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A discrete and, as approximation to it, a continuous model for the software reliability growth process are examined. The discrete model is based on independent multinomial trials and concerns itself with the joint distribution of the first occurrence time of its underlying events (bugs). The continuous model is based on the order statistics of N independent nonidentically distributed exponential random variables. It is shown that the spacings between bugs are not necessarily independent, or exponentially (geometrically) distributed. However, there is a statistical rationale for viewing them so conditionally. Some identifiability problems are pointed out and resolved. In particular, it appears that the number of bugs in a program is not identifiable.
Date of Publication: Jan. 1986