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Diagram Details (web-authored)

Diagrams can be created directly in the iGrafx Platform via web browser or created with the iGrafx Client and added to a repository. This page discusses diagrams created via the web.

A Designer, or Architect license is required to create web diagrams (or equivalent User Extensions ).

Three types of diagrams are created via the web:

  • BPMN (Business Process Model and Notation) diagrams depict the end-to-end flow of a transaction through a business process
  • Generic diagrams can visualize simple processes, value chains, relationships, etc.
  • Journey Map diagrams depict the end-to-end journey through a business process

Web diagrams reside in a repository under Document (non enterprise object) folders or the repository top-level folder. Like other enterprise objects, web Diagrams can have relationships, properties, and permissions. Diagrams cannot contain other enterprise objects but can reference enterprise objects from diagram shapes using Describes relationships.

Creating and Importing Web Diagrams

See .Diagram (web-authored) v17.7 for information on:

Also see the Web Diagramming Tutorial for step-by-step directions to create a web diagram.

Adding Objects

A Shape Library (palette) is displayed when a new web diagram is created. For example, the BPMN All Shape Library is displayed in new BPMN diagrams:

If a Shape Library is not visible, click the Shape Libraries icon


To add Shape Library objects to a diagram, drag and drop an object from the Shape Library to the diagram area.

Setting Object Properties

After you have placed an object into a diagram, you can set or change its properties (if available) by clicking the Diagramming Properties icon


The property settings available depend on the object selected and the diagram type.

For BPMN and Generic diagrams:

  • For Event, Task, and Gateway objects, you can change the object's type within the set of other objects of that type. For example, You could change a Generic Task object into a User Task object, but not into an Event object. You can change one type of Gateway object to another, but not into a Task object.
  • For Task objects, you can set up Repeat Type properties and multiple Conditional Output cases.
  • For Gateway objects, you can set up multiple decision cases.
  • Swimlane/pool objects can be designated as multi-instance participants.

For BPMN diagrams only:

  • For Link Event objects, you can specify a link name and enable Smart Labels.
  • Embedded, Event, and Collapsed Sub-Processes can be designated as Ad-hoc, Transaction, or Compensable processes and assigned Repeat Type properties and multiple Conditional Output cases.

Adding Describes Relationships

You can create Describes relationships between enterprise objects and diagram elements (and diagrams) by clicking the Describes icon


To do this for existing enterprise objects:

  1. Select a single diagram element that you want to have Describe an enterprise object. If no elements are selected, you can have the entire diagram describe an enterprise object.
  2. Click the Describes icon 
    . In the resulting Describes box, click CHOOSE OBJECT TO DESCRIBE.
  3. In the Choose Object dialog, you have the option to:
    1. Type an object name in the Search field and select it when found
    2. Click the Show Tree switch, expand folders, and select an object

The object you chose appears in the Describes box as being the object the diagram element describes, and the diagram element is labeled with the name of the object it Describes.

Once a diagram element Describes an enterprise object, you can delete that assignment by selecting the element, clicking the Describes icon 

, and then clicking the trash can icon

Proposing New Enterprise Objects to Describe

As a Designer or Architect you can propose a describes relationship to a new enterprise object from within the web diagram you are creating by clicking the Describes icon


To do this for new objects you wish to propose:

  1. Select an existing diagram element which has text representing the name of the object you wish to create, or create a new diagram element and add the text.  If no elements are selected, you can propose a describes relationship for the entire diagram to a new enterprise object based on the diagrams name.
  2. Click the Describes icon 
    . In the resulting Describes box, click NEW OBJECT .
  3. In the resulting page, you can propose the Type, Location and RACI for your new enterprise object

When a New Object is proposed, the diagrams describes hierarchy is analyzed and if a suitable location is identified, the objects location is automatically picked.  In the event the location is a child of another proposed object in the diagram, the location appears with (Proposed) after it's name.  If a Proposed object's location is unspecified, or is set to an existing enterprise object, you can revert to the proposed location by clicking the SUGGEST button.  Note that suggest will only work if like-typed parent diagram elements, like an embedded sub-process, pool or the diagram have a Describes relationship.

Note that proposed enterprise objects exist only in the Web diagram until an Architect reviews the proposal, potentially makes edits, and Accepts it.

Accepting Proposed Enterprise Objects

Architects can review new objects proposed by Designers, or other Architects and do any of the following:

  • accept the proposal as it stands
  • make changes to the proposed object and then accept it
  • discard the proposed object, and knowing an appropriate object already exists, pick an existing object, or as an Architect directly create a new Enterprise Object

To do this for new objects you wish to accept:

  1. Select an existing diagram element which has a proposed object.  If no elements are selected, you can an accept a proposed new object for the entire diagram.
  2. Click the Describes icon 
    . In the resulting Describes box, after reviewing the Proposed object, click  ACCEPT .

Note that you can see all of the Proposed, Accepted and already existing Describes relationships in the Describes List.  To view the Describes list, go to the View menu and select Describes List.

Discovering Proposed Enterprise Objects

To find proposed objects within your repository, you can generate reusable reports or find specific data using ad-hoc reports.

See our Discovering Proposed Enterprise Objects page for instructions for both options.

Changing Shape Types 

To change the type of an existing diagram shape:

  1. Right-click a shape and choose Change Shape
  2. Select an alternative shape from the pop-up shape library

Objects in BPMN Diagrams

BPMN defines four types of objects for drawing:

  • Pools and Lanes (Swimlanes® or Departments): Each top-level swimlane (department) represents a BPMN Pool, and each child department is called a Lane. They contain other objects, such as flow, connection, and artifact objects.
  • Flow Objects: These are shapes that represent behavior of steps in the process; there are three types:
    • Events: Something happens; such as a start or end of the flow.
    • Activities: Work is performed, or a reference to a subprocess is made.
    • Gateways: Control the flow of a token (transaction) through the process.
  • Connection Objects: These are the connection lines between flow objects and swimlanes. There are three types of connections:
    • Sequence Flow: Tokens, or transactions, move between flow objects (shapes). Sequence Flow is represented by a solid line with an arrowhead.
    • Message Flow: Messages move information between pools (floating departments). Message Flow is represented by a long-dash line with an arrowhead.
    • Association: Attaches an artifact to the object it annotates. Associations are represented by a short-dash line without an arrowhead.
  • Artifacts: These are notes or annotations to the diagram. They may be textual or graphical.

By default, BPMN Diagrams have two Shape Libraries available when a diagram is checked out for editing:

  • Core – The most used objects.
  • All – All available objects.
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