The activities that occur after deployment of a software system. This includes making modifications to released systems, training, operating, and transitioning to support organizations.

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21
votes
3answers
924 views

How do you keep your basic skills from atrophy?

I've been programming for about 10 years, and I've started to migrate to more of a project management position. I still do coding, but less often now. One of the things that I think is holding me back ...
1
vote
3answers
217 views

How to apply separation of concerns in a very big and messy application [closed]

I have a very big application that is written in C++ but it don't take advantage of the C++ performance and power due to different programmers with different backgrounds the code is a result of 22 ...
0
votes
0answers
38 views

What can I do with a poorly coded vb6/access2003 project? [duplicate]

I'm currently working on a big vb6 project and since I'm not the leader of the team (we're just 2) but I'll be in the near future I've started wondering about improving the code and the data ...
5
votes
3answers
495 views

Functional testing before code checkin

I am working on a project with legacy code where it does not have much code coverage. One of the idea to improve that is to enforce a rule that each code check-in must have test, not only test but ...
0
votes
3answers
440 views

How can I explain this is an anti-pattern? [closed]

I recently started at a new job. The existing system works OK but is poorly designed and hard to maintain, and they are planning to rebuild it in MVC and I fear it will be much worse. (Not because ...
20
votes
8answers
910 views

When do you rebuild an application or keep on fixing the existing one [duplicate]

Possible Duplicates: When is a BIG Rewrite the answer? Have you ever been involved in a BIG Rewrite? I am at a customer where I have been tasked to fix a number of issues they have in their ...
2
votes
1answer
179 views

How to manage stress from ongoing difficult maintenance? [duplicate]

I recently signed on to a contract where I am supporting an aging legacy system. The system is a collage of .net and VBScript components. Part of it operates as a web application; part of it ...
9
votes
5answers
1k views

switch statement - handling default case when it can't be reached

If I'm using a switch statement to handle values from an enum (which is owned by my class) and I have a case for each possible value - is it worth adding code to handle the "default" case? enum ...
3
votes
4answers
265 views

How do I handle merging code that hasn't been merged in ~3 years in an agile manner? [closed]

Our team has recently adopted agile practices and most of the team is new to agile. In our product, we use some code developed by another team and only they maintain that code. For the last 4-5 ...
1
vote
0answers
59 views

On the process of replacing an internal framework by a public one [duplicate]

I am working on several applications which depends on a framework which was developed by a prior engineer in the company. The framework was mainly developed and maintained in the early 2000s, and ...
124
votes
31answers
14k views

How do you dive into large code bases?

What tools and techniques do you use for exploring and learning an unknown code base? I am thinking of tools like grep, ctags, unit-tests, functional test, class-diagram generators, call graphs, ...
468
votes
19answers
87k views

I've inherited 200K lines of spaghetti code — what now?

I hope this isn't too general of a question; I could really use some seasoned advice. I am newly employed as the sole "SW Engineer" in a fairly small shop of scientists who have spent the last 10-20 ...
25
votes
5answers
976 views

Maintain a web application once the only developer is gone

I have a terminal disease and there is a very high chance that I will no longer be in this world by the end of the year. I have developed a web application that it is extensively used in my family’s ...
17
votes
4answers
1k views

How to convince/prove my manager that a rewriting is needed rather than a refactoring [duplicate]

My manager wants me to refactor a gigantic amount of terribly-coupled, macroed, full of private namespace methods, hierarchy-perverted (even 10+ levels of inheritance) code which hasn't been (indeed) ...
4
votes
4answers
681 views

What can I do to maintain respect for a poorly written codebase? [duplicate]

In my job I have to maintain a poorly written codebase which is both hard to understand, has tons of comments that are just plain wrong, has a bunch of weird decisionmaking going on in it and a whole ...
0
votes
0answers
384 views

How to integrate unit testing process into legacy software development process? [duplicate]

I'd like you to share your insights of how have you successfully turned the direction of rotting legacy code base to modular application design where it's easy and useful to add unit tests? What I'm ...
1
vote
2answers
83 views

Is input validation necessary?

This is a very naive question about input validation in general. I'm a MATLAB user (1.5 years old) and I learned about input validation techniques such as "parse" and "validatestring". In fact, ...
0
votes
0answers
107 views

Should I start refactor this messy project even if I know I won't have the time to completely refactor everything? [duplicate]

I have this older project (1st release 2005-ish) I've inherited that a customer asks me to fix or add something to now and then. It's a bit of a mess architecture-wise. Basically it's an ASP.NET ...
9
votes
2answers
613 views

Updating copyright headers each new year just because Jan 1st has passed? [duplicate]

I've seen some projects that - with each new year - start to change all files in their source-tree to update the copyright year. Isn't this just pushing hot air on a level of magnitude? AFAIK: ...
6
votes
4answers
324 views

Should large or old Codebases be expected to be easy to navigate?

I'm an Undergraduate Computer Science Student currently on a placement year at a company that produces and supports a large enterprise web application. I'm loving the experience of seeing how software ...
66
votes
9answers
4k views

How should you deal with a popular project that you no longer want to maintain?

I am the maintainer of a project which has a large non-technical userbase. I've been maintaining it for about 4 years now and adding new features as they've been requested. I'd like to move on to ...
73
votes
6answers
31k views

Why do dynamic languages make it more difficult to maintain large codebases? [duplicate]

I heard in a presentation on The Play Framework at LinkedIn (44:40) that dynamic languages make it harder to maintain large codebases. What are the reasons for that?
5
votes
1answer
155 views

Managing false positives in TDD or BDD

I'm relatively new to TDD and have been thinking a lot about how to manage the perpetually growing pool of tests that comes with it. One of my biggest concerns is about false positives. In my ...
2
votes
4answers
190 views

Considerations before rewriting a software component from scratch? [duplicate]

A piece of software is a patchwork of old and undocumented efforts. There are no comments, no documentation, and the code is hairy -- it involves Unix shell scripts that check for dummy files and then ...
44
votes
7answers
3k views

Writing Tests for Existing Code

Suppose one had a relatively large program (say 900k SLOC in C#), all commented/documented thoroughly, well organized and working well. The entire code base was written by a single senior developer ...
3
votes
2answers
106 views

Managing codebase for basic and pro edition of a project

I have a project which will have basic and professional edition. The professional edition will have all the features of the basic edition. I am using git to manage the project's codebase. I consider ...
49
votes
17answers
4k views

Working on someone else's code

I have hardly a year's experience in coding. After I started working, most of the time I would be working on someone else's code, either adding new features over the existing ones or modifying the ...
0
votes
1answer
122 views

Implementing new required feature after software release

Fake Scenario There is a software that was released 1 year ago. The software is to map and register all kind of animals on our planet. When the software was released, the client only needed to know ...
10
votes
5answers
1k views

How do I get myself out of a dead-end programming job? [duplicate]

I have almost 9 years of IT experience of which 7 years was worked in an IT company. For past 2 years I have been stuck in a non-IT based company using outdated technology and methodologies. We ...
17
votes
5answers
967 views

Is there a measure of code rot? [duplicate]

I'm dealing, again, with a messy C++ application, tons of classes with confusing names, objects have pointers into each other and all over, longwinded Boost and STL data types, etc. (Pause and ...
7
votes
3answers
467 views

Disillusioned with agile; how do you prepare for life after release 1.1? [closed]

My company is going full steam with the agile process, with multiple agile projects in work. The first agile team, the proof of concept, carried the product through release and the first post ...
2
votes
1answer
257 views

Maintaining code-style conventions for large projects [closed]

For a while I've been maintaining an ad-hoc script to check code style against our project's guidelines. I'm aware of AStyle/Uncrustify and have used them, but they are best for once-off code-style ...
13
votes
12answers
1k views

What to do with a not well organized application? [duplicate]

I'm a newly graduate programmer and just got hired before my graduation. In the office, I used to create and revise modules of some applications developed by other programmers in our company. The ...
12
votes
5answers
881 views

Does dealing with legacy code help one evolve as a programmer?

I'm a Java developer with a bit more than a year of experience which places me somewhere above a junior, but not among mid-level developers yet. Recently I was offered a long-term project which is ...
0
votes
2answers
199 views

What's a good way to manage long piece of code in files? [duplicate]

I am a web developer and at the moment am finding it hard to cope with long un-documented code written by previous developers in an organisation I work for. With the deadline gun always pointed at my ...
3
votes
1answer
64 views

data maintenance/migrations in image based sytems

Web applications usually have a database. The code and the database work hand in hand together. Therefore Frameworks like Ruby on Rails and Django create migration files Sure there are also servers ...
1
vote
1answer
254 views

Strategies for removing register_globals from a file

I have a file (or rather, a list of about 100 files) in my website's repository that is still requiring the use of register_globals and other nastiness (like custom error reporting, etc) because the ...
2
votes
2answers
385 views

How can I keep a production Python environment secure?

Most of my work is creating websites in Django (a Python web framework) and deploying them to my own or clients' servers. I work from a virtualenv to separate site from system packages and have ...
46
votes
5answers
2k views

Does dedicated maintenance work hamper a programmer's career? [duplicate]

The majority of my work over the last three years has largely been around maintaining legacy systems that needed patching up or the occasional revamp before being sold again. I understand the ...
0
votes
2answers
158 views

Strategy for reading and understanding Node.js code [duplicate]

Concretely I am looking at this 2000 line file of what I will pretty arbitrarily call "mediocre" code. It's not well-commented variable names and function names seem consistently intelligent ...
0
votes
0answers
85 views

How to quickly understand a huge piece of code [duplicate]

(This is a general question but I think is important.) How do you quickly understand a huge piece of code, say, a project with tens of thousands of lines of code (written by other people)? Are there ...
0
votes
0answers
47 views

Buggy System Management [duplicate]

Recently I acquired support for an existing live system. The system is so BUGGY and every single change would break something else. I am struggling to manage my time/effort between adding new ...
1
vote
6answers
731 views

Working in a company that does not comment their code at all? [duplicate]

I work for a small software development house (10~ developers, a few product managers and a few support staff) that sells various products and services to organisations internationally through ...
0
votes
1answer
783 views

Introducing Fowler's Table Data Gateway to refactor poorly designed systems

I am developing an application, which currently has about 150,000 lines of code. The previous developer didn't really use any discipline when writing code. Application is in production but is ...
19
votes
13answers
2k views

When is it acceptable to NOT fix broken windows?

In reference to broken windows, are there times when refactoring is best left for a future activity? For example, if a project to add some new features to an existing internal system is assigned to a ...
1
vote
2answers
134 views

How to handle product rebranding in code in a short time frame

We've all been there - a product feature is called "gold", and then a week before launch they decide it is to be called "platinum". Luckily, you had some nous about you so the UI code is easy to ...
2
votes
2answers
143 views

Starting a recurring project from scratch [duplicate]

We have a project that keeps recurring. The client expects us to run a website twice a year and this is happened for the last year and a half. I took the last working copy and based our latest website ...
2
votes
3answers
677 views

How can I determine how to charge for supporting SharePoint sites and SharePoint development? [closed]

I recently created a site in SharePoint and I need to setup a maintenance/support agreement for the site. In addition to the site, there are some custom modules that were developed that we monitor. ...
0
votes
2answers
98 views

Proper name for a project supports 2 different release

Is there a technical name for a software project where the current and prior stable releases are both maintained?
1
vote
1answer
108 views

Maintenance code needs improvements [duplicate]

I am currently maintaining/enhancing a project a bit old speaking of the 1990's. Atleast 15 developers would have worked over it. Going through the code for understanding is bit difficult. No ...