Integrated tool support for hardware related software development: Master's thesis

Juho Eskeli

    Research output: Book/ReportBook (author)Scientificpeer-review


    This thesis presents how the hardware-related software development process can be improved by means of tool integration. Challenges in hardware-related software development are diverse, which is why a multitude of tools is needed during the development. The tools produce data that needs to be managed, but the tools are disconnected. Tool integration provides a means of bringing the data from disconnected tools together into one coherent, easily manageable package. Research was conducted by initially perceiving hardware-related software development from a systems engineering viewpoint, with a focus on several well-known process models. This was done to understand the kinds of activities that need to be supported by the tools. A workflow concept was introduced as a means to support the development effort of an individual worker. An extensive background study into tool integrations was conducted to understand state-of-the-art tool integration approaches and concepts, and then used to create the foundation for the tool integration. Hardware-related software development challenges were gathered from literature and industry experiences to reinforce the understanding on needed tool support and to specify the requirements for the tool integration. The main requirements for the tool integration were easy extensibility, which could only be provided via a framework-based solution, and a means to provide data flow from tool to tool while preserving traceability between the data from the tools. Tool requirements for the integration were project management, requirement management, test management, and change management tools. Emphasis was put on tools supporting testing and test analysis. The tool integration, ToolChain, was implemented in two phases. In the first phase the groundwork for the integration framework was done. Eclipse was chosen as the platform for the integration and plug-ins selected as a means of implementation. In the second phase, tool support focusing on the hardware-related software development aspects was added. Implementations from each phase were validated separately in industry cases. Experiences from these cases are presented in which it is shown how ToolChain can be easily adapted into the target company's environments, and how the tool integration improves the way of working.
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationEspoo
    PublisherVTT Technical Research Centre of Finland
    Number of pages83
    ISBN (Electronic)978-951-38-7373-8
    Publication statusPublished - 2009
    MoE publication typeC1 Separate scientific books

    Publication series

    SeriesVTT Publications


    • development tools
    • tool integration


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