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Software support for configuring distributed object based systems

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1 Author(s)
Kramer, J. ; Dept. of Comput., Imperial Coll., London, UK

There is some consensus on the set of techniques and mechanisms which should be used to construct distributed systems. However, none of these mechanisms help in the design process of decomposing an overall application into a set of components nor in its subsequent construction. They are rather the `glue' used to compose components such that they may communicate and interact. What is missing is any motion of structure. The premise of the author's approach is that a separate, explicit structural (configuration) description is essential for all phases in the software development process for distributed systems, from system specification as a configuration of component specifications to evolution as changes to a system configuration. Descriptions of the constituent software components and their interconnection patterns provide a clear and concise level at which to specify and design systems, and can be used directly by construction tools to generate the system itself. The author uses the neutral term `component' to mean a software entity which encapsulates some resources and provides a well defined interface in terms of the operations it provides to access the resources and the operations it requires to implement its functionality. Further, these components must be `context independent' in that they use only local names to communicate with their environment, thereby allowing them to be developed independently of the context in which they execute

Published in:

Distributed Object Management, IEE Colloquium on

Date of Conference:

14 Jan 1994