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Agile Computing: Product Review

Manage Your Source Data Assets . . .

. . . with RAD Harvest Interface

Presently, I am the administrator of SCM AllFusion Harvest. SCM AllFusion Harvest is a process-based Software Configuration Management (SCM) tool for managing application source code. I manage 146 applications housed in SCM AllFusion Harvest and support 226 users using the product. The development tools we currently use in our development environment are PowerBuilder PBV8, PBV11; Visual Studio 2003, 2005, 2008; IBM RAD V7.5.5 and Eclipse Europa.

As the Software Configuration Manager (SCM), I provide the administration of the source code management tool. This includes creating the Harvest environments, developing life cycles, environment phases, processes, users, user groups, access to environments, loading repositories, documentation; maintaining build machines; providing best practices and training all users on proper source code management using the development tools in our environment.

Every Software Configuration Management tool is different in terms of functionality; however, they all have common threads of functionality that are consistent with all Software Configuration Management tools. Common activities include checking out, checking in, adding files, deleting files, obsoleting files and loading an initial baseline. The way these tasks are achieved is of course different from tool to tool but many of the SCM tools perform these basic activities.

This article will focus on a product called Rational Application Developer and the integration with SCM AllFusion Harvest R12.0.2 using the CA SCM Eclipse plug-in.

Rational Application Developer
Rational Application Developer is an integrated development environment that helps Java software developers design, develop, and deploy their applications. It contains specialized wizards, editors and validators for a variety of technologies. To manage source code, a development team can configure Rational Application Developer to work with a source code repository system. Rational Application Developer is Eclipse based. It can support the third-party plug-ins for Eclipse, as well as plug-ins specifically for Rational tools.

In 2001, IBM donated the Eclipse Platform into open source to enable community-driven development of a Java workbench and tools. Eclipse was based on standards like J2EE and was designed with a plug-in based framework so that vendors could easily extend the features of the workbench.

In 2003, IBM completed the purchase of Rational Software and, a year later, replaced WSAD with Rational Application Developer version 6.0. This release supported WebSphere Application Server version 6.0 and updated programming standards such as J2EE 1.4. Also included were tools for visual portlet and portal development.

In 2006, IBM donated the Web Tools Platform (WTP) to Eclipse. WTP included tools for developing Web and Java EE applications. That year also saw the release of Rational Application Developer version 7.0, with new features supporting JavaServer Faces and tools for XSD and WSDL visualization and transforms. In this release, Rational Application Developer could be installed in a single workbench with other Rational tools.

In 2008, IBM released Rational Application Developer version 7.5. This release supported WebSphere Application Server version 7.0 as well as the new Java EE programming standard. This release included tools for Service Component Architecture (SCA), a component-based programming model and tools for communication-enabled applications.

The latest version of Rational Application Developer is version 7.5.5, which was released in December 2009

We begin with the creation of a workspace area on your C:/ workspace. After the creation of the workspace area on C:/ you are going to want to browse/navigate to that location to initiate your workspace area within the Eclipse workbench. Click the OK button to begin the launcher (see Figure 1).

Figure 1

Once in the RAD workbench you'll want to navigate to the Help menu and select Software Updates. This is where you will navigate to and attach the CA SCM Harvest Eclipse Plug-In. This plug-in will integrate RAD developer with CA SCM Harvest to provide your software configuration management activities (see Figure 2).

Figure 2

The navigation of this software update will take you to the CA website and will populate the view with the latest Harvest Eclipse plug-in's that are available to select for RAD 7.5 (see Figure 3).

Figure 3

Once you have navigated to the CA website, click add site to select the correct Eclipse plug-in for the CA SCM Harvest version you have installed on your PC (see Figure 4).

Figure 4

When the Harvest versions are available, select the choice that best matches your installation. In this example we are at CA SCM R12.0.02. Once this is checked, the install button will be enabled and you can then install the latest Eclipse Plug-in for RAD 7.5 (see Figure 5).

Figure 5

After the plug-in is installed, you can then navigate to the CA SCM menu on the tool bar and create "New Broker Connection." The Explorer tab will reflect the Broker/Server name and be available for software configuration management activities (e.g., check out, check in, etc.) (see Figure 6).

Figure 6

When the Broker is available you need to go to the Window menu on the tool bar and set your preferences. You will receive a new menu that will allow you to modify your preferences for the RAD 7.5 workspace (see Figure 7). The lower right pane provides an appending session log that records all activities and the lower left pane provides information about individual files (size, date stamp, time stamp, broker, user name, etc.).

Figure 7

Navigate to the Team location and expand the view and then expand the CA SCM view to make your settings in the RAD 7.5 workspace view. This will allow you to make all your settings in the IDE for the CA SCM tool (see Figure 8).

Figure 8

Once your preferences have been set you can double-click on the Broker on the Explorer pane and you'll receive your Broker Logon screen where you can now type in your Harvest credentials (your user name and password). Click the OK button and whatever your access level has been set to in the Harvest Administrator the RAD 7.5 Explorer pane will reflect the Harvest Projects and the access level will be replicated in this view (see Figure 9). That would include the Harvest life cycle, processes and repository view where your source data assets are secured and controlled.

Figure 9

More Stories By Al Soucy

Al Soucy is software configuration manager at the State of New Hampshire's Department of Information Technology (DoIT). In that role Al manages software configuration for dozens of PowerBuilder applications as well as applications written in Java, .NET, and COBOL (yes, COBOL). Al plays bass guitar, acoustic guitar, electric rhythm/lead guitar, drums, mandolin, keyboard; he sings lead and back up vocals and he has released 8 CDs.

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