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My opinion would be to give yourself a few days incase of any complications, you may achieve it in a day but it is always good to have extra time if problems occur.
I wouldnt recommend carrying it out for a client if you have no experience, probably worth spending some time going through the process say on a vm so you are comfortable.
My initial estimate was 3 days, 8 hours a day. Client wants downtime restricted to 8 hours only, as far as possible. I agree it is risky and probably not a good idea for me to agree to it.
If this was say 184.108.40.206 to 220.127.116.11, I wouldn't be asking this question, since they are very stable versions. My issue is with 18.104.22.168 being so unstable. So you think 3 days is good enough?
When doing major upgrades you should consider having a regression test done on the whole application and should never do "in-place" migrations.
Your comment about going 22.214.171.124 -> 126.96.36.199 -- we've done this several times and have seen defects in both HFM and Essbase of one sort or another.
The Essbase issue affected currency conversion. The prior app was doing some interesting things with currency rates across XRefs using dynamic calcs. This did not work properly on .4 however did on .3.
So go in with your eyes wide open and the more testing on a development instance the better.
Also do not forget about desktop clients e.g. Smart View, Financial Reports, ...
Your mileage will vary.
John A. Booth