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I am upgrading Sitecore 8.2 to Sitecore 9.3 and I have followed the database upgrade approach in my developer machine using dev databases. Now We have multiple environments (Test, QE, UAT, Prod) and each environment has own data. I want to upgrade all the environment databases.

I have followed the below steps in my local environment to upgrade the databases:

  1. Extracted the database upgrade scripts from the Database Upgrade Script.zip file
  2. Executed the script individually on top of Sitecore 8.2 core database, master database and web database CMS_core_master_web8x.sql
  3. Executed the script on top of Sitecore 8.2 core database CMS_core.sql
  4. After doing a database upgrade, Installed the 9.3 Upgrade package on top of the Sitecore 8.2 instance to upgrade databases
  5. Installed a clean 9.3 environment, replaced the core/master databases there with the upgraded ones.

I would like to understand how to upgrade the databases in higher environment. Do I need to follow all the above steps in each environment?.

Anyone help on this. I would like to know a better approach.

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Any database upgrade script has a potential to change database schema, hence require exclusive table/database locks.

Obtaining an exclusive lock for database/table level cannot be guaranteed in heavily loaded environment (it will timeout).

If there is a sequence of SQL steps to be taken, upgrading schema for one table, while timing out for a different one will leave database in a logically corrupted state (f.e. no longer 9.0; not yet 10.1)

Therefore the only way I see is:

  1. Content freeze window
  2. Restoring DBs copies
  3. Upgrading copies (with no load)
  4. Changing connection strings in application

That way you'll be able to switch to older DBs in case of fire.

From past experience, xDB upgrade scripts were killing our shards. If it was for real prod, site would go down with no way back.

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