Newbie needs help applying SP on ERP8.0 AS400

durhamjp

Member
Hey guys, long time lurker, first time poster. Unfortunately I'm a little in over my head, and I hope you can help me work thru it. Our old JDE administrator has left our employ, and that leaves no one with experience updating/upgrading JDE.

We are an AS/400 shop, and need to update the service pack level of ERP8.0 to be compatible with V5R4 (we're running V5R3 under an extended service agreement with IBM). Our warehouses run 24/7/364, and any downtime (especially unexpected downtime) is a major no-no. So our thought was to update an environment other than production to make sure everything (we have heavily customized JDE) works first.

That being said, no one is familiar with environments either, as we normally do EVERYTHING (including development/changes) in production. (I know, I know, we are looking long term to change that, but it works for us for now.) We should have a development environment setup for testing (the old JDE admin set it up), but I can't even figure out how to log into it. But before that even matters, we need to copy production (Data, objects, everything for testing everything) to development.

I contacted JDE support, but all I could really get from them were a bunch of knowledge base documents. Nothing outlining how the whole process should work/recommendations.

So that is where I am. Can you all help me figure out what would be the best course of action, and help me get started in the right direction?

Thanks for any assistance!
 

sashton

Reputable Poster
What you're trying to accomplish is some very advanced stuff and not a simple upgrade. I would HIGHLY suggest you talk with a consultant or hire another CNC with knowledge to help you out. Even if we were able to provide you with some steps to perform, you will need someone with CNC knowledge and experience to troubleshoot issues you will undoubtedly run into. And with such a sensitive system by not allowing any downtime, I don't think you would want to accidentally do something and not know how to fix/troubleshoot it. As you know, you could really screw things up not knowing what you are doing. Just my thoughts.
 

gregglarkin

Legendary Poster
[ QUOTE ]

That being said, no one is familiar with environments either, as we normally do EVERYTHING (including development/changes) in production. (I know, I know, we are looking long term to change that, but it works for us for now.)

[/ QUOTE ]

Dude! Major no no. Your old CNC should have been fired for allowing that. Can I make a suggestion? Sub contract your CNC admin duties to one of the many fine firms that post here. (no, I'm not for hire, so I can be impartial about this). Have them get you over your hump and then put in the best practices that your old CNC sadly was not even close to following.

- Gregg
 

kylepyro

Active Member
durham - what Saston said.

Like you I'm a long time lurker and infrequent poster, but it sounds like you're in a pretty deep hole. Not just you but your company.

1st - forget the service pack upgrade for now. You need to stabilize your CNC capabilities. I actually know comparatively little about CNC but I know its a challenge for my guys to keep up with it. Even after years of experience, lots of training and mentoring its still troublesome. We still rely on consultants for expertise when we run into a problem we can't resolve.

2nd - you need to go to your boss, and his boss and his boss and advise them that your company is in a deep yogurt. Think of E1 as a toy top and your CNC guy as the one that pumps the handle every so often to keep it spinning. Without that effort your top is going to spin down and fall over. E1 is like that. It requires a certain level of care and maintenance and without it, your going to fall over. Restarting E1 is not just a simple ctrl/alt/del and you've told us that unscheduled downtime is a no-no.

3rd - go to the Vendor directory on this site and start calling the CNC consultants you'll find here. There are others as well - ask around. Start calling them 1st thing tomorrow and pick one or two to come visit your firm on Thursday, do an immediate health check and then start maping your CNC environment out for you. You need these guys to keep you going while your company decides its new CNC strategy. You might consider having the application hosted for you and that will get you out of the CNC business altogether.

4th - decide on a CNC strategy, make a plan and execute. If you choose to continue to run E1 internally your CNC capabilities cannot be expressed in the form of a single person. You CAN have just one person, but they have to be backed up because life is uncertain. People quit or get run over by buses - life happens. So cross-train, or keep an on-going relationship with an outside source but you can't be single threaded on CNC.

OK - that's my opinion which when combine with $6 will get you a cup of coffee at Starbucks. Now go find your boss.
 

gregglarkin

Legendary Poster
[ QUOTE ]
Don't be too quick to denigrate the old CNC. Some companies are too cheap to spend for whats needed.

[/ QUOTE ]

I disagree - A CNC that allows development in Production, sets up another environment that no one knows how to access? Come on, that's piss poor. Steven had it right, this needs to be escalated to upper management and they need to get this fixed ASAP. It's just a matter of time before the system crashes or an untested production change corrupts data. Major train wreck just waiting to happen.

- Gregg
 

jstooge

VIP Member
Oh come on Gregg...an environment that can't be accessed...that's BRILLIANT...no maintenance, no user issues, no worries...and development in production...WOO HOO...no OMW issues nor builds in any other path code other than PD.

And yes...for those that are non-Gregg...the above is entirely cheek in tongue or tongue wagging out or something like that.
 

jstooge

VIP Member
Try this again...my first attempt appears not to have posted.

I think you first need to right the ship. Adding a new engine to the Titanic wouldn't have helped, unless you fix the flooding first. I think you might be uber well served by getting an experienced iSeries CNC consultant or CNC firm to perform an audit on your system. That documentation will detail your steps to get to a more standard state, and you can decide if you want to do it or have someone else do it.

Realistically, you are better off stabilizing things and getting one or more environments other than PD available. Then you can properly implement multi-foundation and minimize the impact on the PD instance.

Of course you can always apply the Tools Release to PD and hope for the best and no issues...and I might be winning the lottery tomorrow....one could always hope.
 

gregglarkin

Legendary Poster
[ QUOTE ]
Oh come on Gregg...an environment that can't be accessed...that's BRILLIANT...no maintenance, no user issues, no worries...and development in production...WOO HOO...no OMW issues nor builds in any other path code other than PD.


[/ QUOTE ]

True - that would be a pretty low maintenance environment. To make it really easy, you could also skip these other pesky details:

patches
backups
reboots
service packs
ESUs
closed door security
enterprise change control
audits.....

You're right - there's lots of pesky stuff that we could do without.
 

brother_of_karamazov

Legendary Poster
[ QUOTE ]
Hey guys, long time lurker, first time poster. Unfortunately I'm a little in over my head, and I hope you can help me work thru it. Our old JDE administrator has left our employ, and that leaves no one with experience updating/upgrading JDE.

We are an AS/400 shop, and need to update the service pack level of ERP8.0 to be compatible with V5R4 (we're running V5R3 under an extended service agreement with IBM). Our warehouses run 24/7/364, and any downtime (especially unexpected downtime) is a major no-no. So our thought was to update an environment other than production to make sure everything (we have heavily customized JDE) works first.

That being said, no one is familiar with environments either, as we normally do EVERYTHING (including development/changes) in production. (I know, I know, we are looking long term to change that, but it works for us for now.) We should have a development environment setup for testing (the old JDE admin set it up), but I can't even figure out how to log into it. But before that even matters, we need to copy production (Data, objects, everything for testing everything) to development.

I contacted JDE support, but all I could really get from them were a bunch of knowledge base documents. Nothing outlining how the whole process should work/recommendations.

So that is where I am. Can you all help me figure out what would be the best course of action, and help me get started in the right direction?

Thanks for any assistance!

[/ QUOTE ]

As the others said, you are operating a bit outside of best practices. However, you have an immediate problem to solve so here's a suggestion:

Can you clone your system entirely and apply the service pack, do the testing, then apply to your live system? I realize that finding a spare AS400 laying around is not as easy as it would be with Windows servers but thought I would throw it out there.
 

durhamjp

Member
Thanks everyone for your replies. I guess I should explain a little more about our history. Our WHOLE IT/IS/Tech dept is a total of 7 people. 2 are basic helpdesk, 1 is the network admin, leaving mainly 4 people supporting the whole JDE implementation. Of those 4, 3 are mainly development, and I am basically everything else. I've been here for 3-4 years, and have learned a lot about JDE, and resolve 95% of the problems that come up (excluding new development requests). So when I say I'm a Newbie, I mean I've never done a install/update/upgrade, not that I'm new to JDE.

So that being said, does everyone still strongly suggest that for your first time applying a service pack should be done with someone with experience?

We're a little wary of inviting a third party to help us with this, as the last time we did that, was the initial implementation of JDE, which went disastrously wrong. We spent 5+ years cleaning up JDE and getting it stable/useable, and that was all before I started here. There were stories of product going out without invoices for weeks at a time (which meant we didn't get paid for weeks at a time).

On the matter of doing everything in Production, I completely agree, but we've decided that is not our first priority. It may seem hard to believe, but we've gotten very good at not causing problems doing everything in PROD. Our IT dept works on a very short schedule, sometimes we need to make changes, and implement them the same day. We also do a full backup on the 400 every work day (on a HA backup 400).

We rarely have time to do maintenance, usually focusing on new developments/improvements (fast moving company). So when it comes down to it, we are surprisingly very stable using one environment, and are paying extra to stay on V5R3 (IBM only supports the last two releases, V6R1, V5R4). So we immediately want to work on updating JDE, so we can update the 400, so we can stop paying IBM extra. (So I know its hard to do, when we're making a big mistake, but can we concentrate on the update, and not the fact we have one environment.)

Lastly I have a specific question. To log into the development environment, on the log in screen you just change environment listed at the bottom, right? I know that before (unfortunately I don't know before what) it was listed there, and I could log into DEV (DV7334). What could have changed/happened to make it no longer show up there?

Thanks,
John
 

durhamjp

Member
[ QUOTE ]
As the others said, you are operating a bit outside of best practices. However, you have an immediate problem to solve so here's a suggestion:

Can you clone your system entirely and apply the service pack, do the testing, then apply to your live system? I realize that finding a spare AS400 laying around is not as easy as it would be with Windows servers but thought I would throw it out there.

[/ QUOTE ]

BoK,
We actually do have a spare as400 laying around. Actually its our backup, using high availability software to mirror the primary and backup 400s. So we could turn off the HA mirroring, and update the backup, and do a role swap to test with... Okay that won't work, as while we are testing, everyone will be using the backup server, and we can't do that. I'm guessing to use both, we would need to setup a another deployment/central objects server, right? What all would we need to do to get the backup server updated and ready for testing, while leaving the production server normal/ready?
Thanks!
 

Paul1966

Member
Hi John

I’m throwing my two cents in here regarding your DV environment. If you don’t see DV7334 in your drop down list that means to me that the user profile you are using to log on does not have access to this environment – that would be my guess. So, check the profile and see if DV7334 appears on the list of environments your profile has access to.

Paul
 
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