The Difference Between Updates and Patches
When software modifications are needed, Mentor Graphics ships completely qualified software updates. Typically, updates include modifications that affect more than five percent of a product's user base. Software updates are shipped on CD-ROM to customers immediately after qualification, and often may be downloaded directly from SupportNet.
Alternatively, some product divisions provide software updates on a regularly scheduled basis. Check with the product-specific web site on SupportNet for more detailed information.
A more isolated resolution for a deficiency in the software is referred to as a patch, which is a quick way of resolving the problem.
The Two Types of Patches
There are two types of patches: Engineering Patch and Fully-Qualified Patch.
- An Engineering Patch is a restricted distribution patch. Due to the potential risk with this accelerated patch, it isn't available on SupportNet. Typically, few customers require this type of patch due to the specific-use model or customization that warrants the need for this type of controlled fix. Engineering patches have two levels of verification, depending on the urgency and complexity of the patch:
- The patch is tested against the specific test case for the Defect Report.
- The patch is tested as above and subject to additional verification using a subset of the appropriate regression tests.
- A Fully-Qualified Patch is a general distribution patch. Fixes included in this type of patch typically affect the general, support customer-base for the applications involved. Fully-qualified patches are available with your normal login to SupportNet. Notices of new patches are sent in the SupportPro technical newsletter. Fully-qualified patches are tested as follows:
- Each fix is tested against the specific Defect Report.
- The appropriate set of regression tests is run and evaluated.
- The appropriate set of interactive tests is completed, which may include design process flow testing.
To Get a Patch
Fully-qualified patches can generally be downloaded from SupportNet. Use your normal SupportNet login when the "User Name" and "Password" prompts appear. Notice of new patches is provided as part of SupportPro technical newsletter.
To Install a Patch
Installation procedures differ depending on the application and the format of the patch or upgrade. Information and detailed installation procedures are provided in the README file and installation instruction files that accompany the patch.
When You Experience a Problem
You may register a Defect Report in one of several ways:
- Call your local SupportCenter
- Log a Service Request (SR) online
- If you are registered for this service, log a call via SupportEmail.
As always, Mentor Graphics will work with you to assure timely resolution by providing a workaround, patch or software update.