RouteSharp is a large application consisting (at present and in future implementations) in a User Interface (C# WPF) and in a F# core. The F# core implements (through functional/OO programming) many functionalities for path finding in a well defined network (the network itself is created using the core’s functions).

Download and installation

It is possible not to use the UI and access the path finding API(s) through a command line interface. This enables the user to directly interact with the system core used for defining nodes and connection and network traversal algorithms. To install the system core, called PathFinder, please do the following:

  1. Go to the Download section of the RouteSharp CodePlex Project Home at this link: Download section.
  2. Look at the several releases available. Look for the latest release showing the “PathFinder” title. That means the release consists in the core only. Note that probably, when clicking on the DOwnload section, you will be automatically redirected to the latest recommended download; it might be the one you are looking for, otherwose, select, on the menu on your right, the latest release for PathFinder.
  3. Download the executable “PathFinder.exe” by accepting the license agreement.

What have I downloaded?

“PathFinder.exe” is the application you downloaded. It is the system core for defining networks, parsing netfiles and finding minimal paths. You need to use a command line prompt to run the application. But before doing this, please consider the system requirements.

System requirements for PathFinder

To correctly run the application you need to meet the following requirements:

Requirement Required Description
Operating system Any Microsoft system from Windows XP: Win XP, Win Vista, Win Seven. All versions are compatible. The application is compiled for Microsoft Windows systems.
.NET Framework .NET Framework 4.0 or later must be installed. The application runs on .NET Framework.

Please look at the table above and comply all requirements in order to correctly run PathFinder.

Installing the .NET Framework

For those ones who are not accustomed to Microsoft technologies or the .NET Framework, here are some hints to download and install the .NET Framework.

  1. Go to the following link: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?FamilyID=9cfb2d51-5ff4-4491-b0e5-b386f32c0992
  2. Download the installer.
  3. Run the installer.
  4. Install all the .NET framework.
  5. Restart your system.

Using PathFinder

PathFinder is a common command line application.

  1. Open a new window of MS-DOS prompt or Windows PowerShell. From your current location, move (cd command) to the directory where you chose to download PathFinder.exe.
    Consider, for example, that your application is in your desktop and your working directory, in your prompt or shell, is the path C: (the root). Do the following:
    C:\ > cd Users
    C:\Users\ > cd MyUserName
    C:\Users\MyUserName\ > cd Desktop
    C:\Users\MyUserName\Desktop\ >
    Consider that your user in Windows is MyUserName
  2. Run the application. To run the application you need to write the netfile first. The application is run with one parameter only: the path where the netfile you want to parse is located. In the netfile you write all that is needed to create the network and to define the paths you would like to get (path queries). So run the application as follows
    C:\Users\MyUserName\Desktop\ > PathFinder.exe mynetfile.rs
    Consider that the netfile is in the desktop too.
  3. When you run the netfile you get a lot of verbose printings on your prompt/shell. They are just control messages. If an error occurs, it is reported in the last lines of the printing. If the parsing succeeds and the network is correctly built, the paths you requested in the netfile will be showed in the last lines.

Verbosity

From PathFinder 1.1 and later, the core has been provided with the following calling syntax:

PathFinder <filename> [verb|nonverb]

By using the verbose (default) mode, it is possible to see everything that the program generates: logs, status and so on. It is a very large quantity of information so think about using the verbose mode especially in complex and large networks where all printouts can slow down the core execution time by more than 300% (depending on the network complexity and dimensions). The slowdown is due to the printouts and only affects the parsing and preprocessing phase. The minimal path finding algorithm will run with the same speed.

By using the non-verbose mode, the final results are provided after few printouts.

What does PathFinder return to me?

PathFinder returns two important information: the paths you requested and a time report. The time report is used to evaluate the time needed to perform each query. They are useful information, sometimes they are needed.

Last edited Mar 6, 2011 at 11:49 PM by andry87, version 8

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