Software Development Process & Environment | Learn 6 Steps Involved

Software Development Process
• Software development process is carried out in various steps. These steps an basically called as software development phases.
• The system gets developed gradually during each of these phases. For example -after requirement analysis phase, the requirements of the system can be identified and SRS is prepared. After the software design phase, the design of the system on paper gets ready and so on.

Software Development Process & Environment 
• The collection of these phases determine the life cycle of software. These phases are used in various process models such as waterfall model, life cycle model and so on.
• Thus we can define the software development process as

Definition : Software development process is a sequential combination of phases, each having well defined starting and ending points and at each phase there are identifiable deliverables to the next phase.
• During the software development process, the deficiencies of previous stage must be identified and corrected.
• Various phases of software development process are
-Requirement analysis & specification
-Software design and specification
-Verification and validation

Phases of software development process

(1) Requirements Analysis and Specification

The requirements of the system are identified and documented in this phase.
• The requirement gathering and identification tasks are jointly carried out by the users and developers of the system.
. These requirements are then documented in a document which is popularly known as Software Requirement Specification(SRS),
• The SRS does not specify how to meet these requirements in the system.

(2) Software Design and Specification

• The SRS is used during the software design and specification. During this phase,varlous software modules and their interfaces are designed.
• In this phase, the software design document is prepared. This document specifies the functionality of each module, their interfaces and the software architecture used.

(3) Implementation

• Implementation is a phase in which the coding is done in suitable programming language with the help of design document.
• Ideally it should be simply mapping of software design into the corresponding code.
• At the end of this phase, fully implemented and documented system is ready for testing and validation

(4) Verification and Validation

•This phase is for checking the quality of the software system being developed.
•Verification means -" Are we building the product right?" and validation means -
" Are we building the right product?".

(5) Testing

•Testing is a process of finding bugs or errors from the system.
•Testing is done mainly for two things-
i) Module testing 
ii) Integration testing
•Module testing is performed to know whether particular module is working according to its specification or not. While integration testing is to uncover the inter-modular inconsistencies.

(6) Maintenance

• After delivering the software system to the user, there are chances for changes in the system due to some malfunctioning or due to some additional functionality.
•Many times the changes are made in the system to withstand in a new operational envirornment.
•This cost of maintenance is always higher than all other the software development.

Language and Software Development Environment

Definition of Software Development Environment : The software development environment means an integrated set of tools and techniques that are used development of software.
• This environment (actually set of tools) are used in al phases of software development such as-requirements, design, coding testing and so on.
• The ideal scenario for use of environment can be specified as follows -

Step 1: During requirement analysis and specification phase, the environment keeps track of requirements. It helps in identifying incompleteness and inconsistency in requirements. It also provides the facility to validate the requirements.

Step 2: After completion of requirements analysis, the software designers interact with the environment and get the help in creating initial system design. This design is then refined to get final design for the system.

Step 3 : At the implementation (ie. coding) phase, the environment assists the software developer by automating some development steps, by suggesting the reuse of existing design and reuse of components from library. Various tools that are commonly used in this phase are - interactive editors, compilers, interpreters
linker, debuggers and so on.

Step 4: The impletation is further tested in order to find bug. There are various automated testing tools available which help in generating the test cases.

• The software development cenvironment can be commercially provided by the support tools called CASE i.e. Computer Aided Software Engineering.

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