One of the key challenges that system operators face is to safely and reliably update their Azure Stack Hub infrastructure while providing highly available, mission-critical services to customers. Updates can range in scope from software to hardware across the core components of the system. Microsoft and Dell Technologies provide customers with the ability to update their infrastructure while ensuring that business applications, services, and workloads are highly available.
To ensure that updates are completed smoothly and efficiently, Dell Technologies provides tools that are on the HLH to update Dell Technologies software and firmware.
To simplify the Azure Stack Hub update process, Microsoft provides an Update Resource Provider and Updates functions in the Administration portal native to a multinode Azure Stack Hub deployment. The Updates function enables you to:
As an operator installs updates, they can view the high-level status as the update process iterates through various subsystems in Azure Stack Hub. Subsystems can include physical hosts, service fabric, infrastructure VMs, and services that provide both the administration and user portals.
Microsoft and Dell Technologies release update packages contain both a security- and non-security-related payload. Customers must keep their stamps current to maintain both security and functional environments.
Important: Maintenance operations can affect tenant workloads. We recommend that you notify users of the maintenance operation and that you schedule normal maintenance windows during nonbusiness hours as much as possible during the entire update process.
The patch and update process is a two-phase process:
Firmware patches and updates are installed first before running software patches and updates. For the correct order, or for any additional instructions for both the Microsoft and the Dell EMC updates, see the Dell EMC Integrated System for Microsoft Azure Stack Hub Patch And Update Installation Guide.
A key tenet of Azure Stack Hub is to maintain consistency with Azure cloud. To ensure this consistency, Microsoft and Dell Technologies recommend that operators keep Azure Stack Hub up-to-date with the latest updates. The stack must not be more than three months behind on updates to ensure timely support.
Note: The Dell EMC Patch and Update Automation tool is an end-to-end automated process for patching and updating the HLH. The process caters to an automated update of firmware, drivers, and operating system updates for the HLH. SU node firmware is updated through the Azure Stack Hub Administration Portal.