What does Beta mean?

  new boy 17:21 27 Jul 2005

eg Microsoft antispyware Beta?

What is Beta refering to?

please answer in laymans terms


  Danoh 17:44 27 Jul 2005

Beta versions of software programs are pre-release versions of the final product. The term is typically used for “shrink-wrapped” programs targeted at consumer customer segments. “Shrink-wrapped” refers to an easy, menu mouse-click driven installation approach, usually from CDs or DVDs nowadays.

Beta, being the 2nd letter of the Greek alphabet, was originally used to signify the second and last major phase of testing visible to the end-customer in the traditional “waterfall” approach to software development. Other terms used would be User Testing, User Acceptance Testing (UAT), etc.

The first major phase of testing did not use to involve end-users or customers at all, but increasingly this has changed in the use of “iterative” approaches to software development. Better stop there!!

click here

  Stuartli 18:02 27 Jul 2005

Donah explains it very succinctly - it's a means of testing software for possible bugs or problems before the Final version is released.

Most people who use beta versions may not experience any problems whilst others will; beta testers will report back on their findings/experiences and this helps software developers to iron out any problems or poetential problems.

  Forum Editor 19:45 27 Jul 2005

because there are often several beta releases when major software products are being tested.

Microsoft routinely makes several beta releases of new software - each new beta an improved version, based on feedback from the testers. Finally, when the software is almost ready for market, they'll often (but not always) release what's called a public beta, which can be downloaded and tested by anyone.

The whole beta process can take up to a year or more for major releases - like the new Windows Vista operating system, and during that time there'll be hundreds of thousands of testers providing feedback. I'll be one of them.

  new boy 20:01 27 Jul 2005

thanks everyone that explains a lot!

  Danoh 22:08 27 Jul 2005

Green tick please click here click here

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