What's new in IBM Rational Quality Manager 4.0

IBM Rational Quality Manager 4.0 improves your browsing experience and introduces new ways for recording test scripts, upgrading, and customization, plus new reports and new capabilities for distributed testing, automatic selection of test machines, and more. Pramod Chandoria gives you the details on the most noteworthy new features.

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Pramod Kumar Chandoria (pchandor@in.ibm.com), Advisory Software Engineer, IBM

Author1 photoPramod Chandoria works at the IBM Rational Software Lab in India. He represents the Test Automation team in defining the first version of the Automation OSLC specification. He has been leading design and development of Rational Quality Manager since Version 1.0. Test execution and integration with test automation tools are his areas of expertise. Pramod has a degree in computer science from the Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee, and has nearly nine years of product development experience.



17 July 2012

Also available in Chinese

Rational Quality Manager overview

IBM® Rational® Quality Manager helps you manage quality assurance throughout the software development lifecycle. It is a collaborative, web-based tool that offers comprehensive test planning, test construction, and test artifact management functions, so it can be a full replacement for Rational Manual Tester, Rational ClearQuest® Test Manager, and Rational Test Manager.

Rational Quality Manager is also part of the Rational solution for Collaborative Lifecycle Management (CLM). So it connects with Rational DOORS® for requirements and Rational Team Concert™ for change management, and these integrations are based on the Open Services for Lifecycle Collaboration (OSLC) specification. This makes it especially useful for collaborative software development.

As you capture requirements in DOORS, you can start construction of the tests in parallel and, at the same time, create traceability links to the requirement. These traceability links help update tests, based on changes in requirements, to make sure that tests follow the requirements. It also helps to make sure that requirements are met in the product.

In a similar fashion, defects identified during test execution can be directly reported to the integrated change management application, Rational Team Concert. The link created from test results to defects helps you trace from the failed test to the defect and the corresponding requirement, if any. Rational Quality Manager then uses this integration to let the tester know which failed tests are ready for retesting as soon as defects are resolved and code changes are made in the build.

It also provides manual testing options and can integrate with various automation tools for managing automated tests with Rational® Functional Tester and Rational® Performance Tester.


Highlights of Version 4.0

Improved enterprise deployment support

Rational Quality Manager, along with the Collaborative Lifecycle Management solution, can support large enterprise-level deployment.

No more full migration

Previously, migration that involved a large repository could take a couple of days to finish, but not anymore. The addTable repository tool command completes the migration much quicker, from a few minutes to few hours, depending on the size of the repository.

Clustering for high availability

Clustering provides high server availability with automatic failover. This feature is currently supported only for IBM WebSphere® Application Server deployment. Consult the Rational Quality Manager release notes for Version 4 in the information center to find out how to deploy CLM in a cluster.

Server renaming

It is now possible to change the public URLs of one or more of the servers or applications in your deployment. In previous releases, changing a public URL after deployment was not possible. Although planning a deployment and choosing stable URLs is still highly preferable, some situations require a URL change because other techniques for preserving URLs (DNS, reverse proxy, and others) will not suffice. A few examples: cross-geography relocation, reorganization or acquisition, dropping domain name, data center consolidation, alignment with corporate naming policies.

Process application and customization

Rational Quality Manager uses Jazz Foundation process support for customization. You can define your own process based on Role, Permission, Team, and Iteration. You can also export the customized process into a compressed file and import it to any other server to follow the same process (see the Reusable process template) section). Therefore, you can define a process once and use it everywhere to make sure that the recommended process is applied across your organization.

In earlier versions, any process setting was equally applicable to all users of the project area. Now you can define process settings that are applicable to a specific team or test iteration. Essentially, you can allow one user who belongs to Team A to create a test case and, at the same time, deny a user from Team B. As another example, you can allow a user to create a test case in the first iteration, allow only modification permission in second iteration, and prevent that same using from changing the test case at all in third iteration. These examples are very specific ones, but you can define your own complex process by using a combination of Team, Iteration, Role, and Permission.

You can use Process Advisors to define preconditions to be met and actions to be followed for the various predefined operations. As an example: If build information is mandatory before executing a test case, you can add a precondition that says "Disallow Execution until Build is mentioned" for the "Execute test case" operation, as shown in Figure 1. In similar way, you can add follow-up actions upon successful execution of an operation. Again, you can configure these advisors based on Team and Iteration. Note: You need the Rational Team Concert client to configure the process.

Figure 1. Process configuration
Project Area process configuration

Manual Test Script Recorder

The Manual Test Script Recorder is an integration that caters to the needs of an author of manual tests. Using this capability, you can now record the user gestures made on the application, and they are converted to manual script statements in the English language. While doing so, the application screen captures are automatically captured also, highlighting the area that you interacted with. You can create a new manual script, insert steps into existing scripts through recording, and create a manual script from test case design sections to get that manual script linked to the test case.

Figure 2. Steps for manually recording a test
Click Record, select the adapter

Note:
This feature is an integration between Rational Functional Tester 8.2.2 and Rational Quality Manager. When enabled, you can use the recorder to create a manual test script in Rational Quality Manager to test an HTML application, a Java application, or an application with Dojo controls.

Better execution planning and tracking

You can now track test execution progress efficiently and easily. The Test Plan Execution status widget (see Figure 3) can be displayed in the dashboard to view overall execution status of test plans that interest you. In one glance, you can see the live status of total testing effort versus remaining effort for each test plan. You can also view test execution status by testers to analyze each tester's workload and progress.

The sections that following provide more details about various views and widgets to achieve this.

Figure 3. Test Plans Execution view
Execution selected for View As option

You can also create, edit, and view rich-hover traceability links by selecting the Traceability as the View As option in the Tests Cases view (Figure 4).

Figure 4. Test Cases Traceability view
Adding links to a requirement and a development item

New views and dashboard widgets for execution status

Execution view

The Test Plan and Test Suite views have been extended to also show the special Execution view shown in Figure 3. This view shows columns for execution status of the test cases and test suites that are included in each of the test plans listed.

Traceability view

Rational Quality Manager now provides a Traceability view for the following views:

  • Test Plan
  • Test Case (Figure 4)
  • Test Case Execution Record
  • Test Suite Execution Record
  • Test Case Result
  • Test Suite Result

These traceability views have columns for links to requirement and defects. You can also remove links to requirements and defects from those views or hover your mouse cursor over the link to see a preview of linked items.

Execution records dashboard widget

This widget shows execution records in the dashboard based on user-defined query parameters. This is useful when you want to track the status of specific execution records on your dashboard. See Figure 5.

Team Execution status dashboard widgets

The Team Execution status for test cases and Execution status for test suites show the execution status bars for execution records owned by testers. See Figure 5.

Execution Record Queries dashboard widget

You can use this widget to see summary of count for all execution record queries added to the widget. It provides links to open the query result in the Execution Record view. See Figure 5

Execution status bars by owner

The Test Case Execution Record and Test Suite Execution Record views, similar to Team Execution Status dashboard widgets, show Execution status bars by owner when grouped by owner. It shows a overall execution status for each owner. In a similar fashion, the execution status for each owner can be displayed on the dashboard as shown in Figure 5.

Figure 5. Execution Status dashboard widgets
Execution status dashboard widgets

Usability improvements

Quick show or hide columns control

Now you can quickly make any hidden column visible or hide visible column on the fly directly from the menu in column header as shown in Figure 6. You don't need to open the display setting dialog for just this purpose as in earlier releases.

Resize column width in tables simply by dragging the column dividers

Now it is very easy to adjust the width of a column. Simply drag the column dividers as you would, for example, in Microsoft Excel. See Figure 6.

Figure 6. Improved user interface for table views
Improved user interface views

Column re-ordering capability

Now you can easily configure any view for what columns to show and the order in which to show them.

User preference to hide multiple tabs

By default, Rational Quality Manager does not show multiple tabs when more then one artifact is opened. Instead, you can go back and forth, either by using the Back button of your browser of by using menu items. Whenever you create a new artifact or open an existing item, its entry is added to the related menu item, as shown in Figure 7. You can go to the view that you want that is already open by following the menu. An * is added for modified items in the menu. If you prefer the older-style multiple tabs, you can change to that in user Preferences.

Figure 7. Dynamic menu items
Menu for recently viewed and unsaved artifacts

Pre-conditions and post-conditions

Test case pre-conditions and post-conditions are now displayed on the manual script execution page. This helps you read pre-condition or post-condition on the fly while running a manual test.

Preview for embedded images in rich text

You can now hover over images in rich text fields and see the full image preview.

Row action menu in tables

Many tables now support a row action menu, as shown in Figure 8. In the test artifact tables, the actions that you can take on rows of the table have been moved to a pop-up menu that opens when you click the button with a pencil icon, which is located in the column to the right of the selection check box.

Figure 8. Row action menus
Selections on two drop-down menus

Test planning improvements

Test artifact ownership by team

Rational Quality Manager has allowed ownership of artifacts by individuals in previous version. Now Version 4 extends this concept to ownership by team area. The test script shown in Figure 2 is associated with the "JKE Testing - Money that matters" team area.

An artifact that belongs to one team area can still be accessed by all users across the project area. However, the process and permission can be overridden by the process defined at the team area level. By default, the team area process is the same as project area process. But typically, you would override the default process to be team-specific. You might do this, for example, if you do not want to allow modification of test artifacts that belong to your team area at a certain time. In that situation, you can remove modification permission for all artifacts owned by the team area in the team area-specific process. Then no one can modify the artifacts belonging to that team area. In addition:

  • Each team can have its own timeline.
  • This allows fine-grained control over processes without affecting processes for other teams that are working in the same project area.
  • This capability is available for test plans, test cases, test suites, test scripts, execution records, and execution results.

Test artifact workflow customization

  • By default, Rational Quality Manager provides Draft, Under Review, Approved, and Retired states for artifacts. Now you can define custom test artifact states and workflows, as shown in Figure 9. Workflows are built of states and actions. An action defines a path to the target state. There are process advisors for these purposes: A predefined set of state transitions, which can be customized
  • Transitions between states, which can also be customized

You can assign process advisors on each state that act as pre-conditions or follow-up actions using Rational Team Concert client. See Figure 1

Figure 9. Test plan state transition workflow
Draft > Ready for Review > Approved > Retired

Reusable process template

Using the Rational Team Concert client, you can now export a process template from an existing Rational Quality Manager project area into zip file, allowing you to reuse templates to quickly set up new projects. A process template can include the following customizations:

  • Roles and permissions
  • Test artifact workflow
  • Test artifact templates
  • Project properties and preferences, such as attributes, artifact categories, UI templates, and quality objectives

Test prioritization

A new Priority field has been added to Test Plan, Test Suite, Test Case, Test Case, and to the Execution records and Test Suite Execution records so you can set priorities for tests.

  • It helps teams run high-priority tests first and find any critical defects early in the test cycle.
  • It helps analyze execution status based on the priority.
  • It is customizable under the Project Area admin page, and users can define priorities that work best for their test projects.
Figure 10. Test Cases view with new Priority column
Options window overlaid on the Tests Cases view

Hierarchical test iterations and current iteration

In Version 4, you can define global hierarchical test iterations across project areas that can be shared by many test plans. You can define an activity for a timeline within a project area, with its own test iterations, deliverables, permissions, and processes. Figure 11 shows how can you define hierarchical timelines and iterations in the web client.

Tip:

See Figure 1 for how you can customize process and team permissions for iterations by using the Rational Team Concert client.

You can set any one iteration as the current iteration. This will help you create your queries and dashboard based on that current iteration. For example, after you create a dashboard for Execution status for the current iteration, you don't need to change any query or any widget on the dashboard. Just change the current iteration, and it will reflect everywhere else automatically.

Figure 11. Timelines and iterations
Timelines across test plans

Improved review and approval support

The review and approval section for artifacts has been improved to enable team collaboration through general discussion and review comments. Previously, for each review or approval, there was only one comment section for comment by the reviewer or approver to use one time. Now you can have a chain of comments for a discussion by all users over a review or approval or general discussion.

Note:

Formal view is now also supported for test script and execution results

Figure 12. Team collaboration for artifact review
Collaborate through comments on artifact

Configurable process operations

Many process preconditions have been added for various operations, and there are multiple preconditions for artifact state transition. This is only a partial list of the preconditions:

  • Allowing execution of only approved test scripts, test cases, and test suites
  • Allowing execution only when a build is specified
  • Disallowing modification to formal review of approved artifacts
  • Requiring an e-signature for formal review of artifacts
  • Requiring an e-signature for lock-unlock
  • Disallowing transition to Approved until all approvers approve
  • Requiring defect to be associate with results before they are reviewed

Tip:
See Figure 1 for how to apply these preconditions.

E-signature now available

Enhanced e-signature support is available to help you comply with regulatory requirements. Operations that require an e-signature are now enabled through process configuration. A few details:

  • Used in artifact locking and unlocking and review and approval
  • Ability to sign multiple artifacts at once
  • History shows who signed, when, for what action, and comments
  • Configured using the Rational Team Concert client

Test execution improvements

Execution adapter search based on the test environment

Rational Quality Manager now can automatically assign automated tests to the appropriate adapter running in a test environment that matches the test environment specified at the Execution Record level. You can customize this feature to select the type of environment to be matched, such as only the operating system. This helps you make sure that automated tests planned to execute on, say, Linux do not execute on a Windows test machine and hide any issues if it were on Linux.

Figure 13 shows a test case execution dialog with a Linux test environment selected. The adapter selected is also running on Linux platform. See Resources for the reference to the developerWorks article titled "Automate tests without compromising coverage of the environment" for more information.

Figure 13. Machine selection based on the test environment
Adapter is selected based on test environment

There is a project-level preference to control search criteria, as shown in Figure 14.

Figure 14. Adapter search preference
Adapter search criteria and search behavior options

Estimate and time spent

  • A new Estimate field is available for test cases and test suites.
  • Two new fields, Estimate and Time spent, have been added to Execution Records to allow tracking of the total time required for testing to complete and actual time spent so far.
  • These fields need to be updated manually by the testers during test execution.
  • This helps to identify the execution status based on total time efforts and total time remaining to complete the test execution.
  • A status of Testing Estimate is also available in various Execution Status widgets and views described here in earlier sections.

Command line test execution tool

A command line utility is available in this release, which you can use to execute a test case or test suite execution record by providing appropriate input parameters. The exit code of the tool can be mapped to the verdict of the execution. It is useful when you want to trigger execution based on workflow outside of Rational Quality Manager. See the Resources section for where you can learn more.

Selenium JUnit tests adapter

There is a new Execution Adapter available that can run Selenium tests and JUnit tests from Rational Quality Manager. See the Resource section for more information about this new integration.

Favorite machine for automated script execution

Sometimes an automated script runs better on a specific machine because other resources required are not easily available or for another specific reason. In such cases, you can associate a machine with the remote script as favorite machine. Whenever that automated script is executed, if any adapter running on the favorite machine will be given high preference if that the adapter is available.

Execute test case and test suite with build information

Now it is possible to specify a build while executing a test. As mentioned in the process customization section, it is also possible to make build information mandatory for execution.

Bulk update the build associated with a test case and test suite results

You can associate the build record with multiple test results in one go to save time. This helps when you want to provide build information post test execution has been performed without providing build information Improvements for recording test results without execution

  • Rich dialog with multiple options to specify while creating a direct result without execution
  • Include defect, build, notes, category, weight distribution, and custom attributes information

Command line adapter can attach files and links to test result

  • Option to upload external log files to test case result
  • Option to associate test case result to external resource links

Rich execution console

  • Owner of the execution request with bulk owner change support
  • Additional columns, including Suite Progress, Test Plan, Milestone, Adapter
  • Reassign execution tasks to other available machine
  • Reassign execution tasks to other owner
  • Cancel execution tasks if generated in error
  • Clean all task for an adapter from Adapter console
  • Adapter and Execution consoles performance improvement through paging. (since Version 3.0.1.1)

New editor for test case execution record and test suite execution record

  • Custom attributes for test case and test suite execution record
  • View execution history of execution record

Permanently Failed and Deferred step verdicts added for manual tests

Two new verdicts have been added for manual execution with corresponding support for points.

Figure 15. Test suite improvements
Specify test step owner and test Cell

Test suite improvements

Execution owners can be assigned to the steps of a test suite

Sometimes a test suite requires each test step to be executed by a different tester. You can do this by assigning an execution owner for each step. It allows sharing execution of a large test suite steps among multiple testers.

Distributed automated testing by using a test cell

Rational Quality Manager is now capable of distributing the automated test itself; users are not required to explicitly specify the machine where the automated test should be executed. You can create a test cell and, within this cell, include all machines where you want to distribute the test. While executing the test suite, you can specify the test cell rather than explicitly assigning an adapter for each step. Rational Quality Manager will distribute the test among the machines in the test cell at run time to use the machines efficiently. This greatly reduces the manual effort and increases machine utilization.

Test suites can now execute test cases without scripts

It is now possible to execute a test suite even when some of the test case steps do not have associated test scripts.

Test suite execution with only selective test cases

It is now possible to execute selective test cases of a test suite. There can be many reasons to run only some of the test cases, such as testing only those test cases that failed in last run.

There is also an option to rerun all test cases that didn't pass during the last run, rather manually finding and selecting failed test cases for execution.

Rich hover for test suites and related artifacts

Test suites, test suite execution records, and test suite results can also be viewed through hover -over links, similar to earlier support for test plans and test cases.

Test suite execution status flat counts for steps

Suite results and related tables can now show flat counts of passed, failed, and in-progress test cases.


Test scheduling improvements

Directly schedule test case and test suite execution

Earlier, you were always required to create an execution schedule, even if you wanted to schedule an execution of just one test case or test suite. That is no longer a requirement. You can now schedule a test case or a test suite directly from the execution dialog window. There is a "Schedule execution" check box. If you check it, you can specify the time when the test case or test suite should be run, as shown in Figure 13.

Explicit view for scheduled jobs

Previously, one of the shortcomings of scheduling was that there was no way to view all schedules. Now there is a view that you can open from the menu by clicking Execution > Browse > Scheduled Jobs (see Figure 16). This view should list all scheduled jobs of these types: Execution Scheduled, Test Case Execution Record, and Test Suite Execution Record.

You can trace scheduled jobs based on next scheduled time. There is also option to cancel multiple scheduled jobs with one click and REST API support to schedule or cancel jobs.

Figure 16. Scheduled Jobs view
view and track scheduled jobs quickly

Integration improvements

Traceability from manual test steps to requirement

  • Each step of a manual test script can be linked to one or several requirements.
  • It can be restricted to requirements already associated with the related test cases.
  • Links are shown during test execution and in test case result details.
  • This works also with IBM Rational Requirements Composer and IBJM Rational DOORS® 9.4.

Hierarchical categories can now be imported with Microsoft Word or Excel

  • Rational Quality Manager supports hierarchical categories for organization of large artifacts.
  • Now the Word and Excel Import tool also supports importing hierarchical categories.

DOORS 9.4 and Rational Quality Manager 4.0 integration

Figure 17. Associate a test plan with the DOORS module
DOORS integration and selections for requirement links
  • Live links between test artifacts to requirement rather than a synchronization mechanism:
    • Test plans to DOORS modules
    • Test cases to DOORS requirements
  • Links can be created by using the reconcile wizard or one-by-one from DOORS or from Rational Quality Manager
  • Direct visibility of DOORS requirements from Rational Quality Manager via rich hover
  • Uses OSLC RM specification v2
  • Migration utility is available to remove links from tests to Rational Quality Manager proxy requirements and replace with OSLC links automatically.

Note:

You must open IBM Rational Insight to run Data Manager ETL before you can use the included BIRT or IBM Cognos®-based reports for DOORS requirements.

Team areas are now supported in the reportable REST APIs

Rational Quality Manager v4 introduced team area association for many artifacts. This association is also supported in the reportable REST API.


Reporting enhancements

CSV export of data in table views

Many table artifact views can now be exported as CVS files for spreadsheet use. With CSV export, you can access your CSVs in the Export Job Queue, as you do with PDFs that you generate. What you see in the UI is what you get in the resulting CSV file, including selected columns, sorting, and filtering. If the table view contains multiple pages, all are exported. The resulting CSV files are queued and processed in the same manner as exporting PDFs, so you must go to the Manage Export Job Queue to download the finished results.

Figure 18. CSV export action on the toolbar
CSV export action on toolbar

Report management

In v4.0, the reporting user interface has been improved and updated to be common across CLM applications. There is a Shared Reports view (Figure 19) that shows all reports shared across the project. This view offers the ability to create new folders for reports. You can also create reports from report resources, import reports, delete reports, and copy or move reports to other folders.

Figure 19. Shared Reports view
Reports shared across project area

There is a similar view, called My Reports, that shows reports that are private to the user. This view has all of the same actions as the Shared Reports view. You can use it to access the Report Resources (formerly known as Report Templates) within the Rational Quality Manager application. Previously, access to Report Resources required the Rational Team Concert client. You can deploy new reports or update the report resources for existing reports directly from this web view.

Usability improvements to built-in BIRT reports

Chart-based reports now include a table at the bottom of the report that shows the details of the data in the report.

Figure 20. Chart-based report
Table at bottom for details

All reports now include a collapsible section that shows the parameters in use in the report. They also include an expandable About section at the bottom of the report that describes the report and tells the user what information to look for in the report.

New BIRT reports for test preparation and test suite execution

The following new BIRT reports are available, mainly to address a reporting gap for test suites:

  • States of test artifacts
  • Test scripts by development state
  • Test suites by development state
  • Test case coverage by TER
  • Test case coverage by test script
  • Test suite execution record listing
  • Test case results details of test suite results
  • Test suite execution record status using test case count
  • Test suite execution record status using weight
  • Test suite execution record status by owner using TSER count
  • Test suite execution record status by owner using weight
  • Execution status by test suite using TSER count
  • Execution status by test suite using weight

Tip:

These new test suite BIRT reports are also available as dashboard widgets.

New Cognos sample reports for reporting on metrics and execution results

All IBM Cognos reports now use a new set of styles and a new layout to improve usability, readability, and printability of the reports. These styles (called RATL_ styles) are also available to authors of custom reports, as well as to all new report templates for creating custom, full-page reports and widgets for mini reports by using Report Studio. When you log on to Cognos Connections, you will find these templates in Public Folder > Report Templates. The templates are named RATL Report Template and Mini RATL Report Template. Nine new Cognos-based reports are available:

  • Execution Result Date Metrics
  • Execution Result Metrics
  • Execution Result Metrics with Iteration
  • Execution Result Points Metrics with Iteration
  • Execution Work Item Metrics with Iteration
  • Project test case Metrics with test Plan
  • Request Metrics with test Plan
  • Test Suite Execution Summary
  • TSER status using weight

New Cognos reference reports to kick-start custom reporting

This release adds a new set of reference reports, which are prefabricated report samples that are intended to be used as a starting point for creating your own custom reports. Use these reports to create metric reports by using different types of graphs, such as line, bar, or table-based reports for full-page report displays or widgets that can be shown in a dashboard. You can find the new reports in the public Rational Reporting for Development Intelligence (RRDI) - Insight connections folder: Sample Report Definitions > QM > Reference Reports.

These are the new reports:

  • Mini Report - Bar Graph - Defect Arrival and Resolution
  • Mini Report - Bar Graph - Execution Points Over Time
  • Mini Report - Line Graph - Defect Arrival and Resolution
  • Mini Report - Table - Execution Results
  • Report - Bar Graph - Execution Points Over Time
  • Report - Line Graph - Execution Points Over Time
  • Report - Metrics Table - Execution Result Metrics With Iteration
  • Report - ODS Table - Execution Result Related Requests

Support for document-style reports with IBM Rational Publishing Engine

You can now add to and execute from Rational® Publishing Engine™ templates, the common reporting UI. Some sample templates are available which demonstrate how to compose Rational Publishing Engine reports for use in this way. See Resources for more information in this information center topic: Creating a document-style report in Rational Publishing Engine using Collaborative Lifecycle Management application data.

New reportable data

This Rational Quality Manager release provides various new capabilities that have also been made available for your custom reports. It also addressed feedback from users who wanted full coverage for reporting of custom attributes and categories. Here is the list of data items that are now available for custom reporting using Report Studio or Query Studio:

  • All categories
  • All custom attributes
  • Custom artifact states and state groups for cross-process reports
  • Execution result permfailed, deferred, and total points
  • Quality task
  • Phase descriptions

Points PermFailed and Points Deferred from the test execution results have been added to reports that are related to execution weight to match the productizing system verification test's reporting customizations.

Other key Rational Team Concert and CLM enhancements that are important for Rational Quality Manager reports include:

  • Work Item Due Date and Creator (also creator dimension for request metrics)
  • CLM link types
  • Many metrics fixes

Data manager ETL performance improvements and optimizations

For Rational Insight users, there is a new XDC file that enables performance improvements for customers with a large number of projects. You can find this alternative XDC file, called rqm40-cross-project-etl-alternative.xdc, in the Reports > Download administration page. You can use this XDC file instead of the default rqm40.xdc file if you have a large number of project areas on your Rational Quality Manager server. It also provides a migration job if you used the rqm40.xdc first (or the 3.0.1.x equivalent files). You can find the job, called RQM_Migrate_to_XProjETL_4.0, in RQM4_Jobs > RQM4_MigrationsJobs.

The default XDC file causes the ETLs to iterate over each project on the server one by one, thus retrieving resources individually for each project. With the new XDC file, the ETL will retrieve resources of all projects areas in one pass. This removes the overhead of the iteration. Rational Insight uses an ODBC driver that has an initialization overhead for every round-trip to the Rational Quality Manager server. For all resources of one project, this overhead averages of 3 to 5 minutes for each project in a typical server setup.

Therefore, the new ETL strategy minimizes server round-, which saves time. For 100 projects, this could save up to 8 hours for every ETL run (delta, as well as full loads).

The disadvantage of this approach is that if there is an error during the load, you would have to reload much more data than you would for a project-by-project approach where you would be able to pick up from the project that has failed.

In summary, if you manage only a few projects on your Rational Quality Manager server, it is best to stay with the default rqm40.xdc file, even if you have large amounts of data in these few projects. If you have a large number of projects and want to cut out the 3-5 minute overhead per project, then it's worth trying this new XDC file.

This release also provides a new alternative job for loading Rational Quality Manager's ODS (Operational Data Store) in parallel. It is called RQM_ODS4.0_ParallelDeltaLoad. Depending on your data, this build can significantly improve the performance of loading Rational Quality Manager data in particular during daily delta loads. This new job is used as part of the CLM job stream in Jobs > CLMJobs > CLM4.0_All_Parallel.

New enablement video

You can find an entire playlist with all new enablement videos for how to create custom reports for Rational Quality Manager and CLM in general on the IBM Rational Reporting for Development Intelligence web page.


Summary

In this article, you learned what new features were delivered in Rational Quality Manager 4.0 as part of Collaborative Lifecycle Manager (CLM) 2012 release. It has addressed enterprise level deployment for high availability, Server rename, simplified user interface, process customization through Team area and Timeline. Integration with DOORS using OSLC makes this integration of first class and Rational Quality Manager extends its integration with Selenium for web Automation. Automation execution has become more powerful with Environment based machine selection and distributed Testing for reduced manual effort and efficient machine utilization. Various view and widgets for status information makes life easy for a test manager and other managers to monitor status. Reporting area usability, manageability, and performance have been greatly improved, along with the addition of new reports. Reduced repository migration time will attract Rational Quality Manager users to upgrade to new releases more quickly than before.

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Dig deeper into Rational software on developerWorks


static.content.url=http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/js/artrating/
SITE_ID=1
Zone=Rational, DevOps
ArticleID=826112
ArticleTitle=What's new in IBM Rational Quality Manager 4.0
publish-date=07172012