Whomever your release-engineers, qa.. etc.. the post-development people are, incremental releases are annoying.
That hasn't been my experience - people usually thank me for regular incremental releases :-) A few things to consider:
- Just because there are regular updates doesn't mean you need to use them. I don't go around every live project and update modules every time a new release comes out. Release and integration are independent tasks.
- If integrating code is causing problems spend some time figuring out why. You can often make it easier (e.g. one of my dev boxes happily updates from CPAN every day, runs the test suites on all my code and mails me if it comes across any problems - no manual intervention needed.)
- Incremental releases means that you can practice your QA and integration tasks more if you wish. People get better with practice.
- Incremental releases mean more bug fixes are available sooner. The sooner I get a bug fix the more time I have for integration and regression testing. More time is good.
- Incremental releases mean you get more opportunities to re-prioritise. You can lobby to get the patches that are more important to you done earlier.
- Small releases are easier to schedule, so are more likely to come out on time - making the work of QA and integration people much easier to plan.
Doing something once in a while with a lot of work feels a lot nicer than doing a little bit less work often.
It can do. It can also be a complete pain. I come across reactions of the "You want us to do what by when?!?!" variety a lot more than "Please stop giving me these small bits of work".
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