A few brave souls have already started to test Feather on our Cloud. Every Monday, we’ll be inviting more people to join our Cloud beta. Self-hosted version testing will begin on March 24th. Beta Testing B.C. (Before the Cloud).
ActiveCollab was a self-hosted solution back in the days when beta releases were available months before stable releases. These beta releases were always made public. The beta was immediately available for download by all license owners. This was great as many people were involved, but it was also stressful for our team. Some users rushed to download the beta even though they were working on a large project and needed absolute stability. The Cloud Revolution
The Cloud revolutionized beta testing. We introduced the Cloud and have already released two major software updates. Now, testing begins by inviting a few Cloud users to join the beta deployment channel. We monitor their usage and ensure that the system is stable. Our team can respond quickly to any error in their system.
After a few weeks of Cloud beta testing (and many stability improvements), we send a self hosted release to a few users who help us test platform variability. Why? Our Cloud servers are very predictable. We use the most recent versions of PHP, MySQL. Our caching layer and storage servers are properly configured. We know it works well and our focus is 100% on our software – listening to feedback, adding functionality, ironing out bugs, improving performance…Self-hosting is a different beast. There are many combinations and variations of PHP, MySQL, extensions, caching systems, and other operating systems. Strange platform issues can arise, and it can sometimes take days to arrange access and figure out why. Self-hosting is a great way to get started, but it can be very time-consuming and expensive. This way ActiveCollab is stable so we can concentrate on fixing platform variability issues. It takes a few weeks for us to test the new version and declare that it is stable.
The Feather beta is the same. It’s already being used in the Cloud by a few brave users. We’ll be inviting more people every Monday. Cloud users or people who feel comfortable moving to the Cloud will be invited. Our team’s current focus is to finish Feather functionality and receive feedback from testers. At the moment, platform variability is not within the scope of our team’s focus. Once Feather is stable in the Cloud and is well tested in the Cloud the team will shift their attention to the self-hosted beta builds. We aim to get to this point by March 31st and then launch the self-hosted beta build on March 24th.