XTraQue: traceability for product line systems

Jirapanthong, Waraporn and Zisman, Andrea (2009). XTraQue: traceability for product line systems. Software and Systems Modeling, 8(1) pp. 117–144.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10270-007-0066-8


Product line engineering has been increasingly used to support the development and deployment of software systems that share a common set of features and are developed based on the reuse of core assets. The large number and heterogeneity of documents generated during the development of product line systems may cause difficulties to identify common and variable aspects among applications, and to reuse core assets that are available under the product line. In this paper, we present a traceability approach for product line systems. Traceability has been recognised as an important task in in software system development. Traceability relations can improve the quality of the product being developed and reduce development time and cost. We present a rule-based approach to support automatic generation of traceability relations between feature-based object-oriented documents. The traceability rules used in our work are classified into two groups namely (a) direct rules, which support the creation of traceability relations that do not depend on the existence of other relations, and (b) indirect rules, which require the existence of previously generated relations. The documents are represented in XML and the rules are represented in an extension of XQuery. A prototype tool called XTraQue has been implemented. This tool, together with a mobile phone product line case study, has been used to demonstrate and evaluate our work in various experiments. The results of these experiments are encouraging and comparable with other approaches that support automatic generation of traceability relations.

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