Release notes

 

Release Notes are used to communicate information about changes made to successive releases of H2OfficeSolutions.  

 

Release notes contains 1 line for each change implemented on the date shown.  The report is ordered by implementation date, with the most recent at the top.

 

There are 2 sources of information for release notes, our internal do-list and change management databases.  

 

You can review the current release notes by clicking Help -> Release notes.

 

Figure 1: H2OS Release Notes report on web server

 

 

More about Release Notes

Changes come in all sizes, shapes and flavors. We make changes to fix problems, enhance screens, add new features, and so on.

 

As it happens, we embrace change naturally. We use databases to track various activities (such as new requirements, our do-list, problems)  that result in changes. With this information available as a byproduct of these processes change reporting becomes a natural by-product.

 

This is what we're up to.

 

It also (hopefully) explains why you may see discrepancies in reports, because sometimes it happens that activity records are in-flight, partial or even poorly worded.

 

So we've designed System Management mechanics that accommodate activities that can be viewed as "change feeders", "change makers" and "change distributors", much like the process of raw materials entering and flowing through a factory, with products (changes) coming out the other end.

 

To solve the problem of managing changes, we broke it down into it's respective components, or activities. We gave each activity it's own database (the do-list, the problems database, the changes database, the ideas database, etc.), each with it's own specialized data schema (format) needed for the activity, with common fields (keys) to link (relate) these tables to each other, and base fields for common values shared by the other systems management programs. An example is the "STATUS" field, which is defined in each of the Systems Management tables, but which contains status words commonly used for all databases. This makes it easy to create the  Release Notes report, for example, because the process just has to select all records with STATUS = DONE or CLOSED from all tables and walla!, a complete list of changes, regardless the reason (problem fix, new feature, etc.). It can then sort the table by another common field (date completed) to arrange activities from different tables into a common order.

 

Furthermore, on the subject of STATUS: all Systems Management activities go through a 4 stage process: INITIAL records are new records added by an authorized "reporter" but are not yet "picked up" or assigned. OPEN records have been assigned to a person and are in progress. When the assignee completes work, the status is changed to DONE. The status is finally changed to CLOSED by the reporter when the reporter agrees with the solution (or back to OPEN to indicate disagreement).  CLOSED items can be cycled into archival storage after some period of time.

 

In all cases, we try very hard to insure the process of introducing changes goes as smoothly and transparently as possible. See tabmods for a discussion on how database format changes are made to a "running system".

 

The Description field in this report is a hyperlink that can be clicked to "drill down" and view more details on individual changes.

 

Some changes in this report do not have detail records behind them, and clicking these entries will lead to an error message that's misleading - the real reason for the error is that there is no database record related to the item.

 

 

Notes:

 

1. If you have the H2OS option set to automatically detect new releases, during the 1st startup for each day H2OS will check the support website for changes. If it finds a new release is available, it will place a message on the screen announcing the release is available for download. You can proceed with the  download and installation of the new release, or wait.

 

2. The URL for release notes is http://www.h2officesolutions.com/RELEASE_NOTES_H2OS.HTM