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Windows 2000 Cheat Sheet Available

When it comes time to take the Windows 2000 applications compatibility test from VeriTest, it might be nice to have the questions ahead of time. Instead of making you rummage through the dumpster, however, Microsoft and Rational Software are handing out the crib notes for free.

After some delay, the companies have finally released the Rational TestFoundation for Microsoft Windows 2000, an automated testing solution that aims to reduce the time and cost of achieving compliance with Microsoft's Applications Specification for Windows 2000 desktop application edition.

The TestFoundation is designed to be used throughout the development lifecycle to ensure applications comply with the "app spec" and gain the "Certified for Windows 2000" logo requirements. Microsoft Corp. (www.microsoft.com) recommends complying with the specification so applications can take advantage of the improved reliability and manageability features in Windows 2000.

Since the software is free, Rational Software Corp. (www.rational.com) and VeriTest Inc. (www.veritest.com) are encouraging developers to use it even if they don't intend to submit any applications for certification.

The Rational TestFoundation comes in three components. The first is the Test Plan, which is provided by Microsoft and defines all of the manual tests necessary for a product to comply with the Windows 2000 Application Specification. The plan defines the steps and the underlying tools required to execute the test. There is a Methodology Guide that gives a bird's eye view of the testing environment, process and tools used. The pack also includes a collection of tools in the form of executables, automation scripts, manual tests and databases that help implement the test plan.

While the tools are available free of cost, Rational is able to pull developers into its profit center by integrating TestFoundation with Rational's TeamTest, which is sold as part of the larger Rational Suite TestStudio. One such integration is the use of the executables. While the executables can be run manually, in each case the developer would have to record the results of the run in a test log if they were only using TestFoundation.

Developers could use Rational Robot, through which scripts are run and automatically logged in the Rational TestFoundation for Windows 2000 repository/reporting system. Rational Robot is built into Rational TeamTest, but not TestFoundation. -- Brian Ploskina

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.