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#1 directiveDickers   User is offline

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How many betas are acceptable/Whats correct version flow to follow?

Posted 10 June 2021 - 01:25 PM

Im developer of some MOMS type software. Am wondering: how many betas are acceptable before reaching RC and than Stable?
Also: which scenario should we choose and why:

1. Each MINOR new feature = new beta release,or,
2. Bulk-release: gather minor new features in bulk of, say, 10-20, and than make a beta release?

Bear in mind that we develop software for our internal use ONLY: no (source/binary) sharing expected.
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#2 modi123_1   User is offline

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Re: How many betas are acceptable/Whats correct version flow to follow?

Posted 10 June 2021 - 01:38 PM

MOMS as in the people the kiss our boo-boos and send us packing with cookies, or 'manufacturing operations management' stuff?

Quote

how many betas are acceptable before reaching RC and than Stable?

Depends where the 'minimal viable product' milestone is, testing coverage, and training.

Quote

Also: which scenario should we choose and why:

1. Each MINOR new feature = new beta release,or,
2. Bulk-release: gather minor new features in bulk of, say, 10-20, and than make a beta release?


Depends on testing timeframe, and how comfortable folk get with existing feature set. Though, typically, I find having consistent feature updates bundled up, and that release spread out, helps minimize over flow of emails and information.
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#3 directiveDickers   User is offline

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Re: How many betas are acceptable/Whats correct version flow to follow?

Posted 10 June 2021 - 02:19 PM

View Postmodi123_1, on 10 June 2021 - 01:38 PM, said:

MOMS

MOMS = Medical Office Management Software. Pretty self-explanatory if you ask me........ :)
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#4 ArtificialSoldier   User is offline

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Re: How many betas are acceptable/Whats correct version flow to follow?

Posted 10 June 2021 - 02:37 PM

Here's something to consider: the release candidate should have very few or zero known bugs. Zero bugs that will affect usability. If you're trying to push out software that is insufficiently tested or still has bugs because the number of beta releases has hit a magic number set by someone in management as the maximum number of acceptable beta releases, then you're going to have a bad time. You release when it's appropriate to release. If you have a critical fix that needs to go out, you don't need to wait to bundle other fixes with it. You look at your current situation and figure out what the best path is without trying to adhere to a single set of all-purpose "best practices," because those are going to change as new circumstances arise.
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#5 directiveDickers   User is offline

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Re: How many betas are acceptable/Whats correct version flow to follow?

Posted 10 June 2021 - 03:09 PM

View PostArtificialSoldier, on 10 June 2021 - 02:37 PM, said:

Here's something to consider:(...)

Thank you very much :)
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#6 Salem_c   User is offline

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Re: How many betas are acceptable/Whats correct version flow to follow?

Posted 10 June 2021 - 10:17 PM

Decide in advance the feature set that will go into the next release.
This needs to be some function of feature size*complexity, not just an absolute number.
You might have a dozen simple small features, but only one large complex one in each release cycle.

If your release cycle is continually polluted with feature creep, then you're never going to get out of beta.
How well you can resist this depends on your company structure.
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#7 Skydiver   User is offline

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Re: How many betas are acceptable/Whats correct version flow to follow?

Posted 12 June 2021 - 10:13 AM

If it's an in-house app. Why go waterfall when you have the perfect opportunity to go agile? Every release should be production quality. Any user feedback is used to feed to backlog.
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#8 Martyr2   User is offline

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Re: How many betas are acceptable/Whats correct version flow to follow?

Posted 12 June 2021 - 10:30 AM

I am not exactly on board that every release should be production quality as it really depends on who the target of the software is. If the target is some inside investors who just want to see how things are shaping up, they will accept some limitations in the software during a beta cycle. We had to do this in a company I worked for regularly. Now if you are going out as a release candidate to the public, sure everything should be buttoned up as much as possible. Even then users do expect some issues from time to time. Here communication is important and you want a really good feedback cycle.

One thing I do want to mention here is that I am not a fan of putting out software and using the public to test everything. The public is not a test group. Companies should put in a lead time to let the software "soak" with internal testers and have them use the software.

But long story short, and I think what many people here are pretty much agreeing with, is that you should not have some magic number of beta releases. Having 1 or 1000 doesn't matter as long as things are moving forward and (as mentioned) you are working towards a set MVP (minimal viable product). Even some MVPs may have a feature in it that simply is not there and presents a notice "This is not implemented yet". What you want to be avoiding however is obvious crashes and system instability.

Give the public a good product, be honest and communicate with them. Listen to their feedback and show you are incorporating it into future releases. That is the secret to software success. :)
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#9 kimilimes   User is offline

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Re: How many betas are acceptable/Whats correct version flow to follow?

Posted 19 June 2021 - 06:18 AM

Thanks for this solutions. I appreciate it.
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