The Salesforce Winter ‘20 release is quickly approaching and with it, you'll be able to take advantage of exciting new features and functionality. If you're a sandbox customer, you have the opportunity to get early access to Winter ‘20 to test new customization features before your production organization is upgraded.
The Sandbox Preview window for Winter ‘20 is scheduled to begin September 6, 2019. If you want your sandbox organization to take part in the Winter ‘20 Preview, your sandbox must be active on a preview instance before that date to take part in an overall instance upgrade.
Please read and carefully follow the instructions in the next section for specific information on how to handle each of your sandboxes. In most cases, you will not need to do anything because your sandbox is already on a preview instance. But you may need to take action before September 6, 2019, for your sandbox to participate in the Winter ‘20 Preview.
General information about the sandbox service
Sandbox instances are split up in two groups — preview and non-preview. Preview instances are instances which get upgraded to the newer version of Salesforce before production instances (e.g. NA2, EU1, AP0) and non-preview instances are upgraded towards the end of a major release along with the majority of production instances. For the Winter ‘20 Release, preview instances will be upgraded to Winter ‘20 on September 6 and September 7, 2019, and non-preview instances will be upgraded to Winter ‘20 on October 11 and October 12, 2019.
Between now and September 6, 2019, all sandbox requests will be routed to preview instances. Sandboxes that are complete in time for the major release on September 6, 2019, will be upgraded to the latest version of Salesforce.
On September 6, 2019, all incomplete sandbox requests will be reset on a non-preview instance and pending new sandbox requests will be routed to non-preview instances until their production instance is upgraded to Winter ‘20.
You have from now until September 6, 2019, to decide if you would like your sandbox to take part in the Winter ‘20 Preview. Depending on what you decide, follow the steps below for each sandbox org that you have.
Note: If you have a full sandbox, be mindful of the 29-day refresh policy and plan accordingly.
I have an existing sandbox — what are my options?
1. Determine your sandbox instance
To determine which instance your sandbox is on, log into your production org and navigate to your sandbox list page (Search “sandbox” in the quick find bar on the setup home page).
Determine your sandbox instance by using the location column above.
2. Refresh? Or don’t refresh? Or do nothing?
Once you have located the instance that your sandbox is on, use the chart below to determine if, when, and what action you should take on your sandbox.
If you decide to stay on the current Summer ‘19 release, your sandbox will not be upgraded to Winter ‘20 until October 12, 2019.
AppExchange preview instructions
If you plan to upload and/or install one or more AppExchange packages using your sandboxes during the Sandbox Preview window, you should use the chart below to determine your course of action.
If you have additional questions about your sandbox options in conjunction with the Winter ‘20 release, please contact Salesforce Customer Support.
IMPORTANT — Plan Ahead!
Due to the popularity of the Sandbox Preview program, there are backlogs in sandbox create and refresh requests. Since all incomplete sandboxes will be reset to a non-preview instance prior to the September 6, 2019 deadline, it is recommended you request your sandbox a week in advance of the deadline to improve your chances of obtaining a preview instance. While we strive to process each request in a timely manner, we cannot guarantee the completion of a sandbox before the deadline.
You can only clone sandboxes that are on the same major Salesforce version as the production org. Sandboxes that are upgraded as part of the preview on September 6, 2019, will not be available for cloning until the production org is upgraded to the new release.
Check out the video on demystifying the Sandbox Preview.