The Adobe® AIR® runtime enables developers to use the Flex framework to build rich web applications that run as stand-alone client applications without the constraints of the browser. Adobe AIR applications run across desktop operating systems and on Android™, BlackBerry® Tablet OS and iOS mobile operating systems. With AIR, Flex developers can use their existing skills and code to build highly engaging, visually rich applications that combine the power of local resources and data with the reach of the web.
FlexUnit is a unit testing framework for Flex and ActionScript® 3.0 applications and libraries. It provides ActionScript developers with the same powerful set of tools that JUnit 4 provides for the Java™ community, but adapted specifically for the needs of the Adobe Flash® Platform. FlexUnit was created by Digital Primates as an open source product for the Flex community and is included in Adobe Flash Builder® 4.5 software.
AsUnit is the only open source unit test framework for ActionScript that works with ActionScript 2.0, 2.5, 3.0, Flash Authoring (back to MX and up to CS4), Adobe Flex® Builder™, the Flex Framework (2 and 3), MTASC, MXMLC, any version of Adobe Flash Player since version 6 and even AIR and Flash Lite®. We can even emit JUnit-compatible XML results. There is no dependency on any external tooling or framework.
HP QuickTest Professional supports functional and regression test automation. This solution uses the concept of keyword-driven testing to simplify test creation and maintenance. It enables testers to build functional and regression test cases by capturing flows directly from the application screens using specialised capturing technology. Test experts also have full access to the underlying test and object properties via an integrated scripting and debugging environment.
IBM Rational Functional Tester is an automated functional and regression testing solution for quality assurance teams concerned with validating their application functionality before deployment. Combining advanced test development techniques with the simplification of automated testing, IBM Rational Functional Tester accelerates the process of system test creation, execution and analysis to help ensure the early capture and repair of application errors.
SilkTest is the proven choice of QA professionals for powerful functional and regression test automation. Intuitive GUI record-and-play capabilities and a stable, easy-to-use scripting approach enable you to build robust functional and regression tests. SilkTest delivers time-tested stability and support for major enterprise environments and Web 2.0 technologies like Flex in a cost-effective package, making automated regression and functional software testing a key capability instead of an expensive option.
FlexMonkey, by Gorilla Logic
FlexMonkey is an Adobe AIR application used for testing Flex and AIR based applications. Providing the functionality to record, play back and verify Flex UI interactions, FlexMonkey also generates ActionScript based testing scripts that you can easily include within a continuous integration environment.
RIATest is a multiplatform GUI test automation tool for Flex applications. RIATest is built on top of the Flex automation framework and supports Flex 2, Flex 3, Flex 4 and AIR applications.
Ranorex is an UI test automation framework for testing application types such as Flex 3, Flex 4, AIR, Flash, Web 2.0, WPF, Silverlight, Qt, .NET and Java. The Ranorex Recorder enables you to capture/replay UI tests; edit actions; and generate real C# and VB.NET code. Ranorex object repositories enable separation of test automation code/recordings from RanoreXPath identification information. The test suite view simplifies the combination of simple modules and recordings within single test cases. In addition, you can directly connect test data — stored in tables or external data sources — with variables used as placeholders within modules and Ranorex repositories. The IDE includes test project management, an intuitive code editor, code completion, debugging and a watch monitor.
Sauce OnDemand and Flex extensions for Selenium, by Sauce Labs
Sauce Labs makes cross-browser testing of Flex applications simple and cost-effective — in the cloud or on-premise. The company's flagship product, Sauce OnDemand, is a cloud service that allows users to execute their test scripts in parallel across today's most popular browsers. Sauce OnDemand eliminates the overhead of setting up and maintaining test environments. Sauce Labs also provides on-premise support for the popular Selenium open source testing framework with Flex extensions and downloads of commercial Selenium implementations, allowing you to test your hybrid web applications in the cloud, with zero QA infrastructure set up and maintenance. Based on open source Flex-Pilot's object explorer API and Sauce IDE, Sauce OnDemand lets you send your tests directly to browsers — and then watch the tests run with Sauce TV.
TestComplete is an automated testing tool that lets you create, manage and run tests for any Windows®, web or rich client software. It makes it easy for anyone to create automated tests. And automated tests run faster, increase test coverage and lower costs.
TestPlant's QA automation and software testing product, aubergine, is designed with businesses, professional software application testers and QA automation specialists in mind. Because it does not interact with the underlying code, aubergine is ideal for QA automation and testing of any application including Flex/Flash, Java, HTML, .NET and Silverlight. aubergine delivers a robotic solution to user interface testing across all mobile operating systems and devices. Using RealVNC, generic VNC or emulators, aubergine deploys patented intelligent image recognition technology to read any device display. This approach to test automation is easy to use, noninvasive and requires no special hardware.
SOASTA CloudTest! can automatically record and test Flex applications and the way users interact with them.
Maque is a cross-platform, desktop-based development tool that is designed to help developers create, test and maintain web-enabled applications in a variety of spaces such as mobile, web and desktop. With a built-in HTTP Server, developers can create mock data services to develop and test their applications. Maque also provides the ability to create and dynamically modify JSON, HTML and XML documents in an easy to use UI.
Performance and load testing
HP LoadRunner, the market-leading performance testing solution, supports testing for a broad range of applications. It helps identify and eliminate performance bottlenecks, reduce mean time to resolution, verify that applications meet performance requirements before going live and mitigate business risk of application failure.
WebLOAD Flex Add-On, by RadView
WebLOAD Professional is RadView's award-winning software for performance testing of Internet applications. Designed specifically for Flex, the WebLOAD Flex Add-On includes a specialised protocol recorder that intelligently records the AMF protocol into a format common to WebLOAD's IDE.
SilkPerformer offers a cost-effective, enterprise-class tool for automated software stress, performance and load testing in an open and sharable model. With SilkPerformer, you can create powerful, realistic load tests for thousands of users running business scenarios across a broad range of enterprise application environments to identify bottlenecks and then apply powerful diagnostics to resolve performance issues.
CloudPuncher, by Midnight Coders
CloudPuncher is an innovative and intuitive cloud-based platform used for conducting realistic load and performance testing of Flex applications connecting to a variety of server environments, including Adobe LiveCycle® Data Services and BlazeDS.
Neotys is a leader in easy-to-use, cost-effective stress and load testing tools for Web 2.0 applications. The NeoLoad load testing solution helps you to perform your tests faster, while providing pertinent analysis and support for RIAs and new technologies including Flex, AMF, Adobe LiveCycle® and LiveCycle Data Services. NeoLoad allows you to test internally and from the cloud.
IBM® ILOGUE® Elixir provides 10 graphical data display components for customised RIA development using Flex and Adobe AIR. IBM ILOGUE Elixir helps turn raw data into clear, actionable information through a highly graphical and interactive user experience. For a productive design-time experience, IBM ILOGUE Elixir is tightly integrated with Adobe Flash Builder 4 software. Using a component of IBM ILOGUE Elixir is easy — just drag and drop it into place and set its properties from within your Flash Builder 4 development environment.
Flextras builds interface components for Flex that save you development time. There are three separate components in the Flextras Library: The AutoCompleteComboBox component is an Advanced ComboBox that provides automatic filtering of your dataProvider as the user types; Calendar Component lets you to display data in a Flex app, just like the calendar hanging on your wall; and the DataSorter component takes a common approach to sorting, making it easy for you to implement it in your Flex application.
Chimp is a permission-based filtering component for Flex and AIR. Applications implement Chimp by adding metadata within the Flex UIComponents. Based on the metadata, it will remove components completely, enable/disable and update visibility.
GIS web applications need to include geospatial functionality that go beyond simple map display and interaction. ArcGIS API for Flex is a powerful framework for building RIAs on top of ArcGIS Server. The API is now available for free for noncommercial use, allowing mapping and GIS capabilities to be more easily embedded, consumed and deployed in web or desktop applications. The API provides the tools to generate fast cross-browser and cross-platform dynamic maps, execute powerful GIS models and visualise the results, edit GIS data, locate addresses, perform routeing-related analysis and create mashups. The API provides components that support multiple map projections, as well as both dynamic and cached (tiled) map services. The API also includes prebuild tasks such as query, identify, find, routeing, geometry and geoprocessing to interact with ArcGIS Server.
FusionCharts for Flex is a charting component that adds spice to your Flex solutions. It currently offers more than 57 types of charts and gauges that can convert all your boring data to stunning animated visuals. With its customisability and interactive options like slicing, rotation, conversion from 2D to 3D, and vice versa, you are sure to impress your audience with FusionCharts for Flex.
Flexmonster Pivot Table & Charts, by FlexMonster
The Flexmonster Pivot Table & Charts component provides Flex & Flash applications with additional powerful reporting and visualisation capabilities. You get ready-to-use interactive pivot tables and charts, exposing business data in any desired representation. This component is written in pure ActionScript 3.0. It can be used for multidimensional data visualisation, advanced reporting, interactive drill-down and data analysis. The component can also be easily integrated into any Flex application to replace AdvancedDataGrid or OLAPDataGrid.
Kap Lab offers the following innovative data visualisation components:
Kalileo Flex Diagramming Components — Graph-based interfaces made easy. Kalileo provides ready-to-use yet highly customisable multilayout data visualisation components for Flex and AIR. Kalileo's Visualiser component displays data as graphs to better visualise connections. Kalileo's Diagrammer component, an extension of Visualiser, allows users to draw diagrams and edit them manually.
Kolbert Flex Reporting Components — Advanced Flex components for enterprise data reporting or business dashboards.Kolbert is a component package providing TreeMap, Radar Chart, Ring Chart and Elastic Search components.
All components are easy to integrate and free for noncommercial use.
ASTRA Flex components, by Yahoo!
Yahoo! offers the ASTRA Flex components for use in your Flex applications. These Flex components are designed to work like any other components in Flex with familiar properties, styles and events. They're fully documented and each component comes with multiple examples that demonstrate its various uses.
WebORB PDF Generator is both an SDK and a runtime solution that installs as an extension into WebORB for Java and WebORB for .NET, enabling both client and server applications to create template-based PDF documents.
amCharts and amStock Flex Components are native components which can be used both in Adobe Flex and AIR applications. They support a wide scope of data visualisation techniques ranging from basic Pie, Line and Column charts to advanced Radar/Polar, 3D, OHLC/Candlestick and Stock-related multi-dataset charts. Components area available as free download for any use or as commercial licences.
Data connectivity and AMF products
Adobe Digital Enterprise Platform (ADEP) software offers an enterprise-grade composite content application platform for building customer experience management applications. ADEP provides a unique combination of services and tools designed to enable enterprises and partners to build customer experience solutions that leverage the ubiquity of client-side technologies such as Adobe Reader®, Flash Player, HTML5, Flex and AIR.
Zend AMF, part of Zend framework
Adobe has contributed support for its open, binary AMF protocol to Zend Framework. Using Zend AMF, you can build Flex and AIR applications that use minimal bandwidth.
WebORB for PHP is an open source cross-platform integration server that integrates Flex, Flash, Ajax and Silverlight clients with PHP classes and data. WebORB enables remoting, messaging and data management using a variety of protocols, including AMF, HTTPS and SOAP web services. It also uses WebORB MQ for message queuing.
WebORB for Rails is an open source cross-platform integration server that integrates Flex and Flash clients with Ruby classes.
WebORB for Java is a cross-platform integration server that provides universal connectivity between desktop, browser and mobile clients (Flex, Flash, AJAX/JS, Silverlight, JSON, Java, .NET, Android, BlackBerry Playbook, Windows Phone 7 and iOS) and Java services. All supported client types can leverage WebORB for RPC and data exchange with Java POJOs, EJBs, Spring Beans, Hibernate objects and SOA Web Services. WebORB enables remoting, messaging and data management using a variety of protocols and messaging queues, including AMF, RTMP/T/S, HTTPS, SOAP Web Services, JMS, MQ Series and WebORB MQ.
WebORB for Cloud is a special packaging of WebORB for .NET and WebORB for Java enabling cloud-based deployments that easily expand and contract to match volume of traffic. Supported clouds include Microsoft Windows Azure, Amazon EC2 and Google App Engine. Pay-per-use pricing applies.
FluorineFX, an open source project
FluorineFx is an open source, high-performance, scalable framework that connects RIAs using Flash Player, Flex, AIR and Microsoft .NET. FluorineFx provides an open source alternative for Flex Remoting, Flex Data Services, Messaging and real-time messaging functionality for the .NET framework.
Granite Data Services, by Adequate Systems
Granite Data Services (GraniteDS) is a comprehensive development and integration solution for building Flex/JavaEE RIA applications. The entire framework is open-source and released under the LGPL v2 licence. It features connectors for various JPA engines with full lazy-loading support (Hibernate, OpenJPA, EclipseLink); integration with various application servers (JBoss, WebLogic, GlassFish, Tomcat, Jetty) and J2EE development frameworks (EJB3, Seam, CDI, Spring); data push (Comet, with JMS support); and a Flex development framework that provides injection, entity caching, transparent initialisation of lazy-loaded entities and data paging.
HP SWFScan, by HP
HP SWFScan, a free tool developed by HP Web Security Research Group, will automatically find security vulnerabilities in applications built on the Flash Platform. SWFScan decompiles applications built on the Flash Platform to extract the ActionScript code and statically analyses it to identify security issues such as information disclosure; identifies and reports insecure programming and deployment practices; and suggests solutions.
Licensing, security and encryption
Nitro-LM is a cloud-based service for software companies that view licensing and application protection as a critical component to their business. Nitro-LM goes beyond licence strings or key generators and provides a complete service for user registrations, product encryption and licensing, event-driven notifications, usage reporting and more. Integration of Nitro-LM can be directly in your software, as a component of your e-commerce process or both. Nitro-LM enables streamlining your overall business while protecting your revenue stream.
Easily secure your application against unlicensed use and sell it anywhere you like without having to share revenue with or pay any fees to Futurescale. Why trust some random dot-com to protect and serve your licences? Zarqon uses Amazon S3, the most mature cloud platform on the Internet. Issue licences for limited-time trials or recurring subscriptions and upsell new features to existing users. Control licences any way you like. Lock down both Adobe® AIR® and Flex apps wherever they run using the same simple yet powerful Zarqon API. Zarqon was created by Futurescale, Inc., an Adobe Solution Partner.
Cairngorm 3 provides a set of optional Flex libraries released under the Cairngorm Licence. These are designed to support the Cairngorm 3 architecture by providing utilities for i.e. navigation, Object Relational mapping, validation, module loading, reduction of view behaviour, task processing and popup management.
Mate is a tag-based, event-driven Flex framework that makes it easy to handle the events your Flex application creates. Mate allows you to define who is handling those events and determine whether data needs to be retrieved from the server or other events need to be triggered. Mate also provides a mechanism for dependency injection to make it easy for the different parts of your application to get the data and objects they need.
PureMVC Framework, an open source project
Since 2006, the PureMVC Framework has been enabling the rapid but maintainable development of Flex, Flash and AIR applications. Based upon proven design patterns, PureMVC is free and open source and helps you to create loosely coupled code organised according to the classic Model, View and Controller concept. PureMVC was created and continues to be maintained and supported by Futurescale, Inc., an Adobe Solution Partner.
Swiz is a brutally simple micro-architecture for RIA development with Flash and Flex. Swiz is simple, lightweight and extremely productive thanks to using best practices learnt from top RIA developers at the best consulting firms in the industry. Swiz imposes no JEE patterns on your code, no repetitive folder layouts, no boilerplate code and does not require you to extend framework-specific classes.
Globalisation and Internationalisation Framework, by Digital Primates
The Thrasys i18n framework is an extension to the Flex framework, providing full support for bi-directional languages and international locales in Flex. While extremely easy to integrate, the framework provides automatic bi-directional page flipping, access to the advanced rendering capabilities of the Adobe Text Layout Framework, fully configurable client and OS-independent sorting of any Flex control and support for non-Gregorian calendaring systems.
Parsley is an application framework for Flex and Flash applications based on an IoC container, offering dependency injection, decoupled messaging, modularisation and extensibility.
Pimento is a framework for integrating data management into Rich Internet Applications. It integrates Java web applications built with JPA/Hibernate and Spring with Flex, Flash and AIR clients.
The Potomac Framework for Flex is a modularity framework inspired by OSGi that pulls user interface "parts" together to form applications. It is a general-purpose business application framework (providing reusable features for business applications. Potomac was inspired by many existing technologies, namely the OSGi and the Eclipse RCP. If you're a Java developer familiar with the Eclipse RCP, many of the Potomac features should feel similar. If you're a Flex developer interested in enterprise grade modularity, then Potomac is the framework for you.
Robotlegs is a pure AS3 micro-architecture (framework) with a light footprint and limited scope. Simply put, Robotlegs is there to help you to wire your objects together. It provides the glue that your application needs to easily function in a decoupled way. Through the use of automated metadata-based dependency injection, Robotlegs removes boilerplate code in an application.
Microsoft Visual Studio Flex tooling plug-ins
Amethyst, by SapphireSteel Software
Amethyst is a visual design and coding environment for Flex, AIR and ActionScript. Smoothly integrated into Microsoft Visual Studio, Amethyst has a drag-and-drop designer, extensive refactoring, IntelliSence, customisable code formatting and a fast "drill-down" debugger.
Ensemble's Tofino is a Microsoft Visual Studio plug-in that enables .NET developers to create Flex front ends for their applications. Through Tofino, .NET developers can create and edit MXML and ActionScript source file codes, run and debug Flex applications, move smoothly between MXML and .NET file types and invoke Flex build and run commands, all within their native Visual Studio development environment.
Flex tooling extensions
Kap Lab offers two types of Flex development tools: reusable components (Klovis) and debugging consoles. All of them are opensource. Klovis consists of a set of reusable components targeted for ActionScript, Flex and AIR applications.
The debugging consoles include:
Kap Inspect: Enables developers to control the structure of applications, monitor and analyse the events process, check the design and styles, manipulate objects properties, find memory leaks and more.
Parsley Console: Allows users of Parsley to spy on many things that occur inside the framework such as content, injection points, messages and commands flows.
PureMVC Console: Provides insights on what happens at the framework level: Notifications, Commands, Mediators and Proxies.
Cairngorm 2 Console: Provides insights on what happens at the framework level: Operations, Events, ModelLocator, Commands, Events and Services.
SourceMate, by Element River
SourceMate, the ultimate companion for the serious Flex and ActionScript developer, adds refactoring, code generation, code snippets and much more to Flash Builder 4. Key features include multiple getter/setter creation, extract interface and extract method refactoring, Ant build file creation and TODO and FIXME task markers.
FlexPMD is a tool that helps to improve code quality by auditing any ActionScript or Flex source directory and detecting common bad practices, such as unused code (functions, variables, constants, etc.); inefficient code (misuse of dynamic filters, heavy constructors, etc.); overly complex code (nested loops, too many conditionals, etc.); and incorrect use of the Flex component lifecycle (commitProperties, etc.).
The ActionScript Code Coverage Plug-in for Flash Builder is a tool that helps ActionScript and Flex developers understand exactly what code is executed while an application is running. This product is currently in prerelease.
Flexcover is a code coverage tool for Flex, AIR and AS3. It incorporates a modified version of the AS3 compiler which inserts extra function calls in the code within the SWF or SWC output file. At runtime, these function calls send information on the application's code coverage to a separate tool; The modified compiler also emits a separate "coverage metadata" file that describes all the possible packages, classes, functions, code blocks and lines in the code, as well as the names of the associated source code files.
Flex-mojos is a collection of maven plugins that allow maven to compile, optimise and test Flex SWF, Flex SWC, Air SWF, Air SWC and Air package. The main goal is to provide full support to all mxmlc/compc options.
Mockolate provides Mock Objects and Test Spies for ActionScript 3. A Mock Object can be used to simulate the behaviour of complex, real (non-mock) objects when using the real object would be impractical or impossible. Mock Objects can help you to determine when an object is slow (like a database or webservice); is non-deterministic (like the current time); or has states that are difficult to reproduce (like network connections). A Test Spy records which methods are called, which getters are got, which setters are set. The handler (typically a TestCase) can then check the facts against what should or should not have happened and take action.
UML for ActionScript and Flex is an UML editor with advanced CodeSync technology. It is a developer-friendly tool that can be used to model and synchronise ActionScript code (AS and MXML files).
Monitoring and analytics
RIA Analytics is a platform providing a comprehensive suite of technologies that enable businesses to monitor, visualise, analyse and optimise rich Internet applications. The system supports visual mining of the data extracted and aggregated from user activity. Processed information is visualised through an intuitive management console that supports creating customised dashboards.
Tealeaf CX passively records the HTTP(S) request and response data by "sniffing" TCP/IP packets from the network via an existing span port or network tap. The CX Standard Edition provides a non-intrusive, real-time method to capture what every customer is doing and seeing on every page, across an entire session. Tealeaf CX Extended Edition captures in-page interactions and client-side functions executed by Rich Internet Application (RIA) technologies, including Flash, Flex and AJAX.
Platform providers leverage Flex
Intuit Partner Platform, by Intuit
The Intuit Partner Platform (IPP) unlocks a huge opportunity for ISVs and SaaS providers to reach and sell to millions of small businesses. Using the Intuit Partner Platform, you can quickly build and deploy rich Software as a Service (SaaS) apps capable of seamless integration with QuickBooks data and reach a potential market of nearly 25 million users within the 4 million small businesses using QuickBooks.
Yodlee FinApp, by Yodlee
The Yodlee FinApp platform gives you the ability to build and distribute applications that help people figure out how to better manage, spend or indulge in life with their money. The Yodlee FinApp SDK consists of an application development platform based on Flex, an authentication framework based on OAuth and a set of REST APIs for working with Yodlee financial data.
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