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Complete Remote Build Process Between a Client Running VectorCAST and a Server

Last updated: 2020-04-03

Background and Environment

The customer, a large telecom company in East Asia, needed to run unit testing onto a system running on HP-UX. Their goal was to set a number of tests with expected values generated from actual results, a feature of VectorCAST, which would later be executed onto a newer version of HP-UX. If results did not concur, research would be done to determine if a new bug had been introduced (or, inversely, a previously undetected bug was resolved by moving to the new version of HP-UX). This is a classical baselining application of VectorCAST which is generating quite a bit of interest in a number of industries.

However, in this case HP-UX would not run VectorCAST. Unfortunately, some basic libraries are no longer available on this OS. Hence, the X-windows approach would not work in this context.

VectorCAST Solution

We installed VectorCAST onto the Windows workstation and provided a number of facilities to execute discrete compiler and linker operations on HP-UX using scp and ssh. Every file required to preprocess and compile is uploaded before the command is executed remotely and the results are monitored to ensure commands are successful. This is entirely scripted (including harness execution on the HP-UX server) so users have no manual operation to do. All operations are seamless just as they would in a more standard environment (if there was ever such a thing!). The only difference is that commands take some additional time to execute. How much time depends mostly on network speed.

Obviously, such an approach needs to deal with two important challenges. First, Windows is not a POSIX system. Any commands passed on to HP-UX would need to be revised to find paths and replace them with POSIX-compliant paths. Second, and related to the first challenge, the root of the path itself would need to be changed as the root in Windows (with its letter drive system) would be different than on HP-UX. Both challenges were successfully addressed through scripting.

Later, a few additional challenges sprang up, essentially stemming from the unique features of the C language in HP-UX compiler. This was not surprising and was addressed the usual way: by upgrading the parser’s responsiveness to HP-UX special language constructions. VectorCAST is based on the EDG parser, which is certainly the best in the industry, and that helped us support dozens upon dozens of compilers in the past quickly and efficiently.

The ultimate result was that the customer was able to use VectorCAST to test their HP-UX code.

Additional considerations

Please refer to Remote Deployment of Test Tool onto Build Server for another approach ­to a similar environment. The difference in approach reflects the importance of understanding the needs of customers, and also to spend appropriate time investigating the technical specifications of their environment, as the “devil is in the details”.

If you have such needs, please contact Vector support.

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