Category: DXL

DNG, RTC, and RQM 5.0.2 released!

IBM DOORS Next Generation, Rational Quality Manager, and Rational Team Concert 5.0.2 were just released.

You can read the release notes on Notable in DNG are greatly enhanced file management and much needed updates to managing views.

The Jazz Reporting Service is also promoted to more of a public view, and my guess is that in 6.0 it will be fully baked in. It looks very promising.

IBM Rhapsody and DOORS Englightenment Series 2012

I received the following email from Nancy Rundlet at IBM.

IBM is now offering both Rhapsody Enlightenment and DOORS Enlightenment every Friday, alternating between the two products. NOTICE that there are 3 new DOORS Enlightenment topics that have been added in November and December as well as links to the recordings for the events that have recently been delivered. Please scan the list below for those topics of interest and when you click on the link, you will see an abstract for each of the topics.

Please spread the word to others who may be interested.

Rhapsody Enlightenment Series

6/22 12-1 ET Validating the consistency & completeness of your requirements with modeling Manohar Rao

7/13 12-1 ET Reverse Engineering existing code into Rhapsody Chris Carson

7/27 12-1 ET Systems Engineering: Importing Requirements from DOORS to Rhapsody Justin Dyer

8/10 12-1 ET Safety Critical Software Development with Rhapsody Bruce Douglass

8/24 12-1 ET Systems Engineering: Trade Study Analysis Gavin Arthurs

9/14 12-1 ET DDS Software Development with Rhapsody Dan Poirot

9/28 12-1 ET Systems Engineering: Automating Harmony SE Processes with the SE Toolkit Andy Lapping

10/12 12-1 ET How to Organize Your Model for Teaming, Reuse, Configuration Management Ed Mayer

10/26 12-1 ET Systems Engineering: Creating Combined Simulations with Rhapsody and The Mathworks Simulink Ron Felice

11/9 12-1 ET Test Driven Development with Rhapsody TestConductor Jeff Cohen

12/14 12-1 ET Systems Engineering: Creating Interface Specifications with DOORS and Rhapsody Ed Mayer

DOORS Enlightenment Series

Webcast series 1st Friday (Introductory) and 3rd (Advanced) each month 12:00 Noon ET for approximately 1 hour

6/29/12 DOORS Next Generation Update (every 2 – 3 months) Richard Watson

7/6/12 Importing with ease Jim Marsh

7/20/12 Common Metrics Collection in DOORS George Siampos

8/3/12 Extending DOORS with DOORS Web Access Jim Hays

8/17/12 Optimizing the Performance of DOORS Web Access Jim Marsh

9/7/12 DOORS and Testing — The options available Jim Hays

9/21/12 Requirements Management and Product Line Engineering Michelle Specht

10/5/12 Collaborating with DOORS Discussions Melissa Robinson

10/19/12 Extending DOORS – Introduction to DXL (DOORS eXtension Language) Don Cunningham

11/2/12 Basic Tips and Tricks of Using DOORS Rick Learn

11/16/12 Managing Change Proposals in DOORS Steve Grossman

11/30/12 The Latest Update on DOORS Next Generation Richard Watson

12/7/12 Extending DOORS to Model Based Systems Engineering Barclay Brown

Innovate 2012: DOORS DXL Script Exchange

I’m just going to list the scripts and their functionality.

Rules have changed this year: Scripts can be up to 2000 lines long.

Export Heirarchy to HTML

Patrick Roach

Apparently based on the included DOORS HTML Exporter. Lets you selected which modules to export (including linked modules).

It’s a standard exporter but no Stylesheet information is used to make the HTML pop. I actually started work on something similar a few years ago, but felt that RPE made it obsolete.

Advanced Table Properties


Very impressive. Amazingly impressive. Can merge cells, easily set border option. Can select diagonally. Can Merge Right and Merge Left. Can split cells. Insert Row button. Incert Column button (left and right. Can remove rich text, show/hide link arrow, jump tables.

If he adds sort capabilities, which is not trivial, DOORS tables just may be usable. No table split capability either, which is fine.

I hope the author submits this to our DXL Repository (hint, hint).

Folder Hierarchy Picklist Wrapper (my name for it)

Alex Ivanov

Helps to run DXL on multiple modules easily. Can choose a folder and then it’ll pick up all modules in a folder, even allowing to optionally match a search term (e.g., “Software”) and then runs any DXL you want across modules in the database.

Baseline Manager


A customer wanted to view baselines by “1”, not “1.0”. And search by milestone description (which is a pre-defined list).

The script will search out baselines matching criteria that has been input. Can also create a baseline with this tool. Also allows signatures. With the signature, it will allow a role selection, and also a label (Rejected/Accepted). If Rejected, a comment is required.

DOORS to RTC Bridge

Author did not give his name, but he sounded Scottish

Open-source VB.Net project. ALlows requirements in DOORS to be linked to work items in RTC using OSLC.

  • Uses Madgex OAuth Library
  • Requires MS .NET Framework 4
  • There are instructions.

This is not a DXL script.

There is a girl snoring.

ANd the winner is…

Advanced Table Properties

My Suggestions for Next Year

OK, everyone. THe first rule of making a presentation is to introduce yourself. This is a huge pet peeve of mine, because even though I think everyone should know exactly who I am, the fact is they don’t. So I tell them who I am when I get in front of them. Simple.

Next year apparently is not going to be DXL specific. It’s going to be general DOORS scripting, so OSLC, VB, and other languages will be allowed.

This year, allowing 2000 lines, a revelation occurred: Why haven’t they done this before? It was absolutely stupid to limit the competition to 75 lines. Talk about limiting potential! I say lift the limit completely! Imagine some of the scripts that would be out there today if they didn’t have this absolutely ridiculous limitation. You could have had multiple competitions, one with the 75-line limit, and another without.

And on the same note, give better prizes. An Amazon gift certificate is nice, but make it like $500 or $1000. Or free admission next year (which I think is what they used to give) or something.

Also, send out notification. Apparently the DXL competition notification went out really late this year. That was acknowledged. But here I am, running a Web site that has a DXL Repository and I did not get any such notification at all.

Looking forward to what next year will bring.

DOORS – What’s New and Next


This is my recap of the presentation IBM representative made along with my opinions. While my opinions should always be taken as gospel, you should still realize that they are indeed my opinions. Keep that in mind.


Presentation began discussing that “System of Systems.” Chevy Volt is used as an example of something that is a “System of Systems” but that most people don’t consider to be a “System of Systems”. I disagree with this–because the audience in this room definitely knows that an automobile is a system of systems. 

This kind of padding doesn’t seem to happen in other Rational presentations about what’s new, at least the ones I’ve been to. 

New Releases

DOORS 9.4 and DWA 1.5 are out TODAY!

New Features of DOORS 9.4

  • HPQC 11 is now supported for DOORS/Quality Center integration.
  • RIF has been updated to latest version of ReqIF.
  • Authentication has been moved from the client to the DOORS server
  • New integration between Rational Quality Manager (which was very badly needed. I’ve been told it was re-written completely from scratch). It’s now fully based on OSLC. No RQMI is needed. This is a big deal for a number of reasons.
  • Custom RPE .dta files can be used within the RPE that is included in DOORS! I hope this works as I expect it to!
  • Shareable edit has more options
  • 128 columns can now be in a view
  • Rich Text Export to Excel (I wonder what other improvements to the Excel script have been made)
  • Import multiple attributes from another module in one action

All of this sounds really good. I can’t wait to get my hands on the implementation.

They also showed a slide dealing with future enhancements but it was high-level and vague. I don’t put a lot of stock into these because they change big time.

It’s freezing in this room.

Push to Jazz and OSLC

They are still referring to DOORS as being a Web Client and a Rich Client, and they show that the Rich Client will run DXL. But they are still pushing to go Jazz-based. My guess is that they will only continue the Rich Client as an interface to run DXL. I, for one, think DXL needs to go away, but understand how angry the customer base would be if it were completely removed. (DXL was never intended to run the millions of lines of code that are out there. No one likely ever envisioned that one company would have hundreds of thousands of lines of custom DXL code.)

The DOORS Next Generation Client looks a bit different–bigger headings. The web side looks more like RTC and RQM with a “document view” if that makes sense. It even has the Jazz “Home” button.

One of the attendees asked about RDS vs. the classic DOORS user/group admin capabilities when moving to Web-based in the future. This guy says he has “tens of thousands of users” that will say no to an RDS/LDAP-based user/group admin. While I prefer the classic mode as well, I cannot imagine why this guy has so many users that care.


They appear to be setting the stage for DOORS to DOORS-Next Migration to be selective and concurrent. Migrations can be gradual and selective. Will not be all-or-nothing. I believe they don’t want to do this, but they know that they will lose a lot of customers if they don’t. Too bad. When Apple abadoned OS9 for OSX, they did have classic mode for years, but they didn’t continue to develop classic. Imagine if Apple had to actively develop OS9 due to their customer complaints…do you think the iPhone would exist as it does?

“We continue to invest in DOORS 9.4, and we will continue as long as we can see into the future…”

Sometimes it’s best for the axe to fall quickly. Actually, that’s always best.

“Will DOORS Next require new licenses?” someone asked. The intention is DOORS Next Generation capabilities will be included in DOORS V9 licenses. So you could use any mix of DOORS 9 and DOORS Next Generation licenses at the same time. However, running DOORS 9 and DOORS NG on the same computer will take two licenses.

DOORS 9.4 Demo

The main thing they say they’re going to demo is the RQM integration. Because it’s based in OSLC, it actually improved the DOORS/RTC integration. I find it interesting that they are going to demo this as I have a hunch that most people in this room do not use RQM (I was the only one that I know of that had used RQMI).

And the demo had problems. The “pop-up preview” that IBM loves so much in their Jazz-products did not work from DOORS.

It’s a refrigerator in here.

The DOORS Rich Client filter window now has an External Links tab, and you can now filter by External Link type. This is how to find out which objects have links to say, RQM, or eventually RTC, or anything else. It’s kind of like defining a link module for External Links. RQM links will be “Validated By” or something.

RQM task assignment can be done with from inside DOORS. 

When Richard Watson completed the demo, the audience applauded.

DOORS Next Web Client Demo

For large modules, a pop-up preview appears to the left of the module  as the user scrolls. This is awesome. Very nicely done! It’s UI stuff like this that I feel that IBM Rational constantly ignores, at least as far as DOORS goes.

There’s still too much hovering and clicking. You can hover over a comment icon to see how many comments there are, then click to see comments. I’d like to see a more “Facebook-like” comment display system.

You can actually filter by levels just like in DOORS. This makes navigation easier as well.

Comments in DOORS Next replace Discussions in DOORS 9.

Speaking of UI, IBM needs to get away from these meaningless little icons. I don’t know how to fix this problem, but I’m looking at many of these icons and not knowing what they do at all. 

I think the DOORS NG Rich Client needs to focus on a better looking user presentation. Work those fonts. Notice how huge the headings are and how tiny the text objects are. 

That being said, the DOORS NG Rich Client is obviously very young. Lots of standard functionality missing (the File menu has three items, and views have just been implemented.) 

DOORS NG looks more spreadsheet like with the way columns and editing works. This is good. Still looks like a UI from 10 years ago though. That is, as opposed to 20. Progress.


This is just a summary. I did not verbatim transcribe the Qs and As.

“How much admin work is there in migration, assuming DOORS 9 and DOORS NG are both set up?”

In this release, IBM is careful to not to call Data Interoperation, “Migration” It’s not moving data from one place to another–it’s not moving history and baselines. Therefore, admin work is not much. They don’t want flat data structure to flat data structure.

“Rich client doesn’t have option to run DXL script. Is this planned?”

First release of DOORS NG won’t have DXL scripts capability. But it is something we’re looking at in the future.

“How can we make sure that we’re working towards your solution and not against it when we do implement DOORS Next?”

One of the long-term strategic goals of DOORS Next is to solve that problem, but we don’t have an answer yet. It’s too early. Talk to us. This is a bigger issue amongst all Rational ALM applications, not just in Requirements Management.

“What about DOORS CPS/DOORS Change and DOORS NG?” There are 3 integrations between DOORS and Change Systems…they won’t have the Requirements Change Management (where requirements are version controlled) this year.

“What’s the plan for Focal Point/DOORS Integration?”

OSLC will allow us to do this academically and theoretically. We haven’t looked at Focal Point yet but it’s on our backlog. It may actually be done, but we haven’t qualified it and tested it. 

In DOORS Next, there is an RRC/FP integration but it hasn’t been tested in DOORS Next. It should work the same, in theory.

“When do you use RRC vs. DOORS?” RRC doesn’t have concept of modules. Modules will be added to RRC. DOORS Next and RRC will look the same. DOORS Next will have all features, and RRC will have some features.

“Will DOORS Next have a relational database”?


“Can you get data out of DOORS Next with RPE?”

Yes. You can import/export with ReqIF too.

DXL Repository Updated

Over the weekend we made some changes to how the DXL Repository works. From now on, in order to actually download files from the DXL Repository, you will have to be logged in. So please, create an account and download away! We will never sell or otherwise give away your email address, but we may occasionally send out a mass email. “Occasionally” seriously means about once per year.

We also fixed an issue where the wrong comments were being displayed on pages throughout the site.

The bar was set really high by the quality of DXL uploaded to the repository. The intent was never to have such polished code (though we are not complaining about that!). If you’d like to post useful DXL functions and not actual DXL applications, please feel free.

Updating Multiple Objects at Once In DOORS

This beginner/intermediate level DOORS tutorial focuses on updating the attribute values of multiple objects at the same time without the need for copying and pasting. Anyone who has ever used DOORS knows that this can be an area of frustration for many users.

There is also some basic DXL given at the end on how to do the same thing via code, instead of via the GUI.

Enjoy the tutorial, and if you have any ideas for DOORS tutorials you’d like to see, just leave a comment below, or write me at the email address I give at the end of this video.

Worst Programming Languages Ever

I was doing some google searching today and stumbled upon this question on stackoverflow: What is the worst programming language you ever worked with? You can check the link for yourself, but my favorite response:

For me the second worst in my opinion is Doors DXL. Programming languages can be divided into two groups: Those with manual memory management (e.g. delete, free) and those with a garbage collector. Some languages offer both, but DXL is probably the only language in the world that supports neither. OK, to be honest this is only true for strings, but hey, strings aren’t exactly the most rarely used data type in requirements engineering software.

The consequence is that memory used by a string can never be reclaimed and DOORS DXL leaks like sieve.

There are countless other quirks in DXL…

I guess I get a kick out of being good at one of the worst programming languages ever.

Introducing Serpent

Introducing Serpent

Serpent is a web-based launcher for Rational Publishing Engine and DOORS.

Rational Publishing Engine is a good tool with some drawbacks. The main one is  that it has to be installed on a user’s machine in order for that user to generate a document with it! This is unacceptable to me as a DOORS administrator, so I created Serpent.

Read More “Introducing Serpent”

White Papers Galore

For those of you who couldn’t attend the US 2007 UGC conference, I thought I would pass along some information that was provided to those who did.

Telelogic has posted the white papers from this year’s conference here:

Not all white papers will be posted due to some companies not giving Telelogic permission to share. And according to the email, not all white papers have been posted yet, so you have to keep checking back

It’d be nice to have all those white papers in one place instead of having to poke and prod around. But if you’re willing to do that poking and prodding, I’m sure you’ll find some useful information.


I know updates have been sparse for the past few weeks. That’s because I’ve been working on a redesign for the site and a new feature. A feature that I hope will be highly utilized.

You can find snippets of DXL all over the place, but you can’t just go to one place and find lots of DXL. You can visit Tony Goodman’s smart DXL, or Michael Sutherland’s Galactic Solutions, and find some interesting DXL along with some great information on the inner workings of DOORS, but you cannot find a lot of different DXL in one place.

I’m hoping to change that with a DXL file repository I’ve programmed into this site. I’ve found that I am much better at DXL than I am at Web Development, and I’ve been working on this for quite a while, just about as long as this site has been launched!Not all features have been implemented yet, but the important ones have. The DXL Repository allows:

  • registered users to upload files
  • anyone to download files
  • registered users can make comments
  • anyone can read comments
  • categories to be assigned to files
  • descriptions to be added to files
  • a download counter

Eventually, you’ll be able to browse DXL by category and do a search. As I said, I’m not the greatest Web Developer in the world, so if you run into a bug, please let me know. There is a limit on the filesize you can post, so if you try posting a large file and get an error, it may be due to that. If there is a category you think I should add, let me know. In the meantime, if a category doesn’t fit, just put it in the “Uncategorized” category.

The very first DXL I’ve posted is a script that allows users to save views without DOORS’ horrible Save View dialog box. This makes view management an absolute breeze for administrators, and saving views simple for users. The name of the script is Simple Save View, and you can download it here.

For this file repository to be successful, you have to contribute to it. Contribute snippets, examples, full-fledged scripts, or even zipped powerpoint presentations.

This can be one of the most valuable resources for DOORS users everywhere. We don’t have to worry about the Telelogic Forums losing posts or someone’s personal Web site going down. This site will be up and running for quite a while, and will be cached by Google and other major search sites, so for goodness sake, share your most useful DXL and let’s have a library the DOORS community can use.