Management of a Specific Project

 

Parent page: Workspace Projects

An Enterprise Server Workspace provides an advanced, manufacturing-orientated CAD-centric view of a project when opened in the browser interface. This interface offers Design, Tasks, Releases, Activities, and History view options, available in the left-hand navigation pane:

  • Design – Display and navigate source project design documents, view design object properties and place review comments. This view uses the Web Viewer interface to present your design across four distinct data sub-views, to show the source schematic(s), board in 2D and 3D, Draftsman documents, and the Bill of Materials (BOM) respectively. The Design view is for the latest version of the source project data, rather than a specified release from that project, and so could be considered to be a work-in-progress (WIP) view. You can review both the base design and that of any defined Variant.
  • Tasks – View and manage assigned Task activity requests that apply to the current project. Tasks that relate to a project document are created by assignment through the Comments system (in either Altium Designer or the Workspace). Tasks that apply to this project, but not to a specific document or comment, can be created on this page as General Tasks.
  • Releases – View the releases for the project. Access is provided for opening a specific Release for detailed inspection in a Manufacturing Portal page. From this portal you can view and navigate the released file data, inspect the BOM, and view and comment on the snapshot of the design itself; the source for that released data. You also have the ability to perform design data comparisons between releases.
  • Activities – Create or view active/closed Process workflow Activities that apply to the current project. The listed processes provide an overview of the state of each process, including its instigator and who it is assigned to, when it was invoked, and the current stage of its Workflow. Select a Process entry to view additional detail that includes its notated Workflow diagram, a summary of its associated process data, and the sequential history of its Workflow events.
  • History – Browse a progressive timeline of major events relating to the project, including its creation, commits, releases, and clones. Each time a supported event happens in association with the project, that event is added to the timeline as a dedicated tile with various actions supported where applicable. You also have the ability to perform design data comparisons between release events.

A project is opened from the Workspace's Projects page by double-clicking on the project entry, by a single click on its title, or by selecting the project and choosing the Open option from the menu or project menu. The page will open in a new browser tab.

Accessing the CAD-centric Projects Management page for a project. Accessing the CAD-centric Projects Management page for a project.

The Workspace project viewer also provides a dedicated structural view of Multi-board projects. Open the below collapsible section for more information:

A project also can be opened in the Workspace's browser interface from within Altium Designer. For the active Workspace project, use the Project » Show in Web Browser command from the main menus. Alternatively, right-click on the entry for the project in the Projects panel and choose the Show in Web Browser command from the context menu.

When browsing the project through the Altium Designer Explorer panel – configured in its default Project View rather than Classic View – use the button to open the project in the Workspace's browser interface.

The following sections take a closer look at the five views into the project design and its data, as presented in the page for an opened project.

Design

Related page: Web Viewer

The Design view provides interactive visual access to the project's design documents, property data for objects within those documents, and the ability to collaboratively comment on definable document locations. This view is for the latest version of the source project data, rather than a specified release from that project, and so could be considered to be a work-in-progress (WIP) view. You can review both the base design and any available variant of that design.

The Design view also allows you to search, select, cross-probe, and inspect components and nets throughout the design and across the various sub-views as applicable. And when viewing the board in 2D, you can even take measurements.

The Design view utilizes Altium's Web Viewer functionality to provide detailed review access to the project's source schematic and PCB documents. Shown here is a schematic – hover over the image to see the PCB. The Design view utilizes Altium's Web Viewer functionality to provide detailed review access to the project's source schematic and PCB documents. Shown here is a schematic – hover over the image to see the PCB.

Based on an advanced graphics engine and interface – Altium's Web Viewer – you are provided with all the features needed to locate and visually inspect the design and its objects. The view also includes fully rendered 2D and 3D PCB layout views, object search and select capabilities, and tree-based design document navigation. Its additional information pane provides an interface to the active Comments system – which dynamically interacts with the design space – and a comprehensive properties listing for any selected design object.

Support is provided for downloading a Zip archive containing a snapshot of the WIP design project (base design), as well as the ability to generate and download a range of derived outputs, which take setup information directly from the applicable Output Job file (where one exists). These include Gerber and NC Drill files, Schematic and Assembly PDFs, and CSV-formatted BOM data.

See the Web Viewer page for more information on the Design view functions.

Tasks

Related information: Working with Workspace Tasks, Web Viewer – Commenting Window.

This view allows you to access and manage the Tasks – job activity requests – that apply to the currently open design project. Tasks are presented in a Kanban board flow style, with their progress state (ToDo, InProgress and Resolved) moving through Task rows. One row is reserved for general Tasks (those not associated with a design document), and each remaining row applies to Tasks for a specific project document. General Tasks are created from within the dashboard and document-specific Tasks are created by assigning a Workspace member to a project Comment.

The view also incorporates Tasks created by Process Workflows, which are indicated by the process Name and its current progress state. Selecting a process workflow tile will open its related task in the workflow, which can be completed by the user it is assigned to.

Manage and work with collaborative job activity Tasks through the Altium 365 Workspace Tasks dashboard.Manage and work with collaborative job activity Tasks through the Altium 365 Workspace Tasks dashboard.

Although presented through a relatively simple interface, the Workspace Tasks dashboard offers a flexible and efficient way of both managing and tracking work progress within the actual design environment rather than via an external system. This page is a project-specific view of Tasks that are currently active for the open Workspace project, while the global Tasks view available from the main Workspace navigation tree represents Tasks that are active for all projects in the Workspace.

Releases

The Releases view presents all project release packages that have been generated from the design space (see Design Project Release), where each package incorporates the released Source, Fabrication and Assembly data.

The Releases view gives you access to the released data packages, with the ability to open a package for closer inspection through a dedicated Manufacturing Portal, and also to send a release to your manufacturer as a Manufacturing Package.
The Releases view gives you access to the released data packages, with the ability to open a package for closer inspection through a dedicated Manufacturing Portal, and also to send a release to your manufacturer as a Manufacturing Package.

From this view you can:

  • Download any and all of the data sets included in a release. Click the button associated to the release to access a window in which to define which of that release's data sets to download. After clicking the button a single Zip archive containing a folder for each included data set will be downloaded to your browser's default downloads folder.
  • Open a release, which will be presented on a separate tab through a Manufacturing Portal. From this portal you can view and navigate the released file data, inspect the BOM, and view and comment on the snapshot of the design itself; the source for that released data. You'll also have access to controls for downloading manufacturing data at various levels of granularity (from full data set(s) to individual generated output file(s)).
  • Perform comparisons between the Gerber, BOM, or Schematic data of different releases – see Design Data Comparisons for more information.
  • Change the lifecycle state for any of the data sets in a release.
  • Toggle the display of releases that contain one or more data sets in an inapplicable revision state (e.g., Deprecated, Obsolete, Abandoned states, and where such a state has its Allowed to be used in designs property disabled) using the Show hidden releases control.

The following sections take a closer look at these various features and functionality in closer detail.

Browsing a Release Package

To open the full release package for viewing, click on its associated button. Alternatively, click the button and choose what to view – either the full release package (Full Release) or a specific assembly (variant). An opened release package is presented in a new Manufacturing Portal browser tab.

The Manufacture view gives you access to the released data packages, and the ability to open a package for closer inspection through a dedicated Manufacturing Portal.
The Manufacture view gives you access to the released data packages, and the ability to open a package for closer inspection through a dedicated Manufacturing Portal.

An opened project release, or a specified variation of it, is presented in a new Manufacturing Portal browser tab and incorporates further sub-views:

In either of the above views, click the button at the top-right of the view to access controls for changing the lifecycle state of the data sets contained in the release, and also to select a Data Comparison feature.

Activities

The Activities view provides a detailed overview of the Processes associated with the project, and the current state of their progress – represented as a user-highlighted task step in their workflow diagrams. Use the Open/Closed menu options in the page header to list current or completed project activities, the upper Search field to filter the listing by an expression contained in any column field (except dates), and the button to invoke a new process activity from a list of enabled processes.

Along with an annotated graphic representing the flow and state of an activity (Diagram mode), the view also includes a Data view mode that lists parametric data relating to the activity (associated users, project information, etc.), and a History mode showing the sequence of workflow events (start, preparation, task completion, etc.).

Project activities are typically invoked in Altium Designer by selecting an available process from the Project » Activities menu. The activity is then assigned to an available project and data, a user for review, and if required, a nominated user as a review coordinator. Tasks are automatically created for those users, and will appear in their Altium Designer Tasklist panel, in the Workspace Tasks view for this project, and in the Workspace's main (global) Tasks page.

Project activities, such as Ad-hoc, Milestone and Handoff Reviews, are enabled and configured by a Workspace administrator on the Processes Management page (Admin – Processes). In the above Activities view, administrators also may cancel (Terminate) an active process, or download a CSV file that includes the information on all listed activities ( ).

History

Related page: Project History

The History view provides a progressive timeline of major events relating to the project – its creation, commits, releases, clones and MCAD exchanges – with various actions supported where applicable, including Design Data Comparisons between history events.

The History view presents a timeline of basic events that have occurred during the project's evolution.The History view presents a timeline of basic events that have occurred during the project's evolution.

The view can essentially be broken down into three key sections:

  1. Main trunk of the timeline. Direction of event chronology is from the bottom up. The first event – the creation of the project – will appear at the bottom of the timeline, with subsequent events appearing above and the latest (the most current event) appearing at the top.
  2. Events. Each time a supported event happens in association with the project, that event is added to the timeline as a dedicated tile. Each type of event will have a different colored tile and will either be linked directly to the main trunk of the timeline, or have some additional icon next to it (as is the case for MCAD Exchange events). For Commit events design diffing is supported, showing basic information on what has changed between the current and previous commits (including files, components, nets, PCB structure, variants) – use the button to expand the tile view.
    For the following two event types, additional operations are accessible from the event tile:
    1. Commit event – ability to create a clone of the project using that version of the design, the ability to view or download the source files of that version of the design (a Commit snapshot), and the ability to compare the Commit to the design data of another Commit and/or Release.
    2. Release event – the ability to open that release package for viewing through a manufacturing portal and the ability to download either the full release package or the source files of the version of the design that was used to create that release package. You can also access the Schematic comparison, Gerber comparison, and BOM Comparison features.
  3. Search. Click the control at the top-right of the view to access a search field that facilitates basic searching of the project history. As you type your search string, filtering will be applied to the timeline to present only the events relevant to that search.

Whenever a supported event happens in relation to the project, that event will be detected and made available to the History view automatically. Notification will appear at the bottom of the view shortly after the event takes place – click the control to update the timeline with the new event. A manual refresh is also provided, performed by clicking the control at the top-right of the view.

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