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'UML2ClearQuest' Tansform UML diagrams into ClearQuest Designer state matrix PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 28 March 2009
The purpose of this application is to ease the process of programming ClearQuest Designer's state transitions matrix for change requests. UML2ClearQuest can export UML state charts to ClearQuest Designer, which makes for a simple visual design process. UML Export is supported from StarUML, IBM Rational Software Architect or MS Visio. The demo version can export diagrams to IBM Rational ClearQuest with no more than 3 states. See success story. Compatibility: Compatible with any ClearQuest version (including ClearQuest 7.1).
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About

The purpose of this application is to ease the process of programming ClearQuest Designer's state transitions matrix for change requests. UML2ClearQuest can export UML state charts to ClearQuest Designer, which makes for a simple visual design process. UML Export is supported from IBM Rational Software Architect or MS Visio.

UML2ClearQuest supports the following capabilities:

  • Transferring UML states from IBM Rational Software Architect, MS Visio or StarUML. Design business processes with the comfort of IBM Rational Software Architect, MS Visio and StarUML and easily import the results to IBM Rational ClearQuest to a new or existing record type.
  • Visualizing the import data. Before importing, UML2ClearQuest shows the state diagram and checks it for compliancy with the IBM Rational ClearQuest state machine.
  • Exporting state machines for record types from IBM Rational ClearQuest. Allows for exporting IBM Rational ClearQuest state machines to UML diagrams in IBM Rational Software Architect, MS Visio and StarUMLformat for modifying and viewing. A modified diagram can then be imported to the existing record type from which it was exported. 

Why UML2ClearQuest

1. UML2ClearQuest helps to tune ClearQuest scheme in very short terms basing on our UML diagrams which are describing the whole process of CM
2. UML2ClearQuest allows easy converting the transition matrix of ClearQuest Designer into the UML State chart diagrams.
3. The quickness and efficiency of UML2ClearQuest make it the irreplaceable tool for the analysis of the complex and undocumented processes. The time spent for UML diagrams' optimization is significantly less than the time needed for the analysis of the ClearQuest Designer transition matrix.
4. UML2ClearQuest helps to appreciably reduce TOC of CM process in company by reducing the requirements for CM manager qualification and for CM administrator as well. Also by radical reducing of the labor coefficient during ClearQuest Designer's schemes debugging.
5. UML2ClearQuest enclose an internal UML syntax parser that allows rapidly and efficiently receiving required ClearQuest Designer scheme which is bug free.

Rationale

  In ClearQuest, a change request’s lifecycle is described via state machines, which is defined by the state transition matrix. Programming these matrices is an administrative task, which is based on some specification (contained in a “Configuration management plan” document). The specification is written by an analyst, usually using two types of charts that describe a process – State-charts and Activity-charts. These charts are handed over to the administrator, who plots them to ClearQuest. This approach has several obvious deficiencies:
  • There’s an excessive link in the chain: the administrator.
  • Errors can frequently occur when transferring the diagrams.
  • Correcting the diagram entails manual reprogramming of the ClearQuest state transition matrix.

Description

The purpose of this application is to ease the process of programming ClearQuest Designer's state transitions matrix for change requests. UML2ClearQuest can export UML state charts to ClearQuest Designer, which makes for a simple visual design process. This module enables for automatic state chart transformations to ClearQuest Designer’s state transition matrix for a certain entity (change request) and is distributed in two flavors, for different platforms:
  • As a plug-in for IBM Rational Software Architect
  • As an external application, which takes UML diagrams (in Visio & StarUML format), and converts them to ClearQuest’s state machine.

When exporting, UML diagrams are checked for compliancy with ClearQuest: since it's state transition matrix places several constraints on it's states and transitions, not all UML diagrams are valid. The export process is configurable; you can, for example, choose to create a new entity in the database, or change an existing one to match your UML diagram. If the export process was successful, your schema will increase it's version by one, and the entity will have been successfully added to your schema.

The external application works with Visio 2003 and StarUML diagrams . For Visio 2003, the following XML formats are supported:

  • XML Drawing (*.vdx).
  • XML Stencil (*.vsx).
  • XML Template (*.vtx).

For StarUML the following format is supported:

  • StarUML Project File (*.uml).

  In Rational Software Architect, StateMachines are created in UseCases.

In all 3 cases (Visio, StarUML and RSA), only "UML Activity" elements are used to describe a change request's lifecycle.

 

Requirements

  • ClearQuest Designer.
  • Administrative rights.
  • Rational Software Architect or UML files MS Visio/StarUML format.

Implementation

  • This module is realized in the form of Win32 application, designed in .NET 2.0 environment.

Features

New in 3.0 version

UML2ClearQuest 3.0. includes the set of the unique functions which make the usage of UML2ClearQuest   as more effective as it possible:

  • Strongly adjusted the algorithm of the statements visualization. Now it allows visualizing UML diagrams of change request’s statements more fast and easy than ever.
    • Scaling function is added;
    • UML diagrams display is hastened.
  • The new function of documenting the properties of the IBM Rational ClearQuest Designer schemes:
    • The documenting proceeds with the template formed in advance that could be the part of the Configuration Management Plan or Change Management Plan.
    • The documenting is being done in XML.format. Our solution supports all text editors for XML display including MS Word, Open Office etc.
    • To be documented:
      • General list of the scheme properties (statistic data), including the ER diagram;
      • The structure of the scheme’s entities (change requests) divided on Stateless\No Stateless;
      • For every entity the fields structure is defined (including initial and listed values, and comments for every field as well), statement diagram, ER diagram (all dependencies – showing the Parent\Child hierarchy), state transition matrix, list of all activities, and also the fields behavior description.
    • It is able to define the depth of the scheme documenting basing on the predetermined templates (Brief , Full or Custom);
    • The templates are available in Russian and English;
    • Visualization template can be customized by the user himself: every control pattern can be changed including the language of visualization.
  • The new function is added –documenting the comments to the scheme. Usually the biggest challenge with the scheme development is the documenting the help item for every field of entity. In UML2ClearQuest 3.0 it’s possible after scheme documenting to type into the field table the help item for every field and then, to import the resulted table by the special way. Meanwhile UML2ClearQuest creates the new version of the scheme and puts there all the comments.. Thus it’s possible to read comments in the scheme, update them and record again unlimited amount of times:
    • The mode “Get scheme’s properties” is supported
      • Add comments;
      • Update scheme basing on the document.
    • Unlimited recurrence is supported as well.

All features

 

  • Supports UML 2.1 and up (all current versions).
    • Only state-chart export supported.
  • Analyze state chart syntax for ClearQuest state machine compatibility.
  • UML diagrams can be transferred to new entities in a ClearQuest schema, or existing entities can be modified based on the UML.
  • A ClearQuest-style preview of the transition matrix is available for checking the end-results.
  • Code style independency.
  • Multilanguage support.

Note: each export cycle increases ClearQuest Designer’s schema version. The schema must be checked in before the export operation. After the export all user databases must be updated

  • Import and visualize state charts from ClearQuest – reverse-engineering is employed to correct an already existing lifecycle with the visual convenience of UML.
  • Programming ClearQuest transition matrices based on activity diagrams, with required field detection and access rights configuration according to groups and role policy depending on the state and action.
  • There are no similar solutions on the market.

  Advantages & tech. info

Details:

There are several restrictions on the UML diagrams that can be exported to ClearQuest:

  • Only "UML Activity" elements are supported.
    • Visio 2003: "Initial State", "Final State", "State", "Action State" and "Control Flow".
    • StarUML: "InitialState", "FinalState", "ActionState", "SubactivityState" and "Transition".
    • Rational Software Architect: "Initial State", "Final State", "State", "Transition".
  • There must be exactly one transition from the "Initial State" (or "InitialState").
  • There must be at least one transition to the "Final State" (or "FinalState").
  • All transitions must have names, except for transitions to the "Final State" (or "FinalState").
  • Every state ("State", "Action State", "ActionState", "SubactivityState") must have at least one incoming and one outgoing transition.
  • No transition from any state can lead to that same state.
  • If two transitions have the same name, they must lead to the same state.
  • No transition can have "loose ends": every transition has to point from one state to another.
  • No two states can have more than a single transition in each direction.

  • Names can contain letters (english and russian), underscores and numbers;
  • Transition and state names must be no more than 25 symbols long.
  • No two states can have the same name.

At export time, you can create a new entity or modify an existing one. If you're creating a new one, you'll need to enter the entity's ClearQuest DB name, otherwise the existing one is used. The entity's name can consist of letters (english or russian), underscores and numbers, and it's length must be no more than 25 symbols. The ClearQuest DB name follows the same rules, but it must contain only english symbols.

When exporting to a schema, the schema name is chosen from the appropriate list, which is determinted automatically from the specified connection parameters (to an available repository).

The external application contains the following control elements:

  • The "Fill" button loads the UML diagram, with the file type indicated as a standart filter.
  • The «Diagrams» drop list contains the list of available diagrams. The chosen diagram is graphically displayed in the application window.
  • The «Validate» button verifies the diagram for compliance with ClearQuest's restrictions. The verification result can be seen in the "Result" field; if there are any requirement violations, the specific requirement violation will be outputted there.
  • The «Result» field shows error messages (red) if the diagram does not meet the requirements, or «Verification is completed» (green) if all requirements are met.

  YouTube video-demonstration

Demonstration scenario:

  1. Create simple State-chart UML diagramm in StarUML.
  2. Check UML syntax in UML2ClearQuest.
  3. Export UML to IBM Rational ClearQuest Designer.
  4. Add some states and actions in StarUML.
  5. Update State-Machine in IBM Rational ClearQuest.

   

Download video in best quality

Microsoft VISIO screenshots

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 A diagram is first constructed in Visio. The diagram's type should be State chart.
This stage employes Visio's UML graphic representation capabilities

 

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

UML2ClearQuest reads the Visio file and locates all the State Chart diagrams.
The basis of UML2ClearQuest is syntactic analysis of UML diagrams for ClearQuest state machine compliancy (since not all UML state charts can be translated to ClearQuest).
A connection to ClearQuest must be available, and at this stage you choose the entity to which the export is being made. If the entity does not yet exist, it will be created.
 
3
 The result of UML2ClearQuest is a configured state transition matrix in ClearQuest Designer.
UML2ClearQuest  automatically creates all the necessary states and actions between them. All that's left to do is define the fields' behaviour and access policy.
 

IBM Rational Software Architect screenshots

 
 
rs1

First, a UML State Chart diagram is constructed in IBM Rational software Architect.
The State Chart can be a part of a general UML model that describes the business process of an organization.
Just like in visio, there's functionality to analyze the diagram and export it to ClearQuest Designer.

 

rs2
Information window, reporting on a successful diagram export from IBM Rational Software Architect to IBM Rational ClearQuest Designer
 
rs3
The result of UML2ClearQuest is a configured state transition matrix in ClearQuest Designer.
UML2ClearQuest  automatically creates all the necessary states and actions between them. All that's left to do is define the fields' behaviour and access policy.
 

StarUML screenshots

 
 
1
A diagram is first constructed in StarUML. 
 
2
UML2ClearQuest reads the StarUML file and locates all the State Chart diagrams.
The basis of UML2ClearQuest is syntactic analysis of UML diagrams for ClearQuest state machine compliancy (since not all UML state charts can be translated to ClearQuest).
A connection to ClearQuest must be available, and at this stage you choose the entity to which the export is being made. If the entity does not yet exist, it will be created.
 
 
3
 
The result of UML2ClearQuest is a configured state transition matrix in ClearQuest Designer.
UML2ClearQuest  automatically creates all the necessary states and actions between them. All that's left to do is define the fields' behaviour and access policy.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 19 May 2010 )
 
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