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Practical Advantages of a Version Controlled Application

 

Version Control defines the ability and possibility of managing and conducting configuration changes on a given software. Now and then, software changes and version development occur due to improvements or the release of new technology. The ability to control the software version is extremely important, especially in cases where you have more than one developer working on an application.

The importance of version control ranges from having a seamless software development process to effective file sharing. Version control allows for change tracking and provides alerts for any modifications that may have been made on a particular application. The clients and users of particular software and systems can benefit from the various version control systems as they get quality services and products from the developers.

The developers can take advantage of Version Control Systems, which help record changes and track code modification. Some of the version control systems include the following:

  • Local Version Control Systems
  • Centralized Version Control Systems
  • Distributed Version Control Systems

Some of the most common of these VCS include:

  • Git
  • SVN
  • ClearCase
  • TFS
  • Mercurial
  • Helix Core

Advantages of using Version Controlled Systems

  • They help in automatic error testing and debugging
  • They help in keeping the history of all files increasing ability to trace changes
  • Provide ability to revert to the last revisions you made at a particular point in time
  • They provide the benefit of collaboration while working as distributed teams.
  • They assist the developers in identification of differences in sets of files
  • They allow development of programs with code versions that are different
  • The automated VCS prevents broken test scripts and minimizes the risk of losing functional codes.

There are a lot of benefits to embracing version control in the development process of software. The advantages include the following:

Collaboration

Version Control allows for the effective collaboration of developers who may be working on the same software simultaneously. It allows for fast project completion and helps you to save on time. Whenever developers work on a project, the different segments may demand different skills such as databases, networking, and graphical user design.

Version Control helps the developers to work on any given part of the file at any given time. Once the changes and modifications are done, the developers can integrate the changes they have made to the major version of the project. The Version Control Systems help create branches allowing for independent changes and development of software in multiple streams. This feature also helps in avoiding conflicts during collaboration.

Accountability

Accountability is critical, especially in environments where people work as teams. The changes that occur during the development of software must be attributed to a given developer or user in the system. Version control allows for easy tracking of the developers and the changes they made, hence increasing the team's levels of accountability. It also makes software updates and changes to be conducted effectively as the owner of a given change process can be traced.

Traceability

Version Control helps in the traceability of the major changes in the project. The ability to track all the changes that may have been made to the software is important. Software used to track bugs helps in the annotation of changes made and allows you to append messages that describe the nature and intentions of the changes made.

Traceability helps, especially in terms of conducting forensic analysis of the software. The appended messages help other developers understand the changes made and how they integrate into the software design. Traceability also helps identify differences in a set of files and compare any revisions that may have taken place.

Off-site Backup of the Source code

The backup of the source code is an essential component in the software development process. The source code is the code that makes the software to function the way it does. In case it is corrupted, the software may crash or malfunction; therefore, it is important to keep it in a safe location.

An instance of the VCS is created to function remotely and share any changes that have been made between the developers. The remote instance is normally hosted off-site and secured to ensure that no damage happens to it. In case the other instances are affected or stolen, the off-site backup can always serve to retain the source code.

The version control systems help team members store the source codes on portable and off-site disks. There are instances where the company may be using a central server, which may break down, causing the internal files and disks to fail. The off-site backups allow you to conduct a full recovery from the version control system’s repository.

Version Restoration

Software development entails the different aspects of file creation, allowing you to compare, conduct revisions, and merge the work. Version control helps you to have different code versions that are independent of each other. In case you prefer keeping a certain version of the code, the software allows you to do so and merge the changes at a later date. Version restoration helps to ensure that the original working state of the software is available and effectively operational.

Source code Rollback

Rollbacks in source codes enable the developers to revert or undo changes in the source code. Whenever any change is made, the Version Control System keeps track of history. This record helps whenever a developer needs to roll back to a previous state of the source code. In cases where there is an error in the code, the developer will revert to the last well-known and working state.

CI/CD pipelines and testing automation

The developers and development teams apply Continuous Integration (CI) and Continuous Delivery (CD) principles to deliver changes in the software codes efficiently. These principles and practices form the basis of the CI/CD pipeline. The CI/CD pipeline principle allows the developers to implement security and quality in the codes they develop to meet business requirements.

Testing automation is essential in Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery (CI/CD) pipeline, especially when working on complex software. Testing and automation enable faster tests to be conducted during continuous delivery as it reduces the rates of delay. The effectiveness of CI/CD is based on minimal anomalies and the elimination of variations. Testing automation ensures there is more consistency in the configurations and frameworks of new technologies.

Lastly, testing automation provides more agility to the CI/CD pipeline allowing for significant adjustments to be made on frameworks and tools. Due to the small changes frequently made on software updates, testing automation enables code integrations and updates efficiently and effectively.

Conclusion

Through the use of automated systems for version control such as Mercurial and Git, developers have access to powerful tools effective for merging and integrating files. These automated systems help the developers to achieve concurrency in file administration and effective version control mechanisms.

It would help if you considered implementing the version control best practices such as putting all project-related files, documents, and configuration files under the version control system. Conduct extensive testing using automated systems, update your working, and ensure to commit work and changes to the database consistently.

Version control brings immense benefits when using large systems and code bases. Consider using version control for the projects you are planning to develop and enjoy the above-stated benefits.

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