Browsing existing links

Changing a requirement may have grave consequences on artifacts depending on it. YAKINDU Traceability can help you visualize the extend of such impacts. This blog post has an overview: "Visualize the relation between artifacts with YAKINDU Traceability".

YT Explorer

The YT Explorer view can be used to navigate over traces and artifacts in a tree view. It also provides access to several traceability functions, like filtering and reporting over its menu. Expanding the tree shows the artifacts related to the traces. The tree is pruned in order to avoid cycles. A double-click on an artifact shows that artifact in its origin editor. By default, YT Explorer displays only linked artifacts, but it can be configured to also display unlinked ones.

In the YT Explorer tree, you can select one or more artifacts. Selecting multiple artifacts is useful to populate the YT Editor or YT Favorites views quickly, or to delete multiple links at the same time.

If an element in the YT Explorer tree has a lot of children, the latter are grouped into chunks with separate nodes that can be opened and closed individually. By default, „a lot of children” means „thousand or more”. You can configure that number in the preferences under Layout and Views, i.e., select Window → Preferences in the main menu, then open YAKINDU Traceability → Layout and Views.

Please note: For performances reasons, the Select All action ([Ctrl]+A) will not select the entire tree if the number of expanded elements is too high. The exact behavior of this action is undetermined in this case. The only guarantee is that this action will select all items currently visible (on screen), plus a few more. The same goes for multi-selection via [Shift]+click or [Ctrl]+click, which might not select the entire range of elements if there are too many elements.

The menu provides access to several grouping modes.

  • Artifact type (undirected), default: Displays traces grouped by artifact types without regarding the link direction.
  • Artifact type (directed): Displays traces grouped by artifact types, taking the direction into account (from A to B). Each artifact that is linked as A can be expanded to show the artifacts that are linked to it as B.
  • Link type: Displays traces grouped by link types.
  • Resource: Displays traces grouped by resources.

By default, the YT Explorer shows only linked artifacts (i.e., artifacts with at least one incoming or outgoing link), regardless of the chosen grouping. By activating the toggle „Show Unlinked Artifacts” in the menu (or by pressing the corresponding tool bar icon), you can display also unlinked artifacts (i.e., artifacts without any incoming or outgoing link). Note that this can incur a significant performance penalty when there are many unlinked artifacts. Unlinked artifacts are marked with the same symbol that is used for the „Show Unlinked” toggle. For the grouping mode „Link type”, no unlinked artifacts are shown independent of the toggle state.

Filter the displayed links

The YT Explorer provides two means to filter the content:

  • A fast textual filter that considers artifact names only
  • Means to configure and save filter configurations which consider attributes of the link type and the artifact type as they are defined in the YT Configuration, e.g., link types, artifact types etc.

Textual filters

Textual filters can be defined in the text field at the top of the YT Explorer. If a textual filter is set, the Explorer shows only artifacts (and the belonging links) with a name that conforms to that filter. Note that you need to hit enter in order to confirm your filter. Entering a blank (empty) text or a click on the rubber icon clears the filter.
The Regexp checkbox controls whether the entered text works as a plain text filter or as a regular expression:

  • A plain text filter matches if the name of an artifact contains the given text. It is not case-sensitive.
  • A regexp filter matches if the identifier matches the given expression.

Synchronize selection

The YT Explorer can be put into synchronize selection mode. If the mode is activated, the YT Explorer will listen for selection events and if a artifact is selected that has trace links, only the related artifacts will be displayed. This mode can be activated by clicking in the toolbar or by selecting Synchronize Selections in the menu.

YT Overview

The YT Overview view displays a live impact analysis graph by showing artifacts that are related to the current context. A double-click on an artifact node in the graph opens the artifact in its corresponding editor.

The zooming can be adjusted by the icons Zoom in, Zoom out, Zoom to fit, Zoom to original size, and Auto Zoom to fit in the toolbar of YT Overview.

Using the menu, you can invoke a couple of operations:

  • Setting the depth of the shown graph.
  • Switching the context definition:
    • Current selection: YT Overview calculates a graph consisting of the last selected artifact as „root” and all artifacts linked to this root with a distance that is not longer than the chosen depth.
    • All traces: YT Overview always shows the complete trace graph. Selection and depth are not considered.
  • Displaying directed links only (links outgoing from the selection until the specified depth) or displaying all links (incoming as well as outgoing).
  • Defining an exclusion filter. This is a blacklist of artifact types. Artifacts of these types won’t be shown in YT Overview.

Learn more about directed versus undirected links in the blog post "About bidirectional traceability, link semantics and a toggle button".