How do you decide when to upgrade a library in your project?
I work on a project that uses multiple open source Java libraries. When upgrades to those libraries come out, we tend to follow a conservative strategy:
- if it ain't broke, don't fix it
- if it doesn't have new features we want, ignore it
We follow this strategy because we usually don't have time to put in the new library and thoroughly test the overall application. (Like many software development teams we're always behind schedule on features we promised months ago.)
But, I sometimes wonder if this strategy is wise given that some performance improvements and a large number of bug fixes usually come with library upgrades. (i.e. "Who knows, maybe things will work better in a way we don't foresee...")
What criteria do you use when you make these types of decisions in your project?
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