ECLASS has defined a transparent release roadmap. MajorReleases shall be valid for a longer time period than MinorReleases as the included structural changes result in a higher upgrade effort for users. The possibility to publish all required additions, the removal of all erroneous keywords and values and the correction of clerical errors will be possible each year. Starting with ECLASS 6.0 a ServicePack exclusively comprises textual changes, i.e. clerical errors and translations, it is therefore language-specific. As it is not integrated into the release roadmap any more, it can be published on demand if needed for a specific language version.
|Release Number||Release Type||Release date||No. of contained classes||No. of contained properties||No. of contained values|
|6.0 (replaced by 6.0.1)||Major||2008-04-30||32.592||8.653||6.811|
|10.0 (replaced by 10.0.1)||Major||2017-02-03||41.647||17.342||15.708|
NOTE 1: Starting with Release 7.0 all releases are available in a BASIC and an ADVANCED version. The numbers of contained structural elements refer only to the BASIC version.
NOTE 2: The number of keywords is language-specific and not mentioned here. ECLASS 3.0 started with around 8.000 German keywords. ECLASS 8.0 contains more than 50.000 keywords in both German and English. More information is available in the relevant language version descriptions in the ECLASS Shop.
NOTE 3: Starting with Release 6.0.1 a ServicePack definition differs from before 6.0.1, please see: ServicePack.
Previously, a MajorRelease was usually followed by a MinorRelease. Starting from the ECLASS Release 12.0 only MajorReleases will be published as to accelerate the enhancements of the ECLASS Standard and to be able to meet the dynamic requirements of the users even faster.
ECLASS will publish
- one release per year
- every year a MajorRelease
Table 1: Example: The general ECLASS roadmap
The ECLASS data model defines the format of release numbers, the versioning of changes and additions as well as the consequences for the release number. The release number consists of a "MajorRelease Number" (x.0) and a "MinorRelease Number" (n.x). A ServicePack additionally comprises a "ServicePack Number" (n.n.x).
A Change Request (CR) is a proposal by an ECLASS user (=requestor) to change a part of the content of the ECLASS classification system. It can be a correction or even a deletion of something that is identified by the requestor as wrong or an enhancement of something that is still missing. Generally, the ECLASS classification system will never be finished as changes will always be necessary as long as markets are evolving. The number of change requests processed within a release varies according to the temporary requirements of the industry. The biggest release in regard to the number of submitted change requests was ECLASS 7.0 where more than 260.000 CR were processed. Different kinds of CR are valid in different kinds of releases, see above or have a look at the list of valid change requests per release.
All ECLASS Change Requests have to concur to specific guidelines and rules.
Major changes of the ECLASS standard done by the ECLASS expert groups can also be submitted as bulk requests with the help of MS EXCEL® import spreadsheets. As a huge amount of changes is usually prepared in a similar form by the expert groups themselves and a lot of experts have a look on it before even submitting the change requests (CR), ECLASS provides a normalized import spreadsheet to make an import of change requests easier for expert groups. The import spreadsheet only replaces the manual change request creation in the ContentDevelopmentPlatform. Any included change will be imported as a CR.
The normalized MS EXCEL® import spreadsheet that is used for the import of bulk requests is available at the ECLASS head office. It is mostly spread for internal use by the ECLASS expert groups and larger projects like e.g. brand new segments.
The ECLASS association is organized in various bodies. The most important ones for the maintenance process are described in the following section. The ECLASS maintenance process is described in the following figure, followed by the description of the involved user roles:
Every interested person or organisation can take part in the development of the ECLASS classification system. The proposal of change requests (CR) is open to everybody with the help of the online development and maintenance platform ECLASS ContentDevelopmentPlatform. In the case of a more complex and detailed contribution, a requestor is advised to contribute to the work of an ECLASS expert group. Every requestor has to fulfil the requirements and preconditions to create a change request. Detailed descriptions are to be found in the relevant section of. Otherwise a change request cannot be accepted by the ECLASS association. To be able to propose change requests, a requestor simply has to register in the ECLASS ContentDevelopmentPlatform. The registration is free of charge.
With the thousands of Change Requests for each new ECLASS Release and despite the intensive testing during the test and beta phase, errors occasionally occur. These known bugs, comprising technical errors, errors of content or documentation mistakes, are listed here and documented in detail.
- Release Numbers and Versioning
- Workflow Service Pack (Help Page)
- Workflow Major Minor (Help Page)
- Center for Research and Development (CRD)
- Using the Content Development Platform
- Structure and structural elements
- ECLASS-Update: User support for updating product data to a new release
- CEN (Comité Européen de Normalisation, European Committee for Standardization), Workshop ePDC on Global Multilingual Product Description and Classification for eCommerce and eBusiness. See CWA 15295:2005, p. 35ff.