Welcome to the ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010 Website

This is the website for ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010:2011, Systems and software engineering — Architecture description, the latest edition of the original IEEE Std 1471:2000, Recommended Practice for Architectural Description of Software-intensive Systems.

If you are a first time visitor, you may want to start with the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) or Getting Started with ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010.

If you are already familiar with the Standard, you may be interested in joining the User Group List.

If you are an old-timer, you may be interested in what’s new...

What’s New?

Forthcoming changes

18 APR 2023 Over the next few months, we expect to conduct a review of Guide to ISO/IEC/IEEE 42020, Architecture processes. The draft is being prepared by INCOSE for submission to ISO/IEC JTC 1/SC 7 WG 42. If you would like to participate in the review, please contact Architecture Working Group chair.

Based on the publication of the 2nd edition of ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010, we will be updating related information including: the FAQ, the Architecture Description templates and the 42010 Bibliography.

2nd edition of ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010 published

30 NOV 2022 The second edition of ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010 has been jointly published by ISO and IEEE. It is available in the usual places. A special thanks to those who participated in the IEEE public review is deserved! See Conceptual Model for a brief overview of some of the new concepts.

P42010 Final Draft International Standard (FDIS)

8 JAN 2022 The FDIS for the second edition of ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010 has been submitted to the ISO Secretariat. It will be jointly balloted by ISO and IEEE.

P42010 Draft International Standard

15 OCT 2020 DIS 1 revision to the 42010 standard has been completed and submitted to the ISO Secretariat for balloting. It will be balloted in parallel by ISO member bodies and liaisons and IEEE.

Concepts and Design Philosophy behind ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010, Systems and software engineering — Architecture description

15 OCT 2020 Rich Hilliard will present an overview of 42010 and its current revision at the 2nd Annual INCOSE New England fall workshop.

42010 Annotated Bibliography Updated

14 OCT 2020 A new version of the annotated bibliography has been posted. It has many new entries, but is a work-in-progress. Latest version: ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010 bibliography.

42010 Work Recognized

3 OCT 2019 The paper “Every Architecture Description Needs a Framework: Expressing Architecture Frameworks Using ISO/IEC 42010”, by David Emery and Rich Hilliard, presented at the 8th Working IEEE/IFIP Conference on Software Architecture (WICSA/ECSA in Cambridge UK, 2009) has been selected by the International Conference on Software Architecture (ICSA 2019, Hamburg DE) for its Most Influential Paper Award. [Details]

42010 Revision

20 SEP 2019 The first public draft of the revision of ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010:2011 is being circulated for review by ISO and IEEE. Comments will be reviewed and dispositioned by WG 42 in Delft NL in November.

Companion Standards published

24 JUL 2019 ISO/IEC/IEEE 42020, Software, systems and enterprise — Architecture processes and ISO/IEC/IEEE 42030, Software, systems and enterprise — Architecture evaluation framework were published in July and are available in the usual places from ISO and IEEE.

News from the Architecture Working Group (AWG)

19 DEC 2016 If you would like to join the balloting group for P42020 (Architecture processes), you need to do so before 13 January 2017. [Joining Instructions].

29 AUG 2016 Two items of interest from the IEEE AWG. First, the revision of ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010 will begin this fall. As with the previous edition, the development will be undertaken with JTC 1/SC 7/WG 42.

This revision will undertake any corrections and clarifications needed based upon the past five years of usage of the current (2011) edition. The revision will seek to incorporate improvements to the practices of Architecture Description that have come into use since the previous edition. The revision will update its alignment with related standards (including ISO/IEC/IEEE 15288 and 12207) that have been published since that edition. Expected scope of the new edition is as follows:

This International Standard specifies the manner in which architecture descriptions of systems are organized and expressed. This International Standard specifies architecture viewpoints, architecture frameworks and architecture description languages for use in architecture descriptions. This International Standard establishes the conceptual foundations for terms and concepts used in architecture description; presents guidance on specifying architecture viewpoints and architecture frameworks; and demonstrates the use of this International Standard with other standards.

Anyone interested to participate in this development, its balloting, or to submit proposals for consideration during the revision, please contact Rich Hilliard, IEEE AWG chair.

IEEE AWG is also joining an on-going WG 42 effort on Architecture Processes (slated to become ISO/IEC/IEEE 42020). The draft scope of that work item is:

This standard will establish a common framework of process descriptions for the governance and management of a portfolio of architectures and the architecting of entities associated with those architectures. It also provides a process for development of enablers in support of the other architecture processes.

Several drafts have already been circulated. We hope to ballot the current draft with IEEE this Fall. Anyone interested in joining this effort, please contact Rich Hilliard, IEEE AWG chair.

Updates and news on these activities will be posted here.

5 DEC 2015 Mathematician John Baez explains why 42 is the answer to the ultimate question.

8 OCT 2014 Updated templates for ADs and viewpoints.

8 JUL 2014 Ivano Malavolta and colleagues have created a useful list of Architectural Languages and encourage further submissions.

7 JUL 2014 Attention students and faculty: if you are working with ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010, you may want to consider IEEE Standards Education Grants:

The IEEE Standards Education Committee (SEC) offers grants of US $500 for students (per project) and US $300 for faculty mentors to help complete senior, undergraduate or graduate projects. Projects may be for design, capstone, development or research in which an industry technical standard(s) was applied to complete the project.

Students report on the results of their projects by writing and submitting a Final Student Application Paper. The papers detail which industry technical standard(s) was applied (analyzed and implemented). Each paper highlights specific design choices in the application of various technical standards and describes the resulting product, process, or service.

Final papers accepted by the SEC are published to the Student Application Papers website.

Applications for the grants may be submitted at any time throughout the year, but we have running target deadlines of: 30 January, 15 March, 15 June, 15 October.

Further details can be found at: IEEE Standards Education Grants.

5 FEB 2014 Updated information on meta models in ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010.

30 JAN 2014 ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010 included in the IEEE Software & Systems Engineering Essentials Collection – Systems [PDF].

8 NOV 2013 Minor updates to the FAQ. Also: ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010 included in IEEE Smart Grid Standards.

8 AUG 2013 Updated ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010 bibliography.

4 AUG 2013 Updated Getting Started with ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010.

4 AUG 2013 Added How to Build, Implement, and Use an Architecture Metamodel, by Chris Armstrong (APG, Inc.).

10 JUN 2012 Updated architecture description and viewpoint templates.

15 APR 2012 Joint 10th Working IEEE/IFIP Conference on Software Architecture & 6th European Conference on Software Architecture, Helsinki, FINLAND, 20–24 AUG 2012.

28 JAN 2012 Added a page discussing the definition of architecture in the Standard.

17 JAN 2012 8th ACM SIGSOFT Conference on the Quality of Software Architectures, Bertinoro, ITALY, 25-28 JUN 2012
QoSA 2012
QoSA keynote is Johan Bendz, convenor of WG42!

7 JAN 2012 Added an overview of architecture descriptions per the Standard.

7 DEC 2011 Press release on publication of ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010:2011.

24 NOV 2011 Published! ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010:2011 Systems and software engineering — Architecture description is now available from ISO.

15 NOV 2011 The Standard has a Facebook page, automatically generated from Wikipedia, apparently.

10 NOV 2011 P42010 was approved as a revised standard by the IEEE-SA Standards Board on 31 October 2011. This standard replaces IEEE 1471:2000. It is identical to the ISO standard approved in July. The new standard, designated ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010:2011, Systems and software engineering — Architecture description, is available from IEEE and ISO.
Per IEEE rules: An approved IEEE standard will remain active for ten years. If the Sponsor does not complete a revision process within ten years, the standard will be transferred to inactive status.

9 NOV 2011 Updated conceptual model to reflect revised standard.

5 NOV 2011 On or about 15 November, the users group will change from "IEEE 1471 Users List" to "ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010 Users List". Existing subscribers need not make any change. New subscription instructions will be posted at that time.

OCT 2011 "Rebranding" website to refer to the new Standard, ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010:2011, which supercedes IEEE 1471:2000 and ISO/IEC 42010:2007. Historical references to IEEE 1471 will remain in place.

30 SEP 2011 Users of ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010 may be interested in the new IEEE project, P1723, SOA (Service-Oriented Architecture) Solution Reference Architecture.

5 SEP 2011 IEEE P42010 completed recirculation of the FDIS version with 92% affirmatives. The draft will be presented to RevCom on 18 OCT 2011.

14 JUL 2011 ISO/IEC/IEEE FDIS 42010, Systems and software engineering — Architecture description has passed the final ballot cycle (Final Draft International Standard) with 21 approvals and 0 disapprovals from member bodies. Editorial comments from Sweden and India accompanied their approvals. Final editing will be resolved between the project editor and the ISO editor. This version will then be recirculated to IEEE and then the new standard will be jointly published by IEEE and ISO.

31 MAY 2011 Added Architecture Frameworks page to navigation sidebar.

20 MAY 2011 Updated Frequently Asked Questions.

17 MAY 2011 Ballot of Final Draft International Standard ISO/IEC 42010 opened 10 May and will close on 10 July.

12 MAY 2011 Workshop on Standards for (software) Architecture: an assessment. 24 June 2011, at WICSA 2011 in Boulder, CO.

24 MAR 2011 Updated page on architecture frameworks.

7 MAR 2011 "Final Draft International Standard" transmitted to ISO. [PDF]

23 FEB 2011 Call for Submissions: Workshop on Standards for (software) Architecture: an assessment. Due: 25 March 2011

1 SEP 2010 Next meeting of WG 42 will occur during the ISO/IEC JTC1/SC7 meeting at NIST in Gaithersburg, MD, 1–5 November 2010. At that meeting, comments from IEEE and ISO ballots of current ISO/IEC FCD 42010/IEEE P42010 will be resolved. Also, work on WG 42's new work item, Architecture Evaluation will begin. Anyone interested to participate or submit inputs to that effort should visit: CfP.

1 AUG 2010 There will be a tutorial, Architectural rendering with ISO/IEC 42010, presenting concepts from the revision, at the European Conference on Software Architecture, 23 AUG in Copenhagen. Details and registration.

8 JUN 2010 A Final Committee Draft of ISO/IEC 42010 has been (re)circulated to IEEE and ISO for balloting. The IEEE ballot will last 30 days. The ISO ballot will last 4 months. This latest draft, ISO/IEC FCD 42010, is available in the usual places...

7 MAY 2010 The ISO ballot of ISO/IEC CD1 42010 completed on 3 May 2010. The results are like this:

**National body comments were received from: France (AFNOR), Sweden (SIS), USA (ANSI). Liaison comments were received from: IEEE, INCOSE, TC 184

There were a total of 269 comments received. These will be resolved at the next WG42 meeting; 23-28 May in Niigata, Japan.

2 APR 2010 An example of applying ISO/IEC 42010 has been added to the Applications page: the Heath-Watcher system. Participation in elaborating the Health-Watcher case study, or alternate architectures, encouraged as examples of revised ISO/IEC 42010 features.

1 APR 2010 Call for papers: IEEE Software, special issue on Software Architecture: Framing Stakeholders' Concerns. Submissions closed. Expected publication date of special issue is Nov–Dec 2010.

4 MAR 2010 The recirculation ballot for IEEE P42010/D7 [draft 7] is done. The results of that ballot are as follows:

During the recirculation, 8 negative votes from the first ballot were changed to affirmative. There were no new negative votes. 9 editorial and technical comments were received.

The parallel balloting of ISO/IEC CD1 42010 (identical document to P42010/D7) continues within ISO. That ballot closes 3 May 2010. Comments from both ballots will be resolved at next meeting of WG42 (late May in Niigata Japan).

26 JAN 2010 ISO/IEC CD1 42010 transmitted to ISO and IEEE for ballot, together with resolution of comments on previous draft WD4. Comments resulting from ballots will be addressed at next WG42 meeting in May, Nigata, Japan.

16 NOV 2009 Congratulations to Jim Moore, winner of the 2009 Hans Karlsson Award! [IEEE press release]

9–13 NOV 2009 WG42 meets in Lima Peru, at the ISO/IEC JTC1/SC7 Interim meeting to complete resolution of comments from previous draft (WD4). Next draft, CD1, will be transmitted for parallel ISO and IEEE ballots by 27 January 2010. Other results from meeting will be posted here.

22 MAY 2009 Collected comments on ISO/IEC WD4 42010 (IEEE P42010/D6)

Happy birthday, IEEE

13 MAY 2009 Happy birthday, IEEE!

3 MAY 2009 Updated the ISO/IEC 42010/IEEE 1471 bibliography in the Reading room.

24 APR 2009 New example architecture description (AD) added to Applications, courtesy of Tim O'Neill, Avolution.

2 APR 2009 The IEEE first ballot of P42010/D6 began today. Ballots are due 2 May 2009. Parties not involved in the IEEE or ISO balloting are welcomed to submit comments on the current draft. Please use ISO's comment form.

17 FEB 2009 The ISO CD Registration ballot began today. The 3 month ballot will close 17 May, in time to collect comments for the Delhi meeting.

18 JAN 2009 The newest draft, ISO/IEC WD4 42010 (= IEEE P42010/D6), will be balloted in parallel by ISO and IEEE. Instructions for joining IEEE ballot group.

17 OCT 2008 Added an area in the Reading Room for presentations about IEEE 1471 | ISO/IEC 42010.

14 SEP 2008 ISO/IEC WD3 42010 is available for download from the reviewers page.

25 AUG 2008 Updated events calendar. Updated IEEE 1471 bibliography. Added page on "Applying the standard".

8 JUN 2008 ISO JTC1/SC7 WG 42 met in Berlin, 18–23 May 2008. Part of the meeting was a joint session with ISO TC 184/SC 5/WG 1 — Architecture and modelling, for the purpose of harmonizing ISO/IEC 42010 with the GERAM standards. RM-ODP was also represented. WG42 also worked on disposition of comments received on WD2. Comments disposition and the next 42010 draft will be available in July.

6 MAR 2008 Working draft 2 (WD2) of joint ISO and IEEE revision available for review.

8 FEB 2008 WICSA 2008 will include three sessions related to ISO/IEC 42010, focusing on three revision topics: architecture frameworks, review of architectural descriptions and capturing relations between views. See: Calendar.

11 DEC 2007 Jim Moore has been awarded the IEEE Standards Association's 2007 International Award for his "considerable contribution to the IEEE Computer Society Software and Systems Engineering Standards Collection (S2ESC) and the international collection of software engineering standards supported by ISO/IEC".

Jim has been an invaluable advisor, supporter and advocate for IEEE 1471 throughout its development, he was instrumental in its adoption by ISO and continues to help the evolution of the standard in numerous ways. Congratulations, Jim!

For more information see: IEEE press release.

13 OCT 2007 Updated the IEEE 1471 bibliography (now version 1.2); added a page about the conceptual framework (or "frame of reference" or "metamodel") of the Standard.

WD1 Commenting

1 October 2007 Added links to commenting template (Excel) and ISO commenting guidelines (pdf) for IEEE reviewers who are commenting on ISO/IEC WD1 42010. Comments received by 28 October 2007 can be discussed at the next WG 42 meeting in Montreal.

ISO publishes ISO/IEC 42010:2007

10 JUL 2007 ISO has published ISO/IEC 42010:2007, Systems and software engineering — Recommended practice for architectural description of software-intensive systems. The text of this ISO standard is identical to IEEE 1471:2000, and will serve as basis for the joint ISO and IEEE revision.

Website Renovation

9 JUN 2007 Website is being renovated to eliminate use of frames. There are probably still some bugs. Contact webmaster to report.

Call for Reviewers

8 JUN 2007 The first draft of the joint ISO and IEEE revision, WD1, will be ready in early July. If you would like to receive WD1 and future drafts, join the IEEE reviewers group.

WG 42 Meets in Moscow

25 MAY 2007 ISO/IEC SC 7/WG 42 met in Moscow during the SC7 Plenary meeting. Topics discussed included: alignment with ISO 15288 and ISO 12207, standardization of architecture frameworks, architecture evaluation, RM-ODP, GERAM. The group analyzed comments from the fast-track ballot which had been deferred for the revision, and a set of comments from INCOSE UK.

New Website

7 DEC 2006 Rehosted the IEEE 1471 website. Thanks to DSCI for these resources, and a special thank you to Pithecanthropus Consulting for many years of support in hosting the IEEE 1471 site.

First Meeting of WG 42

1 DEC 2006 The first meeting of ISO/IEC JTC1/SC7 Working Group 42 took place in Seoul, Republic of Korea, 30 Oct–3 Nov 2006. All comments on fast-track ballot were examined and deferred to the joint revision; the standard will now be published as ISO/IEC 42010 Systems and Software Engineering — Architectural Description. More

Revision to be performed by WG 42

6 JUL 2006 IEEE 1471, now also an ISO Draft International Standard (DIS), Recommended Practice for Architectural Description of Software-Intensive Systems, will be jointly revised by IEEE and ISO. ISO/IEC JTC1/SC7 has proposed that the revision be undertaken by a new working group, auspiciously designated "Working Group (WG) 42". More

Fast-Track Ballot of IEEE 1471 Approved by ISO

30 MAR 2006 Following a five-month fast-track ballot by ISO/IEC/JTC 1/SC 7, IEEE 1471 has been approved as a ISO/IEC Draft International Standard. Now that there are identical IEEE and ISO draft standards, there will be a joint revision to resolve the comments received. More

IEEE 1471 becomes ANSI Standard

7 AUG 2001 ANSI adopts IEEE 1471 an American National Standard. [Press release]

Resources for the ISO/IEC/IEEE 42010 website provided by Olimpia.com. Comments, corrections, suggestions on this site to: Webmaster.