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McAfee on premises product release cycle
Technical Articles ID:   KB51560
Last Modified:  10/29/2019
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Environment

McAfee on premises products

Summary

IMPORTANT: McAfee troubleshoots and investigates issues for supported product versions, regardless of the current update level. Be aware, part of the troubleshooting and resolution process can involve applying the most current product update. 

If the resolution requires us to create a hotfix, the hotfix is based on the code for the most recent product update and requires you to apply the update.

Product Release Cycle
Security moves fast and McAfee wants our customers to be protected. Constant updating is costly. We have moved to a predictable, regular cadence—the second Tuesday of the month—so you can plan and prepare for updates to keep your environments protected. The monthly cadence does not mean that every product has a release every month. It means that when a product releases, it is on the second Tuesday of the month.

NOTE: Sometimes, McAfee might choose to release a product on a day other than the second Tuesday of the month. Examples include coverage for a critical incident or vulnerability that is important to customers. 

The monthly cadence reduces the number of independent updates and provides more coordination of product interoperability. Release types include: 
  • Major and minor releases – Major and minor releases include a combination of fixes, new features, and architectural changes.
  • Updates (formerly known as patches) – An update is a rollup of fixes needed by most of the customer base. They are not used to introduce changes such as new features, architecture changes, or schema changes. Updates are released on our standard monthly cadence. This schedule does not mean that each product releases an update every month. The product teams decide how frequently they release updates. Updates are also used to provide operating system support, for example, zero-day support for a Microsoft Windows 10 Update release. In this case, the update might be released outside of the second Tuesday cadence to provide zero-day support.
  • Hotfixes – Hotfixes are used for urgent fixes for a targeted set of customers. Hotfixes are sometimes publicly available before the normal release cadence. These releases only apply when the hotfix contains a fix for a critical issue or vulnerability that might impact multiple customers.
McAfee product software, upgrades, maintenance releases, and documentation are available from the Product Downloads site at: http://www.mcafee.com/us/downloads/downloads.aspx.

NOTE: You need a valid Grant Number for access. KB56057 provides additional information about the Product Downloads site, and alternate locations for some products.

Support FAQs
Technical Support helps customers who have issues with any update level of the product. But, for any issue that requires a code change, only the latest update or next update receives that code change. Hotfixes are built only for the latest update, and only in response to high-severity cases where no viable workaround exists. Hotfix code will be included in the next update.
 
What can I expect from Technical Support?
Technical Support often advises customers to test issues against the current or latest update, if the reported incident occurs in an environment using an older update.

NOTE: It is best practice to run the latest update in your environment, because the latest update contains the latest fixes available for the product. Confirming that an issue exists with the latest update is also valuable to help understand the nature of an issue. 
 
Why must I stay current?
Update releases solve business-impacting product issues reported from the field. They might also provide operating system support, and improve product security to combat malware and malicious users. Failure to update the product regularly increases risk to your environment.
 
How do I stay current?
Notifications are sent to customers through the Support Notification Service (SNS), to inform them when new releases are available. You can sign up for the Support Notification Service at https://www.mcafee.com/enterprise/en-us/sns/preferences/sns-form.html.
 
McAfee expects to follow Microsoft Windows release schedules to maintain support for newer operating system platforms. It is advisable to plan for, and test the adoption of, a new update when it becomes available. You can download updates from the following locations:
NOTE: If needed, you can obtain older updates from Technical Support.

Are system restarts needed?
We make every effort to minimize the number of reboots, but updating certain low-level drivers might require a reboot to fully deploy them.

Are monthly updates cumulative?
Yes.

Is there an upgrade path?
Specific upgrade information is provided in the product release notes.

Previous Document ID

614038

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