Production Freezes for Campus Services

A production freeze process ensures service availability and reduces risk by establishing a period of time, or "freeze," during a business cycle where we will eliminate changes to any component related to the service. In short, no major changes are made to services and systems during a freeze.

Security patches and critical updates can be applied and emergency maintenance can be done during a freeze. For emergency maintenance, follow your standard emergency maintenance process. For all other maintenance requests, security patches, and/or critical updates during freeze periods, please complete the ITS Maintenance Exception Request form and submit to so-exceptions@umich.edu.

Some exceptions require customer approval. Exceptions can be made for units with special/different needs. For example, Campus Computing Sites sets freeze dates for sites on the Medical Campus in concert with the Medical School's different term dates.

When Sites is in a freeze and the rest of ITS is not, the rest of ITS is aware of the need to minimize changes that could impact Sites.

Event-related production freezes are in support of campus-wide or unit special events. Any U-M staff member may request a freeze to be considered for an event by submitting a request to Inform ITS of a Campus Event.

Freeze Schedule

Freeze dates are calculated based on the academic calendar published by the Office of the Registrar. Some U-M schools follow different calendars, and ITS staff members are encouraged to use caution in scheduling major work during critical times for those schools. To see the academic calendars for those schools, view the U-M Academic Calendar, then select a class term. Scroll to the bottom of the page and look under the Notice heading.

Fall Term

  • Start of Term
    The ITS production freeze begins at 12:01 a.m. 7 days prior to the 1st day of classes. The freeze ends on Friday of the 2nd week of classes. For example given that classes typically start on Tuesday, the freeze would begin the preceding Tuesday.
  • Exams
    The ITS production freeze begins at 12:01 a.m. 7 days before exams begin. The freeze ends at midnight at the end of the last day of exams.

Winter Term

  • Start of Term
    The ITS production freeze begins 12:01 a.m. 7 days prior to the 1st day of classes. The freeze ends at the end of the 5th day of classes. For example if classes begin on Thursday, the freeze would begin the preceding Thursday.
  • Exams
    The full production freeze begins at 12:01 a.m. 7 days before exams begin. The freeze ends at midnight at the end of the last day of exams.

Spring and Summer Terms

  • Start of Term
    There is no freeze at the beginning of the term.
  • Exams
    The freeze is during exams only.