Please note : This help page is not for the latest version of Enterprise Architect. The latest help can be found here.

Generate Source Code

Source code generation is the process of creating programming code from a UML model. There are great benefits in taking this approach as the source code Packages, Classes and Interfaces are automatically created and elaborated with variables and methods.

Enterprise Architect can also generate code from a number of behavioral models, including State Machine, Sequence and Activity diagrams. There is a highly flexible template mechanism that allows the engineer to completely tailor the way that source code is generated, including the comment headers in methods and the Collection Classes that are used.

From an engineering and quality perspective, the most compelling advantage of this approach is that the UML models and therefore the architecture and design are synchronized with the programming code. An unbroken traceable path can be created from the goals, business drivers and the stakeholder’s requirements right through to methods in the programming code.




See also


Enterprise Architect supports code generation in each of these languages:

  • Action Script
  • C
  • C# (for .NET 1.1, .NET 2.0 and .NET 4.0)
  • C++ (standard, plus .NET managed C++ extensions)
  • Delphi
  • Java (including Java 1.5, Aspects and Generics)
  • PHP
  • Python
  • Visual Basic
  • Visual Basic .NET


Code is generated from Class or Interface model elements, so you must create the required Class and Interface elements to generate from.

Add attributes (which become variables) and operations (which become methods).


Before you generate code, you should ensure the default settings for code generation match your requirements; set up the defaults to match your required language and preferences.

Preferences that you can define include default constructors and destructors, methods for interfaces and the Unicode options for created languages.

Languages such as Java support 'namespaces' and can be configured to specify a namespace root.

In addition to the default settings for generating code, Enterprise Architect facilitates setting specific generation options for each of the supported languages.

Delphi Options Source Code Options PHP Options C++ Options Visual Basic Options C Options Java Options Visual Basic .NET Options ActionScript Options C# Options Namespaces Python Options

Code Template Framework

The Code Template Framework (CTF) enables you to customize the way Enterprise Architect generates source code and also enables generation of languages that are not specifically supported by Enterprise Architect.

Code Template Framework Tool

Local Paths

Local path names enable you to substitute tags for directory names.

Local Paths Local Paths Dialog

Behavioral Code

You can also generate code from three UML behavioral modeling paradigms:

  • State Machine diagrams (SW & HW)
  • Interaction (Sequence) diagrams (SW)
  • Activity diagrams (SW)

Activity diagrams Interaction (Sequence) diagrams Legacy State Machine Templates

Live Code Generation

On the 'Code Engineering' submenu, you have the option to update your source code instantly as you make changes to your model.

Code Engineering Options


When you generate code, you perform one or more of these tasks:

  • Generate a Single Class
  • Generate a Group of Classes
  • Generate a Package
  • Update Package Contents

Generate a Group of Classes Update Package Contents Generate a Single Class Generate a Package


  • The tools provided by Enterprise Architect for code engineering and debugging are available in the Professional, Corporate, Business and Software Engineering, System Engineering and Ultimate editions of Enterprise Architect
  • When security is enabled there are permissions for Generate Source Code and DDL and Reverse Engineer from DDL and Source Code

Learn more

Learning Center topics

  • Alt+F1 | Enterprise Architect | Software Engineering | Generate Code