StarTeam is the Win32 client piece of Starbase's Software Change and Configuration
Management system. It plugs in using the usual SCC hooks, and so will run anywhere
that (for example) Visual SourceSafe will. But while VSS is focused strictly
on source code control, StarTeam extends SCCM to cover the software management
process from requirements to releases.
StarTeam does this by presenting a rich environment for working on files and
projects. To the left of the workspace, you get a treeview of the folders in
your project. You can stash anything you like in a folder: source code, documentation,
graphics, web sites. To the right, the screen is divided into two panels. The
top panel holds a tabbed interface with tabs for files, change requests, requirements,
tasks, topics, and audits. By switching back and forth between the tabs, you
can move smoothly between the requirements for a product, the code to implement
those requirements, bug reports, and a threaded discussion view. The lower panel
shows details and version information for whatever you're currently working
Some of the nice features you'll find here are an excellent capacity to roll
pack projects to previous "point in time" versions, autolinking of various objects
and views, an open java/COM/.NET set of APIs that let you extend the product,
and Java and Web clients for access from non-Windows platforms.
StarTeam and StarBase are also designed to integrate with many other products,
including StarBase's own CaliberRM requirements-management product (which I
looked at in the last issue of Developer Central), StarTeam Elite for workflow
automation, Mercury Test Director for testing, and TogetherSoft for Java and
UML-based development. And now that Borland is buying both StarBase and TogetherSoft,
I think we can probably expect to see all of these products converge towards
an even more unified set of development tools. The result will definitely be
something to keep an eye on.
Mike Gunderloy, MCSE, MCSD, MCDBA, is a former MCP columnist and the author of numerous development books.