Military Handbook-Evaluation of Contractor's Software Quality Assurance Program

Keywords evaluation of a contractor military handbook quality assurance quality assurance program

A. Review of Requirement.
MIL-S-52779A is applicable to computer Programs and software systems to assure conformance to contractual requirements through control of the design, development, and testing of the software. Unless otherwise defined in a contract or order, firmware is defined as hardware that contains a computer program that cannot be altered in its use environment. Examples are: Programmable Read-Only-Memory (PROM) devices, Read-Only-Memory (ROM) devices and Erasable Programmable-Read-Only Memory (EPROM) devices. All computer programs that are, or will be contained in firmware are classified as software. The chip on which a computer program is burned in, is classified as hardware.

B. Application.
Among the types of software to which MIL-S-52779A may be applied are:

1. Command and control computer programs (embedded), software systems, and operational software end items.
2. Computer programs and software systems (deliverable/non-deliverable) designed for acceptance testing, checkout, launch, or control weapon or space systems, or other aerospace systems.
3. Firmware in the above systems. Firmware targeted software will be considered the same as any other software under this specification. The hardware quality aspects of firmware are beyond the scope of this specification and should be specified in the contract.

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This document provides guidance to personnel responsible for the evaluation of a contractor’s software quality program when Military Specification, MIL-S-52779A, is invoked in the contract. MIL-S-52779A, “Software Quality Assurance Program Requirements, requires contractors to establish a Software Quality Assurance (SQA) Program which will assure compliance with the requirements of their contract. Since the contract will tailor the application of MIL-S-52779A and other specifications, care must be taken to tailor the application of this document accordingly.

Both MIL-S-52779A and this document are based on established Department of Defense (DOD) concepts and policies which provide that:

a. Contractors are solely responsible for the control of software quality and for offering to the Government for acceptance only software determined by them to conform to contractual requirements.
b. Government representatives are responsible for determining that contractual requirements have, in fact, been complied with prior to acceptance of the software.
c. Final decision of software acceptability is solely the responsibility of the Government.

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