I have two related announcements. We released HiveOS and HiveManager version 6.6r1 this week. Links to the New Features Guide and the Release Notes are below. However, unless you need the new features or cannot wait for the bug-fixes introduced in this release, I am changing from my past behavior and advising that you hold off and not necessarily upgrade to this version of HiveOS immediately.
We have all heard the phrase “one size fits all”. That’s a fallacy, one size fits one, and all others get at best a poor fit. That’s true for hardware and software as much as for clothing. We have polled many of our customers (and I thank those of you who were chosen and who responded), and at the risk of oversimplifying things, you essentially are in one of two camps. One set prefers to set-and-forget their wireless infrastructure, you just want it to work and don’t think you need many if any new features beyond what we’ve already delivered. The other set actively manages your wireless infrastructure on a daily or other periodic basis, and many of you submit requests for new features to help you manage un-met needs. Rather than continue to force the ever-growing and ever-diverging Aerohive customer base into the “one size fits all” mentality, Aerohive is adopting a new release strategy that may be familiar to many of you from other long-established vendors.
We are embracing the concept of a “golden” release train and a “feature” release train. The basic idea is that going forward when/if you find and report a bug to us (or we find one during our own internal testing), we will check in the fixes to BOTH the “golden” release train AND the then-current “feature” release train. In the past we would usually only check in bug-fixes to what would now be considered the next “feature” release, forcing you to accept new features (and potentially new bugs) in order to get a fix for the problem that was bothering you. The goal now is to have one release train with a known and fixed feature-set that becomes increasingly stable over time, and another release train where we can introduce new features and capabilities, but also will occasionally (and unintentionally) introduce new bugs.
HiveOS 6.6r1 is the first of our new “feature” releases. In the next several weeks and months we will release HiveOS versions 6.5r2, 6.5r3, and further maintenance releases in the “golden” release train.
For those of you who have been long-term Aerohive customers, one of the most obvious changes you’ll notice is that where previously we would “fly the bee” to indicate the availability of every new feature release, now we will only do that for selected releases. These will typically be in the golden release train. The original intent for “flying the bee” was to inform all customers of a release to which we believe most customers will want to upgrade.
We will not fly the bee for HiveOS and HiveManager 6.6r1, even though it is available for you now. We will wait until the 6.5r3 release is available and will fly the bee at that time.
HiveManager version 6.6 will manage HiveOS devices running version 6.6, version 6.5, or earlier, including mixed versions of HiveOS.
HiveManager-NG does not (yet) support HiveOS 6.6. That is planned for later this summer, in a subsequent maintenance release to HiveOS 6.6.
Please do not interpret all of this as indicating I or anyone at Aerohive considers HiveOS 6.6r1 to be in any way unsuitable for your adoption. I have been running alpha and beta code in my own home and work environments for weeks. I would have allowed it to be commercially released if it had not met my and Aerohive’s quality goals.
Obviously, if our Technical Support organization suggests you use a specific version of HiveOS then their advice should be followed instead of my generic comments, because Tech Support will take into account the specifics of your environment, your particular problem(s), etc.
Product Manager, Aerohive