1. When is the Early Release Program versions going to be available?
The Early Release Program versions are routinely targeted for availability early Q1 and Q3 based on the respective Now Platform Release cycle.
2. What is the Early Release Program?
The Early Release Program gives customers access to our new innovations ahead of the pack. The ability to preview, test, and upgrade early allows customers to plan and prepare for a seamless upgrade transition to the latest Now Platform.
- Learn about features enhancements, UI changes, and security improvements before General Availability
- Build on the latest release ahead of pack
- Get eight weeks (or more) to test out new features in sub-production and production environments
3. Who can participate?
All existing customers and partners are eligible to participate in this program excluding Government Community Cloud (GCC).
4. How long is the Early Release Program?
The program is broken into two phases that work together to provide additional time to test release capabilities in your own environment.
- Phase 1: Release Testing Preview (RTP): Released ~ 60 days prior to General Availability with the intent to test the last Now Platform in non-production instances.
- Length ~ 2 weeks to schedule version upgrade
- Phase 2: Early Availability (EA): Released ~45 days prior to General Availability with the intent to test and upgrade to the official Now Platform build in both non-production and production instances.
- Length ~6-7 weeks to schedule version upgrade
5. When will release notes and documentation be available?
- Preliminary release notes will accompany the Release Testing Preview version and full release notes and documentation will accompany the Early Release version. Please see https://docs.servicenow.com
6. I am a customer - how can I participate?
You can self-register for this program via Now Support Service Catalog item Early Release Program Signup.
- Government Community Cloud customers are not eligible to participate in the Early Release Program. Note: These customers rely upon the Federal Risk & Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) certification which will only be attributed to general availability releases.
Please reach out to your ServiceNow contact or the firstname.lastname@example.org account with any registration questions.
7. What type of customers are the best fit for the Early Release Program?
We invite existing customers who:
- Have a desire and need to take advantage of the new products/features as soon as possible
- Can upgrade and test the new release on their non-production instance after receiving the invitation to upgrade
- Are willing to be actively engaged and report issues promptly when encountered
8. I am in the process of purchasing ServiceNow. Will I be able to participate in the Early Release Program?
To be eligible for Early Release Program you must be an existing customer or partner. New instances can be provisioned only after the official Market Launch.
9. I am a partner - how can I participate?
If you are a Technology Partner you can self-register for this program via Now Support Service Catalog item Early Release Program Registration.
10. I am a Developer - how can I get a temporary development instance?
To receive a temporary development instance, you need to register and be part of the ServiceNow Developer Program. Please review the ServiceNow Developer Program website to learn more about the program. To upgrade your personal developer instance please reference the "manage your PDI" page.
11. I am in Early Release Program, but I am not on the latest version yet. Can I directly upgrade to Rome?
Yes, you can upgrade any of your instances (regardless of version) to the Rome RTP and EA builds upon their availability.
12. How would I know that I am signed up for Early Availability?
After you self-register or your ServiceNow contact registers for Early Availability via Hi Service Catalog item Early Release Program Registration, you will receive a registration notification. Once the program begins, you will receive a “Welcome to Early Availability” email notification inviting you to schedule your upgrade. The notification contains detailed instructions on scheduling your upgrade, accessing product documentation, and release-specific details. Note the e-mail notification will be distributed to the the account contacts - to ensure you receive the proper messaging please keep company contacts up-to-date.
13. How is Early Release Program rolled out?
Once the Early Availability program begins, all registered customer accounts will be entitled to the release and invited to schedule their upgrade via the Now Support Instance Dashboard.
- Customers/Partners register for the program
- The Release Test Preview build becomes available, registered accounts will receive an e-mail announcement, and be entitled to upgrade their non-production instances via the Now Support Instance Dashboard.
- The Early Availability build becomes available, registered accounts will receive an e-mail announcements, accounts will no longer be able to schedule RTP build upgrades, and accounts will be entitled to upgrade their non-production and production instances via the Now Support Instance Dashboard.
- Note: during this time technology partners can utilize the Early Availability build to build and submit for ServiceNow store certification prior to market launch.
- The General Availability build becomes available, all accounts will receive an e-mail announcement, accounts will no longer be able to schedule EA build upgrades, and all customer and partner accounts will be able to upgrade to the GA version via the Now Support Instance Dashboard.
- If your instance is on the RTP or EA build after GA release the account can upgrade to the latest version or allow the patching program to automatically target non-production and production instances to the latest version 30 days post General Availability.
14. I am a participant and want to report an issue on the new release - what should I do?
Promptly submit a Case in HI and begin the text in the Short Description field with "Rome -" For example:
Rome - <your short description here>
15. I have been on Early Release for past versions. Do I have to request to participate in every release?
In the past, repeat registration was required. Beginning in the Paris Early Release Program, if your account has been registered, you will also be automatically enrolled for optional participation in all future Now Platform Early Release Programs.
If you would like to opt-out of the Early Release Program please reach out to email@example.com
16. If I am interested in one of the paid features of the new release, how would that work in Early Availability?
Let your Account Team know.
17. If Early Release Program participants get the release 1-8 weeks early, when do other customers receive the release?
All customers can get the release after General Availability (official Market Launch).
18. I'm registered for the Early Release Program but unable to update an existing upgrade change?
If you are registered to participate in the Early Release Program but are unable to update an existing platform upgrade change to the EA version:
- Add a comment in the existing upgrade program record, requesting the Target Version be updated to the EA build
- The case will be reviewed, and the change will be either:
- Updated so you can change the target to the EA version
- Canceled to allow you to go back to the “Manage Instances” in HI and schedule the upgrade to EA on the appropriate instance
19. I still have questions related to the Early Release Program that are not covered in this FAQ - whom should I contact?
Please reach out to your ServiceNow Account Manager contact with your question, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.