SDLC stands for”System Development Lifecycle.”. SDLC is a systematic approach to the design and management of a system used in information technology. It can be extended to networks and web services but is most commonly used in the production of apps.
When applied to applications, the SDLC is often referred to as the “application development life-cycle.” Some SDLC models have as little as five stages, while others have as many as ten. A standard SDLC system used to build a software application may include the following seven stages:
- Planning-The most critical aspect of the SDLC is planning. This involves steps such as assessing the need for specific software, who will be the end-users, what the development will cost, and how long it will take.
- Defining-At this point, the general development plan is focused on basic criteria. The basic specifications of the program shall be specified. At this point, the development team will also determine which programming language should be used to create the software.
- Designing-This step includes designing a user interface and deciding how the software operates. A design document specification (DDS) is popular for larger applications, which will need to be checked and accepted before the actual implementation begins.
- Building-The building stage usually forms the bulk of the software development process. This involves scripting the source code, designing the graphics, and compiling the assets into an executable program. Small projects may include a single programmer, whereas larger projects may involve several teams working together. For example, one team might design the user interface, while another team would write the source code. Individual teams can be delegated to various platforms for multiplatform applications.
- Testing-The all-important testing process helps the developer to catch unknown problems and to correct any glitches that occur in the software. Some testing may be performed internally, while a trial version of the program may be given to a small group of users for public testing.
- Deployment-As soon as the software has passed the testing process, it is ready for deployment. The program is released to the public at this point. It can be supported by electronic download or as a packaged program that is available on a CD or DVD.
- Maintenance-After a software application has been released, additional bugs or feature requests can still be submitted by users. The development team needs to maintain the program by fixing bugs and adding new features. Market software programs also require a certain degree of technical support.
The reason the above steps are referred to as a loop is that they are repeated every time a major new version of the program is released. Although minor changes can be included in the maintenance process, most tech companies remain in business by periodically releasing paid updates (version 2, version 3, etc). Before embarking on a new major version, the development team must first build a strategy (stage 1) and then move on to the other stages of the SDLC.