IBM System Architect
|Stable release||Version 188.8.131.52 / Released June 26, 2015, available on IBM Fix Central http://www.ibm.com/support/fixcentral/.|
|Operating system||Microsoft Windows|
IBM System Architect is an enterprise architecture tool that is used by the business and technology departments of corporations and government agencies to model their business operations and the systems, applications, and databases that support them. System Architect is used to build architectures using various frameworks including TOGAF, DoDAF, MODAF and NAF.
Enterprise architecture (EA) is a mechanism for understanding all aspects of the organization, and planning for change. Those aspects include business transformation, business process rationalization, business or capability-driven solution development, application rationalization, transformation of IT to the cloud, server consolidation, service management and deployment, building systems of systems architectures, and so forth. Most simply, users use EA and System Architect to build diagrammatic and textual models of any and all aspects of their organization, including the who, what, where, when, why, and how things are done so they can understand the current situation, and plan for the future. Parts of the EA can be harvested from existing sources of information in the organization—auto-discovery of network architectures, database architectures, etc. The users building the models are typically enterprise architects, business architects, business analysts, data architects, software architects, and so forth. This information can be viewed by all stakeholders of the organization — including its workers, management, and outside vendors (depending on the level of access they have been granted to the information), through generation of the information to a static website, or enabling direct web-access to the information in the repository. The stakeholders can use this information to get answers to questions about the organization's architecture in the form of visual diagrams and reports that produce textual information, pie charts, and other dashboards.
System Architect is widely used in developing defense architectures. The Architecture Development and Analysis Survey, conducted by MITRE Corporation for the US Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Networks & Information Integration (OASD NII) and revealed at the CISA worldwide conference on December 1, 2005, reported that out of 96 programs building DoDAF architectures responding to the survey, 77% used System Architect, either by itself (48%) or in conjunction with another modeling tool (29%).
System Architect has been referenced in textbooks written in the field of enterprise architecture, UML, and data modeling, and was also used to build some or all of the models that appear in some of these books.     
System Architect was initially created and developed by Jan Popkin under the auspices of Popkin Software. System Architect was one of the first Windows-based computer-aided software engineering (CASE) tools. It evolved through the years to become an enterprise architecture modeling tool — one that enables the end user to utilize many notations and methods to model aspects of their organization in a repository, and disseminate this information to a large audience.
Telelogic acquired Popkin Software in April, 2005 and IBM acquired Telelogic in 2008. IBM has announced that System Architect is its tool of choice for enterprise architecture. After acquisition of Telelogic, IBM included System Architect (and all other Telelogic products) in the Rational division, named after Rational Software, which it acquired in 2003. In January 2015, IBM announced an internal reorganization that created a new Systems division, within which System Architect was positioned.
System Architect includes support for:
- Enterprise Architecture Frameworks and Reference Models
- Business Process Modeling Notation (BPMN) 2.0
- Service oriented architecture
- Balanced Scorecard
- OMG Business Motivation Model (BMM) via Enterprise Direction diagram
- Cause-Effect Analysis and Gap analysis through Network-style Explorer diagram
- Landscape and Heatmap analysis Heat map through Landscape-style Explorer diagram
- Functional decomposition
- Organizational chart
- Network architecture modeling
- Application Portfolio Management and Service oriented architecture (SOA) development through SOA add-on
- Application Portfolio Management, IT portfolio management, and decision-based trade-off analysis via:
- Integration with Unicom Focal Point
- Relational Data Modeling - Logical Entity-relationship model and Physical diagramming
- Reverse engineering and/or generation of database schema via integration with IBM Infosphere Data Architect
- Object-relational mapping
- Data flow diagramming
- Cross-Reference Matrices
- Underlying Repository in SQL Server 2012, SQL Server 2008, or SQL Server 2008 Express
- Multi-user network environment
- SQL-based query reporting language
- Role-based access control
- Native Requirements management
- Interface to DOORS for Requirements management
- Extensibility through:
- Model-to-model transformations
- Report Generation via:
- Native Report Generator using SQL-like language
- Integration with IBM Rational Publishing Engine
- Business Intelligence Dashboard Analysis via:
- Cognos-based Business Intelligence (BI) reporting bundled with product
- Integration with IBM Rational Insight
- Governance of Files and Assets Associated with EA via:
- Integration with IBM Rational Asset Manager (RAM)
- Web access to Enterprise Architecture repository via:
- HTML Generator
- Report-based website generation via SA/Publisher add-on
- Live web read/write access to repository via SA/XT product
- IBM Cognos BI 10.2 (bundled with System Architect, integration via REST technology)
- IBM Tivoli TADDM/CCMDB (off-the-shelf assets tailored for the customer by services engagement)
- WebSphere Business Modeler (export of BPMN diagrams from SA to WBM via no extra charge add-in)
- Rational Focal Point (bidirectional integration provided at no extra charge)
- Rational DOORS (no-extra-charge integration provided with SA)
- Rational Software Architect (RSA) (bidirectional import/export of UML diagrams; no-extra-charge integration is in RSA tool)
- Rational Rhapsody (export of DoDAF information from SA to Rhapsody; no-extra-charge integration is in Rhapsody tool)
- Rational Change (no-extra-charge integration provided with SA)
- Rational Publishing Engine (RPE) for cross-IBM-Rational-product reporting
- Lanner Group Ltd Witness (paid add-on called SA Simulator III)
- SAP for process architecture information via IntelliCorp (Software) LiveCapture paid add-on
- SAP and other ERP systems (Siebel and PeopleSoft) for data architecture information via SA/ERP paid add-on
- Microsoft Office products:
- Powerpoint (SA Presentation Integration provided as add-in, uses REST technology for synchronization of Powerpoint and EA repository)
- Visio (import from Visio to SA provided at no charge via macro  )
- Microsoft Word and Excel (auto-generation of Word documents and Excel files from EA repository via VBA macros provided in SA, and via reporting engine)
Graphic models and their underlying information are created and stored in a relational database in either SQL Server 2005, SQL Server 2008, Oracle 10G, or SQL Server 2005 Express. For SQL Server, the information is stored in a database on the server; this database is considered a repository of information and in System Architect parlance is called an encyclopedia. For Oracle, the repository, or ‘encyclopedia’, is a schema on the Oracle database server.
Users build the models working together in teams on the network. In this multi-user environment, as one user opens a model artifact to edit it, other users get a read-only version of this artifact. Options exist to enable users to check out multiple artifacts so that they can work on sections of the architecture without anyone else modifying it while they work on it, and administrators to freeze artifacts so that they are ‘set in stone’. Users may also work in a stand-alone configuration using SQL Server 2005 Express on their laptop or workstation.
A SQL-based query reporting language enables users to build and run reports to answer questions about the information they have modeled, such as what business processes are related to what organizational goals, what applications are used to perform what business processes, what business processes operate on what data entities, what user has modified what information on what date, and so forth.
The information captured in the repository is done so against a metamodel that acts as a template for information to capture and how it is all related. Users may customize this meta model, to change or add to the template of information they wish to capture and how things are interrelated.
Models are typically published to a website so that they can be viewed by a wide audience. An add-on tool called SA/Publisher is used to publish websites based on SQL-based queries of the repository using System Architect’s reporting language.
System Architect DoDAF, MODAF, and NAF
System Architect provides support for the diagrams, matrices, and work products required to be captured for the Department of Defense Architecture Framework (DoDAF). There are two options to System Architect that are used by the DoDAF community – System Architect DoDAF and System Architect DoDAF ABM. The System Architect DoDAF ABM version has specific metamodel changes and utilities geared toward supporting the Activity Based Method (ABM) for building DoDAF artifacts, as specified by MITRE, who created the method.
Another variant of System Architect is the System Architect MODAF offering, which provides specific metamodel, diagrammatic, and byproduct (matrices and reports) support for the UK Ministry of Defence Architecture Framework (MODAF). Yet another variant of System Architect is the System Architect NAF product, which provides support for the NATO Architecture Framework.
System Architect ArchiMate
A sister tool to System Architect, called System Architect/XT (where XT denotes eXtended Team) provides a web interface to read and write access to the repository. SA/XT enables remote users with a web browser to browse the repository, run reports against it to ask it questions, and add information into it
- The US Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (NII) Architecture Development and Analysis Survey, conducted by MITRE Corporation, and presented at the CISA worldwide conference on December 1, 2005.
- Goikoetxea, Dr. Ambrose, PhD. Enterprise Architectures: Planning, Design, and Assessment. ISBN 978-981-270-027-8.
- Whitten, Jeffrey L.; Lonnie D. Bentley, Kevin C. Dittman. Systems Analysis and Design Methods. ISBN 0-256-19906-X.
- Chonoles, Michael Jesse; James A. Schardt. UML for Dummies. ISBN 0-7645-2614-6.
- Pender, Tom. UML Bible. ISBN 0-7645-2604-9.
- Bahrami, Ali. Object-Oriented Systems Development: Using the Unified Modeling Language. ISBN 0-07-234966-2.
- Pender, Tom. UML Crash Course. ISBN 0-7645-4910-3.
- "Telelogic acquires Popkin". Government Computer News.
- "IBM Completed Acquisition of Rational Software in 2003". IBM website.
- Rational System Architect family of products on ibm.com
- Official Product Page on IBM developerWorks
- SystemArchitect.info fan portal page
- Official page for System Architect events in Federal space
- Community Product Page and EA Resource Wiki on IBM mydeveloperWorks
- IBM Knowledge Center for Rational System Architect
- System Architect Linked In User Group -- Run by Users
- System Architect User Forum on IBM developerWorks
- System Architect on Twitter
- System Architect on Facebook
- System Architect Train on YouTube.com
- Rational Software on Twitter
- Rational Software on Facebook
- Rational Software on Youtube
- Business Planning and Transformation with Enterprise Architecture Blog -- EABlue.com
- Demonstrations of Product on IBM developerWorks
- Free Trial of Product
- Add-ons on developerWorks, including Visio Mapper Macro and NGOSS Support
- Latest Product Patches on IBM's Fix Central - select 'Rational' product group, and 'IBM Rational System Architect' for 11.3 and later, or 'Telelogic System Architect' for 11.2
- Section 508 Compatibility (VPAT) Statement -- Request via form
- IBM Rational Tools Aid Smart Device Makers, by Charles Babcock
- eWeek Review — System Architect Turns Ten, by Peter Coffee
- Data Administration Newsletter Review — System Architect, by Terry Moriarty
- Q&A with Jan Popkin
- Enterprise Architecture and System Architect
- The Open Group's showcase of TOGAF-certified tools
- Data modeling resource site offers data models built in System Architect
- Learn more about Gartner Magic Quadrant on Enterprise Architecture Tools
- Learn more about Gartner Magic Quadrant on Business Process Analysis Tools