When software and hardware goes through development and testing, the time comes for it to be released throughout the IT infrastructure or to other clients. This falls on the lap of the ITIL Release Management team. This team of individuals ensures that the licensure, tests and version-verified software and hardware is all up to date upon release. This is to ensure that it functions properly when it is placed into the current infrastructure. During the development and implementation of new hardware is also a responsibility of the release management–specifically, the quality control.
The Goals of Release Management
When working with release management, there are numerous main goals that they strive for to ensure that the projects are done smoothly and efficiently. However, these goals can be summed up as:
- Creating an effective plan for the release of the software
- Working on the design and implementation procedures for the installation of the software/hardware to the system.
- Keeping track and communicating the expectations of the customer.
- Keeping a control on the distribution and installation.
By focusing on all of these points, the release management team is able to release a new piece of software with as few glitches as possible. This, in turn, makes it possible for the customers to be pleased with the goods provided to them.
Types of Releases
There are three main types of releases. The first is a major software/hardware release. This release, whether it is for fixes to major glitches in a previous release or an entirely new product. This type of release takes precedence over all other releases because it fixes major problems. On top of that, it supercedes all fixes that were done by minor problems.
The next type of a release is any sort of software/hardware release that is minor. This release is for fixes on minor problems. A minor release supercedes all fixes that were done by an emergency release.
The final type of release is an emergency release. If something suddenly appears that is wrong in software or hardware, this release ensures that it is fixed in a timely fashion. They are very small, pinpointed releases.
There are three types of release sizes. Depending on how big the release is can determine the type of release. The first type of release is a delta release. This is a release where only the a specific change has been added to the software such as a security patch. The next type is a full release. A full release is any type of complete software. For example, any application that has a new version is a full release. Finally, a packaged release is something that has numerous different releases all packaged and bundled together in one big release.