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TCK tools and documentation

Test tools

Oracle provides the following tools to help Spec Leads with their TCK development responsibilities.

Tool Open Source Links Description
JavaTest/JT Harness • JT Harness project
• Download page
• Documentation
JT harness is the open source version of the JavaTest harness. JT harness is a general purpose, fully-featured, flexible, and configurable test harness very well suited for most types of unit testing, especially TCK test suites. The JT harness is an excellent tool for configuring, sequencing, and running test suites that consist of large numbers of discrete, independent tests. It is especially good at testing APIs and compilers. Originally developed as a test harness to run the JCK test suite, it has since evolved into a general purpose test platform well suited for use with all TCK test suites and other types of test suites.


(Signature Test tool and API Coverage tool)

• SigTest project
• Download page
• Documentation

Signature Test tool verifies that a Java technology implementation undergoing compatibility testing and its reference APIs are mutually compatible as defined in Chapter 13, Binary Compatibility, of The Java Language Specification. The tool automates this verification process with a signature test algorithm that compares the API under test with a reference API.

Use of the Signature Test tool is the preferred way of meeting the JSP Process requirement that TCKs provide 100% signature-test coverage.

APICover tool uses the Signature Test tool engine to provide static analysis of test coverage of an API. This is a useful metric for determining the quality of a TCK.

Java ME Framework • ME Framework project
• Download page
• Documentation
The ME Framework is a set of JT harness plugins that provides support for the Java ME platform. TCK architects use the JT harness and the ME Framework to construct TCK test suites for Java ME technologies.


Oracle provides the following documents to help Spec Leads with their TCK development responsibilities.

WARNING: these are "legacy documents" that describe how Sun did (and how Oracle now does) TCK development. They contain references to tools used internally, some of which are available for third-party use (see above) and others (primarily Spec Trac, which is a tool used for specification markup) that are not externally available. Nevertheless, the documents contain much useful information and are therefore provided on an "as-is" (unsupported) basis.

Document Description
TCK Project Planning and Development Guide Provides an overview and starting point for an Expert Group responsible for developing a technology compatibility kit (TCK) under the Java Community Process program. It is a high-level planning guide for project managers.
Java Technology Test Suite Development Guide

Describes in detail how to design and write TCK tests and to build a TCK.

The Sample TCK tests mentioned in this document are available for download here.

Java Technology Compatibility Kit User's Guide Template Provides an outline and template that can be used as the basis for creating a complete User's Guide for a TCK.

NOTE: this template assumes that your TCK will be built with the JT Harness and is therefore considerably more complex than might be necessary for your purposes. For a simpler template see the next item.

Simplified TCK User's Guide Template Provides a simple template that can be used as the basis for creating a User's Guide for a TCK. Because the template contains sample Compatibility Requirements it will be particuarly helpful in ensuring that your TCK meets the requirements of the JCP's Process Document.
Sample Test Coverage Document Provides a sample Test Coverage Document (TCD) that can be used as a model for the TCD that you deliver to the PMO with the final version of your TCK.

Other resources

The following external resources also provide information helpful in the TCK development process.

Resource Description
OASIS Test Assertion Guidelines

The OASIS Test Assertion Guidelines (TAG) Technical Committee produced a Committee Note providing guidelines and best practices for writing and using test assertions. This Note provides extensive background on the theory and practice of using Test Assertions in conformance testing.

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