Macro 4 Purchases XTRACE for OS/390 Tool Suite

Macro 4 has purchased XTRACE, an interactive program testing product from BankNet Technologies. XTRACE, which will be renamed TRACEMASTER, completes Macro 4’s integrated suite of tools for OS/390 developers. The new suite presents an alternative to the expensive and inflexible contracts offered by some larger software vendors.

OS/390 software has proved to be an extremely high-margin business for large software suppliers. They have often been able to lock their customers into long-term contracts that are expensive to modify when, for example, the hardware is upgraded. The addition of program testing to Macro 4’s existing fault diagnosis (DUMPMASTER) and data manipulation (INSYNC) tools enables developers to free themselves of these vendors. Macro 4 is an active campaigner against the price gouging practices.

OS/390 is becoming one of the most popular platforms for e-businesses and IT departments are under great pressure to integrate legacy applications into an e-commerce environment quickly while assuring 24x7 reliability. Detailed program testing traditionally represents about 30 percent of the time required to deploy new applications, and TRACEMASTER allows this time to be significantly reduced. Consequently, critical e-business legacy solutions can be deployed faster, and with greater reliability.

TRACEMASTER supports source level execution tracing of S/390 Assembler and COBOL programs. Key features include a scripting language for automated testing and customization, logic path coverage analysis, support for an unlimited number of breakpoints, a history of executed statements to allow reverse logic tracing, and the automatic display of variables referenced by the current program statement.

Macro 4 will continue to work with the original developers of TRACEMASTER to further enhance the functionality of the product.

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