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Champion
Champion

Check Point Major vs. Minor releases

Check Point classifies it's releases as either Major or Minor releases.

Major releases contain new functionalities.
Minor releases are maintenance releases that mostly contain fixes, stability improvements, support for newer appliance models and so on.

So how to identify them? The version numbers seem to go by an obvious scheme: RMAJOR.MINOR

Well, it's not that easy and depends on the Check Point ressource you look at:

Also Check Point Endpoint Security goes by version numbers EMAJOR.MINOR while releases for scalable platforms just add a SP to the end of the R number. And don't forget the SMB releases!

Therefore I spoke to Check Point's Professional Service. This is the current overview about all supported, non-SMB, R releases available:

Major R80 R80.20SP R80.30SP
Minor (base) (base) (base)
R80.10  
R80.20
R80.30
R80.40
7 Replies
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Employee++
Employee++

@Danny ,

There is indeed a confusion here in the R80.x releases, We will work on unifying it and make it clearer.

From the resources you mentioned above please use the following 2 which state the same (accurate) data

Check Point's Releases Terminology

Check Point's Support Life Cycle Policy

 

Which is:

MajorMinor
R80R80.10
R80.20R80.30,R80.40

 

Thanks,

Release Management Team

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Champion
Champion

@Jake_Loots : Maybe you want to add to this as in your 'Upgrading to R80' PS training R80.20 is mentioned as a Minor release?

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Hi Danny,

indeed very confusing. But thanks for the feedback, just added the slide below into our Training material:

 

R80 history and versions

Major Version General Availability Affected Versions Support Until
Check Point R80.20 September 2018 R80.20, R80.30, R80.40 September 2022
Check Point R80 May 2017 R80, R80.10 May 2021

 

  • R80 is the major release
    • R80.10 is a minor release under it
  • R80.20 is a major release
    • R80.30 and R80.40 are minor releases under it
  • This will be improved in the future to be more clear
  •  

Christian

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Admin
Admin

Worth noting that the forthcoming R81 release was originally going to be released as R80.50.
By naming it R81, it’s much clearer it’s a major release.

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Authority
Authority

Nice summary indeed @Danny  just like licenses - once you finally think you have learnt them and understand the usage, marketing releases whole new set of them and eliminates old ones 🙂

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If definition of Major release is that Major release contains new functionalities, than also R80.40 should be marked as Major, as starting from R80.40 we have CoreXL automatic distribution - which is in fact new functionality.

The same applies for Jumbo hotfixes. In some of them, NEW features are introduced.

In short, my understaning of Major vs Minor release is:

Major release upgrade will require downtime (Major cluster member goes into Ready state).

Minor release upgrade does not require downtime (Minor cluster member goes into Standby state).

Kind regards,
Jozko Mrkvicka
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Employee+
Employee+

Hi all, 

My name is Tsahi Etziony, I am the Director of Product Operations at Check Point, and I'd like to explain.

We are aware that for quite some time there is a mixup between major upgrades, minor upgrade and Jumbos. starting R80.40 and the upcoming release of R81, we are trying to make thing clearer with the enforcement of the numbering convention - a major release version number will be an integer (i.e. R81) and a minor release number will be a fraction (i.e. R81.10). So now you'll be able to easily distinguish between major an minor versions. 

The most important difference between major and minor versions is the support duration which is based on the major releases and can be viewed here.

As for the content and the upgrade considerations:

Both major versions and minor versions include new features and content - we always strive to introduce new features and capabilities, and every new version contains novelties. Jumbos also may contain new features, but with our careful consideration in order to minimize changes in behavior and any risks to the customer's environment. This is because we see it is as highly important for every customer to always be aligned to the latest GA jumbo, no matter what version is installed, even the most conservative customers. 

The upgrade process to major and minor versions is the same - CPUSE creates a new root partition where the new version is installed, and the configuration is copied from the old version to the new one. This ensures that any installation failure or problems with the new versions can be easily reverted by returning to the older root partition which is kept as a snapshot. There is downtime, since a reboot is always needed, but cluster upgrades can keep the system up with no downtime. 

 

Hope this help. I'd be happy to elaborate more if needed. 

 

Tsahi

 

 

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