Power Tools for Technical Communication:
Evaluating Oral-Report Scripts


In this lab, you evaluate the script of an oral report:
  1. Study the script of the oral report below, paying particular attention to how well it meets the guidelines in Chapter 16 of Power Tools for Technical Communication.
  2. Make a copy of the evaluation chart at the end of Chapter 16, and fill it out with your evaluation of the oral report below.
  3. Put your name, Oral Report 3: Evaluation, and the date on this document, and send it to your instructor.


Explanation of the Context

I'm speaking as myself to a group of technical users. These users are the ones who will be creating the new integrated test areas using the document I created. The presentation is an informative report telling these users about the project and what has been created for their use. There is one overhead which contains the outline of the document. The overhead is put up during the introduction and is referred to as each subject is discussed.

Oral Report: Integrated Test Environment for Tandem Software Applications

Back on September 29th, I made a proposal to Dr. Gharry Koblett, the manager of the Software Quality Assurance group. This proposal was to create a written document which detailed the steps to make and test an integrated testing environment for the Tandem-based applications. The document would allow the various application groups to create standardized testing areas in a shorter period of time without having to draw upon the limited resources of the Development Control group. With the help of the Development Control group, the Tandem Tech Support group and several of the technical leads of the various applications, this document is complete. This presentation is to act as a formal turnover of the document to you, the users of the document. The document is broken down into various sections as follows.
  1. Preliminary analysis
  2. Tools
  3. Mapping the environment
  4. Security
  5. Online systems
  6. Batch systems
  7. Gotcha's
  8. Testing

The document starts with how to perform the preliminary analysis for laying out the new testing environment. The analysis phase is needed to determine how the data should be laid out on the disk packs for the new environment. This section is very important since a well laid out environment will be easier to maintain. There are currently samples of effective layouts for both 4 disk pack and 5 disk pack environments. Use the existing layouts to help speed up the process. If you decide to perform the preliminary analysis without these layouts, you can expect to take about two to three days to map out the data files.

To help you perform the analysis, there are various tools on the system. The Disk Space Analyzer Process, or DSAP, will help you map out the data files on the disks. Using DSAP with Microsoft Excel will allow you to break down the data evenly across the packs. Other tools which are available for use in creating the environment are the various Tandem utilities. There are also various obey files to help you create an environment. These tools which are described more fully in the document can be used to accomplish the following tasks:

  1. Backup an existing environment
  2. Restore a baseline environment from tape onto new disk packs
  3. Create the configuration files for the online applications
  4. Create the batch PASSIGNS file
  5. SQL-register the new environment's copy of the production objects

    Create the batch processing configuration files

Once the analysis is done, the data can be laid out on the disks. This is done with a combination of tape backups and file dups. The exact process is described in the document. There are also sample obey files in the appendices of the document to help you map out the data on the disk.

Once the data is on the disks, the disks should be secured through SAFEGUARD to prevent unauthorized access to the data. Currently this is done in the Systems Integration Test environments by securing the disks to the owner of the environment, NET.ST. For your environments, you will probably wish to open the security a little more. It is up to you as to how secure you need each environment to be made. To actually effect security at a disk level, you will need to involve Tandem Tech Support to gain access to SAFEGUARD.

There are several applications which need to be duplicated for a test environment. They are listed in the document. As each application is started, the system needs to be monitored to evaluate the impact upon the system resources. We are currently short on low-pin PCBs so keep a careful watch on that particular resource. The PCB count for the system can be seen using the Tandem utility Viewsys.

One of the last applications to bring up is Netbatch Plus. The batch processing scheduler runs under a security of SUPER.SUPER. This means that you will need to get the Tandem Tech Support group to start the application for you. Since the Tech Support group is responsible for the production system, they have very little time to assist others in development work. The document details what tasks you are capable of performing prior to involving the Support group. The obey files listed in that section will help to make sure that the time required from the Support group is as small as possible.

Once everything is up and running, there are a few "gotcha's" for which you should check. These issues usually won't prevent the applications from running, but they do cause erratic data. These errors can be difficult to track down to their source. A full list of these issues is written in the document.

Once the environment is created, you will wish to test the applications. In one of the appendices of the document, there is a test script. The script can be used to test the major functions of the environment. Any errors should show up in the Virtual Hometerm System (VHS ) or in Viewpoint. Each error will have to be evaluated to determine if it is a problem with the new environment. Most errors will be indicative of a problem in the creation of the environment.

You are now aware of the contents of the document. You are aware of how to create a standard test environment and how to test it once you are finished creating the environment. The standardized environments should help to streamline the development life cycle and to improve the quality of coding enhancements for Dell Computer Corp.


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