Share model from Enterprise Architect
Expand your team work with the analytical model. Use the Enterprise Architect for modelling capabilities and the AyMINE collaborative support for complete model sharing and wide cooperation.
AyMINE has a double-sided connector to Enterprise Architect and allows automatic or manual synchronization.
AyMINE and Enterprise Architect together
Why Enterprise Architect
Enterprise Architect provides great modelling capabilities necessary for complex projects.
While Enterprise Architect is well established among software development teams but it provides useful capabilities also for system engineering. Enterprise Architect is one of the best solutions for system analysis using SysML. System analysis is a mandatory part of development according to a number of standards such as Formel Q, VDA 6.3, and ISO 26262.
Why AyMINE in addition to Enterprise Architect
Enterprise Architect alone is not sufficient for complete project management, collaboration on the assignment and documentation management. The complete project management requires integration with tools focused on the project management process support.
Furthermore, Enterprise Architect is not designed for general users – non-analysts. Most of the project members are not involved in the system modelling but shall also work with many information that could be used in the SysML, ArchiMate or requirement model.
Who do we understand most people?
Intro note: Our analysts and trainers have many years of experience with Enterprise Architect. We use the tool very regularly. But that's why we know that it's definitely not a tool we want to teach everyone in the project team.
Who won't want to work with Enterprise Architect (but would like to have appropriate access to the model data):
- Authors and reviewers of the system requirements People who create ideas in the team shall effectively describe the ideas, include files and share several versions of. But they don't bother about the modelling. They want to discuss requirements, see the context, decide what to do. But they're used to think about their requirements in the form in which they were written down.
- Test authors and performers Although Enterprise Architect provides some support for test management, its use is not only inconvenient, it doesn't meet the necessary requirements for proper testing documentation.
- Project manager As for testing, Enterprise Architect support for project management is not sufficient for proper project management. It does not allow efficient work management, does not provide a good overview and it does not allow task integrations and support for people that do not work with EA.
- The safety manager (Safety manager) must have a perfect overview of which requirements are safety-related, how they are analysed and fulfilled. From his point of view, it is out of the question that the requirements can be modified after approval. Enterprise Architect is not prepared for such strict control in accordance with strict methodologies such as CMMI or ISO 26262.
- The quality manager is in a similar position to the safety manager. It must be able to manage revisions, control collaboration, approval and decision-making. None of this is related to modelling and the clarity of information that can be stored in Enterprise Architect does not support the actual documentation of the processing process.
What AyMINE brings you besides Enterprise Architect
AyMINE focuses on collaborative requirements and analysis. At the same time, it has a full connector so you can work with the same data together in Enterprise Architect and AyMINE.
AyMINE allows you to:
- Create requirements as well as analyse and decompose them
- Manage analysis tasks, including linking to the objects from model
- Complete relationship management between requirements, modules, services, and other objects
- Discussions, revisions, comments on requirements and other objects
- Clearly track who changed what
- Control write and read access rights in detail
- Work with the model anywhere – on mobile, laptop and of course conveniently on a computer
- Easily reference specific requirements or embedded files using fixed URL links. URL links have access rights control.
- Protect sensitive information using strong user-access control or even the encryption.
In addition to these capabilities, AyMINE integrates model work into project management processes and control of the methodology.
What processes the project requires
Whether you have to follow a methodology (e.g. PMBOK, but especially standards like CMMI, Automotive SPICE, etc.), or you simply care about managing the project properly, you need support to manage all information and activities.
Configuration management process requires support to create and manages bundles of the documentation – including requirements and objects from the analytical model – and lock them after the approval. AyMINE has complete support the configuration management and applies that to all objects including those that are synchronised the Enterprise Architect. It locks them and in case that someone would try to change them via the EA, the change is rejected and the managed version preserved.
Configuration control is a very effective project control tool, but only if it is well implemented and supported by system security that controls that:
- No one can edit the objects that are inserted in the configuration package
- For each object it is immediately obvious whether it is part of a package and whether it is locked
Configuration control is closely related to change control. It must allow you to control changes to objects that have been processed and are inserted into a package.
Configuration control must be able to create new versions of e.g. locked requirements, services or products.
Effective revisions require that you can go through any object that needs to be revised – not just a requirement, but even a service, interface description, etc. – with someone face-to-face or share them for comments. All comments are useful to preserve and have the opportunity to have a discussion.
Task management in accordance the project management methodology
The task management is not just about the task assignment. Task shall be defined and controlled if it was really completed. There should be a link between task and objects that are processed by task. No one wants repeatedly describe the task procedure – the only efficient way is and integration with the methodology and tasks definitions. AyMINE integrates workflow management with the task definitions from methodology and support efficient and automated task management.
For most of the listed needs, it is possible to find a way how it could be done – but with a poor process support it is more easy just not use it. AyMINE was developed to support collaboration and project management and optimises all processes to operate smoothly and efficiently.
Benefits of the integration
Integration combine advantages of two systems and gives you both – modelling capabilities, project management and workflow management together.
What about Confulence? Or Jira?
Confulence is not a collaboration tool
Conflunce is a tool that many teams use as a way to put the analyses out of Enterprise Architect and share it. Confluence is used to make documentation available, but it is published statically after the completion. It is not build to provide effective collaboration and requirement-making tool capabilities. (However, there is Jira for that…)
Companies export the finished description to Confulence. AyMINE is typically the first step in the process – requirements are created here and later moved to the Enterprise Architect. It also go in opposite way – the design from Enterprise Architect is revised, managed and shared within AyMINE. An analyst in Enterprise Architect works with the model alongside AyMINE. Confulence is not built for flow integration.
An important option for Confulence is the ability to post part of the analysis in the form of a document on a page. One reason for this is the possibility to refer to the document, the second is to make it available to a wider group of people. AyMINE supports both. Documents can be displayed on a bulletin board, which is either public or available only to selected people. Internally in AyMINE is possible keep documentation long-term, including schematics.
An example of available documentation exported from AyMINE is a bulletin board about changes in AyMINE. The second example of available documentation is technical documentation itself AyMINE.
Jira does not work with the model
Jira is a sophisticated tool for the management of requirements, respectively. "Stories". Strong support for agile development and working with dashboard is why teams like the tool.However, Jira does not work with a complex model, e.g. in the ArchiMate or SysML langauge. The tool is even not intended for long-term archiving stories and important notes from revisions, links between individual parts of the model and storage data to the under the configuration management. Process tools for the documentation management are generally not used by agile development, but the management of a larger project requires them.
Jira is often used in projects on for some parts, most often for the development of the software part. AyMINE on the other hand, is a tool that support project from the moment of its definition and holds the documentation not only of the solution, but also the entire processing process, e.g. for the needs of auditors.
Note to trademarks: Confluence and Jira are both products and trademarks of the Atlassian company. Atlassian has nothing to do with this document. The comparison presented here results from PDQM's experience from consulting and experience, how teams use Enterprise Architect, Confulence and Jira products.
How data synchronisation and access works
AyMINE and Enterprise Architect both have their own database. AyMINE implements a bridge that transfers data automatically or manually between both systems so that requirements and the model can be worked on in parallel.
When configuring transfers, the administrator selects which analytical model is supported – ArchiMate or SysML. The transfer is managed accordingly. Different parts of the model can use different settings.
Synchronization is provided by a bridge running on server. Database connectivity to both databases is required for its functionality. Enterprise Architect can use the model using the SSH connection (or http server from Sparx). It can also be completely integrated to the company environment.
The freeware database Maria DB / MySQL is recommended for the Enterprise Architect repository, however transfer to other SQL databases is also possible. For technical reasons, synchronization with Enterprise Architect local-file repository is not possible.