Everware-CBDI announces the publication of version 3.0 of the CBDI-SAE Meta Model for SOA.  Immediate availability to all from the Everware-CBDI website in both PDF and UML Model formats as a draft for comment and feedback.

SOA is Mainstream

Many organizations tell us they are classifying SOA as mainstream – that is, the architectural pattern and associated technologies are mandated for all projects and programs and strategic applications are progressively being modernized with service interfaces. Further, as organizations’ use of SOA matures, we observe increasing commitment to establish common capabilities and core business services which naturally lead to standardization of the service portfolio.

This progressive maturing of SOA capability requires consistency of approach across disparate programs that facilitate collaboration and effective governance and naturally creates the requirement for standardization of reference models and reference architecture.

Whilst there is a plethora of reference materials from the standards organizations such as OASIS, The Open Group, The OMG and ITIL(OGC) it’s clear that in addition to inconsistency of definitions and expression, most of the standards are abstract and narrowly focused on core concepts and ontology. Whilst these standards are often very useful in guiding conceptual understanding, they may not provide the detailed models on a broader scope required by practitioners to establish best practices for architecture and solution delivery teams.

What’s required from an SOA reference model is a precise meta model that is:

  • a basis for common agreement on concepts across disparate groups that allows sharing of models.
  • at a level of detail that is unambiguous and supports tooling. A fully detailed UML model, defined, enumerated and attributed.
  • across a scope that supports a typical end to end business project covering: business models, service specification, service implementation, solutions, deployment and runtime, technology, testing, policy and organization. 
  • aan attempt at some level of compliance with the various standards groups, recognizing that they share no single SOA model, ontology, definitions or expression

In order to support use cases such as:

  • integrate SOA into wider business practices:
    • enterprise architecture
    • solution architecture
    • business modeling
    • BPM
    • application delivery projects
  • support common service definition across ecosystems such as industry groups, supply chains, business partner
  • define policy relating to reference model compliance (and thereby support governance of same)
  • define required traceability
  • support seamless interaction between teams (and parties) carrying out business modelling, service architecture and design, provisioning/procurement, implementation, test, service management and operation
  • support service agreements with outsourcing and offshore parties
  • support common schema definition for what may be a disparate set of tools being used in modeling, asset management, cataloguing, version and configuration management
  • support definition of a set of common and or project specific deliverables across the architecture and delivery life cycle
  • support creation of UML Profile or domain specific language (DSL)

Version 3.0

The CBDI-SAE meta model for SOA was first released in October of 2006 and updated to Version 2 in 2007 as a result of feedback from our membership and the broader industry. Everware-CBDI created a UML profile based on V2 in 2008 that has since been downloaded thousands of times all over the world. Obviously industry was ready for more mature support for modeling services and the feedback we got was very positive.

In parallel with our efforts the Object Management Group (OMG) issued a Request For Proposal (RFP) for a UML Profile and Meta Model (UPMS) in September of 2006. Consequently, a submission team formed that included Everware-CBDI, IBM, EDS, HP, Model Driven Solutions, SINTEF and several others. Aspects of the CBDI-SAE meta model contributed to the resulting SoaML profile which was finally adopted as a specification in November of 2008 and is currently in the finalization process.

Any model remains a work in progress if it is to continue to be relevant over time. The CBDI-SAE meta model for SOA is no different. As mentioned above the meta model has been downloaded thousands of times and has provided a practical mechanism for using CBDI-SAE with existing toolsets. Feedback from that broad membership usage along with our own involvement in standards organizations and client engagements has pointed out some areas that needed improvement and some holes that needed to be filled. Equally, we have continued to refine and extend our CBDI-SAE guidance.

Hence, as well as aligning with SoaML, we saw requirements to address the following:

  • Incorrect or cyclical dependencies between meta model packages
  • Only a very loose notion of who or what is providing a service
  • The need for a more consistent concept of Service for both business and software contexts
  • Separation of a concept (or "thing") from the specification (i.e., the artifact) of the concept
  • The need for refinement of the relationships between Service, Automation Unit, and Deployable Artifact, and
  • The need for inclusion of the concept of Internal Architecture.

Version 3 of the CBDI-SAE meta model for SOA sets out to address these issues.

UML Model Format

The availability of the CBDI-SAE Meta Model for SOA V3.0 as a UML model enables users to easily customize the meta model to their own unique requirements using popular UML modeling tools, and within the capabilities of the tool used to transform or generate the model into other formats such as XML Schemas (XSDs).

The specification – in UML or PDF form - for the CBDI-SAE Meta Model for SOA V3.0 contains the following

  • The meta model, depicted using a UML class diagram, in which each class box represents a CBDI-SAE concept.
  • The concepts are grouped into UML packages.
  • Descriptions of each of the UML packages in the meta model
  • Definitions and attributes for each of the concepts


The CBDI-SAE Meta Model for SOA V3.0 is available now to all as a draft for review and comment. It is available in the following formats

  • Specification in PDF form
  • Specification in Model form, in both XMI 2.1 format for use in compatible UML modelling tools, and .EAP format for use in Sparx Systems Enterprise Architect.
    The model is made available under a creative commons license. This allows others to use this model, to derive further deliverables providing they attribute Everware-CBDI in the process. See the specification for further details.

Download now from http://everware-cbdi.com/mm-v3

UML Profile

A new version of the CBDI-SAE UML Profile for SOA created from the V3 meta model will be available in due course.