insights by infactory in-factory GmbH Upgrading Informatica PowerCenter

As promised in our last blog post about Informatica PowerCenter we will now continue giving you an detailed overview of some generic preconditions as well as some general recommendations and pitfalls for upgrading PowerCenter.

It is not meant to give a general order of steps to be executed (a “check list”). Too many of these steps depend on the actual environments and customer situations; it would be unprofessional to claim that such a simple check list existed which would prove helpful in more than 25% of all customer environments.

It is also not meant to be a reference of which option to use in what circumstance. To some extent such reference is available from the software vendor and can be found in two instances, first the manuals (publicly available for download) and second the public discussion and support forums (the so-called “Informatica Network” [INW], accessed via https://network.informatica.com). It is highly recommended to download the manuals (a collection of PDF files) from INW and have them at hand before planning an actual upgrade.

The article assumes basic working knowledge of PowerCenter and a bit of general IT knowledge.

Environment Considerations

This chapter talks a little about the surrounding of some PowerCenter installation.

Requirements for the Software Itself

PowerCenter is not simply installed on some server and used for whatever data warehouse must be filled. It is part of a fairly complex software infrastructure called the “Informatica Platform”.

The software installation consists of at least two parts, namely the server part and the client installation:

  • The server installation is available for AIX, Windows, and Linux (not z/Linux). Sun OS / Solaris is no longer supported.
  • The graphical clients (Designer, Workflow Manager, Workflow Monitor, and Repository Manager) are available solely for Windows.
  • There is also a so-called “Command-Line Client” (a stripped-down server installation) which may be installed on any supported operating system. It can be used, for example, in networks where some enterprise scheduling system runs on servers with a suitable operating system but without a full PowerCenter server installation.

PowerCenter can be used solely in conjunction with at least one DBMS system which hosts at least two databases (or database schemas, depending on the DBMS and the setup performed by the database administrators). One of these databases is used for the so-called “Informatica Domain” (refer, for example, to the respective blog post hosted by in-factory), the other database(s) is/are used for PowerCenter repositories.

Informatica publishes exact information about the operating systems, hardware platforms, and other software products supported for each version of PowerCenter on INW by means of Excel files. These can be found under the heading Product Availability Matrices (PAMs) and are sorted by product line and version number.

Each PAM lists all OS and DBMS versions supported for the Informatica Platform, PowerCenter, and all other components in this subject area. For example, it is exactly mentioned which versions of the DBMS published by Oracle, Microsoft, IBM, and so on are supported for each version of PowerCenter.

Furthermore the PAM for each version lists the supported Windows versions for the graphical clients.

N.B. It is important to stick to supported operating systems, DBMS versions, and so on. For example, while it may work to install the server part e.g. on Windows 10, at latest after a reboot of the Windows 10 machine the server part will most likely not start (or will work only erratically). Windows 10 is supported only for the graphical clients, not for server installations. Stick to the PAM. Always.

Want to know more? Continue with the next chapter Systems around PowerCenter by downloading the PDF file below!

Autor: Nico Heinze

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