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Software Configuration Management

Introduction to Software Configuration Management
Configuration Management System (CMS) is designed to manage an evolving software system or product and then maintain it in the post-development phase throughout its life cycle. The following are the purpose of CMS:

(a)    To offer standards and procedures for change management,
(b)    Identification to configuration components
(c)    Version management and control,
(d)    To ensure orderly development
(e)    Maintenance of software system or product.

SE deals with Software Development Processes, Software Project Management and Software Product Development, and each of them require different processes to achieve respective desired objectives. A software product has two major parts:

1.    The main product and its code that meet the customer’s requirement
2.    The support product such as user manual, system manual, technical manual, RDD and SRS documents, which meet the requirement of the product.

SCM deals with both parts in the development phase as well as in the maintenance phase.

The need for SCM becomes stronger with the customer asking for the development of large complex systems that are flexible, easy to change and easy to maintain. Further, such large complex systems must run on different platforms and must be consistent in SE when the development process and products development process moved to component technology using object technology and reusable codes. The need became stronger when the software system or product was required to run on different vendor platform operating system and so on.

In the backdrop of the scenario, SCM becomes a necessity as a separate SE function to deliver to the customer a system that funs effectively on the customer platform, provides all support to users to fulfill the requirements and allows ease of maintenance. SCM deals with three stages of the software system cycle. The three stages of the software life cycle and the components in each stage. SCM manages these components to keep the product integrity even through the changes are effected in the software.

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