Altair FlowTracer User Guide

FlowTracer is a complete system to create, manage, and execute design flows.

A design flow is a collection of interdependent jobs used to carry out design tasks. Design flows are an important corporate asset that need to be captured and protected. Design flows can be found in projects involving chip design, chip testing, library characterization, software development, and regression testing, among others. Basically, they can be found anywhere where there are two or more jobs that need to be executed in a well defined order to accomplish a design task. Such a task might require compilation then the formation of a link, placement then routing, or the execution of a test followed by report generation. Large flows may contain hundreds of sequential steps, while others may consist of tens of thousands of interdependent jobs.

FlowTracer captures and updates the design flow by interacting with the tools while they are executing. This unique technique to manage the dependencies between files and tools is called runtime tracing.

FlowTracer provides the following services:
Design management services
  • Automatic management of design file consistency
  • Coordination of concurrent activities
  • Automatic warnings when a tool tries to read invalid data
  • Documentation of the design flow
  • Reuse of design methodologies
  • Discovery of parallelisms
  • Automatic execution of tools
Intelligent change propagation
Network computing services
  • Interface with FlexNet Publisher and other licensing systems
  • Interface to local compute farm
  • Capability to directly manage multiple Taskers
  • Priority scheduling with FairShare
  • Load sharing
  • Load balancing
  • Queuing
  • Near-zero latency in job dispatching
  • Hardware and software Resource Management

Value Proposition

The value proposition for FlowTracer boils down to:
  • A faster, safer design cycle
  • Higher utilization of available computing resources
  • Higher quality flows

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