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Revision as of 12:00, 10 July 2006

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Release Schedule

Q: What is the BIRT release schedule?

BIRT will release a stable build every two weeks between now and the 1.0 release. BIRT will release a milestone build one a month between now and 1.0. This means that stable and milestone builds will alternate. Release plans after 1.0 are not yet defined.

Project Source

Q: Where can I find the BIRT project source?

BIRT source is in the Eclipse CVS system. Full information for obtaining and building the source is available on the BIRT Build page.

Q: I'm behind a firewall and cannot access CVS. Is there another way to access the source?

Eclipse provides an HTML interface into CVS. Be sure to select the BIRT Project to see the BIRT sources.

Q: How do I build BIRT?

Complete instructions are available on the Build page.


Q: How can I contribute to the BIRT Project?

BIRT is an open source project and seeks contributions in many areas:

  • Answer questions in the newsgroup. – As BIRT grows, new people will come to BIRT and ask questions that more experienced users have already answered. A great way to "give back" to the BIRT community is to answer such questions.
  • Try out new builds & features and report suggestions & problems. – BIRT uses an incremental development process: "release early and often." If you're adventerous, try out new builds & features and let us know about bugs, or ways to improve the product.
  • Platform, driver, app server and other integration issues. – The team tests BIRT on a set of plaforms identified in the Project Plan. If you work on a different platform, please try BIRT and report any problems that you find. File bugs using Bugzilla. Please be as specific as possible, since the development team does not have access to your platform.
  • Examples. – Examples help users quickly see what BIRT can do, show how to accomplish tasks, and help the development team visualize how BIRT is used in practice. You can contribute a static example (HTML output of a report), a report design, a code example and more. Eventually, we'll have a place to submit such examples. For now, please let us know on the newsgroup that you've got an example and we'll work with you to get it onto the web site.
  • Articles. – Articles can include how-to, tutorials, case studies, or brief notes about how to solve a particular problem, integrate with a particular bit of sofware and so on. Again, we'll eventually have a place to submit such articles, but for now please let us know via the newsgroup.
  • Bug fixes. – If you discover a problem or enhancement, and have the time & skills to track down the problem and find a fix; you can submit the fix to the development team as a Bugzilla entry.

Q: How can I contribute code to the BIRT Project?

Eclipse has an extensive process for code contributions. (LINK) Briefly, start by completing the (NAME) form required for all code submitters. Then, follow the (STUFF) development process to first submit bugs & patches via Bugzilla.

Q: I'd like to help develop BIRT. How do I do that?

Start with the above process. Eventually, if you're level of participation remains high, and your code is of good quality, the development team can vote to make you a committer. All Eclipse Foundation projects must follow the Eclipse Development Process.

In brief, you have to earn the right to be contributor. On other projects, this was done by submitting code patches, bug fixes, etc. (See above) On the Web Tools project (WTP), there are people that have a related open source project or plug-in and have donated it to the WTP project and became contributor this way.


Q: What other projects might fit within the BIRT project?

BIRT has chosen to focus on embedded reporting for the first release. Other possible projects could expand BIRT into many of the dimensions of Business Intelligence:

  • Data Modeling tools for defining schemas, meta data.
  • ETL (Extract, Transform, Load) tools for creating and maintaining the data warehouse.
  • Developer-oriented reporting tools for embedded reporting from operational and data warehouse stores within the application.
  • Business-user query tools for providing users with flexible ad hoc access to that data.
  • Analysis tools that enable power-users to slice-and-dice the same data.

Q: How does the BIRT project relate to TPTP, Data Tools, etc.

Eclipse is an active, growing community with new top-level projects being created at a lively pace. The BIRT PMC has an active dialog with these other projects to figure out where BIRT can leverage existing or proposed functionality. With a community as dynamic as Eclipse, we'll adjust our plans as the community evolves.

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