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Each CAST AIP release provides new features which improve the value of the platform and justify an upgrade. However, there are a number of changes or improvements which can impact the measurement results/grades:
Below is a list of changes made to the current release of CAST AIP that are known to cause impacts to results. You can also consult Case Study - Measurement changes after upgrade for selected customer applications which provides a more detailed analysis based on a few sample applications.
The following is a general description of the steps that should be taken in order to compare pre and post upgrade results:
Grades at Business Criteria level
Lines of code
Step 4: Compare the data functions and transactions across the source Analysis Service and the target Analysis Service post upgrade.
In CAST AIP 8.1.x, CAST has introduced a new consolidation mode in the CAST Assessment Model for snapshot generation (if you are upgrading from 7.3.x or 8.0.x then this new consolidation mode is also "new" in 8.2.x). The new mode is called Full Application and calculates grades from components of an Application (as is already the case for previous consolidation modes available based on Functional Modules). The scope of components is defined as a union of components accessed from all Functional Modules:
By default in CAST AIP 8.2.x, when using the CAST AIP 8.2.x Assessment Model, the new Full Application consolidation mode will always be used unless you manually change it. In the context of an upgrade to CAST AIP 8.2.x from 7.3.x and 8.0.x, if you choose to
Note that you can query the DSS_HISTORY table in the CAST Dashboard Service to view the status of each existing snapshot after the upgrade process has been completed by the CAST Update Tool. Messages will be entered into the table as follows for each snapshot that is handled as part of the upgrade:
Whatever Consolidation Mode is used in the Assessment Model in the CAST Management Studio, Total Checks and Failed Checks are now calculated in CAST AIP 8.2.x with components that can be accessed from all Functional Modules. This is also true for Sizing Measures counting critical violations. In the context of an upgrade to CAST AIP 8.2.x (from 7.3.x or 8.0.x), if you choose toresults may differ from previous releases of CAST AIP when there is an overlap between user defined modules (i.e. when a component belongs to two or more User Defined Modules).
In previous releases of CAST AIP, the Quality Rules listed above were not functioning correctly and were producing false negative results. The algorithm used to generate these Quality Rules has now been improved and corrected and, after an upgrade to CAST AIP 8.2.x and the generation of a new snapshot, the number of violations may increase. This increase in violations is due to the improved accuracy provided by the bug correction. In addition, although many "paths" may exist for each violation (a violation is deemed to be a "path" that starts in a loop in a method and targets an object) the Quality Rules will now only report one "path", thus keeping the Quality Rule calculation time stable and reducing the amount of data produced.
Please note however, that results for these two quality rules are not perfectly deterministic because results depend on the order in which control-flow (in particular calls in loops) is discovered. In addition, results depend on objects and links identified by the JEE analyzer. As the analyzer improves, objects and links change for the same source code. Therefore, when upgrading to forthcoming service packs, violations reported by these quality rules can vary slightly.
In previous releases of CAST AIP, the Quality Rule listed above functioned only on Spring beans. In CAST AIP 8.2.x, this behaviour has been improved:
Due to a change in the way J2EE Analysis Units containing differing analysis configurations are analyzed in CAST AIP 8.2.x - all in one Execution Unit rather than in multiple Execution Units (seebelow) - you may find that after an upgrade to CAST AIP 8.2.x (from 7.3.x only) a subsequent re-analysis of source code and a snapshot generation, the number of violations for the Quality Rules listed below changes (there may be more or less violations):
These removed and added violations are all positive improvements, in other words the list of violations is more accurate than in previous releases of CAST AIP.
In CAST AIP 8.2.x a change has been made to Analysis Unit grouping in Execution Units due to the move to a 64-bit architecture: instead of grouping Analysis Units in Execution Units according to a set of predefined rules, all J2EE Analysis Units in an Application are now grouped in one single Execution Unit. The effect of this change is that when re-analyzing the same source code following an upgrade to CAST AIP 8.2.x (from 7.3.x only), links between objects in different Analysis Units are now more accurately identified provided that Dependencies have been correctly identified by the CAST Delivery Manager Tool (see the dependencies marked as "Discovered" in the Dependencies tab in the CAST Management Studio Application editor), therefore some links that were previously incorrectly identified in earlier versions of CAST AIP may no longer be identified and/or new links that were not previously identified in earlier versions of CAST AIP may now be found. This will have a knock on effect on the number of violations produced by certain Quality Rules - seeabove - some violations that previously existed will be removed, and new ones may be found. These removed and added violations are all positive improvements, in other words the list of violations is more accurate than in previous releases of CAST AIP.
In CAST AIP 8.2.x, the CAST Application Analytics Dashboard now provides more detailed information about Transactions in the Application. In order to do this, additional metrics are now run on Transactions where in previous releases of CAST AIP they were not:
These additional metrics may cause the step entitled "Configure snapshot data into dashboard service" to take more time to process than in previous releases of CAST AIP.