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Application owner challenges: compatibility and testing

Application Owner local_offer

Windows compatibility is less of a concern these days, but ensuring compatibility with not just the operating system but the other applications in the enterprise remains a challenge that requires testing before a production deployment of any new or updated application.

While automated testing can catch obvious problems, other issues may require interactive use of the application to be identified. Functional application testing (FAT) is often performed by the team working on the application’s deployment. However, depending on the application, it often makes sense to invite the application owner to perform such testing. Someone who knows the application, even a little, may perform actions in the application that expose a problem that is otherwise not caught until it has been deployed and is negatively impacting end users.

Functional testing is particularly important when leveraging the new MSIX packaging format. While an application may launch, the execution occurs within an application virtualization layer that can break certain functionality within an application. Such may not be recognized without exercising all the functions the application has to offer. Most problems running in an MSIX package can be remediated with a fixup using its Package Support Framework (PSF), but identifying when a problem exists and must be patched typically requires one to observe the problem and apply the appropriate fixup. 

It is not uncommon for enterprises to have both a Windows and a Mac version of an application. Depending on the application, it often makes sense to have a single application owner monitor them both, but it may not be reasonable for them to support such at a higher level if they don’t have access to both platforms.

While uncommon, it can be necessary to maintain multiple versions of an application for compatibility reasons. When intentionally maintaining multiple versions of a product, It is especially important to ensure such versions remain supported by the vendor. Unsupported software can be dangerous as it means the software is no longer being tested and corrected for security issues. 

An application owner should understand what versions, editions, etc. of their application are being used in the organization and why, to know what information to watch out for when monitoring news about an application, and in order to provide accurate recommendations. 

Our App Owner offering is accepting signups for waitlist access. This solution is aimed at helping address many of the common challenges faced by application owners. Sign up now to get two months of free access when it launches later in 2024.