Software Release Management
Software release management is a software engineering process intended to oversee the development, testing, deployment and support of software releases. The practice of release management combines the general business emphasis of traditional project management with a detailed technical knowledge of the system development lifecycle (SDLC) and IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) practices.
When software is developed and tested, it will often go through a release management team (especially in larger development shops). The main activities involved in release management are:
1 Generating a planning policy for the implementation of new versions
2 Creating new versions or buying them from third parties
3 Testing new versions in an environment simulating the production environment
4 Implementing new versions in the production environment
5 Carrying out back-out plans to remove the new version if necessary
6 Keeping the configuration management database (CMDB) up to date
Informing and training customers and users about the functionality of the newly released version
Software release management usually begins in the development cycle with requests for changes or new features. If the request is approved, the new release is planned and designed. The new design enters the testing or quality assurance phase, in which the release is built, reviewed, tested and tweaked until it is ultimately accepted as a release candidate. The release then enters the deployment phase, where it is implemented and made available. Once deployed, the release enters a support phase, where bug reports and other issues are collected; this leads to new requests for changes, and the cycle starts all over again.