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In-place upgrade of SQL Server Cluster (incl. OSver)

    Question

  • Hi there,

    We are planning to upgrade our platform versions of the O/S and SQL Cluster from (Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise + SQL Server 2008 R2 SP3 Standard) to (Windows Server 2012 SP3 Enterprise + SQL Server 2012 SP3 Standard).

    Could someone please advise on any hurdles that might be encountered during the rolling upgrade. More specifically re; SQL Server Cluster upgrade.  Assuming that all the cluster settings will be resolved from existing Configuration.ini or is there new H/A configuration end-points that I need to be configured outside the original SQL Server 2008 R2 Cluster installation.

    From documentation, looks to be quite seamless,
    https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms191009%28v=sql.110%29.aspx?f=255&MSPPError=-2147217396

    Current elements of SQL 2008 R2 Cluster Configuration,
    FEATURES=SQLENGINE,REPLICATION,FULLTEXT,SSMS,ADV_SSMS

    SSRS is distributed to another server outside the Cluster, with the ReportServer databases hosted on the Cluster, which will also upgraded to the same OS/SQL versions.

    Any information/guidance on this process would be helpful. 

    Some initial concerns for guided discussion:

    1. From my understanding the Windows Server Cluster upgrade path from previous versions was not a rolling upgrade with the upgrade process being blocked as a result of configured Cluster Services and therefore needed to have one node evicted, upgraded and the cluster recreated as the recommended approach.  Hoping this is not the case with 2008 R2 to 2012. 
    2. I'm hoping the SQL Server upgrade is similar to the original install of the SQL Server 2008 R2 SP3 Cluster (same cluster settings) or do I need to be concerned with more recent features of H/A groups/endpoints.
    3. Also, should I consider a more recent version of SQL Server 2014.  I'm more versed with 2012, but recently looking at 2014 and looks to be very similar for the H/A feature compatibility of 2012.  No real need for the newer features at this time as the Cluster is for SCCM2012 at the moment.  Further, for those of you that have SCCM knowledge, let me know if there are any dependencies/hurdles in regards to the entire stack in this Cluster upgrade, please advise further.

    Thanks in advance,
    pGwtech

    Wednesday, March 15, 2017 7:41 PM

Answers

  • Hi Pierson,

    >>Is the upgrade from SQL 2008R2-2014SP2 very similar to that of 2008R2-2012SP3 (in regards to the configured features and endpoints).

    From what I’m aware the upgrade process is quite similar across all versions. And it’s recommended to review Upgrade Technical Guide(2012, 2014) and run upgrade advisor before upgrade to avoid potential issue.

    >>Another dependency is on our End-of-Life software assurances for 2012 and 2014.  If SQL2012 can take us to EOL2023, I can feel comfortable in selecting SQL2012 going forward.

    If I understand this correctly, this is really a question for product lifecycle and should not be answered here. But typically(if I remember it correctly) sql server products gets 5years mainstream support plus 5years extended support from lifecycle start date. For more information, please visit this site.

    If you have any other questions, please let me know.

    Regards,
    Lin

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    Tuesday, March 21, 2017 10:31 AM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Hi pGwtech,

    Please correct me if I’m wrong:

    >>From my understanding the Windows Server Cluster upgrade path from previous versions was not a rolling upgrade with the upgrade process being blocked as a result of configured Cluster Services and therefore needed to have one node evicted, upgraded and the cluster recreated as the recommended approach.  Hoping this is not the case with 2008 R2 to 2012.

    From what I see cluster OS rolling upgrade in only available from Windows Server 2012 R2 to Windows Server 2016. In all earlier versions, you would have to destroy/rebuild the cluster.

    >>I'm hoping the SQL Server upgrade is similar to the original install of the SQL Server 2008 R2 SP3 Cluster (same cluster settings) or do I need to be concerned with more recent features of H/A groups/endpoints.

    The upgrade process is fully described here. Also, make sure you have taken full backups on all your databases and run upgrade advisor before upgrade.

    >>Also, should I consider a more recent version of SQL Server 2014.  I'm more versed with 2012, but recently looking at 2014 and looks to be very similar for the H/A feature compatibility of 2012.  No real need for the newer features at this time as the Cluster is for SCCM2012 at the moment.  Further, for those of you that have SCCM knowledge, let me know if there are any dependencies/hurdles in regards to the entire stack in this Cluster upgrade, please advise further.

    If the cluster is for SCCM 2012, please review the SQL Server support matrix here before making decisions.

    If you have any other questions, please let me know.

    Regards,

    Lin


    MSDN Community Support
    Please remember to click "Mark as Answer" the responses that resolved your issue, and to click "Unmark as Answer" if not. This can be beneficial to other community members reading this thread. If you have any compliments or complaints to MSDN Support, feel free to contact MSDNFSF@microsoft.com.

    Thursday, March 16, 2017 2:36 AM
    Moderator
  • Hi Lin,

    Thanks for your prompt reply and end-to-end insights. 

    For the cluster, I agree with your similar findings in having to rebuild the Windows Cluster as part of the upgrade path from 2008-2012.

    In regards to Sql Server 2014, my main concern; Is the upgrade from SQL 2008R2-2014SP2 very similar to that of 2008R2-2012SP3 (in regards to the configured features and endpoints).  I have more extensive technical documentation and working knowledge of the 2012 cluster environment, but if I can get some assurances that 2014 is very similar, I can opt for this version instead.  Another dependency is on our End-of-Life software assurances for 2012 and 2014.  If SQL2012 can take us to EOL2023, I can feel comfortable in selecting SQL2012 going forward.

    Regards,
    Pierson

    Friday, March 17, 2017 12:25 PM
  • Hi Pierson,

    >>Is the upgrade from SQL 2008R2-2014SP2 very similar to that of 2008R2-2012SP3 (in regards to the configured features and endpoints).

    From what I’m aware the upgrade process is quite similar across all versions. And it’s recommended to review Upgrade Technical Guide(2012, 2014) and run upgrade advisor before upgrade to avoid potential issue.

    >>Another dependency is on our End-of-Life software assurances for 2012 and 2014.  If SQL2012 can take us to EOL2023, I can feel comfortable in selecting SQL2012 going forward.

    If I understand this correctly, this is really a question for product lifecycle and should not be answered here. But typically(if I remember it correctly) sql server products gets 5years mainstream support plus 5years extended support from lifecycle start date. For more information, please visit this site.

    If you have any other questions, please let me know.

    Regards,
    Lin

    MSDN Community Support
    Please remember to click "Mark as Answer" the responses that resolved your issue, and to click "Unmark as Answer" if not. This can be beneficial to other community members reading this thread. If you have any compliments or complaints to MSDN Support, feel free to contact MSDNFSF@microsoft.com.

    Tuesday, March 21, 2017 10:31 AM
    Moderator