Common Process Editor (CPE)

The CPE provides java-based process visualization and editing capabilities of newly synthesized processes and process knowledge. CPE utilizes a translator which converts O-Plan plan output format into the Common Process Language(CPL).

Running CPE

The CPE can be launched from the control panel or executed from a command prompt in the installed directory: "./cde". CPE runs as a java applet (using appletviewer, which is part of the JDK) which means that it may eventally be integrated into set of web pages and launched from a browser, but most of the current browsers fail to provide adequate support for the java api's. The O-Plan plan output format file which was exported from O-Plan can be read into the CPE. See figure 1 for an example of process editing session.

Figure 1 - The Common Process Editor

See the "{target dir}/docs/papers/" directory for the CPE users guide which provides detailed information for working with the editor. Eventually, plug-in translators will be developed for exporting the process knowledge to WPDL, IDEF3, PIF, PSL. CPE also provides access to its O-Plan Output->CPL translator on the command line. For example, the command "java -classpath cpe.jar opo < input.opo > output.cpl" translates and O-Plan file to CPL (sorted FOL).


The CPE takes advantage of the latest java classes in the Java Foundation Class (JFC) library (formerly known as Swing). In order to ensure compatability and performance, download and install at least the JDK 1.2 beta 4 or later. See for downloading. CPE provides lots of features for managing processes. For example: it supports opening and saving specifications over the internet (using FTP) or to a local file system; internet-based communication with other tools (e.g. CPA); reading of system properties (e.g. user name); etc. Much of this was simply not allowed in an applet for early versions of java. The java security model has changed significantly to provide much more flexibility. In order to work with the CPE (using appletviewer), a few security measures must be addressed.

Detailed information about the new security architecture can be found here. The first step is to create a new security keystore using keytool (which comes as part of the JDK). Keytool can then also be used to import the certificate which can be found at: "{target dir}/source/school.key". This certificate was used to "sign" the java applet archives so they can be authenticated. The last two steps involve setting up "policy entries" for the security and in configuring appletviewer to use the new policy.

The JDK also contains a tool for managing security policies: policytool. Policytool provides a graphical user interface for setting up policy entries. One policy entry must be made for CDE and one for CPE although the rights will be identical. This gives these tools the permission to perform the specified acts. The required permissions are listed in "{target dir}/source/policy". Ensure that the appropriate {target dir} is specified and the correct socket for the CPA communication is entered.

Source code


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Last updated 7 October 1998
by Steve Polyak