We will now examine SCM strategies for OSP projects of different sizes and suggest suitable models for each. This should serve as a guidebook for SCM when starting new OSP projects
OSP projects can be considered as "small sized" if they fall within the following criteria.
Small User Base
The user base of the OSP project will typically be small in the order of magnitude, less than 100. One possible reason would be that the project addresses a very niche area of a problem domain that does not interest the average public. Another reason could be that the project is just starting out and so the user base is small due to its relative obscurity.
Small Code Base
The size (number of files/lines) of the source code for the application will typically be small. Thus the various versions of the source code can be maintained without using a tool.
Releases are not frequent
In any Open Source Projects project, the dictum is to "release early and release often". But some projects do not necessarily have a need for frequent releases. Small sized OSP projects tend to fall in that category. Such projects do not need a release management mechanism in place.
Applying the traditional SCM procedures (See Section 3) for a small Open Source Projects,
For a small project, we have said that the code base will tend to be small. In that case, identifying configurable items can be a straight forward exercise. It will be the list of all the source files plus other documentation that accompanies the code.