When can I start upgrading my Cisco CM subscribers?

Upgrading a rather large Communications Manager cluster I needed to upgrade all of the subscriber nodes at the same time.

The general rule still applies when upgrading a Cisco CM cluster – Publisher upgrades first and do not switch to upgraded partition.

Now there is a certain point during the publisher upgrade that I can actually start upgrading on all the subscribers in parallel. Be sure you have the proper compute and MHz reservation because you don’t want to overload all subscribers at once.

  1. SSH to your Publisher or get on the console
  2. List the install logs
    1. admin:file list install install_* date
    2. install_log_2014-04-
    3. dir count = 0, file count = 1
  3. Search the most recent install log for “PRODUCT_VERSION”
    1. file search install install_log_2014-04- PRODUCT_VERSION
      1. 04/06/2014 20:52:30 post_upgrade|PRODUCT_VERSION is|<LVL::Info>
      2. 04/06/2014 20:52:30 post_upgrade|PRODUCT_VERSION_DISPLAY is|<LVL::Info>
      3. Search completed
  4. When the file search command finds the PRODUCT_VERSION string in the install log, you can start the upgrade of the subsequent nodes.
    1. If you want to upgrade the subsequent nodes in parallel with the publisher node, do not choose the Reboot to upgraded partition on either publisher node or subsequent nodes while configuring the upgrade options. If selected, the publisher node may complete its upgrade and reboot while the subsequent nodes are upgrading, which causes the upgrade of the subsequent nodes to fail.

When you are ready to activate the new version, you must activate the new software on the publisher node before activating it on all other nodes.

Deployment is dead! User adoption and BYOE.

Deployment is dead. It is less about technology deployment and more about getting people to actually USE it. Get out of the clouds for a moment and think about how all of these clouds are transforming your user experience. A desktop is a desktop is a desktop and I don’t care if I consume a desktop from an Android, Mac, Chrome, Windows, or Linux.

So how do we as collaboration architects stop worrying about deployment and more about the user experience? First of all we need help from Cisco, Avaya, Google, and Microsoft. The user experience has to come first. The new generation workforce has very high expectations that things just WORK. Did Twitter, Facebook, Vine, or Instagram deploy themselves to the user community? No, it was very cool and users adopted it. Our workplace has always been a place of we’re going to deploy this desktop, with this office suite, with this phone and you’re forced to like it.

Enough already! Bring Your Own Everything – BYOE. Desktop, Mobile Device, Instant Messaging app, social sharing app, and web collaboration app. I’m not the first person to talk about BYOE and a few searches around the Internet and you’ll see other posts.

Have you looked at HTML5, WebRTC, VP9, and H.265? These things may not transform your business this year but be prepared Q4FY2014 and 2015.

Jabber and Expressway – Still in beta!

Quick post — The Cisco Expressway “Mobile and Remote Access” feature for Cisco Jabber is NOT officially supported by Cisco at the time of this post.

In fact only Jabber versions 9.6.1 will support “MRA” and the IOS+Android versions of 9.6.1 are still in BETA!

Just be aware that if you’re doing a Jabber deployment today we might see the Jabber 9.6.1 clients released by end of March. There are no official commitments on that date.

Cisco Finesse

I couldn’t figure out how to turn on finesse. It’s a CLI command and only permitted to change on the primary node.

Reminder – you cannot run both CAD and Finesse agents.

Cisco Finesse is a next-generation agent and supervisor desktop designed to provide a collaborative experience for the various communities that interact with your customer service organization. It helps improve the customer experience while offering a user-centric design to enhance customer care representative satisfaction as well.

Cisco Finesse provides:

  • A browser-based administration console and a browser-based desktop for agents and supervisors; no client-side installations required.
  • A single, customizable “cockpit”, or interface, that gives customer care providers quick and easy access to multiple assets and information sources.
  • Open web 2.0 APIs that simplify the development and integration of value-added applications and minimize the need for detailed desktop development expertise.
  • By default, Cisco Finesse Service is not activated during the initial component-activation phase or when the appropriate licenses are updated on a Unified CCX deployment.

Run utils uccx finesse activate command to activate Cisco Finesse Service on each Unified CCX node in a cluster.

“””Unified CCX 10.0(1) does not support concurrent use of Cisco Agent/Supervisor Desktop and Cisco Finesse.

  • If you are using Cisco Agent/Supervisor Desktop, deactivate Cisco Finesse service.Do you want to proceed? (yes/no)””” yes

    Cisco Finesse activation in progress…

    Cisco Finesse activated successfully.

    If this is a HA deployment, run this command on both Unified CCX nodes.


Configuration changes are permitted on only the primary server. Access to Finesse administration console on the secondary server is read-only.

When you attempt to save the changes in Finesse administration console on the secondary node, you receive a message that administration on the secondary node is read-only.

Cisco Collaboration Licensing – New Purchasing

This is more for my reference but maybe it’ll help you decipher a Cisco bill of materials. I was tired of opening the PDF. Please order UCSS and ESW.

Cisco Unified Workspace Licensing (UWL): Cisco Unified Workspace Licensing provides the most popular bundles of Cisco Collaboration applications and services in a cost-effective, simple package.

It includes soft clients, applications server software, and licensing on a per-user basis. Cisco Unified Communications Software Subscription (UCSS) is required to enable access to major software upgrades.

Cisco User Connect Licensing (UCL): A per-user based license for individual Cisco Unified Communications applications, that includes the applications server software, user licensing, and a soft client. Depending the type of device and number of devices that you require, User Connect Licensing is available in Essential, Basic, Enhanced, and Enhanced Plus versions. Cisco Unified Communications Software Subscription (UCSS) is recommended to enable access to major software upgrades.

Please notice the Enhanced PLUS – you can run a soft phone for every user and still maintain licensing compliance. 9.x and 10.x versions force licensing compliance. A soft phone IS A DEVICE.

Cisco User Connect Licensing for Cisco Unity Connection is available in the following option:

Basic Messaging (Voicemail): The Basic Messaging license includes rights to one Cisco Unity Connection user. The user has advanced voicemail access Internet Message Access Protocol [IMAP], unified messaging, phone, and web) and voice recognition. (If you are using voice recognition, you must order SpeechConnect ports separately.) SRSV

Enhanced Messaging (Voicemail): The Enhanced Messaging License includes all the capabilities of a Basic Messaging license + Survivable Remote Site Voicemail (SRSV). Enhanced Messaging licenses are included with Cisco Unified Workspace Standard and Professional licenses.