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Most Important Software Configuration Management Practices

by Robin
(Chicago, Il, USA)

Hi,


I was hired by a company to help institute Software Configuration Management Practices.

The company current does not use a source control tool. The build is a combination of taking the different compiled projects and copying them to a server.

I come from a very well disciplined development organization. Tightly integrated tools and processes.

I know what I need to do, but my question is around where should I start. I start working on one thing and then get pulled into another.

Because so much is needed everywhere, it is hard to stay focused.

Thanks,
Robin in Software Configuration Management Hell

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Most Important Software Configuration Management Practices
by: SCMWise

Hi Robin,

It sounds like you have your hands full.

I would start with the two areas you talk about in your question.

1. Source Code Control

2. Software Builds

I think the first you need to fix is there lack of a SCM Tool. There is no point in doing anything if they are not versioning their source code files.

Make sure you pick a tool that fits their technologies and comfort. I would choose a tool that would be easy for the developers to use like Git or Subversion. These tools have a short learning curve and they work with almost all technologies.

Next, I would fully automate their software builds. You will have an integration nightmare until you have the builds automated.

I think you will see instant improvements in reliability and reproducibility of their software from those two areas.

From there you can start implementing more and more Software Configuration Management Best Practices.

Also, do not get too depressed. I like to refer to situations like this as job security...;-)

SCMWise

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