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Author's profile photo Rob Verschoor

Sybase ASE’s version numbering goes the SAP way

Yesterday, the latest version of SAP Sybase ASE was released: ASE 15.7 SP100. This new ASE release brings you a bunch of interesting new features and improvements (check out the webcast on June 4th).

Right now I would like to draw your attention to a more mundane aspect, namely: the new version numbering scheme used by ASE.

The version string for my ASE server is: Adaptive Server Enterprise/15.7/EBF 21152 SMP SP100 /P/x86_64/Enterprise Linux/ase157sp100/3425/64-bit/FBO/Fri May  4 03:37:47 2013.

Observant readers will notice the “SP100” as looking somewhat unusual. That is correct: the previous ASE release was version “15.7 ESD#4.x”.This suggests that “ESD” has been replaced with “SP” — and that is exactly what happened.

Why is this, and what does this change mean for you?

To start with the last part, it actually means very little, and there is no impact on features, functionality or licensing.

The new version numbering scheme is simply more aligned with SAP terminology and that’s just the reason for the change.

Previously, a Sybase “ESD” release typically contained bug fixes as well as new features. The “ESD” concept has now been replaced with (or rather, renamed to) the SAP notion of “Service Pack” or “SP”.

An SP comes with a number (here, a 3-digit number) which increases over the lifetime of a major version (like 15.7). However, there is no guarantee that these numbers are consecutive, i.e. subsequent next ASE Service Packs could be numbered SP101, SP102 and SP103, but they could just as well be SP105, SP130 and SP150. Don’t bother searching for a deeper meaning here.

There can also be ASE releases containing only fixes. In the old Sybase parlance, such a release was also known as an “ESD”. In the SAP version numbering scheme, such a release may be called a “Patch Level”, or “PL”.

What has not changed is the fact that every ASE release is uniquely identified by its “EBF” number (21152 in the example above).

All clear?

Then go and download the new ASE 15.7 SP100 — it has lots of great new stuff in it.

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      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Is it possible to install SP100 in a same way as ESD are installed? From cover letter which is coming with SP 100:


          Determine the current ASE version compatiblitiy for upgrade. Run this isql


              1> select @@sbssav

              2> go

          Check if the @@sbssav number is in "sourcesps" property in the

          <install_image>/archives/ file. If it is, proceed with the

          following instructions.

          If this is a ONE-OFF type install, please make sure that the ASE server is

          the same SP level as this ONE-OFF. For example, an ASE 15.7 SP100 ONE-OFF

          can only be installed on top of an ASE 15.7 SP100 level installation

          unless otherwise stated.

          For previous versions of ASE, refer to the upgrade instructions in the ASE

          15.7 Installation Guide for your platform."

      So, what is variable @@sbssav?

      How can be concluded over which version, this SP 100 can be installed? For example, in 15.7.ESD 4.2 it is said that:

      "Determine the current ASE version. Run this isql query:

              1> select @@version

              2> go

          If the server is not running, get the version string by running:

              $SYBASE/$SYBASE_ASE/bin/dataserver -v

          If this shows that the ASE Server is a 15.7 based SMP Server, proceed with

          the following instructions."

      So, this is clear and usual way of telling where this EBF can be installed.

      For example. yesterday I had to decide to install ESD 15.7 4.2 or SP100, but I was not sure from cover letter is it safe to install SP100, so I have upgraded my client system to 4.2, although SP 100 brings lots more interesting and useful features.

      Author's profile photo Rob Verschoor
      Rob Verschoor
      Blog Post Author

      Nothing has really changed with respect to installing the SP100 release. If you like, you can think of it as "ESD#5" instead, which means you can install it on top of earlier 15.7 ESDs, just as you always could. It is perfectly safe.

      The reference to @@sbssav is just a more formal way of defining which earlier version you can install it on top of. @@sbssav was introduced in 15.7 GA but so far was not really discussed much, but you will find it exists in your previous 15.7 server.

      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Hello, where can I download the new version? There is no download for SP100 in the sap service market place and also in the new sap sybase portal?



      Author's profile photo Rob Verschoor
      Rob Verschoor
      Blog Post Author

      It is available in Service Marketplace, see the screenshot below (SP101 is also available now, use it rather than SP100).

      Go to, and go to "Software download & license keys" in the menu at the top of the page. Then navigate to "Sybase ASE" and "Sybase ASE Server 15.7".

      Author's profile photo Rajasekhar Ambati
      Rajasekhar Ambati

      As Rob mentioned, the newer version numbers look like say, 15.7 SP100 PL00, etc.

      Upgrading your server to a new version that uses SP/PL format, you definitely want to check for the @@sbssav and follow the instructions in the coverletter. While @@sbssav specifies the version number of your current ASE, sourcesps lists the old compatible sbssav numbers. You need to make sure that it matches.

      Starting from ASE 15.7 SP100 PL00, if you try to upgrade to a version that does not have the @@sbssav in the sourcesps, the upgrade will fail with a warning message:

      Warning: The current "Sybase Adaptive Server Enterprise Suite" in your destination directory is not compatible with this version upgrade; some bug fixes may be unavailable if you proceed.  See the release note for more information.

      Note: According to the SP100 README file:

          ASE 15.7 SP100 contains all fixes in previous ASE 15.7 releases up to and

          including ASE 15.7 ESD#4.2

      Hope that helps

      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Hello all!
      First of all, sorry, for my English..
      I don't share the Bob's optimism about safely upgrading one SyBase version to newest and about SyBase database in total.
      I couldn't downgrade 15.7 SP102 to 15.7 ESD 4.2 after upgrading it and I was forced to restore the database from backup. Then restored 15.7 ESD 4.2 version I updated to 15.7 SP50.
      It turned out that SP50 "is better" than SP102! If you are not satisfied shot dump after t-code GD12, read carefully the SAP Note 1894602 before making a decision to move to a different version.
      Now, all our SyBase databases, 15.7 SP50 version once of 2 month hungs with error: "infected with signal 11 (sigsegv)" in 3 differents modules.
      As expected, on a last week the Production system "has hanged" too.
      I found some CR lists with errors "infected with signal 11 (sigsegv)" for different version of ASE 15.7 (SP60, SP110, SP120) on I would like to know what lies ahead, how many different errors "infected with signal 11 (sigsegv)"  will be repaired and how many others unrepaired errors exists?

      Expect to fall productive system every two to three months?

      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Hello All,

      Read SAP Note 1898535 - SYB: SAP Sybase ASE service pack update compatibility

      about how the codelines are.

      Although it mentions a lot SAP BS on ASE stuff, the same codelines are applicable.

      - Hans

      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      I'd love to read the tech note, but it's over in the SAP Service Marketplace, which requires its own login/password. Hey Sybase, why isn't the note over here, where I can read it without jumping through hoops?

      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Is Syabse ASE available for IBM z-Series?

      Author's profile photo Dawn Kim
      Dawn Kim

      No Sybase ASE is not availbe for IBM z-series. This is the older Sybase Certification site: .
      On the Search By Platform pick your platform then pick the products that are available for that platform. ASE is not listed for the IBM z-series.