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CII Best Practices

1. Introduction

This repository contains the source code for the SPARK project. SPARK is a software development technology specifically designed for engineering high-reliability applications. It consists of a programming language, a verification toolset and a design method which, taken together, ensure that ultra-low defect software can be deployed in application domains where high-reliability must be assured and where safety and security are key requirements.

This repository provides visibility on the development process. The main line of development is in line with the development version of GNAT, which is not directly visible to the public (although patches are regularly transferred to the FSF repository at svn://, and it will probably be impossible to build the master branch of the software with any other compiler. However, buildable branches are provided corresponding to public compiler releases or the head of the FSF repository, see the section on Building SPARK below.

2. Commercial support

SPARK is commercially supported by AdaCore and Capgemini, you can visit the AdaCore website for more information.

3. Community version

There is a Community version of the tools, readily packaged, and suitable for research and hobbyist use. You can download it from AdaCore's website.

4. Governance

SPARK is led by AdaCore and co-developed by AdaCore, Capgemini and Inria. The SPARK team at AdaCore is responsible for the technology roadmap, taking into account the needs of all stakeholders: sales and marketing, customers, other development teams, community.

The team is organized around a set of roles for QA, integration, certification, language evolution, etc. with two roles managing interactions:

The Team Coordinator:

  • Defines the technology roadmap with all stakeholders.
  • Coordinates and organizes the work in the team.
  • Adjusts efforts and priorities based on the technology roadmap.

The Team Technical Authority:

  • Provides and maintains deep knowledge of the technology.
  • Is the main reference point for knowledge on the technology.
  • Is the software architect on the technology.

Currently these roles are exercized by Yannick Moy (Team Coordinator) and Johannes Kanig (Team Technical Authority).

5. Community

News about SPARK project are shared primarily on AdaCore's blog. Discussions about SPARK occur on a public mailing-list.

6. Documentation

You can find the definition of the SPARK language in the SPARK Reference Manual, and instructions on how to use the tool, together with a tutorial, in the SPARK User's Guide.

7. Building SPARK

In order to build SPARK, you need to first install the following dependencies (and we recommend using the OPAM package manager for these):

  • ocaml compiler
  • ocamlgraph library
  • menhir parser
  • zarith library
  • camlzip library
  • ocplib-simplex library

SPARK sources are tied to the sources of GNAT compiler frontend. For this reason, you should use a compiler built from sources with a date matching the sources of SPARK. There are two options.

7.1 Building SPARK with GNAT Community

To build SPARK with GNAT Community compiler, you need to use the corresponding branch of this repository. For example, to build with GNAT Community 2020, use the branch gpl-2020, as follows:

git checkout gpl-2020

SPARK repository uses submodules to keep in sync with corresponding versions of Why3, Alt-Ergo, CVC4 and Z3, which generally track the main repositories for these tools with minor modifications for the integration with SPARK. To retrieve the corresponding branch of these submodules, do:

git submodule init
git submodule update

Then follow the instructions in the Makefile.

7.2 Building SPARK with GNAT FSF

To build SPARK with GNAT version from FSF, you need to use the corresponding branch of this repository which follows the latest changes pushed at FSF, as follows:

git checkout fsf

To retrieve the most recent version of the submodules for Why3, Alt-Ergo, CVC4 and Z3, which matches the latest changes for SPARK pushed at FSF, do:

git submodule init
git submodule update

Then follow the instructions in the Makefile.


SPARK 2014 is the new version of SPARK, a software development technology specifically designed for engineering high-reliability applications.



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