Since the release of our current version of Sitecore in 2008, Sitecore has grown from a platform that provides simple web experiences to one that enables users to become truly engaged with their customers. The upgrade to Sitecore v8.1 comes with a completely updated user interface and API that make the system more efficient and extremely extendable. This update enhances our ability to support, promote and leverage the application to meet the needs of the campus community.
The OIT Web Team has been working through the upgrade process on a test system. The Sitecore application upgrade process is a step by step approach of installing and then verifying updates until we reach the current release. The process originally involved over 70 steps, but the team was able to consolidate those steps to a little over 50.
After the test server upgrade, the Web Team recruited the Web Captains in the schools and departments to put the test system through its paces. Since some areas have customized widgets and frameworks, those customizations needed to be tested with the upgrade. Around 25 issues were reported by the Web Captains in their testing. The Web Team had resolved most of those issues when they came across a critical flaw involving the web forms.
The Web Team is working with Sitecore support and other universities to resolve this issue. At this point, we are delaying the Sitecore 8.1 update. We will reschedule after we are confident the web forms are working correctly and in a sustainable manner.