IMPORTANT: Cross-architecture Upgrades Are Not Supported
Cross-architecture upgrades, such as upgrading from a 32-bit version of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server to the 64-bit version, or upgrading from big endian to little endian are not supported!
Specifically, SLE 11 on POWER (big endian) to SLE 12 SP2 on POWER (new: little endian!), is not supported.
Also, since SUSE Linux Enterprise 12 is 64-bit only, upgrades from any 32-bit SUSE Linux Enterprise 11 systems to SUSE Linux Enterprise 12 and later are not supported.
To make a cross-architecture upgrade, you need to perform a new installation.
Before you perform any migration, read Section 19.3, Preparing the System.
NOTE: Skipping Service Packs
Consecutively installing all Service Packs is the safest upgrade path. In some cases it is supported to skip 1 or 2 Service Packs when upgrading. However, we recommend to not skip any Service Pack.
NOTE: Upgrading Major Releases
We recommend to do a fresh install when upgrading to a new Major Release, for example from SUSE Linux Enterprise 11 to SUSE Linux Enterprise 12.
There is no supported direct migration path to SUSE Linux Enterprise 12. We recommend a fresh installation in this case.
There is no supported direct migration path to SUSE Linux Enterprise 12. You need at least SLE 11 SP4 before you can proceed to SLE 12 SP3.
If you cannot do a fresh install, first upgrade your installed SLE 11 Service Pack to SLE 11 SP4. These steps are described in the SUSE Linux Enterprise 11 Deployment Guide.
Upgrading from SLE 11 SP4 to SLE 12 SP3 is only supported via an offline upgrade. Refer to Section 19.2, Online and Offline Upgrade for details.
A direct upgrade from SLE 12 GA to SP3 is not supported. Upgrade to SLE 12 SP2 first.
Upgrading from SUSE Linux Enterprise 12 SP1 or SP2 to SP3 is supported.
Updating any previous SLE 12 LTSS version to SP3 is supported.
Figure 19-1 Overview of Shortest Upgrade Paths