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Software Configuration Management

When we develop software, the product (software) undergoes many changes in their maintenance phase; we need to handle these changes effectively.

Several individuals (programs) works together to achieve these common goals. This individual produces several work product (SC Items) e.g., Intermediate version of modules or test data used during debugging, parts of the final product.

The elements that comprise all information produced as a part of the software process are collectively called a software configuration.

As software development progresses, the number of Software Configuration elements (SCI's) grow rapidly.

These are handled and controlled by SCM. This is where we require software configuration management.

A configuration of the product refers not only to the product's constituent but also to a particular version of the component.

Therefore, SCM is the discipline which

  • Identify change
  • Monitor and control change
  • Ensure the proper implementation of change made to the item.
  • Auditing and reporting on the change made.

Configuration Management (CM) is a technic of identifying, organizing, and controlling modification to software being built by a programming team.

The objective is to maximize productivity by minimizing mistakes (errors).

CM is used to essential due to the inventory management, library management, and updation management of the items essential for the project.

Why do we need Configuration Management?

Multiple people are working on software which is consistently updating. It may be a method where multiple version, branches, authors are involved in a software project, and the team is geographically distributed and works concurrently. It changes in user requirements, and policy, budget, schedules need to be accommodated.

Importance of SCM

It is practical in controlling and managing the access to various SCIs e.g., by preventing the two members of a team for checking out the same component for modification at the same time.

It provides the tool to ensure that changes are being properly implemented.

It has the capability of describing and storing the various constituent of software.

SCM is used in keeping a system in a consistent state by automatically producing derived version upon modification of the same component.


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