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Which UML tool do you use, how and why?

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About one year ago I tried Rational Rose, Dia and other few programs to draw UML diagrams (for job/hobby projects), mainly class, sequence, activity, statechart diagrams. I've seen I spend too much time in drawing them on paper (or using paintbrush [dead]) and then write all the c++ classes skeletons (without counting the amount of time to update them!) I also like to draw dependency graphs/trees to avoid unwanted cascading code updates/changes [depressed] I'd like to know which UML tool do you use, how (as a beginner/senior programmer, to draw a class diagram composed of 2 or 2 thousands classes, etc), why (you'd suggest me to use/don't use it for which reasons). I'm interested in UML tool which I can draw very huge diagrams with. P.S.- I'm asking theese things, because I see Rational Rose has a limit of 10x10 A4 pages. I'd like to give a look at many of open source projects by examining their (reverse engineered) class diagram, but in RR they are messy (classes are overlapping each other) because they are too big to be drawn in 100 pages even with smallest fonts. I'm surprised to see a so expensive professional tool has such limits... maybe I'm wrong at drawing my programs. (I'm going to use WinXP with VC++ (maybe .NET with a free IDE if I can find one that is up to my expectactions [lol], I've a degree in Computer Science). Thanks in advance.

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I use the one by Visual Paradigm because our lecturer got keys for it under educational use and we all got a key. I havn't used it much bit it does have all the standard features as far as i can tell.

ace

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I use Enterprise Architect. It supports alle features you expect from an UML tool and comes at a very reasonable price, especially when you're a student.

When importing big software projects it usually creates a package per directory. Thus you can easily import bigger projects not loosing orientation in your diagrams. The auto layout function is ok. Though as with any automatic layouter it does not know about semantics thus the layout is usually worse than one done by an human.

I don't know about any maximum diagram size. But as EA is pretty slick and fast it might be able to manage pretty big diagrams

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Personally, I use Visio. Sure it's geared for flowcharts and other such planning diagrams, but it does have a setup for UML and can even (i believe) be integrated with Visual Studio (2003).

Another useful feature is that if you use databases it can reverse engineer an ERD for you too.

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I've used Visio and ArgoUML, and currently toying with UMLPad. They'll be showing us Rational in September here at college, although I might start toying with it this semester.

So far, Visio is my #1 simply because it can create skeleton code in C++ (while ArgoUML, at least last time I checked, only did Java). I have the feeling that Rational will beat it down when the time comes, though.

Lastly, UMLPad is wierd and I can't seem to get a grip on it.

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Quote:
Original post by coldacidLastly, UMLPad is wierd and I can't seem to get a grip on it.


Tell me about it, it was the first UML tool I picked up and it confused the hell out of me, but then so did UML at the time.

Although I do use visio quite a bit (more for ERD's than UML diagrams) I, more often than not, just used a few sheets of A3 paper and a pencil. It wins everytime!

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The software engineering classes at my university use Rational Rose, so I have had to use that program extensively. I have decided that it has to be one of the most poorly written applications in the history of software engineering tools. It is riddled with bugs, takes FOREVER to start up (the UNIX version does, anyway, I've heard that the Windows version is a bit better), and there is no way to quickly breeze through UML diagram creation with just the keyboard. You always have to move your hand over to the mouse, and it makes everything take FOREVER to write.

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