Writing XML can be quite challenging. Using a good editor with autocomplete capabilities along with the provided XML Schema can be of great help. But it is still quite complicated, especially as the project gets bigger and involves multiple files. The System Designer UI tool can help ease this process and manage the complexity of a large system. System Designer is a tool that allows you to graphically design and configure all the aspects of a Connext® DDS distributed system. Think of it as a user interface (UI) to XML-Based Application Creation, a technology that allows you to specify in XML format all the aspects of a DDS system.


System Designer is a graphical UI that enables the user to:

  • Specify the Data Types that will be used to communicate information in the system.
  • Create the Topics that will be used in the domain, associating each Topic with a Data Type.
  • Define the DomainParticipants , giving each a participant-name.
  • Define the DataWriters and DataReaders within each DomainParticipant, each associated with its corresponding Topic.
  • Define the Qualities of Service (QoS) that all the entities can use



The main System Designer UI offers four tabs, which represent the tasks in XML-Based Application Creation: Types Definition, QoS Specification, Domain Definition and Participant Definition. The order of these tabs follows with logical progression of XML-Based Application development. Each tab has context-sensitive drop-down menus that allow users to define the various aspects of the application. In addition to the menu-driven method of describing the application, the user can edit the XML directly. Changes that are manually entered will be reflected in the graphical interface.

System Designer also has a tool bar that allows the user to manage their projects. The tool bar allows the user to open an existing project or create a new one. A user can also import a project from a zip file as well as export a project to a zip file. 

Finally, a project can be validated for adherence to the XML Schema Definition (XSD) using xmllint from xmlsoft.org (xmllint must be installed separately). System Designer will also scan the current project to see if there are any data types that have unbounded sequences or strings.

Click here to use System Designer with previous versions of Connext.