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Episode IX: Creating a Workspace



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September 23, 2009 3:30 pm

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Episode IX: Creating a Workspace

In previous episodes, you learned how to build workflows and forms, but how do you implement them? In this episode you will learn how to set up a workspace in Teaming and configure it to allow your form to proceed through a workflow process. If you haven’t been keeping up, or if you need a refresher, feel free to read our last installment to get up up to speed: Episode VIII: Explore the View.

Creating a workspace within Teaming allows you to test and modify the functionality of your forms and workflows. When you have made any necessary changes and you are satisfied that your process is working correctly, you can configure the access rights to the workspace so that anyone involved in the workflow can participate. This article covers creating a workspace, creating a specific folder within that workspace, and configuring the folder to allow the testing and implementation of your form and workflow.

To help you gain a feel for where your workspace will be located within Teaming, let’s start at the login screen.

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Go ahead and log into Teaming.

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When you have logged in, open the Home Workspace tree in the upper left corner.

Within the Home Workspace tree you will see Team Workspaces. Select this option, and you should see the following screen:

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This is the Team Workspaces area. You need to set up a new workspace in which to run your form and workflow, so select Add a Team Workspace.

Now you can set up your workspace. First, you must give your new workspace a title. Then select which users you want to have access to the workspace, and select what types of folders your workspace includes. For our purposes, you only need to add a Discussion folder, but you can include calendars, blogs, wikis, task folders, and more if you like.

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It is useful to add only yourself as a user at first, until you have finished testing the workflow. You can reconfigure your workspace user list later, when you are certain everything works correctly!

When you have created your new workspace, select it from the Team Workspaces tree. You can see that you are also able to expand the tree in order to see the discussion folder that you added at setup. This discussion folder is where all the action is. You are going to configure it to associate your form with a workflow. Select Discussion from the tree. You should see the following:

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In order to properly configure the folder, select Manage > Configure.

When you select Configure, you see a page allowing you to configure a variety of folder attributes. The ones you should be interested in are Default Entry Types, Workflow Associations, and Allowed Workflows. Changing Default Entry Types allows you to select which form you want to run, and changing Allowed Workflows allows you to select which workflow your form will use. The Workflow Associations section allows you to select a workflow that you want to automatically start when a form is submitted in your folder. It is usually the same workflow that you select in Allowed Workflows.

To demonstrate a workflow process in action, deselect Discussion Entry and select a prebuilt form called Internal Product Request Order Form, which is available for download on the Teaming Library. You can also select any form available within your system, or use the skills you learned in previous episodes to build one. Select a workflow called Internal Product Request Flow for both the Workflow Associations and the Allowed Workflows. After you have chosen your workflow, click Apply, then click Close.

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You can see that the folder now displays the form that you have configured it to run, such as the Add Internal Product Request Order Form shown here.

When you add the form, you are required to fill in all relevant data fields. Then, upon submission, the form enters the workflow you have specified. The workflow details are displayed within the folder as shown below:

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When you submit your form, you see the view, which we discussed in our last installment. You also see the workflow options, including Process, State, and Action. The Action area shows you what you can do to move the form through the workflow.

Try running your form through all of the different states and actions you have built into your workflow. If it all works correctly on your first try, that’s great! If not, go back to the Form and View Designer or the Workflow designer and correct any bugs or glitches.

Tip: If you ever want to delete an obsolete workflow or form, you need to make sure that it is not being run in any folder. Teaming does not allow you to delete a form or workflow that is in use.

Congratulations! Now you know what it takes for your form to go through a workflow. When you are satisfied with what you’ve built, you can add more users to your workspace and allow them to participate in the process through the access controls that you built into your worklfow. Also, feel free to experiment with your workspace design, layout, and branding.

Be sure to join us next time for Episode X, the final installment in our series of instructional articles, where you will tie it all together with a lesson on Teaming Templates.

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Disclaimer: This content is not supported by Novell. It was contributed by a community member and is published "as is." It seems to have worked for at least one person, and might work for you. But please be sure to test it thoroughly before using it in a production environment.

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