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12. Code Maintenance

From a user point of view “code maintenance” means ensuring that your existing working code stays working, in the face of changes to Iris.

12.1. Stability and Change

In practice, as Iris develops, most users will want to periodically upgrade their installed version to access new features or at least bugfixes.

This is obvious if you are still developing other code that uses Iris, or using code from other sources. However, even if you have only legacy code that remains untouched, some code maintenance effort is probably still necessary :

  • On the one hand, in principle, working code will go on working, as long as you don’t change anything else.

  • However, such “version statis” can easily become a growing burden, if you are simply waiting until an update becomes unavoidable :

    Often, that will eventually occur when you need to update some other software component, for a completely unconnected reason.

12.2. Goals of Change Management

When you do upgrade Iris to a new version, you could potentially find that you need to rewrite your legacy code, simply to keep it working.

To reduce code maintenance problems to an absolute minimum, Iris applies defined change management procedures to ensure that :

  • you can be confident that your code will still work with a future release
  • you will be aware of future incompatibility problems in advance
  • you can defer making code compatibility changes for some time, until it suits you

To take advantage of this, you should read the basic change management recommendations laid out in Change Management in Iris from the User’s perspective.