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Architecture Reconstruction Guidelines

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journal contribution
posted on 01.08.2001 by Rick Kazman, Liam O'Brien, Chris Verhoef
Architecture reconstruction is the process where the "as-built" architecture of an implemented system is obtained from the existing legacy system. This is done through a detailed analysis of the system using tool support. The tools extract information about the system and aid in building and aggregating successive levels of abstraction. If the reconstruction is successful, the end result is an architectural representation of the system that aids in reasoning about the system. In some cases, it may not be possible to generate a useful representation due to the system. In this report, we describe the process of architecture reconstruction using the Dali architecture reconstruction workbench. We outline guidelines for reconstructing the architectural representations of existing systems. The process that is undertaken to reconstruct an architecture can be supported by other tools and in fact can be done manually.