Managing to release early, often and on time in the OpenStack software ecosystem

JA Teixeira, H Karsten

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


The dictum of “Release early, release often.” by Eric Raymond as the Linux modus operandi highlights the importance of release management in open source software development. However, there are very few empirical studies addressing release management in this context. It is already known that most open source software communities adopt either a feature-based or time-based release strategy. Both have their own advantages and disadvantages that are also context-specific. Recent research reports that many prominent open source software projects have overcome a number of recurrent problems by moving from feature-based to time-based release strategies. In this longitudinal case study, we address the release management practices of OpenStack, a large scale open source project developing cloud computing technologies. We discuss how the release management practices of OpenStack have evolved in terms of chosen strategy and timeframes with close attention to processes and tools. We discuss the number of practical and managerial issues related to release management within the context of large and complex software ecosystems. Our findings also reveal that multiple release management cycles can co-exist in large and complex software ecosystems such as OpenStack
Original languageEnglish
Article number7
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Internet Services and Applications
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2019
Externally publishedYes
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • OSS
  • Open source
  • OpenStack
  • Release engineering
  • Release management


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