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Topics - mikewhit

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General Board / Free (as in beer) proprietary tools ...
« on: November 17, 2005, 01:50:57 am »
I do most of my stuff using open source tools, but MS-heads (on a budget) might like the following:

Looks like you get free updates for a year, doesn't look as if it's time-limited in operation.

No zealot postings here, please ! Horses for courses ...

General Board / Future Plans forum ?
« on: March 22, 2005, 03:43:33 am »
How about updating this occasionally - or is the process so "agile" that no-one knows from one day to the next ?

Or perhaps you're still implementing the 2001 wishlist !

General Board / Import DDL from file (not ODBC) ... yet ?
« on: March 10, 2005, 07:29:37 am »
Further to;action=display;num=1090515616 any thoughts on when we can Import DDL from a data file ? [eg. Marathon - Tools - Metadata Extract]

Tried to do it using the File Source tab, but that doesn't quite do what I expected !

Would expect to be able to generate all tables, triggers, stored procs from MySQL, Oracle, Interbase ...

General Board / Bug report auto-reply not working ?
« on: January 27, 2005, 02:14:46 am »
I posted 2 (oops, 3) bug reports yesterday (26th), but have not had the corresponding email auto-response from Sparx.

Running slow, or broken ? If broken, do I need to re-report ?

General Board / Deleting link in copied locked diagram
« on: December 02, 2004, 03:53:11 am »
If I make a copy of a [Activity] diagram (select all, context menu, copy all to clipboard), lock the diagram (and even package), and then paste the copy (as link) into a new unlocked diagram, would you expect to now be able to modify the original locked diagram ?

If you delete a link in the new copy, that link also disappears in the locked original, although you could not make the deletion in the original, due to it being locked !

I reported this to Sparx, but they didn't consider it a bug.

Anyone care to comment ? (and enlighten me!)

I wanted to try out some different layouts of a diagram using a copy, and found that I'd messed up the original !

General Board / Usability of Package Version Control ?
« on: October 05, 2004, 09:57:43 am »
I have successfully configured EA with the Jalindi Igloo interface to CVS.

However, as a means of backing up and restoring parts of a model, it doesn't seem to hang togther very well.

I would have liked to use this feature to make package backups of a model that was stored in a database repository, say on a milestone or weekly basis.

However, since only Checked Out files are editable, how do you get a fresh copy from the database to overwrite the copy checked out from CVS - there isn't a way to do this.

If I want to revert to an earlier revision (maybe this is a failing of Igloo) there is no way in EA to select a previous version and pull it out of CVS. I can do this with WinCVS, using the model file, but there is no way to get EA to re-read the file - the Load and Save Package to File options do not exist if the project has Version Control enabled.

Am I missing something completely here ?

What I want to be able to do is load the shared model from the database, enable version control, select a package and check it into CVS.

If the package gets broken, I want to open a 'previous versions' list, click on a version, restore it, tweak it if necessary, and then update both the database and CVS.

This seems to be well-nigh impossible as things stand, without jumping through hoops.

Perhaps EA needs to look at some kind of journalling repository ... or is there a missing chapter in the Help/PDF documentation ?!

Alternatively, if these are all failings of Igloo, maybe a native CVS interface in EA (no, I don't want Subversion) would rectify things.

General Board / Hidden Interface label - unhide ?
« on: November 15, 2004, 05:52:36 am »
[build 731]
Having hidden the label on an Interface, there appears to be no way of getting it back - none of the Diagram visibility options is of any use ... just have to delete and recreate the interface itself.

General Board / Component nesting - how ?
« on: November 10, 2004, 07:37:26 am »
The 'Delegate' page in the EA Help file appears to show Component2 nested inside Component1.

How do they do that ? Must have trawled through the EA help file and the EAUserGuide page by page; drag-drop and embed don't seem to be the way ...

I want to show a component that realises a DB interface class (which itself has a 'RequiredInterface' to the DB) as part of another component.


General Board / How to use: "MDG Technology for Testing"
« on: November 05, 2004, 01:54:51 am »
Has anyone seen a 'how to' document for the MDG Testing Technology.xml file that Sparx have so helpfully provided ?

I don't really want to have to become a guru (or god ...) on Profiles and MDG before I can tell if this stuff is going to be of any use.

All I'd like is a little PDF that says - this is what you can do if you import this MDG file - these are the processes it supports, these are the diagrams (and results) you can create, these are the situations you can use it in and these are the benefits.

Preferably without an explanation at the metamodel level ;-)

Sorry if I've missed something obvious. [Perhaps the .xml file should contain a URL link to its own documentation ?!]

General Board / Aspects of Test cases in Sequential diagrams ?
« on: November 04, 2004, 07:17:30 am »
Have I just become the first advocate of Aspect-oriented Modelling ?!
[Quick check on Google shows not ... well, I came up with it on my own!]

I am presented with (numerous) Activity diagrams, each comprising various Activity elements linked by control flows.

Now, an Activity (and also incidentally Sequence) diagram, by its nature, shows the direction of execution of steps, and so explicitly indicates stages in a Scenario.

For Test purposes, I could write out step-by-step scenarios inside each Activity element to test that single element, with much of the preceding and following steps identical or similar.

But what I find myself really wanting to do is to enumerate inside each Activity element, as Test Cases, just those things which could be different for that element.

So if one Activity element says 'parse command line parameters', the test cases could be:
  • Basic path - valid parameters
  • Alternate path - no parameters
  • Alternate path - too many parameters
  • Alternate path - invalid parameters
In this way, every element in the diagram would contain a set of Test Case alternatives to exercise the required different classes of behaviour in that element - without having to state what was going on before or after, since that was inherent in the diagram itself.

All very good in terms of documentation and completeness - a Report itemises every variation at each element, but that does not now translate very well into something usable for assembling the end-to-end scenarios for exercising the paths through the diagram.

Worse still, there's no way in EA that I can visualise this, since all of the Test Cases Activity alternatives are locked away inside their individual elements, with no way of bringing them together to form a series of tests covering the alternatives.

I imagine I would be told "ah, well that's not the way to use EA", but perhaps Sparx could look at some way of improving this aspect, because Test Cases for a Class element are all very well, but for diagrams that are inherently sequential, all you want to do is specify variations from the norm for any element - having entire test scenarios inside each element is overkill, as well as very tedious and bad for "reuse" !

[Yes, I have considered creating a 'shadow copy' of the original diagram, etc:  unmaintainable !]

I guess all that I could realistically do would be to create another set of Test Scenario diagrams which step-by-step played out the required variations, with (perhaps) links back to the original diagram elements containing their Test Cases ...?

<Later> Well, I can live with the lists of alternatives - at least I will know that all the possibilities are covered, and then we can derive some scenarios from the Report by hand.

General Board / EA Build updates - risks ?
« on: November 02, 2004, 08:48:50 am »
I am naturally cautious about 'upgrades' in the absence of an absolute show-stopping bug, and I have a project manager similarly risk-averse (particularly mid-project).

We are running 4.1 build 731, has anyone had any problems in going from an earlier version of 4.1 to a later version, particularly in terms of model integrity, or is this a completely risk-free (;-) process ?

Can you have (slightly) different versions accessing the repository, or is it an all-or-nothing affair ?

And are there any compelling improvements ?


General Board / Suggest & Request forum Vs. 'Request Feature'
« on: November 02, 2004, 06:19:55 am »
What is the expected usage of the Feature Request part of the BB, compared with the main site Request a Feature form?

With the form, you do seem to get some feedback, whereas posting to the BB, if no reply is posted you don't know whether anything has registered - or not.

General Board / Locking locks too much ?!
« on: October 29, 2004, 02:04:17 am »
Of course it's essential to be able to lock aspects of a model, but it's very inconvenient if you, as a locked-out user, just want to change some 'presentation layer' aspect to e.g. read some information or make it visible in your local view of the diagram.

The issue which brought this up was when I wanted to print a diagram to fit on one page, and found I couldn't set a 'shrink to fit page'  setting on the printer options: it was a diagram option, which was currently locked !

Maybe I should just ask Sparx to add this setting to the Print dialog, so that individuals can choose to override it if required, but it did seem a bit wider in scope - why can't I change the way I look at the diagrams locally without having to update the model ?

Maybe if you try to change a locked diagram, you are given the option to go into a mode such that "Diagram is locked - changes will be lost: Continue ?".

Or would that just be too complicated ?

PS. Just come across something else - diagram is locked and I would like to be able to add some tests; would be useful to allow lock discrimination between design and test roles.

General Board / EAExample - Server instance attribute settings ?
« on: October 28, 2004, 02:04:36 am »
There's probably a simple answer, but in Messenger / Model Views / Deployment Model / Office Deployment Models / Seattle Office / Servers / SE0001 / , where are the values of the fields, e.g. "Disk Controller = RAID 1", "RAM = 2 x 512MB" set ?

I can see that the fields are attributes of the classifier HP Proliant DL360, but nowhere can I find the editable fields relating to the actual values for SE0001.

General Board / Missing 'Apply' menu option creating Profile
« on: October 20, 2004, 07:08:19 am »
Having followed the instructions in EA Help to Create a Profile, I then want to 'apply package as UML profile', but find that the context menu only has the 'save package as UML profile' option - right-clicking either on the View or the enclosed Package.

[Neither does the context menu say 'delete <<profile>> myprofile', just 'delete myprofile' - so it's not seeing it as a profile package]

What else needs to be done, or is this a new bug ?
[EA build 731]

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