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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

High-level Best Practice Two(2) in Software Configuration Management

There are six general areas of SCM deployment, and some best practices within each of those areas. The first area and its practices are already discussed.

The Codeline
It is a set of source programs or files required to develop a software. Codelines are branched, and the branches evolve into variant codelines embodying different releases.
The best practices are :
- Give each codeline a policy : It is the essential user’s manual for codeline SCM. The policy of the development codeline should state that it is not for release or the policy of the release codeline should state that it is not for testing or bug fixing. It specifies the check-ins for the codeline.
- Give each codeline an owner : After the policy is defined for a codeline, there would be situations where the policy is inapplicable or ambiguous. When the developers face these ambiguities, they will turn to the person who is in charge of the codeline. There has to be a owner of the codeline because if there would be no owner, the developer will create their own workarounds without documenting them.
- Have a mainline : A mainline is the branch of a codeline that evolves forever. A mainline provides an ultimate destination for almost all changes – both maintenance fixes and new features – and represents the primary, linear evolution of a software product.

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