Find information & report issues</li></ul>After Care<br />
  69. 69.
  70. 70. <ul><li>They all worked in Release 9.1
  71. 71. They needed work though
  72. 72. Givethem the Bb9.1 look and feel NG tags(http://www.edugarage.com)
  73. 73. Use the newconfirmation bars
  74. 74. Implement AJAX technology to reduce page reloads
  75. 75. Special attention (another trick) was needed in order not to lose modules and user defined preferences after installing the updated versions Challenge for Blackboard</li></ul>Building Blocks<br />
  76. 76. <ul><li>Shownews Building Block
  77. 77. Show announcements in a different way
  78. 78. Available on: http://www.supportjukebox.nl/bbtlc</li></ul>The icing on the cake<br />
  79. 79. Configure a Shownews module<br />
  80. 80. Create an announcement for the module<br />
  81. 81. Module can also be used on the frontpage<br />Pictureson the frontpageshouldbe set to public in order to work<br />
  82. 82. Thank You<br />Arald den Braber<br />Avans University of Applied Sciences<br />acbjl.denbraber@avans.nl<br /> @bbbraa<br />Bert Leene<br />Avans University of Applied Sciences<br />awj.leene@avans.nl<br /> @bertwh<br /> Graphics by Rick Dijs<br />

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