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What is an MSC?

MSC is a graphical and textual language for the description and specification of the interactions between system components. The main area of application for Message Sequence Charts is as an overview specification of the communication behaviour of real-time systems, in particular telecommunication switching systems. Message Sequence Charts may be used for requirement specification, simulation and validation, test-case specification and documentation of real-time systems. MSCs are often used in combination with SDL, in particular the ITU specification and description language. Unfortunately you can no longer learn the basics of the MSC language by reading a short tutorial that was at http://www.win.tue.nl/cs/fm/sjouke/msc.htm or the longer tutorial on MSC that was available on the same site. However, you can still read a tutorial on the formalization of MSC.

MSC was significantly updated in 1999 to MSC-2000. Some tutorial slides can be found at

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Last update: 01 May 2013 15:34 +0100