Procedures for Scheduled Maintenance on Production Windows Servers


For scheduled activities/outages to production infrastructure that impact, or potentially impact, a significant number of users, the following procedures should be followed to ensure proper notification and coordination. 

If there is uncertainty about whether a planned activity falls under these procedures, please check with the manager of the affected service before proceeding.  


  1. Those requesting the activity/outage should submit a request to the manager or designee of the affected service.  This should be done at least 1 week prior to the activity/outage, unless in the case of emergencies.

  2. Those requesting the activity/outage should subsequently hold a meeting or discussion with the manager of the service affected.
    (e.g., Business Services manager - Clarice Rinard
             Web Services manager - Dennis Wisinski
             Windows Services manager - Andrea Chan)

    The managers of the services are responsible for discussing the outages with their respective user communities.

  3. Any activity/outage that impacts a significant number of users should normally be scheduled to begin after 7 p.m., and end before 6 a.m. during the work week.  Activities with major, or potentially major impact should be scheduled on Friday evening to lessen the chance of disrupting the next workday.  Measures should be taken to limit the activity/outage to as small a window as needed.

    In addition, for services affecting Business Services, avoid disruptions potentially affecting Payroll, BSD Month End processing, and BSD Fiscal Year End processing. These processes occur 4 days prior to each payday, 3 days prior to and including the last working day of the month, 5 days following and including the first working day of the month, and the final 3 weeks of September every year. 
    e.g., in November this would mean 11/1 - 11/7, 11/16 - 11/21, 11/28 - 11/30, and 12/7.

    See the Payroll 2002 schedule (and more BSD information).

  4. After approval for the proposed activities, the manager or designee should send out notifications to the affected user community at least 2 days in advance (via comp-out, and focused e-mail lists).  For major activities potentially affecting the entire site, notice should be given at least 7 days in advance.

  5. Emergency activities/outages that require bypassing the normal procedures should be discussed with the manager or designee of the affected service beforehand.



Best Practices for Applying Service Packs, Hotfixes and Security Patches


November 21, 2001