Altium NEXUS Server

Lifecycle Management in Altium NEXUS Server

Created: March 22, 2021 | Updated: April 1, 2021
This documentation page references NEXUS Server (part of the deployed NEXUS solution), which has been discontinued. All your PCB design, data management and collaboration needs can now be delivered by Altium Designer (with Altium Designer Enterprise Subscription) and a connected Altium 365 Workspace. Check out the FAQs page for more information.
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Parent page: Configuration

The Altium NEXUS Server provides the ability to define and manage lifecycle definitions through its browser interface, complementing the ability to do this through Altium NEXUS. And providing better visibility of the states and transitions involved, each lifecycle is built in a graphical way, showing at-a-glance the flows involved. Many of the management controls you are accustomed to from the Edit Lifecycle Definitions dialog are present, but in a far more intuitive setting, allowing you to quickly build and modify your definitions with streamlined ease.

Currently this functionality works well in Google Chrome only. Functionality for other browsers will be addressed moving forward.
Various documents are available that relate to lifecycle management defined through Altium NEXUS, which equally apply here, with similar controls through the browser interface. For details on lifecycle definitions, see Managing Lifecycles for Items. For more detail on controlling state transitions, see Controlling Transitions between Lifecycle States.


Access to your NEXUS Server's lifecycle definitions can only be made by an administrator (a member of the Administrators role). Once signed in to your NEXUS Server through a Web browser, use the nav tree on the left to navigate to the Admin - Settings page. Then, in the tree that is presented, click on the Lifecycle Definitions entry.

Eight default lifecycle definitions are provided. These default definitions can be used 'as is', or modified to suit company (or personal) requirements. New custom definitions can also be added and configured as required.

Accessing lifecycle definitions through the NEXUS Server's browser interface.
Accessing lifecycle definitions through the NEXUS Server's browser interface.

Click on an existing lifecycle definition entry to access it.

A Graphical Interface

Defining and managing a lifecycle definition through the NEXUS Server's browser interface is very much a visual affair. A definition is built rather like a flow diagram, using various graphical objects representing the states and state transitions (and stages if using an Advanced style of management).

Define your lifecycle definitions in a visual way with graphical objects representing the stages, states, and transitions.
Define your lifecycle definitions in a visual way with graphical objects representing the stages, states, and transitions.

Adding & Defining a Lifecycle Definition

Add a new definition by clicking the add new link, back on the summary page. A single-stage default definition will be created, using the Advanced style of management.

A newly added lifecycle definition, Advanced-style, with single stage, initial state and released state. A single transition connects the two states.
A newly added lifecycle definition, Advanced-style, with single stage, initial state and released state. A single transition connects the two states.

The controls available will be familiar from management on the Altium NEXUS side, including:

  • Giving the definition a name.
  • Defining which content types the definition can be used by - click the see all/change link to access the Content Types window with which to enable and define use of the definition per content type.
  • Choosing the lifecycle management style - Simple or Advanced.
  • Linking stages to the levels of revision naming scheme (for an Advanced-style definition only).

Then create the (stages), states, and transitions as required to build up the definition 'diagram'. Key things to note in doing this are:

  • There is always an initial stage (usually called DESIGN) and an initial state (usually called Planned).
  • Click the  button to add a new stage graphical entity. This will be added below the DESIGN stage. Initially, the stage will be named NEW STAGE 1. Change this as required in the Stage Properties window, accessed by double-clicking on the stage graphic.

  • Click the  button to add a new state graphical entity. Click and drag this to the position required. Initially, the state will be named New State 1. Change this as required, along with other state properties through the State Properties window, accessed by double-clicking on the state graphic.
Hover over the  button to access a menu of existing stages - click an entry to add the new state to that stage directly. If you don't use this a new state will be added to the first stage and you can drag it to the correct stage as required.

  • Click & hold on the border of a state graphic to add a state transition - drag to the required target state and release when an orange 'valid' circle appears. Define transition properties through the Transition Properties window, accessed by double-clicking on a transition entity. Newly added state transitions will be public by default - change control as required through properties.

  • To remove a stage, state, or state transition entity, hover over it and click the removal cross that appears -  (stage/state),  (state transition).
You will not be allowed to delete all states, or all stages. There must always be at least one stage (default DESIGN) and one state (default Planned).
  • To change the point along a state at which a state transition enters/leaves, hover over the transition and click and drag an end arrow.
A legend at the bottom of the diagram reflects what various icons mean - whether a state is visible in Altium NEXUS's Explorer panel and/or allowed to be used in designs, as well as the control over a state transition being performed (public, non-public, or requiring approval).

Once defined as required, click the  button. Clicking the  button will essentially restore the diagram to its last saved state.

Changes to definitions through the browser interface will appear in Altium NEXUS's Edit Lifecycle Definitions dialog when next accessed and vice-versa.

Exporting a Lifecycle Definition

You can quickly export the graphical portion of the lifecycle definition currently being viewed/defined, allowing you to share with others for feedback. To do so, click the  button. Export is to PNG file format, with the image (<LifecycleDefinitionName>.png) downloaded to your Web Browser's default download folder.

Removing a Lifecycle Definition

To remove a lifecycle definition, click on its close cross (), on the page presenting the summary listing of definitions. If that definition is currently being used by at least one revision of an Item in the NEXUS Server, then a pop-up will alert you to the fact that it cannot be deleted.


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