Code Freezes: Part 2
Code freeze trends across industries, when to mandate a code freeze – and when not, and alternatives to code freezes.
The holiday code freezes which many tech companies had in place over the recent holiday period, are now lifted. These typically run from sometime in December each year, until the following January. In this second part of a three-part series, we continue our deep dive into code freezes.
In Part 1, we covered:
Big Tech and code freeze approaches. How do Meta, Amazon, Microsoft, Uber, Apple, Google and other larger tech companies go about deploy freezes during the holidays?
Code freezes at other companies. Details from Spotify, Twitter, N26, Podia, Bold.org, T-mobile and several startups.
Code freeze upsides. Fewer outages, people disconnecting and other reasons these freezes are helpful.
Downsides of code freezes. A rush to get changes in, risky refactorings, merge issues, and other problems the freeze introduces.
Companies which don’t do code freezes. A major e-commerce platform and a large SaaS provider don’t do code freezes. What did the teams there observe, as a result of this?
In this article, we cover:
Software product categories and code freezes. Web-based products, desktop apps, on-prem software, and embedded products tend to have very different deployment cycles. What are products where code freezes matter, and what are ones where they do not?
Mandating a code deployment freeze. Informal and more formal approaches to do so, and questions to ask before deciding on the strategy.
Code freeze trends across industries. What are trends within banking, fintech, e-commerce, wellness apps, and other groups?
Code freeze alternatives. Code chills, close slush, and business as usual.
“Wave and bake” instead of code freezes: Ocado. The grocery retailer platform has no code freeze and uses a unique approach with its isolated, single-tenant environments.
Do you need to implement a code freeze? Things that play into this decision, from the maturity of deployment tooling to wanting to create space for staff to recharge for a few weeks.
In the final article of this series, we’ll analyze the trends in the Pragmatic Engineer’s survey on code freezes that more than 150 of you have filled out already. Thank you!
If you’re an engineering manager with performance review calibration meetings coming up: do give Performance calibrations at tech companies a read for advice on how to prepare, and navigate this high-stakes session.