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Hanging Path Trigger 

06-13-2012 09:47 AM

Hanging Path Trigger

Component definition

This component catches hanging paths in a model and triggers its own path. A hanging path is any unhandled output path. A hanging path can come from any component with an output path.

Component icon

Description of Hanging Path components

Four different types of hanging path triggers are available.

Component

Description

Hanging Path Trigger

Catches any hanging path in its own model.

Hanging Path Trigger by Component

Catches the hanging path for a user-defined component in the model.

Hanging Path Trigger by Components

Catches the hanging paths from a user-defined list of components in the model.

Hanging Path Trigger by Path

Catches the hanging paths of a certain name (for example, OK or Cancel).

Description of component tabs and their properties

The properties on the Output Variables tab in the Hanging Path Trigger component are listed and described in the following table:

Property

Description

Component IDVariable Name

Lets you enter the variable name that holds the component ID of the component that is involved in your hanging path.

The variable name you enter is created after the hanging path is triggered.

Path Name Variable

Lets you enter the variable name that contains information about the hanging path you triggered. The variable contains the identification information which can be referenced later in the Project.

The variable name you enter is created after the hanging path is triggered.

The properties on the Settings tab in the Hanging Path Trigger component are listed and described in the following table:

Property

Description

Component Class Name

The class name of this component. This property is not editable, but useful if you call Symantec support.

Description

The description of this component. This property lets you describe how the component is used. You can use it to provide any wanted documentation for this component.

This description is included in the model reports that are created when you click Plugins > Generate Business Model.

Location

The physical location of the top left point of this component on the workflow model.

Name

The name of this component. You can change the name.

If you changed the component name when you double-clicked it on the workflow model, the changed name appears here.

Override Background Color

This property lets you change the background color of this component.

To Do

This property lets you record what you still need to do with the component. Use this property to help you remember the configuration that you want to apply to this component.

The text that you enter for this property appears at the bottom of the component editor. If you enter text for this property, a checklist symbol appears on the component in the workflow model.

Is Enabled

This property lets you enable or disable the component. By default, components are enabled. When a component is disabled, it has no effect on the Project. Uncheck Is Enabled to disable the component.

  • Execution Outcome

    If a component with more than one outcome path is disabled, you must select which outcome path you want the component to take. Click the Execution Outcome drop-down list and select the outcome path for the workflow to follow.

  • Disabled Mapping

    If the component has output parameters, you must configure all output parameters with fixed data to pass on. This configuration can be performed in the Disabled Mapping option.

Connection information

Not applicable

Component settings

Unknown

Use cases

An example for the Hanging Path component is as follows:

  • Web form survey data capture

    Web form data is captured even if the user cancels out of the survey halfway through.

Web form survey data capture

Scenario: A company launches a Web form survey for their customers to fill out. The survey is somewhat lengthy. The company understands that if a survey is lengthy that some users only fill out a few fields and then leave the survey. To preserve whatever data was entered, the workflow process is set up to capture all entered data, even if the user cancels the form.

Process: This process is created as a Forms (Web) Project type.

The following screen shot shows the process:

A series of Form Builder components comprise the Web form survey. Notice that none of the Cancel output paths are handled; that is, they have no outbound connection. Usually, the components that are set up in this manner are all invalid because they have hanging paths. The Hanging Path Trigger component makes the model valid because it catches any hanging path. This example uses the basic Hanging Path Trigger component. You can use the Hanging Path Trigger by Components version, which is set to watch the Form Builder components for hanging paths. You can also use the Hanging Path Trigger by Path version, which is set to watch the Cancel output path.

The main reason for using the Hanging Path Trigger component is to avoid unnecessary paths cluttering the workspace. In this example, attaching all the Cancel outcome paths to the Variables Exist component is not difficult. On the other hand, in a much larger workflow process, it may be very difficult. The Hanging Path Trigger component provides a tidy alternative to messy outcome paths.

The desired outcome is that all users complete the survey and enter data in all of the fields. In this scenario, the Upload data to database component saves the data in a database. However, many users do not complete the survey. These users cancel out of the survey before all fields are filled.

When a user cancels the survey, the Hanging Path Trigger is invoked. The process data that is retrieved in the forms is invisible to the new path because it is not downstream from the Form Builder components. A Variables Exist component solves this problem by locating and exposing all available data in the process.

When the Hanging Path Trigger is invoked, your process loses access to all its data. As in the current example, use a Variables Exist component (or alternative) to expose process data to the new stream.

A custom component then uploads all available data to a database and the process ends.

Other components in this example are as follows:

  • Form Builder

  • Custom Component

    This component was created with the integration engine.

    For more information on the integration engine, see the Workflow Solution Administrator's Guide.

    www.altiris.com/support/documentation.aspx

  • Variables Exist

The Hanging Path Trigger component is similar to the Exception Trigger component.

The difference between the components is that one handles errors (exceptions) while the other handles normal execution (outcome paths). The Hanging Path Trigger component helps you create a more cleanly-designed workflow, while the Exception Trigger component helps you create a more stable workflow.

You can also use the Hanging Path Trigger component to handle the Finished outcome path of a For Each Item in Collection loop.

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