Is it possible to enter a new defect in Issue Manager using an external tool?
Yes. Any tool that is SOAP compliant can use the SilkCentral Issue Manager open API. There is an overview and description of the SOAP API in chapter 6 of the Issue Manager User Guide. To review this choose:
HELP | DOCUMENTATION | ISSUE MANAGER USER GUIDE.
You can get a list of all webservices available in the API by
http://IM_FrontEndServerName/serviceshttp://IM_FrontEndServerName:19120/services*where IM_FrontEndServerName is the name of the IM Front End Server box. The url used is dependent on the web server you are using.
Below you will see how to create new issues using different
tools. These tools are .Net Explorer, SilkPerformer & a
Using .Net Explorer
To enter a new defect invoke the following methods:
You can see in the left pane the list of invoked methods.
Note - If you already know the project id, Issue Type etc then
all you need to invoke is the LogonUser and SaveNewIssue
Using the SilkPerformer Web API
We can export our project from .Net Explorer into SilkPerformer
as either a web or .Net based project. If we choose web we can see
the actual SOAP requests in the script and can therefore customize
certain parameters such as "Product",
"Platform", "Severity" etc thus allowing us to
insert issues depending on specific components (see Fig.2).
Fig. 2 Sample SOAP code from a SilkPerformer web based script with "product" customized.
The benefit of being able to customize the parameters is that
you can perform some tests within your own application and if you
discover a new issue then have your tool output the specifics on
the issue (e.g. platform, severity, and component) to a text file.
At this point kick off a batch file that starts SilkPerformer and
use the script to read the text file, insert these parameters where
required in the SOAP request and post this off to SCIM. This allows
a simple automated approach to defect tracking although for a
complete QA platform for automated testing, results analysis and
defect tracking use SilkCentral Test Manager.
Using SilkPerformer .Net framework
The other possibility here is to export the project as a .Net
based project from within .Net Explorer. This will produce a .Net
based script with calls to a dll that is created during compile
time/export (see Fig. 2). This dll contains the web service calls
that when invoked will create a new issue. The difference with this
approach compared to a web based script is that we will use the
.Net Framework to build the SOAP request and to parse the server
response. The benefit of this approach is that you can then open
the project in Visual Studio.NET and from within that environment
create new defects in SCIM.
Fig. 3 .Net based SilkPerformer script which calls a .dll file that contains the web service calls.
It is also possible to customize the values in the .Net script
by specifying in .Net Explorer that you want to use Project
Attributes as input parameters for objects. To do this simply
choose to create a new global variable in the Objects pane, give
the variable a name and ether provide an initial value or file to
read from (See Fig.4).
Fig.4 - Creating a variable and later use as a project attribute.
Once you"ve defined the variable you can then specify that
you want to use the variable as a project attribute (Fig.5)
Fig.5 - Once created, make the variable a project attribute.
This attribute will be exported with the project and can then
allow users to change the input parameter to this object. If you
want you can create a variable for each input parameter of every
object within the test and use them all as project attributes. You
can change the values for these using either SilkPerformer or
Visual Studio.NET. To do this in SilkPerformer simply open the
project and choose PROJECT | PROJECT ATTRIBUTES. (Fig.6).
Fig. 6 - "Product" project attribute has a default input param of "SilkPerformer"
To change this in Visual Studio.Net you need to specify the
attribute in your C# code using Bdl.AttributeGet or
Bdl.AttributeSet functions. For more information on this consult
the .Net Framework Developers Guide that ships with
The similarity between both methods shown above is that they
both send the requests to the SCIM API as SOAP calls over HTTP. The
difference is that while one can be customized within SilkPerformer
(QA Environment) the other can be customized with Visual Studio
Using a standalone application
The next approach to be demonstrated is using a standalone
application to add a new issue. .Net Explorer also allows you to
compile your methods into a standalone application. This is a .Net
based executable that contains the necessary dll"s and config
files in order to run successfully. If you wanted to change the
parameters (e.g. product) then you could open the application in
Visual Studio, make changes to it and then re-compile it.
Alternatively you could implement some input fields in you
application to allow the user to specify the different components
required for SCIM. To build a standalone application using .Net
explorer choose EXPORT | STANDLAONE APPLICATION.