In his CM: the Next Generation series, Joe Farah gives us a glimpse into the trends that CM experts will need to tackle and master based upon industry trends and future technology challenges.
The above questions are answered by looking at release builds, but builds are equally important for your internal customers, especially your development and verification teams. You can start to identify a whole range of questions that can be answered using integration builds as the handles of the queries.
· What features/problems should be tested that weren't available in the previous verification cycle?
· What changes went into the nightly build?
· What structural changes (i.e., new/moved/removed files/directories) have occurred since my last rebase operation
· What run-time data configuration files need to be retrieved to update my test bed?
The build is a key component of your CM data. It's the one that makes it easy to work with all of the traceability data you've accumulated, as long as your CM tool supports these sorts of questions and comparisons through simple menu functions. Pay attention to your change management process and your CM data and build automation will follow.