Monday, September 15, 2014

Automatically Generating MagicDraw Report

Someone asked me how to generate MagicDraw HTML report from a certain UML model automatically. This feature is actually quite practical since if you are working in a group of business analysts, architects, developers, quality assurance personnel and operators, you mostly don't want to tell them to use MagicDraw to open the MDZip file. In this case you have two choices available:
  1. Export the diagrams as pictures (JPG or PNG) and put them somewhere like in your company Wiki. This can be done easily but you lose the structure of your model and you need to copy the structure in your Wiki which kind of unpractical.
  2. Export the whole MDZip file as a HTML (dynamic) report, which can be browsed nicely afterwards.
MagicDraw gives you an example how to do this from Maven, so you can generate the report automatically. So here are the steps:
  1. Create a Maven plugin project to run MagicDraw: You need to build a Maven Plugin project which should be used later in your main project. Copy the example from [magicdraw-install]\openapi\examples\mavenintegration\mdmvn and customize it as you need.
  2. Create a Maven report exporter project where you have your MDZip file which should be exported as HTML dynamic report. See this example from MagicDraw: [magicdraw-install]\openapi\examples\mavenintegration\execute.
To be able to run the report exporter project you need to do following:
  • Use the CommandLine class of MagicDraw to be run from the Maven plugin: 
  • Include following classpath additionally to the MagicDraw classpath:
  • Include the with following content, customize the directory and package as you need: 
 template=Web Publisher 2.0  
That's it! You are now able to run the Magic Draw project exporter automatically which creates the dynamic HTML files. Some additional ideas to make the thing more smooth:
  • Run the report exporter in your CI / Jenkins environment. You still need X server to be able to do this in Linux, so you need something like Xvnc plugin for Jenkins. Also check out this Blog:
  • You can extend the Maven exporter project and integrate Spring Boot, so you can deploy the MagicDraw HTML files as a webapp, so your users can smoothly browse it.
I would prepare some code examples in Github if you are interested in this topic, just mail me.

Have fun!

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