Dienstag, 29. April 2008
The litmus tests of Software Configuration Management
I do a lot of consulting about software development in general and especially about aspect oriented development. I see there a lot of companies, who own some applications. Most of them fail to have the basic software configuration procedures in place. Some fail, because they do not care. But fortunately most care and spend a lot of time and money on software configuration management. But what do they get back? Seven out of eight companies get nothing back, their configuration management system is at most a “developers collaboration tool”, but it should and could be much more.
Why didn’t they get back more? Because they did never any test of their configuration management.

In the next days I like to outline some very simple tests, which anybody can easily perform if you spend your money wise and you have something like a working configuration management system in place. I call these tests litmus tests, because you get an immediate feedback if they work or if they do not work.
So let’s start with the first and the most basic one.

Task:
For every application which you own, get the source for the systems as they are in production as fast as possible.
Failed:
If you need more than one hour for each system you fail. (Assumption, you have a really slow configuration management system)
Succeeded:
If the sources do compile and you can install them on the production system.
Note:
Two out of three companies fail with this basic test.

More tests coming up, in the near future.

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