To see all articles of ISTQB-ISEB Foundation guide, see here:

Software Testing-ISTQB ISEB Foundation Guide

Configuration management is the process of managing products, facilities and processes by managing the information about them, including changes, and ensuring they are what they are supposed to be in every case.

For testing, configuration management will involve controlling both the versions of code to be tested and the documents used during the development process, e.g. requirements, design and plans.

In both instances configuration management should ensure traceability throughout the test process, e.g. a requirement should be traceable through to the test cases that are run to test its levels of quality, and vice versa.

Effective configuration management is important for the test process as the contents of each release of software into a test environment must be understood and at the correct version, otherwise testers could end up wasting time because either they are testing an invalid release of the software or the release does not integrate successfully, leading to the failure of many tests.

In most instances the project will have already established its configuration management processes that will define the documents and code to be held under configuration management. If this is not the case then during test planning the process and tools required to establish the right configuration management processes will need to be selected/implemented by the test leader.

The same principle applies to testware. Each item of testware (such as a test procedure) should have its own version number and be linked to the version of the software it was used to test. For example, test procedure TP123a might be used for Release A and TP123b might be used for Release B—even though both have the same purpose and even expected results. However, another test procedure, TP201, may be applicable to all releases.

A good configuration management system will ensure that the testers can identify exactly what code they are testing, as well as have control over the test documentation such as test plans, test specification, defect logs, etc.

To check your understanding, I would again like to ask you some questions:

Define configuration management.
What can be stored under configuration management?
Why is it important to have effective configuration management?

You may follow the complete series of Test Management articles here:

Test Management Risk And Testing
Software Test Organization
Software Test Approaches Test Strategies
Software Test Planning And Estimation
Software Test Progress Monitoring & Control
Software Testing Incident Management
Software Test Configuration Management

To see all articles of ISTQB-ISEB Foundation guide, see here:

Software Testing-ISTQB ISEB Foundation Guide