[neutron-mc] McStas quality insurance: documentation, bugs and tests

Emmanuel FARHI farhi at ill.fr
Thu Feb 17 11:06:04 CET 2005

Hello Everyone,

As some of you already know, a meeting on McStas (neutron ray-tracing
software for instrument simulations) and code quality was
held at the ILL on tuesday February 8th, 2005.

The meeting raised several important issues regarding quality insurance,
testing methods and concrete problems with specific McStas distributed

The McStas team has now sketched out different solutions, strategies and
policies to ensure better code quality in the future.

The conclusion is more or less that a lot of problems could be avoided
by improving documentation, plus hightening the level of communication
among code developers and users. The software components should be qualified
through test procedures, or rejected.

Documentation and Test methods:

1) A reference test method / procedure with examples will be made public 
so that
writers of a new code can test their code in a systematic way.

2) Existing components should be tested thorougly - The four McStas
team members, including Klaus Lieutenant (formerly Vitess) have begun
the process of testing existing components. Test results will be made
part of the documentation, either as part of the installed package or
as web based information.

3) New components should be tested, preferably by the authors, before 
into the project,  a 'test' procedure should be passed.

4) Information on known bugs and limitations will be available in the
documentation for each component.


1) A bugzilla system <http://www.bugzilla.org> is beeing set up for
reporting errors and problems with McStas parts. The idea is also to
use this system for the process of contributing code, plus giving the
users possibility of expressing wishes for new features of the McStas

2) Use neutron-mc at risoe.dk list, PLEASE! If you find problems
when using the package, please report back to us. The errors and
problems that may annoy you is VALUABLE information for the McStas
developers and other users - reporting it to us will certainly improve 
the software.
Register to this list at <http://neutron.risoe.dk/list/>
and <http://neutron.risoe.dk/mailman/listinfo/neutron-mc>.

What's up Doc ?
Emmanuel FARHI, http://www.ill.fr/Computing/people/Farhi  \|/ ____ \|/
CS-Group ILL4/156, Institut Laue-Langevin (ILL) Grenoble  ~@-/ oO \-@~
6 rue J. Horowitz, BP 156, 38042 Grenoble Cedex 9,France  /_( \__/ )_\
Work :Tel (33/0) 4 76 20 71 35. Fax (33/0) 4 76 48 39 06     \__U_/

More information about the mcstas-users mailing list