In the latest versions of Oracle databases, Oracle introduced these new version releases. This is a new way of calling the different versions, and then we are going to explain what each of them means.
What is the Long Term Support Release version?
To a certain extent, they are like the Final Patch sets from previous releases. It means that this version of the product is more stable, and therefore it will receive less frequent updates than other versions. At the same time, they offer a much longer period of support and correction of errors, since the Premier support for them will be five years, being able to additionally contract extended support for another three years, thus reaching an extension of eight years.
What are the Innovation Release versions?
These versions will be released between two “Long Term Support” versions and will include improvements and new features that will later be consolidated in the next “Long Term Support” version. These versions allow users to incorporate new technologies if required. These “Innovation Releases” will have two years of Premier support and will not have extended support. If it is intended to be used in production environments, this implies that an upgrade to a later version (either Innovation Release or Long Term Support Release) should be planned within two years.
What do these changes mean?
The conclusion we can reach is that this model allows us to choose between more modern versions, with frequent updates (at the cost of having to update more frequently) or more stable versions with greater support, but which will not quickly include new features. .
Everything indicates that we will go towards a cycle of 2 to 4 “Innovation” versions (they can be annual or even biannual) followed by a “Long Term Support” version that encompasses all the improvements of the previous Innovation versions, in a more stable and consolidated version. .
This would allow developing and testing using new features and improvements of Innovation versions, and implement them in production right now if required, or wait until they are available in the next Long Term Support.
What version of Oracle to update our bases 11g, and 12c?
While version 20c is not yet available for productive use, its release is imminent, and that brings us to the question: Upgrade to Oracle 19c or wait and upgrade to Oracle 20c?
At first glance, the idea of waiting for version 20c sounds tempting (a newer version would imply, at first glance, a longer useful life), but in reality, this new classification of versions only confirms that except that we need some of the new features of Oracle 20c, it will stop having support in mid-2022, forcing us to migrate to version 21c or 22c (and we do not know if either of those two will be a “Long Term Support” version) before that date, While version 19c will have Premier support until 2024, and extended until 2027, making it the safest option.
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