Understanding and Predicting the Process of Software Maintenance Releases
W. L. Melo,
and J. Valett
To appear in the Proc. of the 18th Int'l Conf. on Software
Engineering, Berlin, Germany, 1996. IEEE Press.
Also available as a Technical Report, University of Maryland, Department
of Computer Science, College Park, MD, 20742-001. July 1995. CS-TR-3502.
(Also cross-referenced as UMIACS-TR-95-79).
One of the major concerns of any maintenance organization is to
understand and estimate the cost of maintenance releases of software systems.
Planning the next release so as to maximize the increase in functionality
and the improvement in quality are vital to successful maintenance
management. The objective of this paper is to present the results of
a case study in which an incremental approach was used to better understand
the effort distribution of releases and build a predictive effort model
for software maintenance releases. This study was conducted in the
Flight Dynamics Division (FDD) of NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC).
This paper presents three main results: 1) a predictive effort model
developed for the FDD's software maintenance release process, 2) measurement-
based lessons learned about the maintenance process in the FDD, 3) a set of
lessons learned about the establishment of a measurement-based software
maintenance improvement program. In addition, this study provides insights
and guidelines for obtaining similar results in other maintenance
Key words: software maintenance, measurement, experience
factory, case studies, quality improvement and goal/question/metric
Copyright 1996 IEEE. Published in the Proceedings of
the 18th International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE-18),
March 25-29, 1996, Berlin, Germnay. Personal use of this material is
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