A professional conference organiser, professional congress organiser (PCO) or simply conference company is a company which specialises in the organisation and management of congresses, conferences, seminars and similar events.

Role of PCOs

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PCOs can typically work as consultants for academic and professional associations. They usually provide full service management for conferences including but not limited to conference design, abstract management software,program development, registration, site and venue selection and booking, audiovisuals, IT support, logistics, leisure management, marketing, printing and web services, sourcing speakers, funding, sponsorship and exhibitor sales, financial management and budget control.

Other companies offer related services including travel agents and public relations companies. They tend to focus on limited areas such as destination management.

Size of market sector

Recent surveys of UK conference venues have found that a third of conference bookings were made by PCOs or venue-finding agencies. In 2006 UK-based conferences generated £7.6 billion in direct sales giving PCOs a central role in some £2.5 billion of revenue generation. The UK is ranked second behind the US for global market share of conferences. Thus, although there is no one source of global statistics for the conference market it appears that PCOs play a central role in several billion dollars' worth of revenue generation worldwide.

See also

  • Meeting and convention planner
  • Meetings, Incentives, Conferencing, Exhibitions
  • Event planning


External links

  • IAPCO – the International Association of PCOs
  • Association of British Professional Conference Organisers (ABPCO)
  • International Congress & Convention Association
  • Meeting Professionals International (white papers about the meetings industry)
  • - Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA)

Professional Conference Organiser – Convention Management Software


Remote service software is used by equipment manufacturers to remotely monitor, access and repair products in use at customer sites. It’s a secure, auditable gateway for service teams to troubleshoot problems, perform proactive maintenance, assist with user operations and monitor performance. This technology is typically implemented in mission-critical environments like hospitals or IT data centers – where equipment downtime is intolerable.


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Remote service software helps to:

  • Increase uptime, improve performance and extend the life of a device
  • Control service costs by deploying patches and upgrades remotely, and ensure a first-time fix when an onsite visit is required
  • Streamline administration of pay-per-use models, with automated usage monitoring
  • Focus highly trained service teams on preventative maintenance, by diagnosing and repairing issues before they cause system failure
  • Increase customer satisfaction and loyalty

Manufacturers are using aftermarket service a competitive differentiator. Remote service software provides a platform for manufacturers to offer and meet stringent service level agreements (SLAs) without increasing the size of their service team.

Key characteristics of remote service software

  • Proactive: Remote monitoring of devices in use allows service teams to detect potential issues before they escalate, degrade performance or cause a system failure. This early warning system is a key component to issue avoidance and ability to meet more stringent key performance indicator (KPIs) in SLAs. Once an issue is detected, service professionals can also use remote service technology gateways to push patches or resolve issues.
  • Secure: Secure access is a core consideration of remote service. Solutions should adhere to compliance guidelines and protect the remote connection between the manufacturer and the customer – ensuring that no data has been stolen and no outsiders have been granted access.
  • Auditable: [ SOX, HIPAA and PCI ] compliance regulations require businesses to keep track of who does what on their network. Auditors require forensic logs to trace the steps of every interaction a remote service technician has with every device.

Other names for remote service software

  • IDM: intelligent device management
  • SSM: strategic service management
  • RDM: remote device management


Remote Service Software – Remote Support Service


Parallels Desktop for Mac, by Parallels, is software providing hardware virtualization for Macintosh computers with Intel processors.


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Parallels, Inc. is a developer of desktop and server virtualization software.


Released on June 15, 2006, it was the first software product to bring virtualization mainstream to Macintosh computers utilizing the Apple–Intel architecture (earlier software products ran PC software in an emulated environment).

Its name initially was 'Parallels Workstation for Mac OS X', which was consistent with the company's corresponding Linux and Windows products. This name was not well received within the Mac community, where some felt that the name, particularly the term “workstation,” evoked the aesthetics of a Windows product. Parallels agreed: “Since we've got a great Mac product, we should make it look and sound like a Mac product...”, it was therefore renamed ‘Parallels Desktop for Mac’.

On January 10, 2007, Parallels Desktop 3.0 for Mac was awarded “Best in Show” at MacWorld 2007.


Parallels Desktop for Mac is a hardware emulation virtualization software, using hypervisor technology that works by mapping the host computer’s hardware resources directly to the virtual machine’s resources. Each virtual machine thus operates identically to a standalone computer, with virtually all the resources of a physical computer. Because all guest virtual machines use the same hardware drivers irrespective of the actual hardware on the host computer, virtual machine instances are highly portable between computers. For example, a running virtual machine can be stopped, copied to another physical computer, and restarted.

Parallels Desktop for Mac is able to virtualize a full set of standard PC hardware, including

  • A virtualized CPU of the same type as the host's physical processor,
  • ACPI compliance system,
  • A generic motherboard compatible with the Intel i965 chipset,
  • Up to 64 GB of RAM for guest virtual machines,
  • Up to 2 GB of video RAM (VRAM),
  • VGA and SVGA video adapter with VESA 3.0 support and OpenGL and DirectX 10.1 acceleration,
  • A 1.44 MB floppy drive, which can be mapped to a physical drive or to an image file,
  • Up to four IDE devices. This includes virtual hard drives ranging in size from 20 MB to 2 TB each and CD/DVD-ROM drives. Virtual CD/DVD-ROM drives can be mapped to either physical drives or ISO image files.
  • DVD/CD-ROM “pass-through” access,
  • Up to four serial ports that can be mapped to a pipe or to an output file,
  • Up to three bi-directional parallel ports, each of which can be mapped to a real port, to a real printer, or to an output file,
  • An Ethernet virtual network card compatible with Realtek RTL8029(AS), capable of up to 16 network interface connections,
  • Up to eight USB 2.0 devices and two USB 1.1 devices,
  • An AC'97-compatible sound card.
  • A 104-key Windows enhanced keyboard and a PS/2 wheel mouse.

Version 2.5

The first official release of version 2.5 was on February 27, 2007, as build 3186.

Version 2.5 brought support for USB 2.0 devices, which expanded the number of USB devices supported at native speed, including support for built in iSight USB web-cams. The amount of video RAM allocated to the guest OS was made adjustable, up to 32MB. Full featured CD/DVD drives arrived in this version, which allowed the user to burn disks directly in the virtual environment, and play any copy-protected CD or DVD as one would in Mac OS X. In addition, a shared clipboard and drag-drop support between Mac OS X and the guest OS was implemented. This version brought the ability for users with a Windows XP installation to upgrade to Windows Vista from within the VM environment. A new feature known as Coherence was added, which removed the Windows chrome, desktop, and the virtualization frames to create a more seamless desktop environment between Windows and Mac OS X applications. This version also allowed users to boot their existing Boot Camp Windows XP partitions, which eliminated the need to have multiple Windows installations on their Mac. A tool called Parallels Transporter was included to allow users to migrate their Windows PC, or existing VMware or Virtual PC VMs to Parallels Desktop for Mac.

Netsys lawsuit

In 2007, the German company Netsys GmbH sued Parallels' German distributor Avanquest for copyright violation, claiming that Parallels Desktop and Parallels Workstation are directly based on a line of products called “twoOStwo” that Parallels developed on paid commission for Netsys, of which it says, Netsys has been assigned all copyrights. Additionally, the lawsuit claimed that Parallels Desktop 2.5's compatibility with “twoOStwo” showed that the two software products are run by essentially the same functional core. When Netsys lost its initial urgency proceeding, in which it requested a temporary injunction from the Landgericht district court of Berlin, it filed a new suit.

Version 3.0

On June 7, 2007 build 4124 was released as the first publicly available version of Desktop 3.0.

Version 3.0 retained all of the functionality from previous versions and added new features and tools. Support for DirectX 8.1 and OpenGL was added, allowing Mac users to play some Windows games without the need to boot into Windows with Boot Camp. A new feature called SmartSelect offers cross OS file and application integration by allowing the user to open Windows files with Mac OS X programs and vice versa. Parallels Explorer was introduced, which allows the user to browse their Windows system files in Mac OS X without actually launching Windows. A new snapshot feature was included, allowing one to restore their virtual machine environment to a previous state in case of issues. Further, Parallels added a security manager to limit the amount of interaction between the Windows and Mac OS X installations. This version included a long awaited complete “Parallels tools'” driver suite for Linux guest operating systems. Therefore, integration between Mac OS X and Linux guest-OS's has been greatly improved.

Despite the addition of numerous new features, tools and added functionality, the first iteration of Desktop for Mac 3.0 may be missing some of features that Parallels had planned for it. A Parallels, Inc. representative stated at MacWorld in January 2007 that version 3.0 would bring accelerated graphics, “multi-core virtual machines/virtual SMP, some SCSI support, a more Mac-like feel, as well as a more sophisticated coherence mode, dubbed Coherence 2.0”. While accelerated graphics have materialised, Coherence, as well as the overall look and feel of Parallels Desktop for Mac has only changed slightly. Also, SCSI support has not been implemented.

It is currently unknown if these features have been abandoned altogether, or if they will show up in a later build of version 3.0.

Build 4560, released on July 17, 2007, added an imaging tool which allowed users to add capacity to their virtual disks.

Feature update

Build 5160, released on September 11, 2007, added some new features and updated some current features.

The release focused on updates to Coherence, with support for Exposé, window shadows, transparent windows, and the ability to overlap several Windows and Mac windows. Further, Parallels' Image Tool was updated to allow one to change their virtual hard disk format between plain and expanding. Parallels Explorer was updated to allow for one to automatically mount an offline VM hard drive to the Mac desktop. Some new features added are iPhone support in Windows, allowing iTunes in Windows to sync with it. Users can now mirror desktops or other folders. Further, Mac drives can now be mapped by Windows and sound devices can now be changed ‘on the fly’. Up to 2 GB of RAM can be allocated to a virtual machine, with a total of 4 GB of RAM available.

Parallels Desktop for Mac Build 5608 added support for guest Parallels Tools for Linux in the latest Linux distributions (including Ubuntu 8). It also added support for running 3D graphics in Windows virtual machines on Mac OS X Leopard 10.5.3.

Use of code from the Wine project

According to Parallels' Licensing page, Desktop for Mac version 3.0 contains Direct3D code that was originally developed by the Wine open source project. Wine software is licensed under the GNU Lesser General Public License, which required Parallels to release the source code. Parallels released the modified source code on July 2, 2007, about 2 weeks after the promised release date. A Parallels spokesman explained the reasons for the delay in a message on the official company blog.

Version 4.0

Version 4.0, released November 11, 2008, updates its GUI, adds some new features, enhances its performance by up to 50% and has been developed to consume 15–30% less power than previous versions. Version 4.0 is the first version of Parallels Desktop that supports both 32-bit and 64-bit guest operating systems. Parallels Desktop 4.0 for Mac’s 3D support includes DirectX 9.0, DirectX Pixel Shader 2.0 and OpenGL 2.0 as well as 256 MB video memory. It also adds support for 8 GB RAM in a virtual machine and 8-way SMP. Parallels Desktop 4.0 introduces an adaptive hypervisor, which allows users to focus the host computer’s resources towards either host or the guest operating system.

Parallels Desktop 4.0 for Mac adds some new features such as:

  • A fourth viewing mode called Modality, which allows users to scale the size of an active guest operating system on the Mac’s desktop
  • A new screenshot utility called Clips, which lets users take and share screenshots between the host and the guest operating systems.
  • Start Menu integration and Automatic Windows Notifications on the Apple Menu Bar.
  • The ability to use select voice commands to remotely control the virtual machine.
  • The ability to start and stop a virtual machine via the iPhone. (Requires installing an iPhone application from Apple's AppStore.)

Since the Version 4.0 release, Parallels Desktop for Mac has a new logo. The new logo has what resembles an aluminum iMac, with what appears to be Windows XP on the screen and 2 parallel red lines overlaid on right side.

Feature update

Build 3810, released January 9, 2009, includes performance enhancements and features, such as DirectX 9.0 Shaders Model 2 and Vertex Shader support for additional 3D support Intel Streaming SIMD Extensions (SSE4) for better media applications performance. Build 3810 also adds support for running Windows 7 in a VM and for running Mac OS X Snow Leopard Server as either a host or as a guest OS.

Also included are usability features such as the ability to share Windows files by dragging them directly to a Mac application in Mac Dock. Windows can now also automatically start in the background when a user opens a Windows application on the Mac desktop. Version 4.0 drew criticism for problems upgrading from Version 3.0 shortly after its initial release. Build 3810 also addresses installation and upgrade issues previously experienced with Version 4.0 and introduces the option to enroll in the company's new Customer Experience Program, which lets customers provide information about their preferences and user priorities.

Version 5

Officially released on November 4, 2009, Parallels Desktop 5 adds several new features, mainly to improve integration with the host OS.

New features include:

  • 3D graphics and speed improvements
  • Optimized for Mac OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard)
  • Support for Windows 7
  • Theming of Windows applications to make them look like native applications
  • Support for Multi-Touch gestures (from a trackpad or Magic Mouse) and the Apple Remote
  • The ability to drag and drop formatted text and images between Windows, Linux, and Mac applications,
  • The ability for a system administrator to lock down a virtual machine so that users can't change the state of the virtual machine,
  • Support for OpenGL 2.1 for Linux guest virtual machines.
  • support for DirectX 9c with Shader Model 3.

Feature update

Build 9308, released on December 21, 2009, added some new features.

Linux guest operating systems

  • Parallels Tools support Xorg 1.7 in Fedora 12 virtual machines (experimental)
  • Parallels Tools support Mandriva 2010 (experimental)
  • OpenSUSE 11.1 installation media auto detection


  • Improved performance for USB mass storage.

Windows guest operating systems

  • Improved resume from suspend in virtual machines with multiple monitors assigned.
  • Improved performance of file access via Shared Folders.

3D and video

  • Improved performance for video playback in Windows Vista and Windows 7.
  • Windows Aero is not available by default for machines with Intel GMA X3100 and GMA 950 graphic adapters (some MacBook and Mac Mini models). It is available on MacBooks with NVIDIA 9400M graphics cards.
  • Vertical synchronization is now configurable. You can configure these settings using the corresponding option in the virtual machine video configuration page.
  • Improved 3D performance for the video game Mirror's Edge.

Mac OS X Server guest operating system

  • The ability to pass kernel options to the Mac OS X Server guest OS has been added. To do so, enable the "Select boot device on startup" option in the virtual machine configuration: it will enable you to specify the necessary kernel options in the 5-seconds timeout before booting the kernel.

Version 6

Officially announced on September 9, 2010 and launched on September 14, 2010, Parallel 6 supports full 64-bit support for the first time. Parallels claims that Parallels Desktop 6 for Mac "[has] over 80 new and improved features, including speed 40% above the previous version." Specific new features include:

  • An all-new 64-bit engine
  • 5.1 Surround Sound support
  • Better import implementation of VMware, Virtual PC virtual machines and Boot Camp partitions
  • Improved network, hard drive and Transporter performance
  • Windows program Spotlight integration
  • Faster Windows launch time
  • Enhanced 3D graphics that are 40% better than previous versions
  • Ability to extend Mac OS X Parental Controls to Windows applications
  • Ability to use Mac OS X keyboard shortcuts in Windows applications
  • Enhanced Spaces and Exposé support

Version 7

Officially announced on September 1, 2011 and released on September 6, 2011, Parallels Desktop 7 adds many new features, compared to its previous version.

The list below contains most important features (according to developer's website) but is not exhaustive:

  • Integration with Mac OS X Lion :
    • Full-screen support
    • Use of Launchpad for Windows apps
    • Mission Control support
    • Lion as a guest OS
    • Lion animations support
  • Improved user interface
  • New standard help and documentation
  • Shared devices with Mac OS X
  • Longer battery life
  • Mac OS X parental controls support
  • Support for Intel AES-NI encryption
  • Enhanced performance and 3D graphics
  • Support for up to 1GB video memory in virtual machine
  • Enhanced audio support - up to 192 kHz
  • Surround sound 7.1
  • Added support for Windows 7

Version 8

Officially announced on August 22, 2012 and released on September 4, 2012, Parallels Desktop 8 adds many new features, compared to its previous version.

  • Mountain Lion as a guest OS
  • Retina resolution can be passed to virtual machines
  • Windows 7 and Windows 8 automatically optimised for best experience on Retina
  • Parallels Desktop notifications
  • Notification Center support for Windows 8 toast notifications
  • Mountain Lion Dictation in Windows apps
  • Full screen on demand for Windows applications in Coherence
  • Presentation Wizard
  • Open in Internet Explorer button for Safari
  • Drag & drop file to Outlook in the Dock opens new email with attachment
  • Multi-language Keyboard Sync in Mac and Windows
  • Full support for new Modern UI Windows 8 applications (Dock, Mission Control, Launchpad)
  • Reworked Keyboard shortcuts preferences
  • Use the standard OS X system preferences to set Parallels Desktop application shortcuts.
  • Resources (CPU/RAM) monitoring
  • Indication for VM hard drive space usage
  • Shared Bluetooth
  • Improved Virtual Machine boot time/Windows boots time are up to 25% faster than previous version
  • Pause & resume Windows up to 25% faster than previous version
  • Input/output (I/O) operations are up to 35% faster than previous version
  • Games run up to 30% faster than previous version
  • DirectX 10 support
  • Full USB 3.0 support for faster connections to peripheral devices for Virtual Machines starting from Parallels Desktop 8.0.18305 (see

Version 9

Officially announced on August 29, 2013 and released on September 5, 2013, Parallels Desktop 9 for Mac adds includes these new features and enhancements over previous versions:

  • Brings back the "real" Start menu for Windows 8 and enables Modern apps in separate windows instead of full screen
  • Power Nap support, so applications stay up-to-date on Retina Display Mac and MacBook Air computers
  • Thunderbolt and Firewire storage devices are designated to connect to Windows virtual machine
  • Sticky Multi-monitor setup remembers settings and puts Windows virtual machines back into Full Screen mode on the remote monitor
  • Sync iCloud, SkyDrive, Dropbox and more without unnecessary duplication of files
  • Windows apps can launch the OS X Mountain Lion Dictionary with Dictionary gesture
  • Enhanced integration with Mac OS for Linux users
  • Enhanced New Virtual Machine Wizard makes it easier to set up a new virtual machine, especially on computers without hard drives
  • PDF printer for Windows to print from any Windows application to a PDF on the Mac desktop, even if that application doesn't have that functionality
  • Will work with OS X Mavericks
  • Easily install and access complimentary security software subscriptions from one location
  • Up to 40% better disk performance than the previous version
  • Virtual machines shut down up to 25% faster and suspend up to 20% faster than with Parallels Desktop 8
  • 3D graphics and web browsing are 15% faster than in Parallels Desktop 8

Enterprise version:

  • Set an expiration date to the virtual machine.
  • Run virtual machines in headless mode .
  • Start virtual machines on Mac boot.

Version 10

Released August 20, 2014, Parallels Desktop for Mac 10 has included support for OS X 10.10 (Yosemite)

Less than a year after release of its release, Parallels spokesperson John Uppendahl confirmed version 10 will not be fully compatible with windows 10. The coherence mode, which integrates the windows userinterface with OS X, will not be updated and users will need to purchase and upgrade to version 11 to continue using this feature.

Version 11

Released August 19, 2015, Parallels Desktop for Mac 11 includes support for Windows 10 and is ready for OS X El Capitan

Parallels Desktop for Mac version 11 is available as 1-time purchase of $79.99 for Desktop edition and annual subscription at $99.99 for pro edition.

Supported operating systems


Parallels Desktop 9 for Mac requires a Mac with one of these processors:

  • Intel Core 2 Duo
  • Intel Core i3
  • Intel Core i5
  • Intel Core i7
  • Intel Xeon processor

The software requires the operating system be one of these versions:

  • OS X 10.11 "El Capitan" support is currently in Beta, awaiting the final release by Apple.
  • OS X 10.10 "Yosemite" or later
  • OS X 10.9 "Mavericks" or later
  • OS X 10.8.4 "Mountain Lion" or later
  • OS X 10.7.4 "Lion" or later
  • OS X 10.6.8 "Snow Leopard" or later


In Parallels Desktop 10 for Mac, support for guest operating systems includes a variety of 32-bit and 64-bit x86 operating systems, including:

  • multiple versions of Microsoft Windows, including Windows 8, as well as MS-DOS, and Windows 8.1. (Windows 8.1 must generally be installed from a DVD version of Windows 8.1, since, Microsoft offers only the ".exe" version of Windows 8.1 in downloadable form, and does not offer the ".iso" version as a download.), Microsoft has released ISO version of windows 8.1 few months earlier.
  • Mac OS X Leopard Server, Snow Leopard Server, and Mac OS X Lion (only with OS X Lion as host OS),
  • various Linux distributions, FreeBSD,
  • eComStation, OS/2, Solaris,

See also

  • Comparison of VMware Fusion and Parallels Desktop
  • Desktop virtualization
  • Virtual machine
  • Platform virtualization
  • x86 virtualization
  • Virtual disk image


External links

  • Official website

Parallels Desktop For Mac – Virtualization Software Mac


Agile software development is a group of software development methods in which solutions evolve through collaboration between self-organizing, cross-functional teams. It promotes adaptive planning, evolutionary development, early delivery, continuous improvement, and encourages rapid and flexible response to change.

The Manifesto for Agile Software Development, also known as the Agile Manifesto, was first proclaimed in 2001, six years after "Agile Methodology" was originally introduced by the preeminent software engineers of the late 80's and early 90's and came out of the DSDM Consortium in 1994 although its roots go back to the mid 80's at Dupont and works by James Martin and James Kerr et al.


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Incremental software development methods trace back to 1957. In 1974, E. A. Edmonds wrote a paper that introduced an adaptive software development process. Concurrently and independently, the same methods were developed and deployed by the New York Telephone Company's Systems Development Center under the direction of Dan Gielan. In the early 1970s, Tom Gilb started publishing the concepts of evolutionary project management (EVO), which has evolved into competitive engineering. During the mid- to late 1970s, Gielan lectured extensively throughout the U.S. on this methodology, its practices, and its benefits.

A collection of lightweight software development methods evolved in the mid-1990s in reaction to the perceived heavyweight waterfall-oriented methods, which critics called heavily regulated, regimented, and micro-managed; although some proponents of these lightweight methods contended that they were simply returning to earlier software practices. These lightweight methods included: from 1994, unified process and dynamic systems development method (DSDM); from 1995, scrum; from 1996, crystal clear and extreme programming (aka "XP"); and from 1997, adaptive software development and feature-driven development. Although these originated before the publication of the Agile Manifesto in 2001, they are now collectively referred to as agile methods; and often abbreviated loosely as Agile, with a capital A, although this is progressively becoming deprecated.

The Agile Manifesto

In February 2001, 17 software developers (see below) met at the Snowbird resort in Utah to discuss lightweight development methods. They published the Manifesto for Agile Software Development:

We are uncovering better ways of developing software by doing it and helping others do it. Through this work we have come to value:

Individuals and interactions over Processes and tools

Working software over Comprehensive documentation

Customer collaboration over Contract negotiation

Responding to change over Following a plan

That is, while there is value in the items on the right, we value the items on the left more.

© 2001, the above authors. This declaration may be freely copied in any form, but only in its entirety through this notice.

The meanings of the manifesto items on the left are:

  • Individuals and interactions: self-organization and motivation are important, as are interactions like co-location and pair programming.
  • Working software: working software is more useful and welcome than just presenting documents to clients in meetings.
  • Customer collaboration: requirements cannot be fully collected at the beginning of the software development cycle, therefore continuous customer or stakeholder involvement is very important.
  • Responding to change: agile methods are focused on quick responses to change and continuous development.

Some of the authors formed the Agile Alliance, a non-profit organization that promotes software development according to the manifesto's values and principles. Introducing the manifesto on behalf of the Agile Alliance, Jim Highsmith said,

The Agile movement is not anti-methodology, in fact many of us want to restore credibility to the word methodology. We want to restore a balance. We embrace modeling, but not in order to file some diagram in a dusty corporate repository. We embrace documentation, but not hundreds of pages of never-maintained and rarely-used tomes. We plan, but recognize the limits of planning in a turbulent environment. Those who would brand proponents of XP or SCRUM or any of the other Agile Methodologies as "hackers" are ignorant of both the methodologies and the original definition of the term hacker.

Agile principles

The Agile Manifesto is based on 12 principles:

  1. Customer satisfaction by early and continuous delivery of useful software
  2. Welcome changing requirements, even late in development
  3. Working software is delivered frequently (weeks rather than months)
  4. Close, daily cooperation between business people and developers
  5. Projects are built around motivated individuals, who should be trusted
  6. Face-to-face conversation is the best form of communication (co-location)
  7. Working software is the principal measure of progress
  8. Sustainable development, able to maintain a constant pace
  9. Continuous attention to technical excellence and good design
  10. Simplicity—the art of maximizing the amount of work not done—is essential
  11. Self-organizing teams
  12. Regular adaptation to changing circumstance


Later, Ken Schwaber with others founded the Scrum Alliance and created the Certified Scrum Master programs and its derivatives. Schwaber left the Scrum Alliance in the fall of 2009, and founded

In 2005, a group headed by Alistair Cockburn and Jim Highsmith wrote an addendum of project management principles, the Declaration of Interdependence, to guide software project management according to agile software development methods.

In 2009, a movement spearheaded by Robert C Martin wrote an extension of software development principles, the Software Craftsmanship Manifesto, to guide agile software development according to professional conduct and mastery.

In 2011 the original Agile Alliance created the Guide to Agile Practices, an evolving open-source compendium of the working definitions of agile practices, terms, and elements, along with interpretations and experience guidelines from the world-wide community of agile practitioners.

The PRINCE2 project management methodology, used on many British Government projects, is being enhanced to manage projects that use Agile techniques.


There are many specific agile development methods. Most promote development, teamwork, collaboration, and process adaptability throughout the life-cycle of the project.

Iterative, incremental and evolutionary

Most agile development methods break the tasks into small increments with minimal planning and do not directly involve long-term planning. Iterations are short time frames (timeboxes) that typically last from one to four weeks. Each iteration involves a cross-functional team working in all functions: planning, requirements analysis, design, coding, unit testing, and acceptance testing. At the end of the iteration a working product is demonstrated to stakeholders. This minimizes overall risk and allows the project to adapt to changes quickly. An iteration might not add enough functionality to warrant a market release, but the goal is to have an available release (with minimal bugs) at the end of each iteration. Multiple iterations might be required to release a product or new features.

Working software is the primary measure of progress.

Efficient and face-to-face communication

No matter what development disciplines are required, each agile team should include a customer representative (product owner in scrum). This person is appointed by stakeholders to act on their behalf and makes a personal commitment to being available for developers to answer mid-iteration questions. At the end of each iteration, stakeholders and the customer representative review progress and re-evaluate priorities with a view to optimizing the return on investment (ROI) and ensuring alignment with customer needs and company goals.

In agile software development, an information radiator is a (normally large) physical display located prominently in an office, where passers-by can see it. It presents an up-to-date summary of the status of a software project or other product. The name was coined by Alistair Cockburn, and described in his 2002 book Agile Software Development. A build light indicator may be used to inform a team about the current status of their project.

Very short feedback loop and adaptation cycle

A common characteristic in agile is the daily "stand-up", also known as the daily scrum. In a brief session, team members report to each other what they did the previous day toward their team's sprint goal, what they intend to do today toward their team's sprint goal, and any roadblocks or impediments they can see to their team's sprint goal.

Quality focus

Specific tools and techniques, such as continuous integration, automated unit testing, pair programming, test-driven development, design patterns, domain-driven design, code refactoring and other techniques are often used to improve quality and enhance project agility.


Compared to traditional software engineering, agile software development mainly targets complex systems and projects with dynamic, undeterministic and non-linear characteristics, where accurate estimates, stable plans, and predictions are often hard to get in early stages—and big up-front designs and arrangements would probably cause a lot of waste, i.e., are not economically sound. These basic arguments and previous industry experiences, learned from years of successes and failures, have helped shape agile development's favor of adaptive, iterative and evolutionary development.

Adaptive vs. predictive

Development methods exist on a continuum from adaptive to predictive. Agile methods lie on the adaptive side of this continuum. One key of adaptive development methods is a "Rolling Wave" approach to schedule planning, which identifies milestones but leaves flexibility in the path to reach them, and also allows for the milestones themselves to change. Adaptive methods focus on adapting quickly to changing realities. When the needs of a project change, an adaptive team changes as well. An adaptive team has difficulty describing exactly what will happen in the future. The further away a date is, the more vague an adaptive method is about what will happen on that date. An adaptive team cannot report exactly what tasks they will do next week, but only which features they plan for next month. When asked about a release six months from now, an adaptive team might be able to report only the mission statement for the release, or a statement of expected value vs. cost.

Predictive method, in contrast, focus on analysing and planning the future in detail and cater for known risks. In the extremes, a predictive team can report exactly what features and tasks are planned for the entire length of the development process. Predictive methods rely on effective early phase analysis and if this goes very wrong, the project may have difficulty changing direction. Predictive teams often institute a change control board to ensure they consider only the most valuable changes.

Risk analysis can be used to choose between adaptive (agile or value-driven) and predictive (plan-driven) methods. Barry Boehm and Richard Turner suggest that each side of the continuum has its own home ground, as follows:

Iterative vs. waterfall

One of the differences between agile and waterfall is the approach to quality and testing. In the waterfall model, there is always a separate testing phase after a build phase; however, in agile development testing is usually done concurrently with, or at least in the same iteration as, programming.

Because testing is done in every iteration—which develops a small piece of the software—users can frequently use those new pieces of software and validate the value.

After the users know the real value of the updated piece of software, they can make better decisions about the software's future. Having a value retrospective and software re-planning session in each iteration—scrum typically has iterations of just two weeks—helps the team continuously adapt its plans so as to maximize the value it delivers.

This iterative practice also introduces a product mindset rather than the waterfall model's project mindset. Software can be seen as a living organism, which actively changes due to environmental change. As long as the software is being used, especially when it has competition, iterations in agile software development drive the change.

Because of the short iteration style of agile software development, it also has strong connections with the lean startup concept.

Code vs. documentation

In a letter to IEEE Computer, Steven Rakitin expressed cynicism about agile development, calling it "yet another attempt to undermine the discipline of software engineering" and translating "Working software over comprehensive documentation" as "We want to spend all our time coding. Remember, real programmers don't write documentation."

This is disputed by proponents of agile software development, who state that developers should write documentation if that's the best way to achieve the relevant goals, but that there are often better ways to achieve those goals than writing static documentation. Scott Ambler states that documentation should be "Just Barely Good Enough" (JBGE), that too much or comprehensive documentation would usually cause waste, and developers rarely trust detailed documentation because it's usually out of sync with code, while too little documentation may also cause problems for maintenance, communication, learning and knowledge sharing. Alistair Cockburn wrote of the Crystal Clear method:

Crystal considers development a series of co-operative games, and intends that the documentation is enough to help the next win at the next game. The work products for Crystal include use cases, risk list, iteration plan, core domain models, and design notes to inform on choices...however there are no templates for these documents and descriptions are necessarily vague, but the objective is clear, just enough documentation for the next game. I always tend to characterize this to my team as: what would you want to know if you joined the team tomorrow.

Agile methods

Popular agile software development methods and/or process frameworks include (but are not limited to):

  • Adaptive software development (ASD)
  • Agile modeling
  • Agile Unified Process (AUP)
  • Business analyst designer method (BADM)
  • Crystal Clear Methods
  • Disciplined agile delivery
  • Dynamic systems development method (DSDM)
  • Extreme programming (XP)
  • Feature-driven development (FDD)
  • Lean software development
  • Kanban (development)
  • Scrum
  • Scrumban

Agile methods are focused on different aspects of the software development life cycle. Some focus on the practices (e.g. XP, pragmatic programming, agile modeling), while others focus on managing the software projects (e.g. scrum). Yet, there are approaches providing full coverage over the development life cycle (e.g. DSDM, RUP), while most of them are suitable from the requirements specification phase on (FDD, for example). Thus, there is a clear difference between the various agile methods in this regard.

Agile practices

Agile development is supported by a bundle of concrete practices, covering areas like requirements, design, modelling, coding, testing, project management, process, quality, etc. Some notable agile practices include:

  • Acceptance test-driven development (ATDD)
  • Agile modeling
  • Backlogs (Product and Sprint)
  • Behavior-driven development (BDD)
  • Cross-functional team
  • Continuous integration (CI)
  • Domain-driven design (DDD)
  • Information radiators (scrum board, task board, visual management board, burndown chart)
  • Iterative and incremental development (IID)
  • Pair programming
  • Planning poker
  • Refactoring
  • Scrum events (sprint planning, daily scrum, sprint review and retrospective)
  • Test-driven development (TDD)
  • Agile testing
  • Timeboxing
  • Use case
  • User story
  • Story-driven modeling
  • Retrospective
  • Velocity tracking
  • User Story Mapping

The Agile Alliance has provided a comprehensive online collection with a map guide to the applying agile practices.

Method tailoring

In the literature, different terms refer to the notion of method adaptation, including 'method tailoring', 'method fragment adaptation' and 'situational method engineering'. Method tailoring is defined as:

A process or capability in which human agents determine a system development approach for a specific project situation through responsive changes in, and dynamic interplays between contexts, intentions, and method fragments.

Potentially, almost all agile methods are suitable for method tailoring. Even the DSDM method is being used for this purpose and has been successfully tailored in a CMM context. Situation-appropriateness can be considered as a distinguishing characteristic between agile methods and traditional software development methods, with the latter being relatively much more rigid and prescriptive. The practical implication is that agile methods allow project teams to adapt working practices according to the needs of individual projects. Practices are concrete activities and products that are part of a method framework. At a more extreme level, the philosophy behind the method, consisting of a number of principles, could be adapted (Aydin, 2004).

Extreme programming (XP) makes the need for method adaptation explicit. One of the fundamental ideas of XP is that no one process fits every project, but rather that practices should be tailored to the needs of individual projects. Partial adoption of XP practices, as suggested by Beck, has been reported on several occasions. Mehdi Mirakhorli proposes a tailoring practice that provides a sufficient road-map and guidelines for adapting all the practices. RDP Practice is designed for customizing XP. This practice, first proposed as a long research paper in the APSO workshop at the ICSE 2008 conference, is currently the only proposed and applicable method for customizing XP. Although it is specifically a solution for XP, this practice has the capability of extending to other methodologies. At first glance, this practice seems to be in the category of static method adaptation but experiences with RDP Practice says that it can be treated like dynamic method adaptation. The distinction between static method adaptation and dynamic method adaptation is subtle.

Comparison with other methods


Agile methods have much in common with the Rapid Application Development techniques from the 1980/90s as espoused by James Martin and others. In addition to technology-focused methods, customer-and-design-centered methods, such as Visualization-Driven Rapid Prototyping developed by Brian Willison, work to engage customers and end users to facilitate agile software development.

Further, James M. Kerr and Richard Hunter wrote a book on the subject that presented a day-by-day diary of an actual RAD project, It covered the project from inception to production and contains many of the techniques that forge the backbone of, and are very much present in, today's Agile approaches


In 2008 the Software Engineering Institute (SEI) published the technical report "CMMI or Agile: Why Not Embrace Both" to make clear that the Capability Maturity Model Integration and Agile can co-exist. Modern CMMI-compatible development processes are also iterative. The CMMI Version 1.3 includes tips for implementing CMMI and agile process improvement together.

Large-scale, offshore and distributed

Agile development has been widely seen as highly suited to certain types of environments, including small teams of experts working on greenfield projects, and the challenges and limitations encountered in the adoption of agile methods in a large organization with legacy infrastructure are well-documented and understood.

In response, a range of strategies and patterns has evolved for overcoming challenges with large-scale development efforts (>20 developers) or distributed (non-colocated) development teams, amongst other challenges; and there are now several recognised frameworks that seek to mitigate or avoid these challenges, including:

  • Scaled agile framework (SAFe), Dean Leffingwell inter alia
  • Disciplined agile delivery (DAD), Scott Ambler inter alia
  • Large-scale scrum (LeSS), Craig Larman and Bas Vodde
  • Nexus (scaled professional scrum), Ken Schwaber
  • Scrum at Scale Jeff Sutherland, Alex Brown
  • Enterprise scrum, Mike Beedle

There are many conflicting viewpoints on whether all of these are effective or indeed fit the definition of agile development, and this remains an active and ongoing area of research.

When agile software development is applied in a distributed setting (with teams dispersed across multiple business locations), it is commonly referred to as Distributed Agile Development. The goal is to leverage the unique benefits offered by each approach. Distributed development allow organizations to build software by strategically setting up teams in different parts of the globe, virtually building software round-the-clock (more commonly referred to as follow-the-sun model). On the other hand, agile development provides increased transparency, continuous feedback and more flexibility when responding to changes.

Regulated domains

Agile methods were initially seen as best suitable for non-critical software projects, thereby excluded from use in regulated domains such as medical devices, pharmaceutical, financial, nuclear systems, automotive, and avionics sectors, etc. However, in the last several years, there have been several initiatives for the adaptation of agile methods for these domains.

There are numerous standards that may apply in regulated domains, including ISO 26262, ISO 9000, ISO 9001, and ISO/IEC 15504. A number of key concerns are of particular importance in regulated domains which may conflict with the use of agile methods:

  • Quality Assurance (QA): Systematic and inherent quality management underpinning a controlled professional process and reliability and correctness of product.
  • Safety and Security: Formal planning and risk management to mitigate safety risks for users and securely protecting users from unintentional and malicious misuse.
  • Traceability: Documentation providing auditable evidence of regulatory compliance and facilitating traceability and investigation of problems.
  • Verification and Validation (V&V): Embedded throughout the software development process (e.g. user requirements specification, functional specification, design specification, code review, unit tests, integration tests, system tests).

The Scrum framework in particular has received considerable attention. Two derived methods have been defined: R-Scrum (Regulated Scrum) and SafeScrum.

Experience and adoption

Measuring agility

While agility can be seen as a means to an end, a number of approaches have been proposed to quantify agility. Agility Index Measurements (AIM) score projects against a number of agility factors to achieve a total. The similarly named Agility Measurement Index, scores developments against five dimensions of a software project (duration, risk, novelty, effort, and interaction). Other techniques are based on measurable goals. Another study using fuzzy mathematics has suggested that project velocity can be used as a metric of agility. There are agile self-assessments to determine whether a team is using agile practices (Nokia test, Karlskrona test, 42 points test).

While such approaches have been proposed to measure agility, the practical application of such metrics is still debated. There is agile software development ROI data available from the CSIAC ROI Dashboard.


One of the early studies reporting gains in quality, productivity, and business satisfaction by using Agile methods was a survey conducted by Shine Technologies from November 2002 to January 2003. A similar survey, the State of Agile, is conducted every year starting in 2006 with thousands of participants from around the software development community. The State of Agile survey tracks trends on the benefits of agile, trends, lessons learned, preferred practices and agile methodologies. From the 2013 results released in January 2014, the survey concludes that 73% of respondents say agile software helps them complete software projects faster; 92% say agile improves their ability to manage changing customer priorities; and 87% say agile improves their development team's productivity. In 2014 the survey "Status Quo Agile" showed better results of agile methods regarding all success criteria examined compared to classical project management Yet another survey conducted in 2006 by Scott Ambler, the Practice Leader for Agile Development with IBM Rational's Methods Group reported similar benefits. Others claim that agile development methods are still too young to require extensive academic proof of their success.

Common agile pitfalls

Organizations and teams implementing agile development often face difficulties transitioning from more traditional methods such as waterfall development, such as teams having an agile process forced on them. These are often termed agile anti-patterns or more commonly agile smells. Below are some common examples:

Lack of overall project design

This can lead to lack of scalability and design flaws—like building a house with no blueprint and hoping it remains standing.

Adding stories to a sprint in progress

Adding stories to a sprint in progress is detrimental to the flow established by Agile. From Ilan Goldstein's Sprint issues – when sprints turn into crawls, "'Isn't the ability to change course on the fly what Scrum is all about?' Well not quite. Scrum certainly provides provision to change product backlog priorities mid-project however this needs to occur between sprints and not during them."

If an issue arises that requires additions to a sprint, Ilan recommends an abnormal sprint termination. This does not mean that a user story cannot expand. Teams must deal with new information, which may produce additional tasks for a user story. If the new information prevents the user story from being production-ready during the sprint, then it should carry over to the next sprint. However, during the next sprint planning, the user story should be prioritized over all remaining user stories. The information that requires new tasks may have altered the user story priority.

Lack of sponsor support

Agile is often implemented as a grassroots effort in organizations by software development teams trying to optimize their development processes and ensure consistency in the software development life cycle. By not having sponsor support, teams may face difficulties and resistance from business partners, other development teams and management. "Carrying on without an effective sponsor raises the probability of project failure..."

Additionally, the project sponsor is responsible for ensuring the team has appropriate funding and resources.

Insufficient training

A survey performed by Version One found respondents cited insufficient training as the most significant cause for failed agile projects Teams have fallen into the trap of assuming the reduced processes of agile development compared to other methodologies such as waterfall means that there are no actual rules for agile development. Agile development is a set of prescribed methodologies, and training/practice is a requirement.

Product owner role is not properly filled

The product owner is responsible for representing the business in the development activity. In The Elements of Scrum the product owner "... is usually the most demanding role on a scrum team."

A common mistake is to have the product owner role filled by someone from the development team. According to Johanna Rothman this is a mistake, "When the business is unaccountable, the agile ecosystem breaks down." Having the development team fill this role results in the team making its own decisions on prioritization without real feedback from the business. Additionally, the team either tries to solve business issues internally or delay as they reach outside the core group for input. This can cause finger-pointing and divert from the collaborative process directed.

Teams are not focused

The agile process requires teams who focus on the project to meet project commitments. During a sprint, a resource who has the capacity is expected to take up tasks potentially outside their area of greatest expertise or comfort.

If team members have multiple projects, it is difficult to make spare capacity available to help complete the sprint. "While having information developers working on multiple scrum teams is not ideal, it can be done with some proper planning and judicious evaluation of which meetings you should attend."

Excessive preparation/planning

Teams may fall into the trap of spending too much time preparing or planning. This is a common trap for teams less familiar with the agile process where the teams feel obligated to have a complete understanding of all user stories or a detailed design. Teams should leverage the ability for Sprints to act as a method discovery and moving forward with the information they do know. As more information is gained it should be applied to the next Sprint.

Problem-solving in the daily standup

A daily standup should be a focused, timely meeting where all team members disseminate information. If problem-solving occurs, it often can only involve certain team members and potentially is not the best use of the entire team's time. If during the daily standup the team starts diving into problem-solving, it should be tabled until a sub-team can discuss, usually immediately after the daily scrum completes.

Assigning Tasks

One of the intended benefits of agile development is to empower the team to make choices, as they are closest to the problem. Additionally, they should make choices as close to implementation as possible—compared to a waterfall approach—to use more timely information in the decision. If team members are assigned tasks by others or too early in the process, the benefits of localized and timely decision making can be lost.

Another tendency is for assigners to box team members into certain roles (for example, team member A must always do the database work), which hinders cross-training. Team members themselves can choose to take on tasks that stretch their abilities and provide cross-training opportunities.

Scrum master as a contributor

Another common pitfall is for a scrum master to act as a contributor. While not prohibited by the Scrum methodology, the scrum master needs to ensure they have the capacity to act in the role of scrum master first and not working on tasks for the project. A scrum master's role is to facilitate the Scrum process. "Facilitating meetings such as a daily scrum, sprint planning, sprint reviews and sprint retrospectives is part of this. A technical contributor's role is to work with the other team members to figure out how to get the work done and to do it."

Having the scrum master also multitasking may result in too many context switches to be productive. Additionally, as a scrum master is responsible for ensuring roadblocks are removed so that the team can make forward progress, the benefit gained by individual tasks moving forward may not outweigh roadblocks that are deferred due to lack of capacity.

Lacking test automation

Due to the iterative nature of agile development, multiple rounds of testing for a project are often needed. "Having an automated testing framework, which takes care of both system and integration tests, adds a lot of firepower to such a team. It not only acts as a safety net against regressions caused by new development, but more importantly frees up a lot of precious developer and tester time - allowing them to focus on the things they do best."

Test automation also supports continued refactoring required by iterative software development. Allowing a developer to quickly run tests to confirm refactoring has not modified the functionality of the application may reduce the workload and increase confidence that cleanup efforts have not introduced new defects.

Allowing technical debt to build up

Focusing on delivering new functionality may result in increased technical debt. The team must allow themselves time for defect remediation and refactoring. Technical debt hinders planning abilities by increasing the amount of unscheduled work as production defects distract the team from further project progress.

As the system evolves it is important to refactor as entropy of the system naturally increases. Over time the lack of constant maintenance causes increasing defects and development costs.

Attempting to take on too much in a sprint

This is not applicable to Kanban, which does not have sprints.

A common misconception is that agile development allows continuous change, however a sprint backlog is an agreement of what work can be completed during the sprint. Additionally having too much work-in-progress(WIP) can result in inefficiencies due "to avoid the penalties of wasted time, effort and resources."

A possible issue is the team being pressured into taking on additional work. "An important point to reiterate here is that it's the team that selects how much work they can do in the coming sprint. The product owner does not get to say, 'We have four sprints left so you need to do one-fourth of everything I need.' We can hope the team does that much (or more), but it's up to the team to determine how much they can do in the sprint."

Fixed time, resources, scope, and quality

Agile development fixes time (sprint duration), quality, and ideally resources in advance (though maintaining fixed resources may be difficult if developers are often pulled away from tasks to handle production incidents), while the scope remains variable. The customer or product owner often pushes for a fixed scope for a sprint. However, teams should be reluctant to commit to locked time, resources and scope (commonly known as the project management triangle). Efforts to add scope to the fixed time and resources of agile development may result in decreased quality.


Agile methodologies can be very difficult for large organizations such as governments and multinational banks to faithfully adopt, for reasons ranging from lack of sponsor buy-in to agile, to refusal to heed agile consultants' advice on co-located teams - and particularly in the case of governments, outdated procurement and project management policies that assume non-agile methodologies.

Agile methodologies can be inefficient in large organizations and certain types of projects. Agile methods seem best for developmental and non-sequential projects. Many organizations believe that agile methodologies are too extreme and adopt a hybrid approach that mixes elements of agile and plan-driven approaches. However, DSDM is an agile methodology that in fact mixes elements of agile and plan-driven approaches in a disciplined way, without sacrificing the fundamental principles that make agile work.

The term "agile" has also been criticized as being a management fad that simply describes existing good practices under new jargon, promotes a "one size fits all" mindset towards development strategies, and wrongly emphasizes method over results.

Alistair Cockburn organized a celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Agile Manifesto in Snowbird, Utah on February 12, 2011, gathering some 30+ people who had been involved at the original meeting and since. A list of about 20 elephants in the room ("undiscussable" agile topics/issues) were collected, including aspects: the alliances, failures and limitations of agile practices and context (possible causes: commercial interests, decontextualization, no obvious way to make progress based on failure, limited objective evidence, cognitive biases and reasoning fallacies), politics and culture. As Philippe Kruchten wrote:

The agile movement is in some ways a bit like a teenager: very self-conscious, checking constantly its appearance in a mirror, accepting few criticisms, only interested in being with its peers, rejecting en bloc all wisdom from the past, just because it is from the past, adopting fads and new jargon, at times cocky and arrogant. But I have no doubts that it will mature further, become more open to the outside world, more reflective, and also therefore more effective.

Applications outside software development

Agile methods have been extensively used for development of software products and some of them use certain characteristics of software, such as object technologies. However, these techniques can be applied to the development of non-software products, such as computers, motor vehicles, medical devices, food, clothing, and music; see Flexible product development. Some of the wider principles of agile have also found application in general management (e.g., strategy, governance, risk, finance) under the terms business agility or Agile Business Management.

Under an Agile Business Management model, agile techniques, practices, principles and values are expressed across four domains.

  1. Integrated customer engagement - to embed customers within any delivery process to share accountability for product/service delivery.
  2. Facilitation-based management - adopting agile management models, like the role of Scrum Master, to facilitate the day-to-day operation of teams.
  3. Agile work practices - adopting specific iterative and incremental work practices such as Scrum, Kanban, Test-Driven Development or Feature-Driven Development across all business functions (from Sales, Human Resources, Finance and Marketing).
  4. An enabling organisational structure - with a focus on staff engagement, personal autonomy and outcomes based governance.

Agile development paradigms can be used in other areas of life such as raising children. Its success in child development might be founded on some basic management principles; communication, adaptation and awareness. Bruce Feiler has claimed that the basic Agile Development paradigms can be applied to household management and raising children. In his TED Talk, "Agile programming -- for your family", these paradigms brought significant changes to his household environment, such as the kids doing dishes, taking out the trash, and decreasing his children's emotional outbreaks, which inadvertently increased their emotional stability. In some ways, agile development is more than a bunch of software development rules: it can be something more simple and broad, like a problem solving guide.


Further reading

  • Abrahamsson, P., Salo, O., Ronkainen, J., & Warsta, J. (2002). Agile Software Development Methods: Review and Analysis. VTT Publications 478.
  • Cohen, D., Lindvall, M., & Costa, P. (2004). An introduction to agile methods. In Advances in Computers (pp. 1–66). New York: Elsevier Science.
  • Dingsøyr, Torgeir, Dybå, Tore and Moe, Nils Brede (ed.): Agile Software Development: Current Research and Future Directions, Springer, Berlin Heidelberg, 2010.
  • Moran, Alan. Managing Agile: Strategy, Implementation, Organisation and People. Springer, Berlin Heidelberg, 2015. (ISBN 978-3-319-16262-1)
  • Fowler, Martin. Is Design Dead?. Appeared in Extreme Programming Explained, G. Succi and M. Marchesi, ed., Addison-Wesley, Boston. 2001.
  • Larman, Craig and Basili, Victor R. Iterative and Incremental Development: A Brief History IEEE Computer, June 2003
  • Riehle, Dirk. A Comparison of the Value Systems of Adaptive Software Development and Extreme Programming: How Methodologies May Learn From Each Other. Appeared in Extreme Programming Explained, G. Succi and M. Marchesi, ed., Addison-Wesley, Boston. 2001.
  • M. Stephens, D. Rosenberg. Extreme Programming Refactored: The Case Against XP. Apress L.P., Berkeley, California. 2003. (ISBN 1-59059-096-1)
  • Shore, J., & Warden S. (2008). The Art of Agile Development. O'Reilly Media, Inc.
  • Willison, Brian (2008). Iterative Milestone Engineering Model. New York, NY.
  • Willison, Brian (2008). Visualization Driven Rapid Prototyping. Parsons Institute for Information Mapping.

External links

  • Agile at DMOZ
  • Two Ways to Build a Pyramid, John Mayo-Smith (VP Of Technology At R/GA), October 22, 2001
  • The New Methodology Martin Fowler's description of the background to agile methods
  • Ten Authors of The Agile Manifesto Celebrate its Tenth Anniversary
  • Agile Manifesto
  • Agile Rapid Website Development

Agile Software Development – Agile Project Management Software Comparison

online-application-responsive.jpg is a patented online lease management software system that minimizes or replaces traditional paper-based functions while ensuring compliance with laws pertaining to fair housing, resident screening, credit reporting and lease contract forms.

Company History - Work Orders for Property Management Tasks - is a web-based property management software which offers a FREE 60-day trial. Click here to get started: ...

1999: Tom Harrington, apartment community owner & entrepreneur, realized there was little to no available technology and limited visibility over what was happening at his communities. Jake Harrington, “Internet Generation”, brought an engineer’s approach in order to achieve simplification via technology.

2000: Summer 2000, Jake and two classmates from Duke University begin software development from an apartment in Los Altos, CA. Develop auto-form filling technology and call the new company Forms Dash. In July, Forms Dash prints first lease for the Greenery Apartments in Campbell, CA.

Scott Jones, Stanford M.A. in Computer Science pioneered technology as the site’s architect. Forms Dash becomes On-Site Manager Inc, after the job position it automates. December 2000, Via Reggio Apartments San Jose, CA becomes first paying customer.

2001: On-Site Manager Inc subscribes to the credit bureau Equifax, adding credit screening to its auto-form filling technology. The auto-form filling and credit screening services get a new name – Rental Express.

2002: Eviction & criminal searches and verification of employment, rental & banking history are added to the Rental Express service. Customizable lease documents are introduced, which creates one of the most comprehensive resident screening services in the industry.

2003: Regional offices are opened in Seattle, San Diego, and New York City.

2005-06: Opens new regional office in Los Angeles. On-Site Manager Inc. becomes RentNow, a resident screening service designed to meet needs of private landlords, goes live on leading to a record 1000 applicant processed in a single day in May 2006 (doubling in less than a year). Nov 2006, On-Site is featured in The New York Times article

2007: Regional offices added in Phoenix, Chicago, and Atlantic City. On-Site acquires Need 2 Know Reporting and RentQuest. RentQuest becomes the Washington satellite office. On-Site partners with RentBureau to add rental payment data to resident screening reports.

2008: The Main office relocates to Mountain View, CA. On-Site acquires apartment listing site Rent Spider. Rent Spider becomes On-Site marketing suite, which helps apartment managers promote their communities and drive traffic. May 2008, On-Site is awarded patent 7.376,619 (insert pic) for its screening and forms automation technology. The patent took 7 years to be approved.

2009: E-Sign (e-signature) is introduced, ultimately allowing real signatures to be captured and imprinted on lease documents. Regional office opened in Denver and Atlanta. Offices are relocated to Campbell, CA in what was once the Sunsweet processing plant.

Business model positions itself as a web application that assists both resident applicants and multi-family residential communities to efficiently move through the stages of leasing a rental property online.

In a typical example of the online process flow, a resident fills out an online application to rent; the data on the form is immediately submitted to return a credit report; the report and a recommendation to rent based on income requirements is submitted back to the leasing agent; if the decision is made to rent, a lease contract is dynamically generated from the resident and property data, and the resident and the agent close the contract using electronic signatures. The complete process can take place online from diverse remote locations.

In contrast to traditional in-office leasing procedures, the system is designed to eliminate subjective discriminatory practices while automatically enforcing legal compliance with credit and housing laws and reducing or removing the industry's historical reliance on paper-based documents.

Primary Customers

  • EdR
  • Greystar (formerly Riverstone)
  • FPI Management
  • Holland Partner Group
  • Capstone
  • Two Trees Management LLC
  • Viking Properties
  • Hudson Real Estate
  • Evergreen Apt Group
  • Allied Residential
  • HNN


  • Need2Know Reporting
  • RentQuest (2007)
  • Rent Bureau
  • Rent Spider

Industry recognition and awards

In August 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2013 the Multi-Housing News Technology Choice Awards voted Top Resident Screening System. was also selected as a finalist for its First Annual Green Initiative Award. On-Site and EdR took top honors at the recent Student Housing Business Inovator Awards for "Best Off-Campus Venor/Operator Solution".

See also

  • Credit score (United States)
  • Digital signature
  • Electronic signature
  • Fair Credit Reporting Act

References – Onsite Property Management Software


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  • Version 7.4.2–13 February 2014 - Maintenance release fixing some minor issues with Trial versions
  • Version 7.4.1–5 February 2014 - NEW: Enable concurrent backup for SQL and Exchange Mailbox Add-ons, NEW: Allow sending short/private backup report to CMC
  • Version 7.4.0 – 17 December 2013 - NEW: Support for Windows Server 2012 R2. NEW: restore log file that contains a list of all files processed during a restore and the result for each file. NEW: Recovery options section for System Protection backup reports. This section explains the BIOS, EFI and Hyper-V guest recovery options for each System Protection backup
  • Version 7.3.1 – 29 October 2013 - NEW; Allow Exchange Granular Restore for Exchange databases from within backups of Hyper-V guests.
  • Version 7.3.0 – 25 September 2013 - NEW; Direct Exchange Injection: Restore mail items directly into a live Exchange Server.
  • Version 7.2.1 – 13 August 2013 - NEW: RecoverAssist now includes an option to add third party diagnostic tools for use within a recovery environment. NEW: Backup reports now show the backup start and end time as well as the backup engine type.NEW: Increased support for Server 2012 R2, NEW: Improved installation process,
  • Version 7.2.0 – 22 July 2013 - New Exchange Granular Restore and support for Exchange 2013, launch hyper-v and SQL restore consoles from Central Administration, better support for data containers
  • Version 7.1.1 – 3 July 2013 - Enhancements to improve support for proxy servers when sending CMC reports and other web requests. Better support when restoring a Server 2012 backup from a Data Container on a Linux-based NAS with sparse files enable
  • Version 7.1.0 – 20 June 2013 - Exchange Granular Restore in beta, improved server 2012 support, data container as a backup destination, enhancements to Central Monitoring Console
  • Version 7.0.0 – 25 February 2013 - New and enhanced User Interface, New Central Administration, Support for Server 2012 and Windows 8, Upgraded VHD Support, Improved VSS Diagnostics
  • Version 6.4.0 – 3 April 2012 - Added support for iSCSI backups and now also includes RecoverAssist recovery environment.
  • Version 6.3.1 – 8 March 2012 - Fixes for HyperV backups using Cluster Shared Volumes (CSV).
  • Version 6.3.0 – 7 February 2012 - Maintenance release fixing some minor issues with Hyper-V, Mailbox restore & Zip-to-Tape.
  • Version 6.2.8 – 15 December 2011 - Maintenance release fixing some minor issues with Zip-to-tape, Truecrypt and Zip backups.
  • Version 6.2.7 – 17 November 2011 - Important maintenance release with a significant fix to the Zip and File Replication engines.
  • Version 6.2.6 – 20 October 2011 - Fixes to some known issues within the Zip engine and also the UI of the software.
  • Version 6.2.5 – 13 September 2011 - Improvements to System State backups, the Hyper-V Granular Restore Console and support for Microsoft Exchange 2010 Client Access Server.
  • Version 6.2.4 – 28 June 2011 - Fixes and improvements, including SBS Performance Report Integration for SBS 2011.
  • Version 6.2.3 – 1 June 2011 - Important fixes for anyone running Windows Imaging backups.
  • Version 6.2.2 – 28 April 2011 - Introduced fixes and Italian language support.
  • Version 6.1 – 21 October 2010 - Added SBS2008 Report Integration feature.
  • Version 6 – 9 September 2010 - VSS application and System State backup added. Disk Imaging support for Server 2008 R2. Support for Exchange Server 2010 and SQL Server 2008 R2.
  • Version 5.4 – 31 December 2009 - Added support for one-pass Hyper-V backup. Granular restore of VM and files added.
  • Version 5.3 – 23 September 2009 - ZIP (file format) Multi-threading Engine added. Is Zip64 compliant, VSS Aware, AES 256 encryption and supports NTFS Stream greater than 64Kb.
  • Version 5.1 – 15 December 2008 - Rsync Internet Backup Engine added
  • Version 5 – 13 October 2008 – File Replication Engine added. Disk Imaging support for Server 2008 (Wbadmin).
  • Version 4 – 8 May 2007 – application rewritten in .NET Framework, 64 bit OS support
  • Version 3.5 – 8 November 2006 – Exchange mailbox backups
  • Version 3 – 16 July 2004 – SQL Server backups
  • Version 2 – 24 October 2003
  • Version 1 – 28 August 2002


BackupAssist started as a small project designed to help a system administrator use NTBackup on Windows NT and 2000. Due to the many shortcomings with certain features of NTBackup (scheduling, media rotation and monitoring), the purpose of BackupAssist was to provide users software that could back up their servers as per their requirements.

When BackupAssist was initially released in 2002, a basic website was created to help support the software. Over the next few years, extra features were implemented that allowed users to choose from a variety of backup destinations such as tape drives, NAS, REV drives, external hard drives and CD/DVDs. Add-ons for Microsoft SQL Server and Microsoft Exchange Server mailboxes were introduced in 2006.

By 2007, a totally rewritten version of the software was released with a new architecture based around "Backup Engine Independence".

In February 2008, a solution for Microsoft Windows Server 2008 was released, featuring drive imaging capabilities.

When version 5 was released in October 2008, BackupAssist enabled people to create copies of their data on their Local Area Network (LAN) and on the Internet. With multiple copies of data stored in different locations, users of BackupAssist have a better chance when recovering from computer, Office, Network and Regional disaster. For example: 1) File Replication Engine with VSS Snapshots mirrors a second copy of their working folders from their server to anywhere on their LAN. Only a fraction of the space is required at the new location because BackupAssist uses the Single Instance Store. 2) For people who are interested to keep a copy of their data on the Internet, use BackupAssist for Rsync.

For system administrators managing a dozen or more servers, use the Centralized Monitoring Console to reduce backup management to less than an hour a week. Receive all backup results in one email, monitor results from anywhere around the world, drill down to investigate individual failed backups and analyze monthly backup statistics (success, failures, data growth,etc.). The Centralized Monitoring Console is "Cloud" hosted solution that processes all the backup reports and produces meaningful data for better management.

Also in February 2009, BackupAssist released a solution for Exchange Server 2007 backups on Windows Server 2008. This solution overcomes the limitation in the Windows Server Backup application (wbadmin) on Windows Server 2008 that does not allow for live streaming backups of Exchange Server 2007.


The concept of "Backup Engine Independence" is a key differentiating factor between BackupAssist and other similar products. By designing BackupAssist to be able to interface with any backend engine, it is possible to add extra capabilities to BackupAssist easily. This is done by interfacing with existing, well known, popular engines – such as the Microsoft Block Level Backup engine (drive imaging) on Windows Server 2008, Rsync, Ntbackup, ZIP (file format), Exmerge and Stsadm.


  • 4.5/5 Stars
  • 10 / 10

See also

  • List of backup software


External links

  • BackupAssist

BackupAssist – Windows Server 2008 Backup Software


Software-defined storage (SDS) is evolving concept for computer data storage software to manage policy-based provisioning and management of data storage independent of hardware. Software-defined storage definitions typically include a form of storage virtualization to separate the storage hardware from the software that manages the storage infrastructure. The software enabling a software-defined storage environment may also provide policy management for feature options such as deduplication, replication, thin provisioning, snapshots and backup. SDS definitions are sometimes compared with those of Software-based Storage.

By consensus and early advocacy, SDS software is separate from the hardware it is managing. That hardware may or may not also have abstraction, pooling, or automation software embedded. This philosophical span has made software-defined storage difficult to categorize. When implemented as software only in conjunction with commodity servers with internal disks, it may suggest software such as a virtual or global file system. If it is software layered over sophisticated large storage arrays, it suggests software such as storage virtualization or storage resource management, categories of products that address separate and different problems. If the policy and management functions within the software-defined storage solution also include a form of artificial intelligence to automate protection and recovery functions, it can be considered as intelligent abstraction. Software-defined storage may be implemented via appliances over a traditional Storage Area Network (SAN), or implemented as part of a scale-out Network-Attached Storage (NAS) solution, or as the basis of an Object-based storage solution. In March 2014 SNIA began a Draft Technical Work available for public review on Software-Defined Storage.

Based on similar concepts as software-defined networking (SDN), interest in SDS rose after VMware acquired Nicira (known for "software-defined networking") for over a billion dollars in 2012.

Several companies used the phrase "software-defined storage" to promote their products or plans. with a variety of intended interpretations of the term.

VMware, which bought Nicira, used the term "software-defined data center" (SDDC) for a broader concept wherein all the virtualized storage, server, networking and security resources required by an application can be defined by software and provisioned automatically. Other smaller companies then adopted the term "software-defined storage", such as now defunct Coraid in May 2013.

As the Software-Defined Storage Trend continues, the definition of SDS is gradually floating. This is because data storage vendors are coming up with their own definition for SDS which is in alignment with their product-line. SNIA, a standards group, has attempted a multi-vendor, negotiated definition with examples.


What is software-defined storage ChalkTalk - In this ChalkTalk, HPStorageGuy Calvin Zito describes what software-defined storage is and how it fits into the software-defined data center and the HP ...

Characteristics of software-defined storage may include any or all of the following features:

  • Abstraction of logical storage services and capabilities from the underlying physical storage systems, and in some cases pooling across multiple different implementations. Since data movement is relatively expensive and slow compared to computation and services (the "data gravity" problem in infonomics), pooling approaches sometimes suggest leaving it in place and creating a mapping layer to it that spans arrays. Examples include:
    • Storage virtualization, the generalized category of approaches and historic products. External-controller based arrays include storage virtualization to manage usage and access across the drives within their own pools. Other products exist independently to manage across arrays and/or server DAS storage.
    • Virtual volumes (vVols), a proposal from VMware for a more transparent mapping between large volumes and the VM disk images within them, to allow better performance and data management optimizations. This does not reflect a new capability for virtual infrastructure administrators (who can already use, for example, NFS) but it does offer arrays using iSCSI or Fibre Channel a path to higher admin leverage for cross-array management apps written to the virtual infrastructure.
    • Parallel NFS (pNFS), a specific implementation which evolved within the NFS community but has expanded to many implementations.
    • OpenStack and its Swift and Cinder APIs for storage interaction, which have been applied to open-source projects as well as to vendor products.
  • Automation with policy-driven storage provisioning with service-level agreements replacing technology details. This requires management interfaces that span traditional storage-array products, as a particular definition of separating "control plane" from "data plane", in the spirit of OpenFlow. Prior industry standardization efforts included the Storage Management Initiative – Specification (SMI-S) which began in 2000.
  • Commodity hardware with storage logic abstracted into a software layer. This is also described as a clustered file system for converged storage. Examples include:
    • GlusterFS
    • Ceph
    • VMware Virtual SAN
    • StarWind Software Virtual SAN
    • EMC ScaleIO
    • Microsoft 'Clustered Storage Spaces' and 'Storage Spaces Direct'
  • Scale-Out storage architecture including Microsoft Scale-Out File Servers

See also

  • Software-defined networking
  • Software-defined data center
  • Software-based Storage


  1. ^ Margaret Rouse. "Definition: software-defined storage". SearchSDN. Tech Target. Retrieved November 7, 2013. 
  2. ^ Chris Poelker (March 12, 2014). "The foundation of clouds: Intelligent abstraction". 
  3. ^ SNIA (March 2014). "Technical Whitepaper:Software Defined Storage" (PDF). 
  4. ^ Margaret Rouse. "Definition: software-defined storage". SearchSDN. Tech Target. Retrieved November 7, 2013. 
  5. ^ Alex Williams (July 23, 2012). "VMware Buys Nicira For $1.26 Billion And Gives More Clues About Cloud Strategy". TechCrunch. Retrieved November 7, 2013. 
  6. ^ ab Simon Robinson (March 12, 2013). "Software-defined storage: The reality beneath the hype". Computer Weekly. Retrieved November 7, 2013. 
  7. ^ What Is Software-defined Storage? (Nexenta product brochure)
  8. ^ Software-defined Storage and how does it differ from Hardware-driven storage? (Datacore Corporate Blog)
  9. ^ ScaleIO Raises $12M for Software Defined Storage
  10. ^ "Software-Defined Storage: Fusion-io Software Creates Shared Flash Storage". 
  11. ^ EMC Corp. ViPR Software-Defined Storage
  12. ^ Kepes, Ben (12 September 2014). "Software Defined Storage--Scality Unifies File Object And VM Storage". Forbes. Retrieved 25 September 2014. 
  13. ^ Archana Venkatraman. "Software-defined datacentres demystified". Computer Weekly (TechTarget). Retrieved November 7, 2013. The term software-defined datacentre (SDDC) rose to prominence this year during annual virtualisation conference VMworld 2012 [...] A software-defined datacentre is an IT facility where the elements of the infrastructure - networking, storage, CPU and security - are virtualised and delivered as a service. The provisioning and operation of the entire infrastructure is entirely automated by software. 
  14. ^ "The Software-Defined Data Center". company web site. VMware. Retrieved November 7, 2013. 
  15. ^ ab Coraid, Inc (May 21, 2013). "The Fundamentals of Software-Defined Storage" (PDF). Promotional brochure. Retrieved November 7, 2013. 

External links

  • Software Defined Storage that Makes Sense by TechTarget
  • Software Defined Storage is Gaining Stream by Forbes
  • Guide to Software Defined Storage by ComputerWeekly

Software-defined Storage – Data Storage Software