Overview of application lifecycle management with Microsoft Power Platform

The articles in this section describe how you can implement application lifecycle management (ALM) using Power Apps, Power Automate, and Common Data Service.

What is ALM?

ALM is the lifecycle management of applications, which includes governance, development, and maintenance. Moreover, it includes these disciplines: requirements management, software architecture, development, testing, maintenance, change management, continuous integration, project management, deployment, and release management. ALM tools provide a standardized system for communication and collaboration between software development teams and related departments, such as test and operations. These tools can also automate the process of software development and delivery. To that end, ALM combines the disciplines concerned with all aspects of the process to achieve the goal of driving efficiency through predictable and repeatable software delivery.

Key areas of ALM

  1. Governance includes requirements management, resource management, data security, user access, change tracking, review, audit, deployment control, and rollback.

  2. Application development includes identifying current problems, and planning, design, building, and testing the application. This area includes traditional developer and app maker roles.

  3. Maintenance includes deployment of the app and maintenance of optional and dependent technologies.

The application lifecycle is the cyclical software development process that involves these areas: plan and track, develop, build and test, deploy, operate, monitor, and learn from discovery.

The application lifecycle

ALM for Power Apps, Power Automate, and Common Data Service

Common Data Service in Microsoft Power Platform lets you securely store and manage data that's used by business applications. To use the features and tools available for ALM, all environments that participate in ALM must include a Common Data Service database.

The following concepts are important for understanding ALM using the Microsoft Power Platform.

  • Solutions are the mechanism for implementing ALM; you use them to distribute components across environments through export and import. A component represents something that you can potentially customize. Anything that can be included in a solution is a component, such as site maps, apps, entities, fields, charts, or plug-ins.

  • Common Data Service stores all the artifacts, including solutions.

  • Source control should be your source of truth for storing and collaborating on your components.

For more information about how ALM and Azure DevOps technologies—combined with people and processes—enable teams to continually provide value to customers, see DevOps tools on Azure.

See also

ALM basics with Microsoft Power Platform
What is Common Data Service?
Application lifecycle management for Finance and Operations apps