1. This Military Standard is approved for use by all Departments and Agencies of the Department of Defense (DoD).
2. MIL-STD-973 is jointly sponsored by the Office of the Secretary of Defense and the Joint Logistics Commanders. The primary purpose of this standard is to consolidate configuration management requirements which were previously scattered throughout several configuration management standardization documents. As a result of this consolidation effort, MIL-STD-973 significantly reduces the number of configuration management standards in the DoD inventory. Those standards that are superseded by MIL-STD-973 are identified in Section 6. Although consolidation is the primary purpose of this initiative, MIL-STD-973 does contain new material. Some requirements from superseded standards have been modified to clarify ambiguities or to resolve inconsistencies. Some obsolete or redundant requirements from superseded standards have been modified or deleted entirely. Computer-aided Acquisition and Logistic Support (CALS) has been addressed in this issue to the extent practicable. Also, some new requirements have been identified and included.
3. This standard has been developed for use by both contractors and Government activities. Toward this end, the term " contractor " has been used throughout to denote an activity performing any of the requirements of this standard. A " contractor " can be either a contractor or Government activity. Wherever it is necessary to differentiate between the contractor and the tasking activity (i.e., the Government Contracting Activity which awards a contract to a contractor, the Government Program Management Office which tasks another Government activity, or a contractor which tasks a subcontractor), the term " Government " has been used throughout to denote the activity imposing the requirements of this standard on the other.
4. This standard defines the requirements of configuration management as they apply to defense material items. Configuration management is a management discipline applied to configuration items (CIs) over their life cycle to ensure that the characteristics of CIs meet defined user requirements.
5. Configuration management requirements for software have been included in this standard. Where requirements are common to both hardware and software items, they are shown as requirements for CIs. Where requirements are not common to both hardware and software items, they are shown as requirements for computer software configuration items (CSCIs) or hardware configuration items (HWCIs), as applicable.
6. Beneficial comments (recommendations, additions, deletions) and any pertinent data which may be of use in improving this document should be addressed to: Chief, Plans and Policy Division, CALS Evaluation and Integration Office, 5203 Leesburg Pike, Suite 1403, Falls Church, VA 22041-3466, by using the self-addressed Standardization Document Improvement Proposal (DD Form 1426) appearing at the end of this document or by letter.