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IBM Sterling B2B Integrator v5.2.6 End of Support and upgrading to IBM Certified Containers (Part II)

By Nikesh Midha posted Tue February 02, 2021 07:09 AM



In this two part blog post series we will outline the path to upgrade to IBM Certified Containers. In the first part we covered the Benefits of using Containers. In this second part, we will talk about the upgrade process.

With IBM Sterling B2B Integrator v5.2.6 scheduled for End of Support in September 2021, it’s the right time to start evaluating and preparing for application upgrade(s) to the latest product version.

IBM Certified Containers v2.0, released as part of the recent major product version release v6.1 in September 2020, supports the latest and greatest platform stack including Red Hat OpenShift 4.x, Helm 3.1.x and Kubernetes >=1.14.6.


What’s new in IBM Sterling B2B Integrator Certified Containers v6.1 release?
This release comes with support for a new product installation paradigm in the form of Certified Containers which now can be installed on a containerized platform providing significantly savings on operational cost and time. This install option is open to customers upgrading from 5.2.6.x and looking to install the product on the latest available cloud technology stack and tools. It delivers the following capabilities: 

  • Red Hat certified Sterling B2B Integrator container images with base OS as Red Hat Universal Base Image (UBI) 7.8
  • IBM certified Helm charts for enterprise-grade, secure and production editions
  • Support for latest technology platform stack including Red Hat OpenShift 4.x, Helm 3.2.x and Kubernetes >=1.14.6
  • Dynamically auto-scaling application nodes/containers based on resource metrics
  • Dynamic auto-scaling for select protocol adapters
  • External purge support with containers
  • Docker container support for external perimeter server
  • Self-Healing capabilities enabled with multiple replicas, graceful recovery and health monitoring using liveness and readiness probes

Know more about Modernizing and Scaling your Enterprise Software Solutions Across Multiple Environments with IBM Certified Containers on Red Hat® OpenShift®

Upgrading to v6.1 Certified Container release
You can upgrade from Sterling B2B Integrator v5.2.6 version to v6.1 Certified Container release. As part of the upgrade to Certified Containers, the existing database is upgraded to the latest version of the application and the application is deployed on a container platform as per the specified configuration.

Before proceeding you must plan and prepare for an upgrade in the same way you prepare for an installation. Please note it is recommended that you test this process thoroughly in a test or development environment before you implement in a production environment.

Plan for upgrade

Planning for an upgrade requires you to check for system requirements and compatibility before you proceed with the upgrade process.

  • Customizations:You must compile a list of customizations and custom integrations configured in the current setup and plan for their migration to a Certified Container deployment.


Before you upgrade Sterling B2B Integrator, you must complete these prerequisite tasks:

  1. Ensure the Kubernetes version is >= 1.14.6 and beta APIs are enabled
  2. Ensure the Helm version >= 3.2.x
  3. Ensure that one of the supported database servers (Oracle/DB2/MSSQL) is installed and the database is accessible from inside the cluster
  4. Download the v6.1 Certified Container images as per the steps documented here
  5. If required, ensure that a supported MQ Server version (IBM MQ or ActiveMQ Server) is installed and accessible from inside the cluster
  6. Create a persistent volume with access mode as 'Read Only Many' and place the database driver jar, JCE policy file, key store and trust store files in case of an SSL connection to database or MQ server in the mapped volume location
  7. Create secrets with requisite confidential credentials for system passphrase, database, MQ server and Liberty. You can use the given configuration files under the helm charts pak_extensions/pre-install/secretdirectory
  8. When installing the chart on a database on an older release version ensure that enableparameter is set to true and dataSetup.upgrade parameter is set as true along with env.upgradeCompatibilityVerified equal to true in the helm chart configuration. This upgrades the given database tables and metadata to the latest version

Have a detailed look at the Prerequisites before you upgrade Sterling B2B Integrator.

Upgrading the software
After you have planned the upgrade and completed the prerequisite tasks, you are ready to upgrade Sterling B2B Integrator.
For detailed steps, see Upgrading the software



Sterling B2B Integrator Certified Container v6.1 offers easier and faster single click install and upgrades, rolling upgrades, better serviceability and monitoring, faster application start up times, resiliency and self-healing capabilities, auto scaling application run times along with highest levels of security on a cloud platform of your choice or on-premise. With these benefits it becomes the de-facto choice for an upgrade from older versions of the product.