What is an Upgrade?

In simplest terms 'upgrading' is moving from one (current) release level to a higher (newer) release level. The new release would always come with new features in terms of Technical aspects and also functionally. The Upgrade Process involves installing the PeopleSoft Demo database (for the new release level), creating the upgrade environment and executing the upgrade passes. The New Demo Database would be your Source System and during the process, the Copy of Production Database (on which you execute the scripts) will be your Target System. PeopleSoft provides a tool, Upgrade Assistant / Change Assistant (depending on PeopleTools release), for executing the delivered upgrade scripts. Compare reports are produced during the initial upgrade pass and provide critical insight for the Fit/Gap analysis and determining the effort to re-apply/re-develop customizations. After the initial pass, multiple upgrade passes are executed to test, refine and enhance the PeopleSoft delivered scripts for each individual client. The execution of the Upgrade Process is the most critical phase and differentiates an upgrade from traditional implementations.


If this is your First Major PeopleSoft Application or Tools Upgrade, it would be a challenge for you as you have never done this before. This is logically true since any "first" is always a learning experience.   Many people believe that an upgrade is a simple matter of "installing software" and "running scripts".  In principle, this is true... but only if you have never made modifications to your PeopleSoft system, and sometimes not even then. A PeopleSoft upgrade can be very simple for some clients; however, the level of difficulty compounds with each customization a client implements. The types of systems in terms of upgrade process can be categorized as – Simple, Medium and Complex (low, medium and high). The Simple system with less customization can be done without any major challenges. Even medium level systems can also be done with less effort, however the majority of the challenges stem from the complex systems that have heterogeneous environment and high level of customizations. Customizations do not make the upgrade impossible, but they do allow more room for error. Usually the whole process takes anywhere between 4 to 8 months depending on your customization level, the number of modules you have implemented, and the number of resources you have in your team. if there is a good level of documentation, this should also help you during the upgrade process.

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