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Software Configuration Management Checklist


Software Configuration Management at a Glance:

Software Configuration Management (SCM) is a set of tracking and controlling activities, which are mainly initiated when a software development project begins. These activities are used to manage various changes and modifications implemented throughout the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC). Also known as Software Control Management, Software Configuration Management aims to control changes introduced to a large and complex software system through reliable version selection and version control. Moreover, if there is an issue or defect in the software, software engineers can determine what went wrong and the change that led to that particular issue, with the assistance of SCM.

Requirements of Software Configuration Management:

Software Configuration Management is extremely significant for proper and controlled development of a software product. It is the best way to verify the completeness and the correctness of all the components and sub-components of the software, as well as for reporting and recording the status of items and change requests. However, before the commencement of this beneficial process, it is crucial for the management team to consider its requirements and to be ready with them. This ensures that the process get completed without any interruptions or complications.

Hence, here are some of the major requirements of Software Configuration Management:

  1. Repository: These are the shared databases for artefacts with controlled access to prevent overwrite.
  2. Version Management: Maintains history if changes made to each artefact and provides the ability to see how version was created.
  3. Work Space Control: This is a private work space with ability to check out from repository and check in with new version number.
  4. Product Modelling and Building: These are the procedures to build the product from artefacts in repository.

Introduction to Software Configuration Management Checklist:

Apart from considering the requirements of Software Configuration Management, the project managers should also prepare a Software Configuration Management Checklist, to simplify and abridge the whole SCM process. A proper and detailed checklist is extremely beneficial, as it helps in monitoring the whole process as well as keeps a track of all the requirements and completed tasks. Likewise, by preparing a Software Configuration Management checklist before the commencement of the whole project, one can make the SCM process easy, hassle free and comfortable. Moreover, it can assist the project leads and managers in preparing and collecting all the documents and materials required for Software Configuration Management.

Software Configuration Management Checklist:

Preparing a checklist for Software Configuration Management can be confusing and problematic for some software engineers, as there are several components that are required to be included in it. Therefore, to simplify this process, following is a list of all the important elements and components that ought to be included in SCM Checklist.

  1. Ensure version control system is in place.
  2. Validate whether the repository is clean or not.
  3. Make sure the project has identified, controlled and made available the software work products, through the use of configuration management.
  4. Are standard reports on software baselines distributed to affect groups and individuals?
  5. Prepare a list of required tools, techniques, and methods for the SCM process.
  6. Gather information needed for storage, retrieval, and reuse control process.
  7. Build and deployment automation.
  8. Ensure continuous integration.
  9. Version control the repository system.
  10. Version control the system usage model.
  11. Are periodic audits performed to verify that software baselines conform to the documentation that defines them?
  12. Are project personals trained to perform the Software Configuration Management activities allotted to them?
  13. Check the scope of the SCM plan, including the project, the software to be developed, and the life cycle phases.
  14. Also, the relationship between the SCM plan and the other standards or plans, which describe how the project will be managed is stable.

Advantages of SCM Checklist:

From the aforementioned list, we can conclude that one can effortlessly monitor and control numerous activities and tasks that are an integral part of Software Configuration Management, with the assistance of a detailed checklist. From configuration audits, plans, and repositories to other important components, one can easily track the whole process with SCM checklist. Other benefits of SCM Checklist are:

  • With the assistance of SCM Checklist a software developer or tester can effectively track the progress of the software development process.
  • It reduces redundant work.
  • Ensures effective management of simultaneous updates.
  • Avoids configuration related problems.
  • Facilitates team co-ordination.
  • Helps in building management.
  • Provides assistance in managing tools used in builds.
  • Keeps the team members informed about the whole development and testing process.
  • The biggest advantage of preparing a SCM checklist is that one can cross check the whole process without conducting an in-depth inspection.

Conclusion:

Whether you are planning a trip or preparing for an exam, a proper and detailed checklist can help you in planning and managing the whole process. Similarly, in Software Configuration Management, there are several tracking and controlling activities that themselves require monitoring and guidance, which can be easily achieved with the assistance of a checklist. A Software Configuration Management Checklist consists of all the necessary information, which is crucial for Software Configuration Management. Therefore, follow the above mentioned checklist and make the whole process of Software Configuration Management easy, hassle free, and more informative for all the stakeholders of the project.