Overview

Background

Learn to the Cloud project (migration of self-hosted Learn service to SaaS environment) is currently underway and is planned to go-live in early July. However, if the project was not able to meet its hard deadline of early July then a contingency plan is required to mitigate some risks associated with current infrastructure and application, which are outlined below:

  • Learn database physical server end of life is December 2019.

      Associated Risk: Inferior support model (away from DELL to XMA) from January 2020 to July 2020, so if server issues arise there could be outages of days rather        than hours. The likelihood of both the main and back-up servers failing is low, but with age this risk will increase.  The impact would be large.

  • Oracle 11g database end of life is Jan 2020.

      Associated Risk: Difficulties from Oracle regarding support, bug fixes will no longer be available. Low risk but will leave us in a difficult position if there are issues.

  • Current version of self-hosted Learn will be on Operational Support from June 2019 and completely out of support in Dec 2019

       Associated Risk: Self-hosted Learn is currently on version 9.1 Q4 2017. This version will be on Operational Support from June 2019 and no longer supported from     Dec 2019. This is a high risk for a Priority 1 service. As Learn is a top priority service for the University we aim to have an uptime of 99.7% (combined planned and unplanned availability). A key part of ensuring that the platform reaches the availability target is making sure that we are on a stable and supported version.

Various options were put together with pros and cons of each. The Project Board of Learn to the Cloud project recommended the following:

  • Continue support of the physical database server through XMA up to July 2020. 
  • Patch Oracle 11g to next point version 11.2.0.4, which is supported. 
  • Upgrade Learn to version 9.1 Q4 2018. 

It was noted that this option does not preclude the option of moving the Learn database to another physical server.  This option can be triggered in an emergency scenario if required.

Scope

The project will:

  • Upgrade the Learn platform to v 9.1 Q4 2018 plus cumulative updates (if any) applied.
  • Patch Oracle database to the next point version, 11.2.0.4
  • Check if Spring and Java require updating and update as necessary
  • Test and fix any UoE Building Blocks that do not work with the upgrade
  • Test and fix any issues with data feeds.
  • Test and fix any issues with the MyEd uPortal Learn Channel
  • Test and fix any issues with the Helpdesk tool.
  • Production will run a security scan on the application for vulnerabilities

The above activities will be first carried out on Learn Dev environment to give an assurance about the upgrade early in the project. The Go/No-Go checkpoint for ‘Learn to the Cloud’ project is end of May. Irrespective of this decision, above activities will then be carried out on Learn Test so that the upgrade is ready for deployment to Live. This will ensure that in case of any failure during Live migration of TEL058, this project is ready to be deployed as a contingency. Effectively, the decision to make this project live will depend on the outcome of Learn to the Cloud Live migration.

Objectives & Deliverables

Ref Objective/Deliverable Priority
Objective 1  To maintain vendor support by staying on ‘main stream’ release Must Have
Deliverable 1.1 Learn platform upgraded to v9.1 Q4 2018 in Dev, Test and Live plus cumulative updates (if any) applied Must Have
Deliverable 1.2 Learn upgrade works with data feeds and MyEd Must Have
Deliverable 1.3 Learn upgrade works with timetabling building block Must Have
Deliverable 1.4 Native and 3rd party Building blocks updated and work after the upgrade. Must Have
Objective 2 To maintain Oracle support by staying on the supported version Must Have
Deliverable 2.1 Oracle database upgraded to version 11.2.0.4 Must Have
Objective 3 To deliver improved user experience to all users and increase the ability to widen user base through improved functionality Must Have
Deliverable 3.1

Learn upgrade to test and resolve any issues with bespoke UoE building blocks:

  1. University of Edinburgh Connect to Application 
  2. Data for Students 
  3. University of Edinburgh Web Form Tool 
  4. Display Rubrics Grade
Must Have
Deliverable 3.2 Update responsive design for latest update Should Have
Objective 4 To ensure security Must Have
Deliverable 4.1 Conduct security scan to look for vulnerabilities Must Have

 

 

 

 

Success Criteria

  • A successfully upgraded and integrated Learn platform to v 9.1 Q4 2018 with cumulative updates (if any) applied
  • All bespoke Building blocks  working with the upgrade
  • All data feeds and MyEd channel working with upgrade
  • Helpdesk tool working with upgrade
  • Oracle database updated to version 11.2.0.4
  • Application successfully scanned for vulnerabilities

Benefits

Benefit Recipient(s) How Measured Owner
Business as usual maintained through an infrastructure that meets the service requirements.  Learn user community Service availability LTW Service Owner
Excellence in Teaching and Learning: This upgrade will enable Learn users to benefit from enhancements in version 9.1 Q4 2018 Learn user community Service availability LTW Service Owner
More secure application through scanning for vulnerabilities Learn user community Scanning results LTW Service Owner
Quality services/infrastructure: by delivering a central upgraded service with a supported database we will be able to improve reliability. LTW; Learn user community Service availability and analytics LTW Service Owner

Project Milestones

There is a hard delivery milestone date as the system has to be ready for the start of the academic session 2019/20 and the window for non-teaching is very narrow.

Target Date

Title Stage
15th Mar 2019 Complete Planning Plan
15th April 2019 Upgrade Dev Learn Execute
15th May 2019 Test Dev Learn Execute
07th June 2019 Upgrade Test Learn Execute
21st June 2019 Complete UAT Acceptance
08th July 2019 Deployment to LIVE Deliver
22nd July 2019

 Deployment Review

Deliver
05th Aug 2019 Closure Close

 

Project Info

Project
Learn Upgrade
Code
TEL060
Programme
ISG - Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL)
Management Office
ISG PMO
Project Manager
Sonali Nakhate
Project Sponsor
Anne-Marie Scott
Current Stage
Close
Status
Closed
Project Classification
Run
Start Date
04-Mar-2019
Planning Date
15-Mar-2019
Delivery Date
17-Jul-2019
Close Date
09-Aug-2019
Programme Priority
2
Overall Priority
Normal
Category
Compliance

Documentation

Plan