hotel Sales & CateringPro Sunsetting Technical Reference
This documentation serves as an in-depth technical reference guide regarding the sunsetting of Sales & CateringPro by Amadeus.
The underlying Microsoft technology stack is aging (Windows Server and SQL Server) and Microsoft regularly retires older versions of their platform technology. When the underlying platform is no longer supported by the manufacturer (Microsoft), Amadeus is left with:
- No security fixes, which means that Microsoft will no longer be developing security updates for these versions of Windows and SQL Server. This situation results in higher risk of malware infections, advanced persistent threats, and security breaches. For example, if personally identifiable information (PII) data were to be compromised because of a security vulnerability, companies subject to PII regulations, such as the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), could be severely penalized. GDPR calls for up to 4% of a company’s yearly revenues as a penalty.
- Few 3rd party malware protection, As Microsoft no longer supports these versions, many 3rd party companies that provide malware protection solutions stop updating their products, which greatly increases the risk of infection. This situation can quickly become an issue because most malware protection solutions rely on hourly or daily updates to detect malware. Without these updates, the platform almost instantly becomes vulnerable to new malware. AV Test estimates that there are about 250,000 new malicious programs released every day. Without updated protection, public-facing servers will quickly be overrun with malware.
- No platform support escalation point, which may result in longer outages, the risk of ongoing degraded performance, and the possibility an issue cannot be resolved. Amadeus relies on its partners to adequately support the underlying server platforms. These third-parties have a deep understanding of the operating and database systems code and the tools needed to troubleshoot at the root level. Further, these manufacturers are the only ones that can correct defects once identified. Without an escalation path, Amadeus can only troubleshoot on its own. While Amadeus may identify the root cause after trial and error, it can take far longer than if manufacturer support were available. Further, solutions and workarounds are not always available, which would mean that the solution is left in a non-working state, leaving the customer to make a critical product decision quickly, without much forethought and migration planning.
- No further platform updates increase the risk of incompatibility between the software and the platform, resulting in the risk of ongoing performance degradation and application failure. As aspects of a computing environment change, the operating and database systems need to be updated to support it. For example, Amadeus may add a new storage network device to replace an aging component. That device may require newer driver software to function properly. Without an updated operating system, a supporting driver may not be available, resulting in system failure or performance degradation. In that situation, Amadeus would have no recourse to get the solution functioning properly. The customer would then be forced to decide quickly and without proper planning to move to a newer product
In addition to the lack of Microsoft support, additional concerns may arise, putting these products at risk for ongoing degraded performance and potential integration outages including:
- Potential incompatibilities with integrated 3rd party systems (e.g. PMS, EMS, etc.). For example, a third-party could make a database field change that would require adjustment. Since Amadeus no longer actively develops on Sales & CateringPro, expertise in making and testing this type of code change is not available. The result is that the integration will perform poorly, provide inaccurate results, or be down entirely.
Given the lack of underlying platform support, Amadeus has chosen to discontinue Sales & CateringPro in a phased approach (end-of-engineering on June 30, 2019 and end of life for Sales & CateringPro on August 1, 2021). Please refer to the Amadeus Hospitality Modern Life Cycle Policy for additional information. End-of-Engineering means:
- No further solution updates will be made to the product’s code base. Amadeus will no longer update the platform. As our partners make changes to their platforms and solutions, the risk of incompatibility grows. A situation could arise where Customer Support cannot resolve the incompatibility, resulting in poor performance or failure. For example, a third-party operating system on which the product runs could experience a security change that makes a communication protocol adjustment, requiring a change to the product for continued operation. Once the product reaches end of engineering, Amadeus will no longer have development sustaining teams dedicated to resolving code issues. If a critical product issue were to surface, the customer might be forced to make a product decision quickly without much planning and migration analysis.
- Limited internal escalation options for the product, which may result in longer outages and the possibility an issue cannot be resolved. As a product exits engineering, talent is redirected to focus on newer technologies and when critical product issues arise, there is no ability for the organization to quickly address them. Research is required, which lengthens the time to resolution. Further, even if a solution is found, it must be fully tested. In most cases, testers and environments will not be available and would have to be secured. This situation further lengthens the time to resolution. Instead of minutes or hours, it may be days or weeks before a system can be fully recovered.
- Increased operational challenges with legacy products due to an aging platform. The concept here is “out-of-sight, out-of-mind.” As operational and support talent focuses on learning and supporting newer technologies, older technologies become more difficult to support. As stated earlier, issues require more research which lengthens time to resolution. In some extreme cases, operations may not be able to bring a solution fully back online, resulting in the need for an urgent plan to move a customer to a new solution in an unplanned action.