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IP4 a road to nowhere


GMIC
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Is it me but each successive release seems to bring on more issues. In Beta I could convert from 3.4.7 on my test board with no major issues just a few bugs. Now from RC4 to RC6 I can't even convert the same board as the installation does not complete. I made a very BIG mistake in updating my live board at RC3 to find that the same board which ran fine under Beta has major issues with images not loading. I am now in a BAD place, support seems to be non existent and overnight the CKeditor simply stopped loading despite not having implemented any changes. So my board in effect is useless no images and no posting capability. Having run successive boards with IPB for over 10 years I am not a newbie at this game, but I think I fell victim to the frustration that has pervaded most of us on this long road. I got impatient and took the plunge far too early. Now I am regretting that and looking at rolling back to 3.4.7 and losing three weeks of posts and probably a few members in the process. 

I am going to be frank at the end of the day and I know that this is my own fault for being impatient.  But the lack of support from customer services, combined with the ridiculous time that this has taken IPB to develop this mess of a product had severly dented my confidence in their software. I only hope 4.0 doesn't turn out to be the Windows Vista for this company.

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I completely agree with your sentiment. It's crazy how long IPB4 has taken - and it's still not finished! I've only updated one of my live forums to IPB4, and while there are many basic things that still doesn't work (like the profile photo cover) or is confusing (such as the post count) I really do enjoy using v4. It's such an improvement over IPB3 and it feels like IPS is slowly but surely going in the right direction. I just wished we had a stable version to use by now. :tongue:

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This is not apportioning blame on anyone. I am responsible for updating a live board with an RC product. The truth is however no matter how many times people bang out the mantra that you should not update a live board, without real world testing you are never going to get a finished product. It is all very well having a nice test board on a server no one looks at, but without interaction of members testing the software live, the product will never be finished. I waited throughout all the Beta software, testing it on test boards I even waited for a later RC release before upgrading.

My mistake and I admit it. But without those of us that have the impatience or fortitude to step forward this will never be a finished product.  Maybe I was trusting the software too much. What confounds me though is that now I cannot even get RC6 to do an upgrade on my 3.4.7 backup without a critical failure. It ias though we are taking steps backwards not forwards.

What I am raising is that having taken the plunge is  a lack of support. IPB rely on us to get this software finished, so support the guys who are taking the risks and finding the bugs and errors that are not discovered until live testing. Thats the whole point of transitioning from Beta to RC isn't it? I am a big supporter of this software and product, but I am feeling let down. I now have a live board where no one can post and most of the post images are not loading.

I have learnt a lesson, but I hope IPS is also learning lessons on development. 

 

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What I am raising is that having taken the plunge is  a lack of support. IPB rely on us to get this software finished, so support the guys who are taking the risks and finding the bugs and errors that are not discovered until live testing. Thats the whole point of transitioning from Beta to RC isn't it? I am a big supporter of this software and product, but I am feeling let down. I now have a live board where no one can post and most of the post images are not loading.

I have learnt a lesson, but I hope IPS is also learning lessons on development.

 

​Well, i tested since they released the pre-releases. i started a new community duing the beta (thought it was beta3) and upgraded my 3.x-sites during the RC.

There really was some bad Releases, but i als keeped a LKG (Last known Good) before every update. So, after i upgraded a site, i checked if the most important things are working fine and if there was Major Problems, i restored the LKG. Most problems on my installations was fixed ASAP by IPS Staff, if i decided to stay with the upgraded Version and got some minor Problems (or waited for the next release - they oulled them nearly weekly :) )

It took some time to get things stable, but i think they are near their Goal now.... Normal developmentcycle.

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RC's mean limited support, IPS even states this. You can't be angry at them for you being impatient or not taking precautions of a backup of your 3.4.7 instance before upgrading ;) 

I would love to upgrade but I'm waiting for a stable release prior. Until then I am helping IPS with beating up on the product in a test instance.

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If you guys have a Big Company, will you install on it RC versions of Windows? RC versions of Office?

We need to think a little bit about it. If you want stability, you can only install Final Versions. Many Companys even only install 1 or 2 versions after the Final.

You can't come here and say that the blame is of Invision. There is only one person to blame, the one that installed an RC Version in a Production Site.

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​This is new for IPS4. I use IP.Board since 2.3.2 and all RCs were fully supported.

Unfortunately, things change. Have to be current and can't blame it on "oh, that's how it used to be"

IMO though the "limited support" still has been great with the issues I've had.

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You have to bear in mind its a complete rewrite (not the same way 2x to 3x) and its several products in effect ie core / forum app / gallery app etc etc. This in itself is quite a feat as although in theory core is separate in 3x, if you forcibily try to install core(ie system)/members and no forum you will have some interesting issues. I know I've done that.

The open RC nature allows all those who want to participate and test / upgrade to do so, instead of a closed group ie the internal QA team.

Its only by 'real world' testing that issues are found and corrected. Although upgrading this site as its relatively large did greatly (imo) help you cannot beat 'real world'

As far as I'm aware IPS will assist with install / upgrade issues with the RC, the broken editor / post issue does sound quite concerning, I would suggest a ticket if you have not already to see if anything can be done for you with this.

 

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I agree with this part:

 IPB rely on us to get this software finished, so support the guys who are taking the risks and finding the bugs and errors that are not discovered until live testing

All of you guys who say "it's your fault that you upgraded so early" don't realize that there are bugs that can't be found until the software is tested on a really large board. And someone who has such board will have to deal with them anyway and it won't matter if they do it during the RC stage or wait for the final, those bugs will still be there.

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I agree with this part:

All of you guys who say "it's your fault that you upgraded so early" don't realize that there are bugs that can't be found until the software is tested on a really large board. And someone who has such board will have to deal with them anyway and it won't matter if they do it during the RC stage or wait for the final, those bugs will still be there.

​True. I remember when IPS said on preview board that tests were very well and probably would release alpha/beta in weeks or so. So I said that the problems would begin right after the release of Alpha/Beta versions. Some users laughed at me, after all had six months of preview board... real problems comes with real usage.

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But the lack of support from customer services, combined with the ridiculous time that this has taken IPB to develop this mess of a product had severly dented my confidence in their software. I only hope 4.0 doesn't turn out to be the Windows Vista for this company.

​This is obviously nonsense. Considering this is at RC stage I've been very happy with the diligent support I've had from IPS.

Now for the lecture and I'll be candid: There is an unspoken understanding between customer and software vendor when major upgrades are underway and this is why I'm personally happy to participate in live RC testing (even Beta testing if I have the time) and that is that you find the bugs and IPS will do their best to support you in return for that i.e. it's a symbiosis. I think IPS excel in this regard. However, no one held a gun to your head and made you upgrade, and it was made clear from the outset that non-critical issues would have to wait, so basically live with it and save your keybard energy for the bug tracker, this is what you bought into by upgrading to an RC.

IMO IPS4 is a big step in the right direction. It's also a vastly superior product, hence the development time.

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All of you guys who say "it's your fault that you upgraded so early" don't realize that there are bugs that can't be found until the software is tested on a really large board. And someone who has such board will have to deal with them anyway and it won't matter if they do it during the RC stage or wait for the final, those bugs will still be there.

​Am completely aware that there will be bugs on really large boards and really small boards that won't be found till people upgrade. BUT Unless you have an insane amount of time of your hands to detail and work with IPS on these bugs, know what you are doing and have an audience that is willing to wait and work with you through it, it should not be attempted. 

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I think some of the more serious issues are probably related to legacy quirks with boards that started out 10+ years ago on IPB <=2.x. One of the more serious issues on my board was posts being truncated on upgrade. A simple oddly encoded apostrophe appears to have caused the upgrader to barf and just drop the remainder of many posts.

I didn't expect IPS would support me with it but it seems they will by somehow using their skills to import those broken posts from an old backup of my board. I wouldn't have the skills to do that, and I imagine whoever takes that on at IPS is going to find it a frustrating endeavour. . . So I'm very grateful, and impressed, by IPS support. Very impressed indeed.

. . . It's that symbiosis I mentioned in action. My board catching that error means it won't happen to others.

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I took the plunge with eyes wide open. Of course I have backups of the 3.4.7 board and I am at the stage of reinstalling it, which is the last resort and not what I want to do. I have tried all sorts of things to resolve this myself including test installs from RC3 onwards of the 3.4.7 database with a view of transferring across all new posts since install. The trouble is I cannot get the 3.4.7 board upgraded successfully at all, to the point now with RC6 that the install just stops. Its great that IPS are supporting some of you, and its great that many of you have successfully upgraded.  

Now for the lecture and I'll be candid: There is an unspoken understanding between customer and software vendor when major upgrades are underway and this is why I'm personally happy to participate in live RC testing (even Beta testing if I have the time) and that is that you find the bugs and IPS will do their best to support you in return for that i.e. it's a symbiosis. I think IPS excel in this regard. However, no one held a gun to your head and made you upgrade, and it was made clear from the outset that non-critical issues would have to wait, so basically live with it and save your keybard energy for the bug tracker, this is what you bought into by upgrading to an RC.

I will also be candid. This is not a business for me it is a hobby and I don't  run a forum for money, thats why I took the risk. But I do have a large loyal community and I owe it to them to get this working again. Its great you are being supported on this. I raised this as a ticket on the 12th March and it was escalated to Tier II support on the 14th. I am still waiting for some meaningful support on this issue which is now critical, as I now have a board where no one can even post. You are probably right it is going to be a legacy issue from an old version, issues which are going to catch people out, even after final release. There are a few of us in similar boat, the bug tracker indicates that. I have spent hours trying to work around this installing reinstalling and trying different versions. I want 4.0 I do not want to go back to 3.4.7 !! 

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I don't want to be harsh on anyone, but let me say something:

 

- A Beta or RC version is not supposed to be a final release, and even final releases happen to have bugs. Therefore, you should weight the risks. If you don't want to risk your community, do not upgrade. If you did, don't blame anyone. 
- If you want to test, use a test pc at home or some non-important server.
- 4.0 i feel it's "spot on" on the right direction. That's why everybody seems so anxious to upgrade :)

My opinion: wait untill the final release. Avoid having lot's of work, headaches and upgrade issues. Enjoy life in the meantime.

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I don't want to be harsh on anyone, but let me say something:

 

- A Beta or RC version is not supposed to be a final release, and even final releases happen to have bugs. Therefore, you should weight the risks. If you don't want to risk your community, do not upgrade. If you did, don't blame anyone. 
- If you want to test, use a test pc at home or some non-important server.
- 4.0 i feel it's "spot on" on the right direction. That's why everybody seems so anxious to upgrade :)

My opinion: wait untill the final release. Avoid having lot's of work, headaches and upgrade issues. Enjoy life in the meantime.

​I agree with all of these. I'm anxious to upgrade, but I know the risks of doing it before the final version. Members are usually resistant to changes on the board, so I do not want to complicate things by something that is not fully ready, even in a release candidate state.

 

I'll probably even wait a month or so after the full version is out to add even more time for bugs to be sorted out. We all spend a lot of time developing these communities, no need to rush into anything that's not ready.

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