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Configuration Management book recommendation

I am looking for recommendations for a good book on Configuration Management. (specifically as it relates to managing source code and documents)

I'm looking for some guidance as how to maintain, with a common code base, seperate releases for multiple customers (who all have customizations).  I'm looking for something that will explain pros/cons of various approaches (promotion groups/models, branching, etc.)

Anyone have any recommendations?

Or if you know of a course (online or not) I'd like to hear.

Gavin Stark
Wednesday, December 03, 2003

well, one thing you can do is to download a copy of starteam from borland's website.

they'll let you run it for an eval period, but unless you're really interested in that tool specifically, you can ignore installing the software itself; what you're looking for is the documentation that goes with it.

you may be able to get the docs as pdf's from borland's site separately from the starteam download itself. not sure, but you might check.

as you'd expect, the ST documentation is targeted at using that tool itself, but in the course of explaining how to do various things with starteam, they describe various CM problems and common usage scenarios people run into, decision factors, and solutions to use.

versioning, labeling, branching, merging, etc. are common CM problems regardless of the tools used. The sections of the starteam documentation arranged as 'scenarios' are particularly handy.

I don't doubt there are a number of books available, but this option would at least get you going for free. it might answer whatever questions you have right off, but even if not, it will likely improve the quality of your subsequent research.

good luck.

anonQAguy
Wednesday, December 03, 2003

This web site is the place for Configuration Management on the web http://cmcrossroads.com/  also checkout
http://www.snuffybear.com/ucmcentral.htm  both sites have reviews on CM books and CM Crossroads has a fourm for CM questions as well as a Wiki on CM best practices.

A Software Build Guy
Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Brad Appleton's ACME project - which seems to be hosted at cmcrossroads these days http://www.cmcrossroads.com/bradapp/acme/

He also has a book out which I haven't read.

Ken McKinney
Thursday, December 04, 2003

The book that I wrote with Brad Appleton is:
Software Configuration Management Patterns: Effective Teamwork, Practical Integration. (www.scmpatterns.com). The book has gotten some good reviews on amazon etc. It does not talk about branching much(by design) beyond things like a ReleaseLine.  The scmpatterns web site has some links to other books that might provice more info on that, if you really feel a need to branch.

Steve Berczuk
Thursday, December 04, 2003

Well that is what I am wondering.  We are supporting a core set of functionality (in libraries and in some stand alone application) but individual customers need modifications and we need to release those simultaneously.

We already have a good build system and will be implementing PVCS (we use that for source control) Promotion Groups.  However this doesn't give us the ability to do the parallel development/deployment we want.

I'll check out these books/sites.

Thanks!

Gavin Stark
Friday, December 05, 2003

If you're happy to use CVS then this covers pretty much most of what you've mentioned:

http://www.pragmaticprogrammer.com/starter_kit/vc/index.html

I've bought the PDF version and am finding it very useful.

Gordon Hartley
Friday, December 05, 2003

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