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A software product spends more than 65% of its lifecycle in maintenance. Software systems with good maintainability can be easily modified to fix faults. We define maintainability-based risk as a product of two factors: the probability of performing maintenance tasks and the impact of performing these tasks. In this paper, we present a methodology for assessing maintainability-based risk in the context of corrective maintenance. The proposed methodology depends on the architectural artifacts and their evolution through the life cycle of the system. In order to prioritize corrective maintenance tasks, we combine components' maintainability- based risk with the severity of a failure that may happen as a result of unfixed fault. We illustrate the methodology on a case study using UML models.
Date of Conference: 13-16 May 2007