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ADL Frequently Asked Questions

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Getting ADL

How do I get ADL?

How much does ADL cost?

Are there any license restrictions?

Installing ADL

What are the basic system requirements?

Which operating systems does ADL work with?

Using ADL

Who uses ADL?

How long does it take to write an ADL specification

Where does ADL fit in the devlopment process

Is support available?

How do I get ADL?

ADL is available from The Open Group website at http://adl.opengroup.org/download/index.html.


How much does ADL cost?

ADL can be freely downloaded, installed and used. For support see "Is support available?"


Are there any License restrictions?

Please read the COPYRIGHT and LICENSE NOTICE for precise details.
This is a generous license that allows complete freedom to use, modify and distribute ADL provided that the original copyright notice is distributed unmodifed.

Note that ADL is capable of generating test source code that uses the TET API. TET is the The Open Group's Test Environmennt Toolkit - a test control framework. There are several versions of TET available for a wide range of platforms. Some of these versions (TET3.3 and earlier) are freeley available on some platforms. More advanced distributions such a TETware and TETware Professional require purchase of a commercial licence.
See the TETworks website for more details: http://tetworks.opengroup.org


What are the basic system requirements

Installation requirements:

  • C++ compiler and runtime environment
  • Java Development Kit (JDK) version 1.1 (including runtime environment)

If the ADL compilers are being built from source, the JavaCC toolkit is required. This is freeley available from WebGain. ADL is available with re-built compilers (from Java source) and so this is not essential for the installation of ADL.

Disk space: 30Mb of space should be made available for a full ADL installation.

The ADL translation environment requirements:

ADL is a very large C++ application. As such, it requires a robust C++ compilation system in order to be built. The ADL development team has had great success with the GNU project's gcc (versions 2.6 and later). Other commercial compilers, such as the SunPro C++ compiler, are also known to work.

ADL relies upon certain Open Systems interfaces. Any system that supports the POSIX interfaces and ISO C will support ADL. However, in order to use the internationalization features of ADL, the X/Open Internationalization Interfaces (as defined in the X/Open Portability Guide Issue 4) must also be present.

For natural language support, a Prolog compiler is required.

The ADL execution environment requirements:

The tests generated by ADLT are highly portable. Generated tests require that the platform support POSIX.1, ISO C, and POSIX make. The POSIX.1 requirements, however, are very limited.

For Java testing with TET the JETPack API is required. See TETworks web site for more details.

N.B. ADL is capable of running with versions of Java later than 1.1, but JDK1.1 is still required to provide class information for the ADLJava compiler.


Which operating systems does ADL work with?

ADL requires a POSIX-compliant environment and will work on most POSIX-based systems such as UNIX-base systems, Linux, BSD etc. ADL has been sucessfully built on Microsoft NT 4.0 using the Cygwin development environment.


Who uses ADL?

Our target audience is a senior test or developer, with good math and interface design skills, who is tasked with defining or testing a C-callable programming interface. Standards testing is an important special case of this general description.


How long does it take to write an ADL specification?

It depends on how little testing experience you have, how comfortable you are with math and formalisms, the quality and character of the interface you're working with, and how well you understand that interface. It can range between 0.3 and 5 days per function.

There is a startup cost associated with learning to use ADLT, which we estimate at between one and three weeks for a competent engineer, and a startup cost for each completely new interface, which will largely depend on the quality of the documentation of the interface.


Where does ADL fit in the development process?

It can be sucessfully used as a test development tool. It brings the most benefit if used as part of the development process; when you think you have your architecture right, write it the interfaces in ADL. Then you can use the generated documents to start the documentation process, and test development and interface implementation can proceed in parallel on the common basis of the ADL specification.


Is support available?

Support can be provided through a commercial agreement with The Open Group. Please contact adl_support for details.

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