IBM's main goal in the Version 7 upgrade "was to put the A in SOA," or make a planned architecture the dominant theme in the development process of new application services, said Hebner. The toolset has four components:
- Rational Software Architect now allows model-driven development in Java 2 Enterprise Edition and in Web services-oriented portal applications. The tool can coordinate changes between an architect's model and a developer's code. A change in the system code under development will prompt a change in the model as well, allowing an architect to review it and see whether it is consistent with the model.
- Rational Software Modeler, a visual tool based on the symbols and syntax of the Universal Modeling Language 2.1, allow for clear design and communication of the design between architects, system analysts and designers.
- Rational Systems Developer leverages UML 2.1 models to bring together Java, C/C++ and CORBA-based applications. It can be used to meet Department of Defense Architecture Framework requirements for software projects.
- Rational Function Tester is a testing tool for Java, Visual Studio.Net and packaged application testing, to test for software functionality that is required in the application and to test for compatibility with the environment in which it must run.