Clean or in-place installation: which brings more value?
Published Nov 30 2020 10:30 AM 4,360 Views

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Test Base for Microsoft 365 recently changed one of the baseline tests it uses to validate applications against pre-released security updates. Previously, tests were executed using a ‘clean install’ approach. An application was installed on a clean virtual machine with an OS that was up-to-date with the latest cumulative update (LCU).


In the new sequence, termed the ‘in-place installation approach’, the application is installed on an in-market OS version that precedes the local cumulative update patch (the pre-released OS version) that we are testing against the application. This better mimics a use case of keeping existing users of apps productive and protected even when they receive platform upgrades for their devices.


The question we would like answered is, which test option works the best for all users? Would you prefer the clean install approach or the in-place installation approach?


A great metaphor is that of moving into a new home. Your home has a beautiful living area to be furnished, so you order a great couch. Would you rather take the couch out every time you clean the living area or would you get tools that do a great cleaning job while the couch remains where it is?

Taking the couch out represents a clean installation, where your application is fitted on a device for the first time.  Leaving the couch in and using the right tools to tidy up is the in-place installation, where your application is already fitted on the device prior to whatever improvements being done on the device platform. Which brings more value to you?


We would very much like your feedback. Please comment below!

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