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Product Release Check-list

I would appreciate if someone can provide me some pointers to a template for product release checklist. This check list needs to cover action items by Marketing , QA , Development and Product Management.

We are coming out with a product for the first time and this product would be sold on the web.

Thanks

InfantManager
Tuesday, October 21, 2003

Why not hire someone that already knows how to do it?

Simon Lucy
Tuesday, October 21, 2003

1. Compile
2. Ship

HTH,
Philo

Philo
Tuesday, October 21, 2003

Philo, wow, thats useful...normally its done like this:

1) Promise to ship
2) Compile
3) Gather specs
4) Recompile
5) Ship
6) Debug

repeat from 1

Patrik
Tuesday, October 21, 2003

The advantage of interpreted languages.

1) ship

John Ridout
Tuesday, October 21, 2003

InfantManager,

I wish there was someplace I could point you to, but I don't know of any checklists.  I've written a couple of articles about some tools I've used at http://www.lazarusid.com/notes/

In general, it involves building a virgin PC that you can easily restore to virgin status (I recommend ghost or something similar) and testing installation and functionality until everything works properly.  That only covers the development side of things though, so I don't have any good advice for dealing with the other aspects.

Clay Dowling
Tuesday, October 21, 2003

This may not be quite what you need and it goes into both Configuration Management and Release Management but it should help you get a grip on what a hardware/software vendor would do.
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0136365647/qid=1066748207/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/103-5205816-8609439?v=glance&s=books
This is an Okay book and also try http://www.cmcrossroads.com/  and get a free account and if I remember correctly they will have a release Question area.

A software Build Guy
Tuesday, October 21, 2003

1. Compile
2.
3. Ship

Greg Hurlman (www.squaretwo.net)
Tuesday, October 21, 2003

Check out McConnell's "Software Project Survival Guide" for many useful checklists, including a good one around the release process:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/asin/1572316217

Note that these are all necessary conditions to a successful release, but may not be sufficient.  Checklists are no substitute for careful thought.

reader rabbit
Tuesday, October 21, 2003

Here is a good one:

1aa. AT LEAST one week before you release have a code freeze, this means QA has a chance to do whatever it wants to the app, and any bugs found, are NOT fixed immediatly, but Someone in the company decides if this is fixed in current or next release, this means QA has at least a week to check the final finished version. if a bug(s) is fixed, qa should have at least a week to pound away at the newer version. When you have gone a week without finding a must fix bug ... you have a release candidate


1a. Have a defined list of "major" platforms ready*, I worked on Actuate's reporting products and there were something like 2 possible clients, 4 supported OS', 15 supported DBMS, and 5 supported app servers, so if we tested on "all" platforms that meant 300 different possibilities (more if you count jdbc drivers in the mix), so out of all your configurations pick a small list that is representative of what most of your clients will most likely do

When I say all platforms I mean all "major" platforms

1. Run automated tests on all release candidate builds on all platforms (these can be unit tests, your silks and winrunners, your https or jdbc verifications etc... run them all)

2. Attempt installs on release candidates on a clean machine (on all platforms)

3. Manually test builds on all platforms using random tests from test matrix, (this may flesh out ui bugs, copyright info etc ...) plus tends to calm everyone down, as every managers nightmare is a false negative (thought test passed but failed) on an automated test. Note this should not duplicate automated test, but simply be a quick once over of the apps ui, and integration (i.e. enter new customer save, enter another customer, see if old one was saves)

4. Prepare a file inventory and have someone write an uatomated test for this, check file size, and name (did the latest readmen get in, is the right version of the JVM in etc...) yes I know that is what ANT, cvs etc exists for, but the purpose of QA is to verify what ANT etc does.

5. Burn the gold master, these are the disks you will be uploading to FTP, sending to the manufacturer (if you ship Boxware)

6. Try to install the products very quickly from the Gold Master (again 1 hour per major platform max)

7. Run the file invnetory,

8.Contact FCS customers send

9. Release to manufacturing etc ...

Note any changes failures along the way put you back to step 1.

the artist formerly known as prince
Tuesday, October 21, 2003

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