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Manage It! by Johanna Rothman

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Managing Beta Releases

You have several decisions to make with beta releases: how many releases do you anticipate, how finished does the product have to be, and who are the customers who will use the beta releases? And of course, all the answers to these questions depend on the beta duration and purpose.

Try organizing the beta into a subproject. If you’re using an agile life cycle, estimate in the release plan which iteration you’ll use to start beta—and update the release plan as you know more. If you’re using any other life cycle, estimate when you’ll start beta, and update that estimate as you proceed.

Here’s my beta test template:

  • Beta purpose

  • Beta customer selection

  • Beta entry criteria

  • Beta exit criteria

  • Overall beta schedule

Beta ...

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