Understanding the Concept of Configuration Management

Mar 23 08:37 2008 Reggie Andersen Print This Article

This article reports on action research undertaken to understand and to improve the problems with software processes of a medium-sized Danish company. It is argued that, in order to understand what the specific problems are, one may, on the one hand, rely

Configuration management is a concept that has been around for half a century now,Guest Posting and is in use by companies and organizations worldwide. First developed by the United States military, the ideas of this modality have been adopted, and adapted for use in many different industries.

All well and good, you may ask, but just what is configuration management? Basically, it is a model of product, information or process life cycle. It is a blueprint of sorts for whatever project it is adapted to, essentially.Generally speaking, there are four elements to configuration management - identification, change control or management, status accounting and verification.To briefly explain these elements, we will need to introduce you to some terms as we go.

Identification is the process of determining the qualities of a configuration item (any product that will have an end user; this can be a piece of equipment or software, for instance). Change control consists of an approval process and protocols needed to change the configuration of a configuration item. Status accounting is the capacity to check an item against the “blueprint” provided by the configuration management model resulting from the identification process – and lastly, status accounting is making sure that a change made in a configuration itemhas gone according to plan.

This check can be done when the change is made, or once the product is finished, preferably both.Configuration management may sound very complex, and it certainly can be. However, it is perhaps the best method of project management when dealing with very complex and intricate projects requiring many steps along the way. Working with a configuration management system makes implementing incremental changes in a process or product over time much less of a challenge.Obviously, this is not done by hand with flowcharts on a chalkboard, at least not in this day and age.

This type of software exists to make tracking and managing your production process a relatively simple task. Outside of the military where it is still very much in use, configuration management is used by project managers in a variety of fields, most notable software development.

Much like a complex weapon system, a piece of software goes through many step along the way to emerging as a finished product ready for the end user, and configuration management software can take some of the sting out of watching over this sometimes labyrinthine process. Dozens of options are available for those interested in using this concept of software, many even  offered for no cost on the internet.

Some of these are made with a very specific set of tasks in mind (for instance, managing changes in a UNIX network), while others are far more open in the scope of projects they can handle. No matter what field you are in, configuration management is an effective model for keeping a handle on complicated production cycles and processes. Configuration management software can automate a great deal of this for you, freeing you up to tackle less mundane tasks.

Source: Free Guest Posting Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

About Article Author

Reggie Andersen
Reggie Andersen

To learn more about the time saving advantages of configuration management, see: http://www.configurationmanagementsoftware.net Configuration Management Software.

View More Articles