[Veritas-bu] RE: Windows 2000 SP4

2005-08-19 08:45:35
Subject: [Veritas-bu] RE: Windows 2000 SP4
From: marcel.drunenvan AT nl.unisys DOT com (Drunen van, Marcel)
Date: Fri, 19 Aug 2005 14:45:35 +0200

I recently upgraded one of my customers from W2K SP3 to SP4 and
consolidated their NetBackup to 5.0 MP5. This only because I couldn't
convince them to go to 5.1MP3a, which I would have preferred. Question:
what is your reason to go to MP4 in stead of MP5? Lengthy RFC

On some machines the update caused bluescreens. I discovered that some
machines were running very old firmware and drivers. After updating all
this, none of the machines bluescreened. On media servers this is
specifically very urgent. I convinced this customer to run the Veritas
driver install utility on all master- and media servers. After the
complete update we noticed that also some minor problems were gone, like
a very notorious VxIO message. The event viewers were as empty as they
never were.

I must admit that I am an update fetishist, always want to run as much
as possible on the latest firmware/driver/software. This project only
firmed up my beliefs regarding updates. The fact that you are still on
SP3 for some machines is more worrying to me than the possible averse
effects of the upgrade. SP3 is no longer supported by Microsoft, I had
to turn down several customer problems because I had no way of
escalating to Microsoft. They simply would not accept the case! Which,
again, made sense, because in most cases the problem was indeed solved
by updating. Take the release notes for W2KSP4, NBUMP4 and NBUMP5,
combine all relevant fixes, and you wonder how you ever survived running
on SP3/MP3. Throw all the release notes for your firmware and drivers
into the mix and you whished you'd had a proper job.

The only thing better than a blind update is first testing all updates
in your test environment. How many of my customers do have a relevant
test environment, specially now with the expensive SAN solutions? Almost
none. And the ones that pretend to have a relevant test environment
don't spend enough time on it so their tests are almost never relevant.

Most troublesome changes in W2K SP4, as far as my experience goes, have
to do with interaction with storage hardware, specifically if you are
working with a SAN. Make a good decision about which drivers you are
going to use, Storport, MiniPort, etc. The wrong driver can ruin your

Oh, one last reminder: also install all the post-SP4 hotfixes.



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