Planning your DataStax Enterprise Upgrade

The upgrade process for DataStax Enterprise (DSE) provides minimal downtime (ideally zero). During this process, upgrade and restart one node at a time while other nodes continue to operate online. With a few exceptions, the cluster continues to work as though it were on the earlier version of DataStax Enterprise until all of the nodes in the cluster are upgraded.

Factors to consider when planning an upgrade:

Reduce Risks

You can reduce risks and effort by employing a continual upgrade strategy to provide access to product improvements and new features and reduce version impacts. Ensure that you repair your nodes regularly. Node repair ensures that data on a replica is consistent with data on other nodes.

Repair Service

Repairing nodes can be done with the OpsCenter Repair service or nodetool repair.

OpsCenter Repair service nodetool Repair


DSE 6.8


Cassandra 2.1

Version Impacts

Upgrades are impacted by the version you are upgrading from and the version to which you are upgrading. The greater the gap between the current version and the target version, the more complex the upgrade.

Be sure to check driver compatibility. Depending on the driver version, you might need to recompile your client application code.

DataStax drivers come in two types:

  • DataStax drivers for DataStax Enterprise — for use by DSE 4.8 and later

  • DataStax drivers for Apache Cassandra® — for use by Apache Cassandra and DSE 4.7 and earlier

    While the DataStax drivers for Apache Cassandra drivers can connect to DSE 5.0 and later clusters, DataStax strongly recommends upgrading to the DSE drivers. The DSE drivers provide functionality for all DataStax Enterprise features.

DataStax Installer End-of-life (EOL)

The DataStax Installer is not supported starting with DSE 6.0. Because DSE 5.1 was installed with the DataStax Installer, you must first change from a standalone installer installation to a tarball or a package installation for the same DSE version before you can update to DSE 6.8 or later. See Upgrading to DSE 6.0 or DSE 6.7 from DataStax Installer installations.

Upgrade to the Latest Patch Release on your Current Version

When upgrading to a major version, first upgrade to the latest patch release on your current version. Fixes included in the latest patch release can help or can smooth the upgrade process.

Backup Data

DataStax recommends backing up your data prior to any version upgrade, including logs and custom configurations. A backup provides the ability to revert and restore all the data used in the previous version, if necessary.

OpsCenter provides a Backup Service that manages enterprise-wide backup and restore operations for DataStax Enterprise clusters. OpsCenter 6.8 is recommended.

Upgrade Order

Upgrade order matters.

Upgrade nodes in this order:

  1. In multiple datacenter clusters, upgrade every node in one datacenter before upgrading another datacenter.

  2. Upgrade the seed nodes within a datacenter first.

  3. DSE Analytics datacenters

    1. For DSE Analytics nodes using DSE Hadoop, upgrade the Job Tracker node first. Then upgrade Hadoop nodes, followed by Spark nodes.

  4. Transactional/DSE Graph datacenters

  5. DSE Search nodes or datacenters

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