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<p>Large projects rely increasingly on commercial off-the- shelf components, a trend that emphasizes the need for adequate metrics to quantify component quality. Handling the growth of these COTS-based systems requires new approaches to quality and risk management. </p> <p>The authors offer software-engineering metrics to aid developers and managers in analyzing their quality-improvement initiatives' return on investment and to facilitate the modeling of cost and quality. They assert that large-scale component reuse or COTS component acquisition can generate savings in development resources, which can be applied to improve quality and enhance reliability, availability, and maintenance. Further, metrics play a critical role in identifying risks that involve performance, reliability, adaptability, scheduling, and product evaluation. </p> <p>COTS products change rapidly, and research on COTS-based- system development is still in the early stages. Given that cost-effectiveness and quality provide the major factors in deciding for or against component acquisition, the authors see an urgent need for empirical and analytical research that will lead to more accurate cost and quality models for these systems. </p>

A. Ghafoor, S. Sedigh-Ali and R. A. Paul, "Software Engineering Metrics for COTS-Based Systems," in Computer, vol. 34, no. , pp. 44-50, 2001.
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