Spotlight on Spira 7.0 - Data Synchronization Usability Enhancements

June 14th, 2022 by inflectra

We are very excited about the upcoming release of Spira 7.0 in July 2022. In previous articles we've described some of the new plugins and integrations coming to SpiraTest, SpiraTeam and SpiraPlan in this release as well as the new SpiraApps extensibility framework that lets us create in-app extensions for the first time. However in addition to this new infrastructure, we have also updated our existing data synchronization platform to improve the ease of use and simplify the setup process for administrators and users.

Data Synchronization Changes

When you are using SpiraTest in conjunction with other issue and task management tools such as Jira, Azure DevOps, GitHub, GitLab or service management systems such as Salesforce or ServiceNow you will need to use the Inflectra data-synchronization services platform to seamlessly orchestrate the data. Version 7.0 of Spira will include major usability enhancements to simplify the initial setup and configuration process. In particular, instead of the administration screens being completely generic, they will now automatically adjust based on the choice of the tool being integrated with.

Current User Interface

In the current (6.x) version of Spira, when you go to the main Data Synchronization administration home page, you will see the list of configured plugins. They are all displayed without any icons or branding:

List of data synchronization plugins

When you click on the Edit button for any of the plugins, they will display the following generic fields:

Details of the Jira data sync plugin

  • Connection Info
  • Login
  • Password
  • Custom 01 - 05

The problem is that different tools use different types of value for these fields. For example, some tools use a URL for the Connection Info, others just use repository names. Similarly, some tools use a login/password whereas others use an API Key.

Finally, the plugin-specific Custom 01 - 05 boxes are different for each plugin (by design) but offer no examples, documentation or helpful notes on what value is meant to be entered. You have to go to the data synchronization part of SpiraDocs to find the values that should be entered.

New User Interface

With Spira 7.0, when you go to the main Data Synchronization administration home page, you will see the list of configured plugins. However, now they will be listed along with an icon that denotes that the plugin has tool-specific documentation and configuration information available. Any plugin that doesn't have an icon, will use the older, generic fields. We have added the new documentation meta-data for the most popular plugins only.

List of data synchronization plugins

When you click on the Edit button for the Jira plugin (for example), you will now see the following fields that are specific to Jira:

Details of the Jira data sync plugin

 

Instead of the generic fields displayed previously, it now uses the Jira-specific field names instead of Custom 01 - 05 and the Connection/Login/Password fields are updated to reflect the values that Jira actually expects.

If you click on the Microsoft Azure DevOps (ADO) plugin, you will see a similar screen, except that the various fields are now specific to the values needed by ADO:

Details of the Azure DevOps data sync plugin

For each of the fields, the new system provides:

  • Customized Name
  • Tooltip and Notes that provides inline help
  • Placeholders that show the way the values should be entered

spotlight roadmap data synchronization jira azure devops plugins

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