Community Forum


Issue: March 7, 2005

Visible Spotlight
- CM Crossroads reviews Razor

Application Development
- New Review: Visible Developer

Application Lifecycle Management
- Polaris: New Features

Configuration Management
- LCSIS: Smart and Economical
- Razor: Sales/Training Promotions
- Razor: Updated Pricing
- Tech Tip


Visible Spotlight - Feature Story

Comprehensive CM with Razor by Mike Gunderloy

Visible Systems' Razor provides a well-integrated trio of cross-platform (Unix and Windows) configuration-management tools:

- Issues is the problem tracking system
- Versions is the version control system
- Threads is the release management system

Two things distinguish Razor from some of its competition. First, all three of these tools work closely together. It's clear that they have grown up together, rather than having been built as disparate pieces and then later lightly
integrated. Second, they're all quite flexible. If you don't like the user interface in Issues, or the precise workflow within the tool suite, Razor is meant to be modified, and the manual shows you how.

Razor maintains its own databases as ASCII text files using its own custom database server, which communicates with the Razor clients (and with the Razor licensing server) via TCP/IP. The user of plain text and standard Unix
utilities for management means that Razor is quite open to both customization and integration; if you need to work with issue data from an outside tool, for example, it's right there in front of you.

Read the complete review of Razor:

Application Development

"Visible Developer is designed to be at the heart of a 3-tier application development process, and it's very good at what it does...The code that's generated works well and has the most extensive comments that I've ever seen
from any such product." Mike Gunderloy, Developer Central

Click here to read the review:

Application Lifecycle Management

Polaris: New Features

The latest version of Polaris contains a number of new features including:

How many issues were assigned to Steve this week?
What was the average amount of time an issue remained at the QA state last month?

The answer to these any many other questions can be determined using Metrics. This feature allows you to gather statistics about issues in an almost unlimited number of ways, using filters to determine which set of issues are
included in the analysis. The results of the metrics generation process are stored as an XML document and then formatted using an XSL style sheet. If you wish to modify the way the results are displayed, simply modify the XSL files to meet your needs. See for a sample.

When dealing with complex issues, it is often necessary to break up the issue into sub-issues. Polaris allows issues to be linked together through the use of referrals. An issue can be linked to any number of other issues, in any issue set.

In addition to specifying which issues are connected, you can also set the relationship type. There are two types of relationships: parent-child and link. A parent-child relationship implies a hierarchy, while a link does not. If
issues are linked together in a parent-child relationship, you can specify that the parent issue cannot be promoted to an approved state, until all child issues have already been promoted to that state.

Email Issue Submission
In addition to the standard interface for creating and monitoring issues, Polaris can now be setup to allow users to submit new issues and check the status of issues via email. This allows customers and service personnel to enter new problems from remote locations without requiring complete access to Polaris. All that is required is an email client such as Outlook that monitors a mailbox for incoming mail that is formatted in a way that Polaris can

Configuration Management

Visible LCSIS: An Integral Part of Any PLM Endeavor

LCSIS is a dynamic, Enterprise Data Management System that is designed, from the ground up, to meet the specialized needs of product development. The LCSIS system enables the effective integration, structuring, and dissemination of the critical product and process data associated with Product Development, Engineering, Production, Customer Service and Support.

LCSIS also promotes cross departmental synergism and optimal use of organizational resources by combining a robust data management environment with an easy to use interface to increase productivity, improve standards
compliance, and build overall competitiveness.

For a web demo of LCSIS and to see for yourself how effective and economical a PDM solution using LCSIS can be, please contact Stan Mazuroski.

Razor: Sales & Training Promotions

We are currently offering a Razor Sales Promo until 03/31/2005. Any new or current customer who purchases *10* or more licenses of Razor can select ONE of the following options for FREE:

A. 5 additional licenses of Razor for FREE! - You receive a total of 15 licenses of Razor!
B. IssueWeaver for FREE! - Razor's web based interface to the problem tracking database.
C. 1 day of Razor Consulting for FREE! Razor's expert will be on site to give you expert advise and knowledge.

*** This offer is not valid on previous purchases ***

Any new or current customer who signs up for April Razor training classes on or before March 15th will be able to send a second person to training for free. See our website for more information.

*** This offer is not valid on previous purchases ***

Razor: Updated Pricing

Effective April 10, 2005 selected prices of Razor and IssueWeaver licenses and maintenance will be increasing by at least 10%. Save money and take advantage of our March promotions by ordering Razor and IssueWeaver licenses now.

If you have any questions, please contact us at:

+1 315-363-8000, Option 1

Razor Tech Tip

Renaming a Thread

While there is no "rename" option per sť, you can duplicate the thread and give it a new name. If the duplication is successful and the new thread is completely fine, you can delete the old or use it as a backup. Here's the command for duplication.

# razor -c dup -f <name> -g <group> -n <new name> -t <title> /
[-i <issue[:<issue group>]>]

NOTE: The items in brackets is optional.

You could also simply double-click on the thread in the GUI, and do a "Save As..." from the File/Edit menu of the Edit Thread GUI, giving the thread a new name. This would also create a second copy.



The more you take the more you leave behind.
What are they?

The answer to the above puzzle can be found at:


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