14 Replies Latest reply on Jul 13, 2017 9:54 AM by Shaun Toms

    How exactly do automatic transition permissions work?

    Shaun Toms

      What drives the permissions of an automatic transition?


      I can assign admin to it all day long, but from what I'm seeing, it depends on what the permissions were for the state or transition immediately proceeding the automatic transition.

      Is this the case?

      Is there any way to make it use admin?

      Maybe I have to use the "ignore permissions in previous states" option?


      I figured leaving it as admin was the desired option since when you create the transition to begin with, admin is automatically inserted/added. But it doesn't seem to be the case as near as I can tell.


      Just trying to get a clearer idea of how it works and what it's looking for.

        • Re: How exactly do automatic transition permissions work?
          Tim Webb


          The permissions on the automatic transition itself are what controls who can run it. Assigning it to admin only won't really help unless the admin is the one who will be running the transition. Let's say you have 2 transitions. The user running the transition has permissions to let them run both transitions. The 1st in the series is a manual transition but the 2nd transition is automatic. When the 1st transition is run by the user, the file being transitioned through the 1st transition will transition through both. If the user running the transition has permissions to run only the 1st transition, the 2nd transition will be denied and the file will be stranded in the state between the 1st transition and 2nd transition.


          There isn't a way to have the transition be "taken over" and executed by the admin unless you're using a custom add-in.


          I hope that makes sense.


          The setting "ignore permissions in previous states" is on the state permissions and not on the transition. This controls something very very different and doesn't have anything to do with the automatic transition.


          Tim CEPA

          Believe in The Q!

            • Re: How exactly do automatic transition permissions work?
              Shaun Toms

              Ok, it sounds like what I was thinking which was the user/group that passes the ECN from Configurator to the Notification routine needs to have permission IN the Notification routine for it to work properly, otherwise it will ignore it, as you mentioned.


              Inside my Notification routine is a bunch of Auto Transitions with Conditional checks. But each one has to have permissions same as the the "Request departmental review" transition.

              • Re: How exactly do automatic transition permissions work?
                Shaun Toms

                Ok, so here's a stupid question. Same scenario above,


                For permissions, can groups be used for the auto transitions?


                In testing, I added myself to the group that will be performing the last transition function previously discussed, in this case "Configurator". So I have the following user/group for permissions,

                (g) Configurator

                (u) Admin


                Each state and transition shown below has the above user/group permissions, and for the states, I've given full access to Configurator since I'm testing.

                Basically, If Notify-Group = 1 it sends a notification, if it = 0 then it just passes through to next state and doesn't send a notification, all notifications are currently directed at me for testing. I run the Change State and it goes through the transitions and states (according to history),

                but does not send the notification I have setup for each auto transition for testing.

                However, if I logon as Admin and perform the same actions, history shows it going through each state and transition like above and after a few seconds all the notifications are sent/received by me. Almost to the point where I'm thinking it doesn't work with Groups, only individual user(s).


                PS, I do have an email setup on PDM and I get all notifications from other workflows.

                    • Re: How exactly do automatic transition permissions work?
                      Tim Webb

                      Hi Shaun,

                      Great questions!

                      1. Yes, groups can be used to execute the automatic transitions. Do it! Avoid assigning permissions at the user level - that will lead to nightmares!
                      2. The notifications won't ever be sent to the user who initiates the transition so that's why when you are logged in as admin, your shaun.toms username gets the emails.
                      3. Dashboard - a centrally located, browser or desktop based, application that collects data from your PDM SQL server and aggregates the data according to your processes. We build them for all our clients. Below is one we use for demonstration purposes.


                      Each report is built with drill through functionality to get to higher level of detail and the lowest level features PDM URL links so the user can actually browse to files inside PDM if installed.


                      1. EWR Status Report: Engineering Work Request report shows all the work requests being submitted by any department needing engineering work to be done.

                      2. Engineering Status Report: Report that shows all the states and counts of documents in them. This is the highest level of detail shown per project, per folder, per vault, whatever.

                      3. Change Request Status Report: Change Requests. Drill through to get more detail on each change request and who they are assigned to.

                      4. Checked Out Documents Report: Useful for admins who need to maintain the vault so this reports # of documents that have been checked out for way too long and possibly forgotten.


                      Here's the top level of the dashboard


                      Here's the detailed page you arrive at when you drill through from the higher level. This is the level showing PDM URLs. If the user has PDM installed, the links will open PDM to the selected file so they can do something with the links.


                      This is a proactive method for your staff to work with as their shopping list on a daily basis. Email notifications are so 1990's but dashboards are the way of the future. This methodology puts the ownership back on the end user to ensure they monitor their work area.


                      These can be configured to show numerous levels of mid level detail down to high level of detail by using workflow states, filenames, days in state, and data card data.


                      We have even configured dashboards to monitor trends. If you check out our paid add-in called ATLAS Pro, it's a dashboard that you can use to graphically see your entire assembly contains tab. ATLAS Pro runs inside PDM on the assembly data card. Once you have the details highlighted, you can even change state from within the app. Get data, make decisions, take action. That's how dashboards should work.


                      Dashboards - It's what we do in The Q.


                      Tim CEPA

                      Believe in The Q!

                    • Re: How exactly do automatic transition permissions work?
                      Shaun Toms

                      Ok, so I need to bring this thread back up. As I previously mentioned, I have the notification routine I put together and it send the appropriate notification depending on the variable value of 1/0.


                      What we do is paste the PDF, which contains the link to the drawing and the physical part file as a reference to the ECN. So when you view the ECN and look at the contains tab, you see the following

                      What I've discovered is that conditions apply to ALL the files, not just the main file (the ECN in this case). Each file attached to the ECN also falls under the rules of the condition is appears. Didn't know that but through trial and error, that's what I'm concluding unless someone mentions differently.


                      Here's the routine again from above, there's a Pending Approval state at the bottom that End Notification goes to which waits for signatures.

                      Now, originally I was checking the variable on both sides, check if it =1 on the right or =0 on the left. If the variable =1 it would send a notification to the recipients that they have an ECN to look at. However, when I had it this way, only the ECN is processed, the PDF, drawing and solid are not and they stay in the Notification State while the ECN goes through the routine to the State after.  What seems to be happening to the PDF and SW files is that the "Conditions for transition were not met".

                      Unfortunately, I don't know how to resolve this but to add all the variables from the ECN to those 3 files as well. Which I think is a big chore, unless I'm missing something. As I mentioned above, the conditions appear to affect each file attached to the ECN. Is there a way to make it so the PDF and files go through the same transition as the ECN based on it's variable?


                      I then tried removing the =0 check and leaving it blank. Now what happens is the ECN and files get to the notification pool. The variable is checked on the ECN and if =1 sends a notification and the PDF and files go through the =0 side so they all end up in Pending approval at the end. However, the email notification that is received only contains the ECN reference and not the 3 other files. Is there a way to get it to show all 4 files in the email?


                      I hope this reads well and makes sense.

                        • Re: How exactly do automatic transition permissions work?
                          Tim Webb

                          Hi Shaun,

                          It's an easy fix. I always put the ECN in a separate workflow but name the transitions the same so the CAD files and ECN files all appear to move together. Then I add the conditions to the ECN workflow transitions to stop movement if conditions aren't met.


                          Giving transitions the same name makes it so the end user only sees one transition name in their menu which activates the transitions in all the workflows if all the files have that transition available to them.


                          Hope this helps,

                          Tim CEPA

                          Believe in The Q!

                            • Re: How exactly do automatic transition permissions work?
                              Shaun Toms

                              So, on our existing CAD files workflow, when it gets to a certain point, they get passed to the ECN workflow so they track through the various states at the same time. Upon finish, the CAD files go back to the CAD workflow for the final Release step when ECN is complete.


                              In the new workflow and ECN we have about 6 checkboxes with variables tied to them. The ECN by itself functions perfectly on the new workflow which uses conditions to check for the checkbox variable, and either send a notification to the department in question or skip that department. Because these same variables don't exist in the CAD files, even though I've added them to the datacard, they don't get populated to the same values in the ECN. So when the ECN and attached reference files get to that point in the workflow, the work flow appears to check each file separately; ECN, PDF, DRW and PRT. Not just the ECN. Because the variables are blank in the CAD files, they get hung up at the conditional check.


                              I've even started building a separate workflow for the CAD files as Tim suggested, but haven;t finished it yet because unless I add the conditional check or some way to prevent the files from going to the next stage before the ECN has, then we start getting errors about files in incorrect states compared to the ECN. Maybe you can shed some more light on this in case I'm not understanding it quite right?


                              I've even tried adding an action at a certain point that tries to reset the variables to the value of the variable. But as near as I can tell, it's just looping through each file, looking for the variable and resetting it to the value it currently has. Since the CAD files variables are blank they just get reset as blank values instead of the value the ECN has as I had hoped.


                              Kind of frustrating that it doesn't process the reference files as a result of everything it finds on the main file, the ECN in this case. If I could just get the values in the ECN to populate on the CAD files, I'd be done. 

                      • Re: How exactly do automatic transition permissions work?
                        Dan Pihlaja

                        LOL, when I first read the question, I thought Shaun was asking, "How exactly do automatic transmissions work?"  And I was wondering why it was in the PDM section.  LOL