JanPie
Intrepid explorer

Automatic upgrade of agents experiences

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Hello Everyone,

Recently we upgraded our on-premise FNMS installation to 2019R2 from 2018R2 version, and I was interested in the functionality of automatic agent upgrades.

In the past we used to perform installations/upgrades using 3rd party tools, but since this automatic upgrade doesn't require any level of access on target, it looks like very convenient way to do it and huge time saver.

Can anyone who used this functionality share their experience? Should we have any concerns or it went smoothly?

Kind regards,

Jan

1 Solution

Hi @JanPie ,

What happens during the background is that in effect, once an agent is marked as due for upgrade e.g. you configure that Windows agents should use 12.4 version as an example, during the policy update the installation agent service will check the current version and if it's no 12.4 then the upgrade package will be downloaded and executed.

At that point the agent stops all running services to ensure that no new tasks are started, it then waits for the tasks such as inventory, uploads etc to finish and then will upgrade the agent components and restart the services.

As a result, no restart is required and the impact on CPU is similar to other tasks.

 

You can't schedule the upgrade at this time, nor can the policy run time be scheduled, you can only modify the time that inventory agent scans occur which is separate to this.

You can set only specific Operating Systems to upgrade so I would recommend doing one OS at a time if you're going down this route.

There are enhancements in place to improve the targeting and scheduling so if this is something you're interested in, I'd raise a support case and ask to raise an enhancement around more control over upgrade time on agents and ask it to be linked to the larger targeting and scheduling work.

(Anything expressed here is my own view and not necessarily that of my employer, Flexera)
If the solution provided has helped, please mark it as such as this helps everyone to know what works.

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10 Replies
mrichardson
Flexera
Flexera

Hi @JanPie ,

I know that in the past, one regular bit of feedback from customers is that automatic upgrades were not used as you couldn't control them at a per OS level.

 

This has now been added in 2019 R2 to allow you to control which version is rolled out and will hopefully make this process smoother.  I will keep an eye on this thread as I'm interested to see what feedback and challenges everyone has in this area.

(Anything expressed here is my own view and not necessarily that of my employer, Flexera)
If the solution provided has helped, please mark it as such as this helps everyone to know what works.
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Hi @mrichardson,

I did some testing on my own and it seems to have worked quite seamlessly. I'd like to give it a try on bigger scale, but there are some concerns form server owners.

Is there any documentation where I could read what exactly happens in the background during such upgrade?

+ it's related to previous question, but are there any risks to server performance and continuity (like unwanted restart or spike in cpu usage)

if above is true, is there any way to schedule an upgrade at a specific time (as I understand it's approx time of policy download)?

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Hi @JanPie 

there is online help document which will provide details on the Agent version Auto upgrade and please refer to the below link and see if it helps.

https://helpnet.flexerasoftware.com/FlexNetManagerSuite2019R2/EN/WebHelp/index.html#tasks/FIA-Versio...  

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Hi @JanPie ,

What happens during the background is that in effect, once an agent is marked as due for upgrade e.g. you configure that Windows agents should use 12.4 version as an example, during the policy update the installation agent service will check the current version and if it's no 12.4 then the upgrade package will be downloaded and executed.

At that point the agent stops all running services to ensure that no new tasks are started, it then waits for the tasks such as inventory, uploads etc to finish and then will upgrade the agent components and restart the services.

As a result, no restart is required and the impact on CPU is similar to other tasks.

 

You can't schedule the upgrade at this time, nor can the policy run time be scheduled, you can only modify the time that inventory agent scans occur which is separate to this.

You can set only specific Operating Systems to upgrade so I would recommend doing one OS at a time if you're going down this route.

There are enhancements in place to improve the targeting and scheduling so if this is something you're interested in, I'd raise a support case and ask to raise an enhancement around more control over upgrade time on agents and ask it to be linked to the larger targeting and scheduling work.

(Anything expressed here is my own view and not necessarily that of my employer, Flexera)
If the solution provided has helped, please mark it as such as this helps everyone to know what works.

View solution in original post

jasonlu
Intrepid explorer

@JanPie 

I've recently performed this type of agent upgrade for a customer.

As long as the existing agents are reporting in correctly, there generally isn't a problem.

Issues usually stem from:

1) If you are using https, or if you are changing from http to https. Don't change protocols while upgrading agents,

2) networking connectivity issues, in which case the agent will probably not be reporting anyway,

3) Getting a blanket change request approved for ALL computers of a given platform.

 

The actual upgrade mechanism of the agent I haven't seen break. Its all the stuff around it.

 

 

 

 

joshua_neadow
Occasional contributor

we are getting an issue where the upgrade occurs and all of the exe files go missing.  upgrading from 13.2 to 16.0.1

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Can you explain some more detail. Are you trying auto upgrade ?
joshua_neadow
Occasional contributor

yes, have 3 windows devices that we are testing the auto upgrade feature on.  We have enabled upgrade only targeting those devices.  Per the logs, it checks in for policy updates and grabs the upgrade package.  It executes the package.  Yet, when we review the results of the upgrade, NDtrack.exe is missing, as well as others now.

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Can you verify in your beacon if it has all required files from below location. It should have 7 item in Upgrade for managed devices folder

C:\ProgramData\Flexera Software\Staging\Common\Packages\Flexera\Upgrade\16.0.1\Rev1.0
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