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A comparison of maintenance and support challenges within a data warehousing environment to that of a transactional application environment in a South African context
Juggath, Shakeel Mitra
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In transactional systems development literature, maintenance is reported as being a phase in the software development life cycle. In practice, this phase is often neglected as it occurs post-deployment and other ongoing projects take a higher priority. In data warehouse (DW) systems development literature, maintenance is not reported as being a phase but an ongoing iteration to the DW development project. It should therefore not be treated as a phase by DW systems professionals. Although there is this fundamental difference in the approach to maintenance, transaction systems maintenance and DW maintenance share many of the same challenges. DW literature and methodologies inherently contain utilities and methods to assist in alleviating these challenges in a DW system. Transactional systems do not deal with these challenges inherently. Research aspects were extracted from the literature review conducted. The literature review conducted demonstrates what the challenges in maintenance are, how the challenges of transactional systems compare to the challenges of DW maintenance and how the utilities and methods used in DW methodologies can inherently assist in managing these challenges from DW perspective. These research aspects were used to formulate an interpretive questionnaire. This research portion of the study explores the use of DW systems development and maintenance methodologies in the industry among DW professionals. This is done by conducting an interpretive study using the interpretive questionnaire developed from the literature review. The interpretive questionnaire focusses on maintenance and dealing with the challenges thereof. Many themes evolved from the analysis of the interpretive study by using the content analysis method. The final conclusions of this study is drawn by comparing and combining the information gathered from the literature review with the information gathered from the interpretive study. Gaps are identified between practice and literature and recommendations are made based on these gaps.
- Engineering