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Open source Distributed Network Protocol
Tag: 0.9.4

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DNP3 library and testset

The DNP3 library and testset is a portable, scalable, and rigorously tested implementation of the DNP3 ( protocol stack written in C++ and provided by Green Energy Corp to the community under the Apache 2.0 license. The library is optimized for massively parallel front end processor implementations and slave device simulations, although it has been verified to perform very well on embedded linux ARM architectures. It includes a command line master/slave test set.

The library has been verified under linux, cygwin, and windows. Two build systems are included:

  • GNU g++ and the rake (ruby make) build system provided. This build system is verified under ubuntu and cygwin.
  • Visual Studio SLN and PROJ files

The repository is organized as a set of projects of libraries and executables.

The main libraries are:

  • APL - Portable functionality for things like parsing, physical layers, logging
  • APLTestTools - Library of tools/mocks uses for testing
  • DNP3 - Protocol library for dnp3
  • Terminal - Extensible library for creating command line driven UI
  • DNP3Java - Library generated by swig that wraps the stack with JNI

The main executable targets are:

  • TestAPL - A test suite for the PSI library
  • DNP3Test - A test suite for the DNP3 library
  • TerminalTest - A test suite for the Terminal library
  • TestSet - A dnp3 command line master/slave test set.

Building Instructions

Common Dependencies for all platforms

Set the TOOLS_HOME environment variable to an appropraite path for installing tools and libraries. Reasonable choices are C:\Tools or ~/tools.

  • On cygwin/windows this variable is set via:


  • On Linux systems its common to add the following line to ~/.bashrc

    export TOOLS_HOME=~/tools

Configuring CYGWIN

Get a copy of setup.exe from Hold onto setup.exe as you may need it to install additional packages.

You will need the following additional packages to build the C++ libraries and tests. Please be careful to get the correct version if noted below:

  • Web -> wget // used in install scripts to retrieve packages
  • Devel -> gcc-g++ // C++ compiler (version 3.4.4, not tested on gcc4x)
  • Devel -> cache // C compiler cache for improving recompilation
  • Devel -> make // GNU version of make utility
  • Devel -> ruby // Scripting language we use it for build scripts
  • Devel -> libtool // Shared library generation tool

Optional packages:

  • Devel -> swig // C/C++ wrapper generator used for Java bindings
  • Devel -> doxygen // documentation system for C++

Doxygen needs GraphViz. Download and install GraphViz:

The msi installer will put a program called dot onto your path that doxygen needs to generate images.


If you want to build for the Technologic Systems ARM platform, install the cross-compiler:

cd tools/install_scripts/crosstool ./

It is important that this step be completely successfully prior to the boost installation, as the Boost libraries will be built for ARM as well as your platform.

Install Boost

Install the boost libraries and headers by running the script:

cd tools/install_scripts/boost/{VERSION} ./

This step will take some time as it retrieves the boost package and builds from source for both your platform and for ARM.

When the boost version we are using is updated we will update the references in rakefile.rb and config/boost_*.vsprops to use the new version name and include updated installers to compile the new version, if after and update the build suddenly fails with missing boost include errors errors check that the boost version hasn't been upgraded recently.

Install Ruby Gems and Rake

RubyGems is a package delivery system for ruby libraries. Follow the instructions from the RubyGems website to install:

Rake is a ruby gem. To install rake:

gem install rake

Creating Native -> Java (JNI) Bindings

We have created native bindings for java using SWIG. Prior to version 0.9.3, the native libraries where embedded into the jar file and extracted before use on the target. This caused us problems with OSGi and made integrating the jar difficult with some build tools.

The shared library must now be installed in a directory found on the java.library.path. Typical locations are /usr/lib or C:<windir>\System32.

We keep some precompiled versions of the library on the project site for various platforms.

1) Use rake to generate the bindings and build the shared library. This step also outputs the java code. 2) Cd to the DNP3Java dir and use Maven to build/deploy the jar.

Building the libraries and tests

Use rake to build. To see a list of targets and their descriptions, type:

rake -T

rake understands dependencies similarly to the GNU make utility. To build and run the dnp3test executable, type:

rake dnp3test:run

Flags not documented by Rake -T:

  • debug=true // debug mode, compiler generate debug information to use with gdb, etc
  • arm=true // crosscompile for arm, requires the arm cross compiler to be installed w/ arm Boost libs
  • coverage=true // compile with coverage information
  • SH_VERBOSE=true // print every command that rake issues to the shell


rake // build everything rake arm=true // build everything in release mode for arm rake dnp3test:run debug=true // build and run the dnp3test w/ debug info rake dnp3test:run["--show_progress=true"] // run the test in release mode, w/ arg for Boost.Test

Generating Documentation

To generate documentation for the stack you need to have doxygen and graphviz (dot) installed before invoking:

rake document

Be patient, this generates hundreds of megs worth of images.

The html output will be generated in ./docs

Building the Java bindings

The Java Developers Kit (JDK) and Swig are required to build Java bindings. Install Open JDK 1.6 or greater.

Set the JAVA_HOME directory to the install path of your JDK version.

Deploying the jar

The deployment tasks require Apache Buildr to be installed:

gem install buildr

There are 2 tasks for deploying the jar:

  • dnp3java:install : copies the file to your local maven repository (doesn't overwrite an existing build so delete that library first)
  • dnp3java:upload : uploads the file to the remote maven repository (this should generally only be done by the build server)
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