Oracle E-Business Suite 11i to enter Sustaining Support

Oracle E-Business Suite 11i to enter Sustaining Support

A key milestone in the support lifecycle of E-Business Suite will arrive in December this year when 11i (11.5.10) moves into Sustaining Support with Oracle.

This has important consequences for those enterprises using this version of the software, particularly those using Oracle Payroll.

Oracle Lifetime Support Policy

First, a brief review. Oracle E-Business Suite (as with most Oracle products) has three stages of support:

Premier Support

  • Usually lasts for 5 years from the release date of the product version.
  • The most comprehensive support cover, including all aspects of Oracle support.

Extended Support

  • Usually lasts for 3 years after the end of Premier Support.
  • Includes most of the features included with Premier Support, with the exception of certifications with new Oracle/third party products.
  • Typically adopted by those customers that wish to continue to receive the benefits of Premier Support but who are not yet ready to upgrade to a later version of the software.
  • Normally needs to be purchased with an uplift on existing support costs, although Oracle will sometimes announce a waiver for Extended Support fees for certain product versions over specified timescales.

Sustaining Support

  • Lasts from the end of Extended Support indefinitely.
  • Important restrictions means that key features of Oracle support are not included, such as the latest tax/legislative updates and security fixes.

As of November 2013, the relevant dates for Oracle E-Business Suite are as follows:

The key date here is the end of Extended Support for 11.5.10 in Nov 2013

Sustaining Support Exception

The good news is that Oracle have announced a partial exception for 11.5.10 Sustaining Support. For a period of two years from the start of Sustaining Support (December 2013 – December 2015) Oracle have stated that they will continue to provide:

  • Severity 1 fixes, critical patch updates
  • Payroll regulatory tax updates for UK Tax Year April 6, 2013 – April 5, 2014
  • This is allow customers to maintain stable operations while completing an upgrade to 12.1 or 12.2

Extended Support Baseline

In order to qualify for Extended Support and the exception to Sustaining Support, your 11i system must meet certain minimum criteria:

  • EBS 11.5.10 with Consolidated Update 2
  • ATG Rollup Patchset 6 (Patch 5903765)
  • Database or
  • Forms6i Patchset 19 (Version, Patch 6194129)
  • Oracle HTTP Server MLR Patchset 4393827
  • Sun Java Runtime Engine (JRE) 1.6.0_03+
  • EBS patches listed for all licensed and shared products

What does this mean for me?

If you are on 11.5.10 then from December 2013, Oracle will no longer provide new non-Severity 1 bug fixes for this version, although security patches and Severity 1 fixes will still be provided for a period of a further two years.

If you are an Oracle Payroll customer, no new legislative or tax updates will be released after the 5th April 2014 and an upgrade to a later version will be required to continue to run payrolls in future Tax Years.

All 11i customers should consider planning an upgrade to a later version, ideally before Dec 2015 when the exception to Sustaining Support will end, especially for those business that wish to continue to receive the highest level of Oracle support or those who must be on the latest version of security patches for reasons of compliance (e.g. PCI).

A version release upgrade/re-implementation of E-Business Suite is a significant project with timescales typically anywhere between 6 and 18 months depending on the number of modules in use, level of customisations, whether there will be a hardware migration at the same time etc so start planning your upgrade now!