We are excited to announce an update to the Flow release strategy. We realize that some customers like to take advantage of newer features at an accelerated pace, so we are introducing a new release type called ‘Preview Release’(PR). Preview releases allow us to deliver new capabilities to our customers at a faster pace. Customers get early access to upcoming product innovations, enabling them to test functionality and to provide feedback which can be incorporated in a subsequent release. Preview releases should be installed in test environments for exploring new features and providing feedback. Upgrades from previous LTS and preview releases will not be supported. Unlike traditional releases, PRs don’t have maintenance releases. Defect fixes will be available in a subsequent release.
With the addition of this new release type, we will now have 4 distinct types of release outlined below.
- Long Term Support Release (LTS)
LTS Releases are Major or Major.Minor (e.g. 10.0 LTS, 10.1 LTS) versions, typically released every 6 months. An LTS Release is identified by the LTS suffix. An LTS release is supported for a minimum of 18 months. Customers will continue to have access to two actively supported LTS Releases.
- Maintenance Release (MR)
New MR versions are Major.Minor.Maintenance (e.g. 10.0.1, 10.0.2) versions, released approximately every 3 months, or sooner if needed. MR releases are supported as long as their parent LTS Major.Minor version is actively supported (e.g. 10.0). An MR release typically contains defect fixes, and does not contain DB schema changes.
- Hotfix Release (HR)
Hotfix Releases are released on an as-needed basis to address specific customer situations. Hotfixes are typically issued to address critical defects, which can cause production outages, security issues or have a severe negative impact on customers. They can be made available on any supported LTS or MR as needed. Typically, the next MR or LTS release will absorb these changes so a customer can move past the hotfix release by upgrading to a later version.
- Preview Releases (PR)
New PR versions are date based (e.g. 2020.01 PR, 2020.03 PR) versions, released roughly every 1-2 months. This rapid schedule allows us to deliver new features at a faster pace. PR will not receive MR releases (maintenance releases) or hotfixes. Instead, defect fixes and features will be made available in a subsequent PR release. New features introduced in PR releases are subject to change. It is recommended to use LTS in production environments and use PR in a test environment to provide feedback on new features.