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openLCA

This repository contains the source code of openLCA. openLCA is a Java application that runs on the Eclipse Rich Client Platform (Eclipse RCP). This project depends on the olca-modules project which is a plain Maven project that contains the core functionalities of openLCA (e.g. the model, database access, calculations, data exchange, and database updates).

This repository has the following sub-projects:

  • olca-app: contains the source code of the openLCA RCP application.
  • olca-app-build: contains the build scripts for compiling openLCA and creating the installers for Windows, Linux, and macOS.
  • olca-app-html: contains the source code for the HTML views in openLCA (like the start page or the report views).
  • olca-refdata: contains the current reference data (units, quantities, and flows) that are packaged with openLCA.

See also the README files that are contained in these sub-projects.

Building from source

openLCA is an Eclipse RCP application with parts of the user interface written in HTML5 and JavaScript. To compile it from source you need to have the following tools installed:

When you have these tools installed you can build the application from source via the following steps:

Install the openLCA core modules

The core modules contain the application logic that is independent from the user interface and can be also used in other applications. These modules are plain Maven projects and can be installed via mvn install. See the olca-modules repository for more information.

Get the source code of the application

We recommend that to use Git to manage the source code but you can also download the source code as a zip file. Create a development directory (the path should not contain whitespaces):

mkdir olca
cd olca

and get the source code:

git clone https://github.com/GreenDelta/olca-app.git

Your development directory should now look like this:

olca-app
  .git
  olca-app
  olca-app-build
  olca-app-html
  olca-refdata
  ...

Building the HTML pages

To build the HTML pages of the user interface navigate to the olca-app-html folder:

cd olca-app/olca-app-html

Then install the Node.js modules via npm (npm is a package manager that comes with your Node.js installation):

npm install

This also installs a local version of webpack which is used to create the distribution package. The build of this package can be invoked via:

npm run build

The output is generated in the dist folder of this directory and packaged into a zip file that is copied to the ../olca-app/html folder.

Prepare the Eclipse workspace

Download the current Eclipse package for RCP and RAP developers (to have everything together you can extract it into your development directory). Create a workspace directory in your development directory (e.g. under the eclipse folder to have a clean structure):

eclipse
  ...
  workspace
olca-app
  .git
  olca-app
  olca-app-build
  olca-app-html
  olca-app-refdata
  ...

After this, open Eclipse and select the created workspace directory. Import the projects into Eclipse via Import > General > Existing Projects into Workspace (select the olca/olca-app directory). You should now see the olca-app, olca-app-build, projects in your Eclipse workspace.

Loading the target platform

The file platform.target in the olca-app project contains the definition of the target platform of the openLCA RCP application. Just open the file with the Target Editor and click on Set as target platform on the top right of the editor.

This will download the resources of the target platform into your local workspace and, thus, may take a while. Unfortunately, setting up and configuring Eclipse can be quite challenging. If you get errors like Unable locate installable unit in target definition, this discussion may help.

Copy the Maven modules

Go back to the command line and navigate to the olca-app/olca-app folder:

cd olca-app/olca-app

and run

mvn package

This will copy the installed openLCA core modules and dependencies (see above) to the folder olca-app/olca-app/libs.

Test the application

Refresh your Eclipse workspace (select all and press F5). Open the file olca-app/openLCA.product within Eclipse and click on the run icon inside the openLCA.product tab. openLCA should now start.

If you want to build an installable product, see the description in the olca-app-build sub-project or simply use the Eclipse export wizard (Export/Eclipse product).

Build the database templates

The openLCA application contains database templates that are used when the user creates a new database (empty, with units, or with all reference data). There is a Maven project olca-refdata that creates these database templates and copies them to the olca-app/olca-app/db_templates folder from which openLCA loads these templates. To build the templates, navigate to the refdata project and run the build:

cd olca-app/olca-refdata
mvn package

License

Unless stated otherwise, all source code of the openLCA project is licensed under the Mozilla Public License, v. 2.0. Please see the LICENSE.txt file in the root directory of the source code.

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