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Traveler 11 and ActiveSync 16.1 - What to expect after upgrade with iOS devices using Apple native apps

 12 Februar 2020 09:21:33
After some discussions with the HCL Traveler team regarding seen issues after upgrading to Traveler 11 with iOS devices using the Apple native mail app, HCL published an detailed article.

The article describes, what happens in the background on the device, when the Traveler 11 Server is started after the update and from then on uses version 16.1 for iOS devices instead of the previous ActiveSync 14 version.


Introduction

This article applies to devices syncing with the iOS Mail, Calendar, and Contacts apps only. The HCL Verse app on iOS is not affected by this change.

Sync changes in Traveler 11

Traveler 11.0.0 enables support for Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync (EAS) 16.1, the latest version of the protocol used to sync data to the Apple iOS Mail, Calendar, and Contacts apps. All supported versions of iOS already support EAS 16.1, so iOS devices will automatically use it after sending an HTTP Options request to get the protocol versions from the server. In order for an existing profile to switch to EAS 16.1, the device must then send an EAS Settings request to the server. Devices send these requests periodically already, but there is no way to know when exactly it will happen - sometimes only minutes after the server is upgraded, but it can be days later. We found that restarting the device usually causes the app to send the needed requests, making that a more reliable path of trying to get an existing account to upgrade to the new protocol version.
 
Explanation

Known upgrade scenarios

1. Immediate or eventual upgrade of Mail, Calendar, and Contacts:

The device will continue to use the previous version of the protocol (14.1) until eventually sending Options and Settings requests. Once the device receives the server response, it removes calendar and contacts data from the device storage and performs a folder sync, followed by resyncing of calendar and contacts to repopulate the data. In this scenario, mail does not get resynced to the device but begins syncing with EAS 16.1 at the same time as the other data types.

Note:
We have identified an issue affecting Traveler environments using Derby with users that have many folders (>500). These users may not be able to complete a folder sync due to the device restarting the sync before the sync is finished. If this problem occurs during upgrade to EAS 16.1, the user will be missing calendar and contacts data on the device, as well as any new mail changes since the folder sync started. This problem is not specific to Traveler
11 or EAS 16.1, but is noticeable due to the upgrade to 16.1 triggering the folder sync. This issue will be fixed in Traveler 11.0.1 and a hotfix can be requested by opening a support ticket and referencing issue TRAV-4307.

2. Immediate or eventual upgrade of Mail only, resulting in a partial upgrade scenario:

We have seen cases where the device sends the Options request but only uses the new protocol level for mail. No data types resync in this case, and the device will later upgrade to 16.1 after sending a Settings request (see
scenario 1).

3. Restarting the device to trigger an upgrade of Mail, Calendar, and Contacts:

Instead of waiting for the device to send the Options and Settings requests, a restart usually triggers them instead. This scenario is the same result as scenario 1, but the timing is immediately after the device is restarted.

4. Immediate or eventual upgrade causing Mail to resync:

In some cases, we have had reports of a user's mail resyncing to their device upon upgrade to EAS 16.1. It is not known yet what causes the device to request a resync of mail (in addition to calendar and contacts).

Limitations
Once a device begins using the new protocol version, the user cannot sync with a Traveler server that does not support EAS 16.1 (such as Traveler 10.0.1).

Support of the new protocol level can be disabled on the server by adding NTS_AS_PROTOCOL_VERSIONS=2.5,12.0,12.1,14.0,14.1 to each Traveler server's notes.ini file. Devices which have already upgraded to using the new protocol may be left unable to sync until they are reconfigured or reset by an administrator. Disabling support of EAS 16.1 is not recommended for the following reasons:

        •        Some device-side problems have been fixed by Apple for EAS 16.1 only.
        •        Apple may not provide support for problems experienced using a device syncing with EAS 14.1.
        •        Current features such as drafts sync and viewing attachments on calendar entries are only available for devices syncing with EAS 16.1.
        •        Other features planned for future Traveler releases will only be available for devices syncing with EAS 16.1.

Troubleshooting

If you receive a report of one or more devices that are not upgrading as expected, avoid downgrading Traveler to a previous version or issuing a reset for all devices. Problems occurring during this upgrade scenario are not usually resolved by resyncing the data, and the reset adds unnecessary transactions to both the server load and the logs that support may need to review.

 Troubleshooting steps:

        1        Ask the user to turn the affected device off and back on again.
        2        If step 1 does not resolve the issue, ask the user to soft reset the device (see https://support.apple.com/guide/iphone/force-restart-iphone-iph8903c3ee6/ios).
        3        If step 2 still does not resolve the issue, ask the user to toggle Calendar and Contacts off and back on from their Traveler account under Passwords & Accounts in the Settings app.
        4        If the issue is still occurring, add the user to the finest level logging list by issuing the tell traveler log adduser finest <User Name> command to the Traveler server.
        5        Open a case with our support teams.
        6        Remove the user from finest logging after the issue is resolved with the tell traveler log removeuser <User Name> command.



via: https://support.hcltechsw.com/csm?id=kb_article&sysparm_article=KB0075083



 
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