Proper application versions and release management are critical to ensuring your app’s code and functionality remain error-free and stable. By managing app versions and releases, you can easily track changes made to your project code, including functions and features that may be added or bugs that may be fixed. Also, it ensures that your development and release teams efficiently deliver the apps and upgrades required by your business while maintaining the consistency and integrity of the existing development environment.
As a leading low-code development platform, Mendix has simplified the process of managing apps and releases. This low-code development platform provides a series of tools and best practices to streamline the management of app versions and releases. Here is a deeper review of some best practices and tools to consider for managing app versions and releases with Mendix.
Best Practices for Managing App Versions and Releases with Mendix
Here are the top 6 best practices for managing Mendix application versions and releases:
1.Use Version Control
Version control is key to effectively managing app releases and versions with Mendix. It allows you to monitor changes made to your application, roll back to previous versions where necessary, and collaborate with other team members. Version control lets you keep your different app versions and releases organized. Mendix Studio Pro features a built-in version control system to help you manage application versions directly within the platform.
2.Consider Creating Release Branches
Once your application is in production, it is essential to develop a release branch. A release branch is a copy of your application’s code at a specific point in time. This release branch must contain all the changes integrated into the current release, including new features and bug fixes.
Developing a release branch allows you to continue working on new features and bug fixes in a different branch while ensuring your original code remains stable. Also, it lets you quickly roll back to a previous app version when necessary.
3.Create a Release Checklist
Creating a release checklist is an essential best practice for managing app releases and versions with Mendix. Don’t just release a new app version blindly. Consider making a checklist of the tasks that must be accomplished in the new application release or version. This may include testing your app thoroughly and updating documentation.
A release checklist helps you ensure that all the necessary tasks are accomplished before the release. This reduces the risk of issues and errors in managing app versions and releases. Also, it helps establish a consistent release process across various updates and versions of your app.
4.Use Automated Testing
Mendix supports automated testing through its Application Testing Suite (ATS), simplifying the application testing process. Automated testing is a great practice for managing app versions and releases with Mendix. It helps you catch errors and bugs early in development, minimizing the risk of releasing a buggy application.
You can use Mendix’s pre-built testing tools to develop and automate tests directly on the platform. Alternatively, you can integrate Mendix with external testing frameworks like Appium or Selenium for advanced testing scenarios.
5.Communicate with Relevant Stakeholders
Mendix supports collaborative development, implying that different stakeholders are involved in the app development, and management process. Relevant stakeholders include but are not limited to project managers, business owners, and end-users. Informing these stakeholders about upcoming application updates and changes is an important best practice for managing versions and releases with Mendix. It helps prevent surprises and manage their expectations, avoiding potential backlash against the changes made to the app.
Communication may take different forms, including email updates, release notes, or using other messaging platforms or social media tools. What’s more, you should establish clear communication channels early on to ensure that stakeholders receive the message through their preferred communication channels.
6.Use Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) Pipeline
A CI/CD pipeline streamlines the management of app versions and releases with Mendix. It automates your application’s development, testing, and deployment, enabling faster and more frequent releases. Therefore, using the CI/CD pipeline ensures your application’s code is constantly integrated and tested, minimizing the risk of introducing errors into your production code.
Tools for Managing App Versions and Releases with Mendix
These top 5 tools can help you effectively manage app versions and releases with Mendix:
Mendix Studio Pro
As the main development environment for Mendix applications, Mendix Studio Pro features numerous capabilities to streamline the management of app versions and releases. This tool includes a built-in version control system and collaboration tools to help you easily manage application versions and releases.
Besides Mendix Studio Pro, GitHub is another common version control tool for managing application versions and releases with Mendix. It is easily integrated with Mendix, enabling you to track changes and collaborate with other team members. As a result, it streamlines the management of app releases and versions.
Jenkins is a robust CI/CD tool that you can use to automate app releases. Thanks to Mendix’s pre-built connectors and APIs, you can easily integrate Jenkins with Mendix to automate the deployment of new app releases and versions.
Slack is a great messaging platform for communicating with stakeholders and team members. Integrating Slack with Mendix helps provide real-time updates on the app development progress, versions, and releases. This will help keep all relevant stakeholders updated about new app versions and releases.
Jira is an excellent project management tool that enables you to track feature requests, issues, and bugs. This tool can easily integrate with Mendix, helping you develop and manage app releases and versions. Also, it keeps everyone on the same page by notifying them about changes made.
Managing app versions and releases can be daunting, especially if you don’t follow the necessary procedures. Therefore, to effectively and efficiently manage app versions and releases with Mendix, proper planning, and execution are required. However, using best practices such as version control, creating release branches and checklists, and CI/CD pipeline and considering tools like Mendix Studio Pro, Jenkins, and GitHub can streamline the process of managing app versions and releases with Mendix.