Developer Information


  1. Install the latest version of OpenStudio
  2. Install Ruby:

    1. On Mac:
    2. Install Ruby 2.2 using rbenv (ruby -v from command prompt to check installed version).
    3. On Windows:
    4. Install Ruby 2.2.6 (ruby -v from command prompt to check installed version).
    5. Install Ruby DevKit by following these installation instructions
    6. Using BTAP development Environment
    7. Do nothing.
  3. Connect Ruby to OpenStudio:

    1. On Mac:
    2. Create a file called openstudio.rb
    3. Contents: require "/Applications/openstudio-2.1.0/Ruby/openstudio.rb" Modify 2.1.0 to the version you installed.
    4. Save it here: /usr/lib/ruby/site_ruby/openstudio.rb
    5. On Windows:
    6. Create a file called openstudio.rb
    7. Contents: require "C:/openstudio-2.1.0/Ruby/openstudio.rb" Modify 2.1.0 to the version you installed.
    8. Save it here: C:/Ruby22-x64/lib/ruby/site_ruby/openstudio.rb
    9. Start > right click Computer > Properties > Advanced system settings > Environment variables. In the User variables section (top) add a new Variable with the name GEM_PATH and the Value C:\Ruby22-x64\lib\ruby\gems\2.2.0.
    10. Using BTAP development Environment
    11. Do nothing.
  4. Install the bundler ruby gem. (gem install bundler from command prompt)

  5. Install the json ruby gem. (gem install json from command prompt)

  6. Install Git.

  7. Install GitHub desktop or another GUI that makes Git easier to use.

  8. Clone the source code using GitHub desktop (easier) or Git (harder).

  9. Run all commands below from the /openstudio-standards/openstudio-standards directory

  10. On Windows, use the Git Bash instead of the default command prompt.

  11. On Mac the default terminal is fine.

  12. Using BTAP development Environment use the terminator terminal ideally.

  13. Navigate to the openstudio-standards directory.

  14. Command prompt: bundle install. This will install all ruby gems necessary to develop this code.

  15. Sign up for an account at CircleCI and follow the NREL/openstudio-standards project.

  16. That's it, you are ready to make changes!

Development Process


  1. Modify the code
  2. Test the code (new code plus old code to make sure you didn't break anything)
  3. Document the code
  4. Push branch to GitHub repository
  5. Continuous automation runs tests
  6. Pull request
  7. Code review and merge

This project uses Rake to run tasks from the terminal.

rake -T: List all available commands

  • rake build # Build openstudio-standards-0.1.15.gem into the pkg directory
  • rake clean # Remove any temporary products
  • rake clobber # Remove any generated files
  • rake data:update # Download OpenStudio_Standards from Google & export JSONs
  • rake data:update:costing # Update RS-Means Database
  • rake data:update:manual # Export JSONs from OpenStudio_Standards
  • rake doc # Generate the documentation
  • rake doc:show # Show the documentation in a web browser
  • rake install # Build and install openstudio-standards-0.1.15.gem into system gems
  • rake install:local # Build and install openstudio-standards-0.1.15.gem into system gems without network access
  • rake release[remote] # Create tag v0.1.15 and build and push openstudio-standards-0.1.15.gem to Rubygems
  • rake rubocop # Check the code for style consistency
  • rake rubocop:auto_correct # Auto-correct RuboCop offenses
  • rake rubocop:show # Show the rubocop output in a web browser
  • rake test:btap_json_test # Run tests for btap_json_test
  • rake test:circ-90_1_general # Run tests for circ-90_1_general
  • rake test:circ-90_1_prm # Run tests for circ-90_1_prm
  • rake test:circ-all-tests # Run tests for circ-all-tests
  • rake test:circ-doe_prototype # Run tests for circ-doe_prototype
  • rake test:circ-necb # Run tests for circ-necb
  • rake test:circ-necb_bldg # Run tests for circ-necb_bldg

Modify the code

As you add to/modify the code, please try to fit changes into the current structure rather than bolting things on willy-nilly. See the Code Structure page to see how the code is organized. If you don't understand something or want to discuss your plan before you get started, contact [email protected].

  1. Make a new branch for your changes.
  2. Modify the code on your branch.
  3. Modify the OpenStudio_Standards Google Spreadsheet
  4. rake data:update to download the latest version of the spreadsheet from Google Drive and export the JSON files.

Test the code

Tests prove that your code works as expected, but more importantly they help make sure that changes don't break other code. If your code doesn't have tests and someone else makes changes that break it, it's your own fault.

  1. Create a new file called test_XX.rb in the /test/subdirectory directory.
  2. Put tests into your file. See other test files for examples.
  3. ruby test/subdirectory/test_XX.rb Run your new test file.
  4. Fix your code and make sure your tests pass.

Document the code

Good documentation is critical. Changes or additions without good documentation will not be accepted. This library uses YARD to generate documentation. You simply write the documentation inline as specially tagged comments and the rest happens automagically. This YARD cheat sheet quickly shows you how to document things. You can also look at the other methods documented in the code.

  1. Make sure your methods are documented.
  2. rake doc Generate the documentation and document any undocumented methods that are listed
  3. rake doc:show Inspect the documentation in a browser to make sure it looks right.

Push branch to GitHub

  1. Commit your changes to your branch.
  2. Merge /Master into your branch and resolve any conflicts.
  3. Push your branch to GitHub.
  4. DO NOT push your code to the /Master branch!

Pull request

Once your code is done and the tests are passing locally on your branch with Master merged in, go to GitHub and create a Pull Request. This tells the main developers that you have changes to bring into the main code.

Code Review & Merge

The main developers will review your changes and either approve the pull request or give you some comments. If they approve the pull request, you are done and your changes are now part of the main code!

Look at the continuous integration results

  1. When a commit is made to /Master, the continuous integration machine will run all the tests.
  2. Go to openstudio-standards Circle CI and look at the NREL/openstudio-standards project to check out the build status. If it is failing and your commit broke it, please fix it ASAP! Also, you can follow a project on Circle CI and you will get email updates when someone breaks the build.

Issues and New Features

  1. Issues and feature requests are reported on the GitHub Repository Issues Page.
  2. Issues should be labeled according to the OpenStudio Issue Prioritization Guide
  3. Failing tests do not need to be listed as issues; they should be fixed if they fail.