Altium Designer Documentation

Managing Content Structure & Access in an Altium 365 Workspace

Created: November 23, 2017 | Updated: August 10, 2021
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Content structure and access management for a Workspace is performed by an Administrator from the Admin - Explorer page of a Workspace's browser interface. From here, you can:

  • Browse the folders and Items within the Workspace. And although you can't create or edit Items from within the browser interface (you can remove them), you are able to create and edit folders and so build the structure of the Workspace, without having to be connected to that Workspace through Altium Designer.
  • Define folder-level and Item-level sharing - controlling who is able to see what content in the Workspace and, at the folder level, whether other users can simply view a folder and its content, or also edit it (effectively releasing/committing/uploading design data into it).
  • Download content.

The interface itself presents with a look and feel that is similar to that of the Explorer panel, when accessing Workspace content through Altium Designer. A strong degree of consistency between the two interfaces means that if you are familiar with the panel, you'll be able to intuitively drive this browser-based variant without difficulty.

Access content in your Workspace through the Admin - Explorer area of the browser interface.

While the browser interface is accessible from any location you have an internet connection, if you are directly connected to the Workspace through Altium Designer, the Explorer panel offers a far superior interface, especially since it allows creation and management of Items themselves, along with other Workspace management features. For a look at some of the cool features relating to use of the Explorer panel, see Working with the Explorer Panel - Feature How-Tos.

If you are using your Workspace for component management, then Altium Designer's Components panel is your key interface. This panel provides a powerful interface with which to interact with all your components - both server-based (managed components) and file-based. And for your managed components - sitting in your Workspace - the panel provides a filter-based parametric (faceted) search capability, for specifying target component parameters. In addition, the panel also offers options to edit a managed component through the Component Editor (in its Single Component Editing mode), view the component in its source server, and perform component management functions such as component creation and cloning, or editing the selected component's Part Choices and Type.

Managing Structure

Various commands are available to manage the overall folder structure in a Workspace, including the ability to create top-level folders and sub-folders, and edit, share and remove folders.

Controls for managing the folder structure can be found on the right-click menu (with the mouse cursor over an existing folder entry). With the exception of adding a top-level folder, commands act on the currently selected folder in the structure.

Access folder structure management commands from the right-click menu.

You cannot move existing folders (or items for that matter) within the structure. This can be performed only through direct connection with the Workspace from within Altium Designer, via the Explorer panel interface, and provided you have the appropriate privileges to do so.
You can soft-delete folders and Items from the Admin - Explorer page - sending them to the isolated Trash area for the Workspace. Entities in the Trash can then be permanently deleted, or restored, as required.

Sharing Folders and Items

Related page: Controlling Access to Server Content

A Workspace provides the following sharing capabilities:

  • Folder-level Sharing - providing the ability to control who is able to see what content in the Workspace by sharing server folders. This allows control over whether other users can simply view a folder and its content, or also edit it (effectively releasing/committing/uploading design data into it). A single Workspace can be partitioned into various effective 'zones' of content but with controlled folder-level permissions, the content can be made selectively visible, or hidden, as required, giving the right people, the right access, to the right data.
  • Item-level Sharing - providing the ability to control who is able to see which Items in a shared folder. Think of this as a finer level of sharing, in contrast to the coarser level of sharing provided through folder access control. Provided a user has access to the folder itself, they will then be able to view/edit (as permitted) Items within that folder that are shared with them.
Those with administrator-level privileges (members of the Administrators role) will be able to see and manage all folders and Items. For a non-administrative user of the Workspace, only those folders and Items that have been shared - i.e. the user has permissions to access - will be accessible when the user connects to that Workspace.
Item Revision-level sharing is only truly configurable through Altium Designer's Explorer panel. It is not fully supported using the Workspace's browser interface. The difference is that through the Explorer panel, you can specifically share individual revisions, whereas the browser interface simply supports Item-level sharing, and if an Item is shared all of its revisions are also shared.

Sharing controls are accessed by right-clicking over the entry for the folder (or Item) and using the Share Folder (or Share Item) command from the context menu. The Share window will appear, from where access permissions for the folder/Item can be modified as required.

Configure folder-level sharing from the Workspace's browser interface. Hover the mouse over the image to see how to configure Item-level sharing through the interface.

Things to be aware of:

  • In terms of permissions, a user/role has Read/Write access when the Can Write option is enabled. If this option is disabled, they have Read access only.
  • To remove an existing user/role from having shared access to a folder/item, click the associated Remove control ().
  • By default, a folder/item will only be available to its creator (and of course all members of the Administrators role, which does not need to be explicitly added). However, if creating a sub-folder and the parent folder has its Apply To Children option enabled, the new folder will inherit those same sharing permissions.
  • To allow all users of the Workspace to see the folder/item, click the Add Anyone control. Be aware that doing so will, by default, grant Read/Write access. If you want to lock access down to a specific set of users and/or roles, you must remove the Anyone entity.
If an Item in a server folder is shared with a given user but the folder itself is not, then the user will not be able to 'see' that Item when browsing the Workspace's content.
If the same users/roles permitted to 'see' a folder are also required to 'see' the Items therein (and in each sub-folder as applicable), use the Apply To Children option in the Share window when defining the permissions for that parent folder. In this way, permissions are inherited quickly at the sub-folder and Item level. Adjustments can always be made for specific Items at those lower levels. At the end of the day, full control over who sees what, and where, is facilitated.

Downloading an Item Revision

To download data from the interface, click the Download control () to the right of the entry for an Item Revision.

Using the control at the parent Item level will download data for the latest revision of that Item.

Navigating the Workspace Structure

You can navigate the content in a Workspace - through its browser interface - in a couple of ways, as highlighted in the following image and described thereafter.

The ways in which to navigate Workspace content through the browser interface. Hover the mouse over the image to see the results of an example search.

  1. By clicking on a folder name whose contents you wish to peruse.
  2. Using the search feature. Enter a keyword based on an Item's ID, Comment, or Description and press Enter or click the magnifying glass icon (). The entire Workspace will be scanned and results of the search listed, in terms of matching Items.
After a search, you can return to the normal view of the Workspace content by clicking the Admin - Explorer page entry again, in the browser interface's navigation tree on the far left. Alternatively, clear the search field and press Enter.

Additional Features

The following additional features can be found when browsing content through the Workspace's browser interface:

  • Navigate - this command, found on the right-click context menu for an Item, is used to quickly take you to that Item in Altium Designer's Explorer panel. Altium Designer will be opened in order to do this (you'll be prompted if you want to open X2.exe - Altium Designer's source executable).
If Altium Designer is already running, that instance will be used.
  • Full item info - this command, found on the right-click context menu for an Item Revision, is used to present a view listing all detail for that Revision. In effect, it is simply a view that includes all of the various aspect views available for that Item Revision (except Summary).
Using the command at the parent Item level will present details for the latest revision of that Item.
  • Follow/UnFollow - use the Follow command, found on the right-click context menu for a folder of Type Components, to follow the folder. Any activity within the folder being followed (component creation, release, revision state change, or deletion) will be flagged through an email notification sent out from the Workspace (provided email notifications have been enabled for the Workspace by an Administrator). Use the UnFollow command to stop following component activity within that folder.
  • Remove Folder - use this command, found on the right-click menu for a folder, to move that folder and all its content (sub-folders and Items therein) to the isolated Trash area for the Workspace. Entities in the Trash can then be permanently deleted, or restored, as required. If removing a project folder, any associated releases and manufacturing packages will also be moved to the Trash.
  • Remove Item - use this command, found on the right-click menu for an Item, to move that Item to the isolated Trash area for the Workspace. Entities in the Trash can then be permanently deleted, or restored, as required. If removing a Component Item, you also have the opportunity to move its associated models to the Trash at the same time. Note that these can only be deleted if they are not being used elsewhere (by one or more other components).

 

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