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Interoperability Testing

To assist developers who are implementing the Microsoft Open Specifications, Microsoft offers a variety of interoperability testing opportunities and support. These include:

  • Message Analyzer — The eventual successor to Network Monitor which provides even more detail to help understand protocol communication issues related to behavior and validation.

  • The Network Monitor Tool and Parsers — These allow a developer to view and monitor in real time specific protocol communications between two products.  This includes communications between individual Microsoft products and between the developer’s implementation and a Microsoft product.

  • Plugfests and Events — Microsoft offers developers the opportunity to learn more about specific protocols and to test their implementations of those protocols at these Microsoft-campus group events.  Plugfests include one-on-one discussions with Microsoft engineers and the use of protocol test suites that help evaluate whether an implementation’s protocol communications conform to the relevant Microsoft Open Specifications.  File format events offer tools to verify the interoperability of file format implementations.

  • Interoperability Labs — Microsoft offers developers the opportunity to work more extensively with Microsoft engineers in a one-on-one, customized engagement to test their implementations in the Microsoft Enterprise Engineering Center.

  • Microsoft Protocol Test Suites (requires a Microsoft account) — Originally developed for in-house testing of the Microsoft Open Specifications, Microsoft Protocol Test Suites (Test Suites) have been used extensively during plugfests and interoperability labs to test partner implementations. Certain of these Test Suites are now available online for download and may be used by anyone (for details, see the end user license agreement for each Test Suite).

    A Test Suite evaluates whether a protocol implementation meets certain interoperability requirements. Test Suites do not cover every protocol requirement and in no way certify an implementation, even if all tests pass. However, each test suite provides users with a useful indication of interoperability. Source code is provided, allowing users to extend and integrate the Test Suites.

  • Microsoft Office Binary File Format Validator — The Microsoft Office Binary File Format Validator (BFFValidator) Beta tool validates .doc, .xls, and .ppt binary file format conformance to the binary file format open specifications, which can be found here. This command-line tool runs without requiring an installation of Word, Excel or PowerPoint on the computer.

  • Microsoft Exchange RPC Extractor — Microsoft Exchange RPC Extractor (RPX) is a command-line tool that can parse network captures and interpret remote procedure calls made from a client to Microsoft Exchange. RPX uses the information provided in the Microsoft Exchange protocol documentation to parse RPCs, remote operations (ROPs), and the parameters for each ROP.

  • OData Validator — As a key part of the ecosystem surrounding the OData protocol, the OData Validator serves as a tool to validate OData server responses. Each rule extracted from the OData specification is a direct interpretation of a requirement as defined in the OData protocol specification. Implementers can point the tool to an endpoint and select what needs to be validated. The tool executes the right set of rules against the payload and returns a pass or fail result set. The tool supports validating various OData payloads like service document, metadata document, feed, entity and error payloads.

If you have questions about these opportunities or are interested in additional interoperability tests and tools, the Interoperability Test Team is available to work with you to identify those tests and tools that will meet your specific needs.