Upgrade a Single Server (Solo) Environment

This document provides high level processes for upgrading a single-server environment, in support of the recent addition of the latest generation AWS instance types such as M3s, C3s and C4s. These processes support upgrades from:

... for these instance types:

Tip: Use the tools and documentation (which are linked-to in the process steps) to save time.

There are two types of upgrades described here:

Simplest single-server (solo) environment upgrade

Note: This upgrade does not include the use of a maintenance page (so customers won't know why they cannot access your application).

This is the easiest method to upgrade a solo environment's instance type. This method includes stopping your app with no maintenance page; therefore it is not recommended in all circumstances. You need to decide the best method for your own situation.

To upgrade your application's instance type

  1. Check the environment status:

  2. Snapshot your environment.

    This will help the termination process go faster when you stop the environment.

  3. Verify the snapshot.
  4. Stop the environment.

    Note: At this point the application cannot be accessed and there is no maintenance page. (Customers will see messages like "Webpage not available" or "Gateway timeout".)

  5. Boot the environment:

    • Select Custom Configuration to upgrade the instance type and size.
    • Select the proper IP address for the environment.
    • Select the most recent snapshot to boot the volume from.
    • Boot the configuration.
  6. Verify that your application is working as expected.

Single-server (solo) environment upgrade using dump and restore

This is a relatively easy, medium-downtime method to upgrade a solo environment's instance type by using a dump and restore. This method includes maintenance page and IP swap tools.

To upgrade your application's instance type using dump and restore

  1. Check the environment status:

  2. Create a new single-server environment with the instance type and size you need.
  3. Test your application on the new environment.
  4. Enable the maintenance page for both the old and new environments.
  5. Stop the application; also stop any workers, background and cron jobs.

    Ensure there are no remaining database connections.

  6. Dump and compress the database from the old environment.
  7. Restore the database to the new environment.

    You might also need to rsync assets over to your new instance.

  8. If you must retain the EIP, swap the IP address from your old to new environment.

    By default, the swap IP tool automatically puts both environments into maintenance mode during the swap; it takes them out of maintenance mode after (unless there is an error).

  9. Perform a sanity test on your new environment with the restored data.


You might have these questions about upgrades.

Do I need to do all this for weekly cookbook / stack upgrades?

No; minor weekly upgrades have the same upgrade process as usual: Click Upgrade on your environment.

More information

This table provides other resources related to upgrades.

For more information about... See...
Upgrade intro and overview Upgrade Guide
Multiple server environment upgrades Upgrade a Multiple Server Environment
Simple upgrades from v2 to v4 Simple Upgrade from Engine Yard Gentoo 2009 (stable-v2) to 12.11 (stable-v4)
Complex upgrades from v2 to v4 Upgrade from Engine Yard Gentoo 2009 (stable-v2) to 12.11 (stable-v4) with Custom Chef
About AWS instances on Engine Yard About Instance Sizes
Supported AWS instances on Engine Yard Amazon Instance Type Support

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