As of RLC6.0 the Release Train application contains a mechanism to make scheduling easier. The tool can be used in many ways which will be broken down here.
There are two pre-defined selections for scheduling a release, by quarter or by six month release. If the date of release is set to begin the day the item is being created, click either button to get whatever release cycle is desired. As of writing this, today is March 10, 2016 and this is what it looks like after clicking both with no fields previously filled out.
Looking at quarter release, we see what is expected, start date is today (03/10/2016) and three months later the end date is 06/10/2016. Viewing a six month release, again we see what is expected, start date is today and six months later 09/10/2016 is the end date. Where things get real nice is the calculation of planning, development, and QA complete dates. Notice that less time is provided for planning and more time is allocated to development.
This is all great for scheduling a release that starts today, but this is generally not the case and the item being created is for something that will eventually start. Let’s say we want a quarter release to start on the 29th of March. After filling out the Start Date field manually then clicking Quarter Release, we get the following.
Or, how about if we know that we want to finish a quarter release on 08/20/2016. After manually filling out the End Date and clicking the Quarter Release Button, this is what we see.
According to our scheduler, we should start this release on 05/20/2016 if we hope to meet our end date of 08/20/2016.
What we haven’t talked about is if we have a start and end date that is say nine months long. What about correctly scheduling for this type of scenario? Thankfully, this is taken care of as well! We want to begin this release 03/11/2016 and complete it nine months later, 12/11/2016. Populating the start and end date fields with these values and clicking the quarter release button, this is what we get.
Quarter release correctly calculated, using percentages, the nine month release and set the three other fields appropriately.
So there you have it, scheduling at its finest! If you haven’t already, check out Release Train in the completely revamped RLC6.0! Also, check out this blog here to see how to change the default behavior of these buttons.