The MapR Ecosystem Pack (MEP) is the program that lets MapR customers upgrade their open source ecosystem stack independently of the core MapR Platform. The "MapR Ecosystem" is the set of open source projects that are included in the MapR Data Platform, and the "Pack" is a bundled set of MapR Ecosystem projects with specific versions, where each pack is labeled with a version.
New MEP versions are released on a quarterly basis, ensuring customers are given quick access to the latest open source innovations. This is particularly important for the fast-changing community projects such as Apache Drill and Apache Spark, both of which are adding new valuable capabilities on a rapid pace.
With all the changes in the open source ecosystem, it’s very easy to install the latest version of a project only to find out that it’s incompatible with other projects in your deployment. This problem is easy to avoid if you know what project versions are compatible with each other, and MEP handles that for you. MEP ensures inter-project compatibility within any given MEP release so you can focus on getting value from data instead of troubleshooting your project stack. For the stable, slow-changing ecosystem projects, MEP leaves out any new versions that introduce inter-project incompatibility.
New MEP versions are released quarterly, and independently of the core MapR Platform, which means you can perform a smaller upgrade that only updates the open source project stack in your deployment. This reduces the upgrade effort to easily give you the ecosystem updates that you need. Major MEP releases (e.g., 1.0, 2.0) generally involve significant changes in project versions, while major point releases (e.g., 1.1, 1.2) generally have incremental updates. Minor point releases (e.g., 1.1.1), or "maintenance releases," entail only bug fixes to project versions in the major release.