1. About This Guide

This guide has two aims. The first one is to introduce you to the Ada Semantic Interface Specification (ASIS) and show you how you can build various useful tools on top of ASIS. The second is to describe the ASIS implementation for the GNAT Ada compiler.

What This Guide Contains

This guide contains the following chapters:

What You Should Know Before Reading This Guide

This User’s Guide assumes that you are familiar with Ada language, as described in the International Standard ANSI/ISO/IEC-8652:2012(E) (hereafter referred to as the Ada Reference Manual), and that you have some basic experience in Ada programming with GNAT.

This User’s Guide also assumes that you have ASIS-for-GNAT properly installed for your GNAT compiler, and that you are familiar with the structure of the ASIS-for-GNAT distribution (if not, see the top ASIS README file).

This guide does not require previous knowledge of or experience with ASIS itself.

Related Information

The following sources contain useful supplemental information:

  • GNAT User’s Guide, for information about the GNAT environment

  • ASIS-for-GNAT Installation Guide

  • The ASIS-for-GNAT Reference Manual

  • The ASIS 95 definition, available as ISO/IEC International Standard 15291.

  • The Web site for the ASIS Working Group: http://www.acm.org/sigada/wg/asiswg


Following are examples of the typographical and graphic conventions used in this guide:

  • Functions, utility program names, standard names, and classes.

  • Option flags

  • File Names, button names, and field names.

  • Variables.

  • Emphasis.

  • [optional information or parameters]

  • Examples are described by text

    and then shown this way.

Commands that are entered by the user are preceded in this manual by the character ‘$’ (dollar sign) followed by space. If your system uses this sequence as a prompt, then the commands will appear exactly as you see them in the manual. If your system uses some other prompt, then the command will appear with the $ replaced by whatever prompt character you are using.

Full file names are shown with the ‘/’ character as the directory separator; e.g., parent-dir/subdir/myfile.adb. If you are using GNAT on a Windows platform, please note that the ‘\’ character should be used instead.