A workflow consists of connected tools that perform different functions to process data. Building a workflow involves adding and connecting tools and configuring tools and workflow properties. To build a new workflow, click on the toolbar, or click File > New Workflow.
Workflow connections move in a downstream direction, vertically or horizontally, based on the workflow layout you choose in the workflow Configuration window. See Workflow Configuration.
To add a tool to a workflow, click any tool from the tool palette and drag it onto the workflow canvas, or right-click the workflow to access a menu to insert tools. See Tool Categories.
To remove a tool from a workflow, select the tool and press the Delete key.
To connect tools in a workflow, click and drag a tool from the tool palette onto the canvas near the output anchor of another tool. You can also drag the output anchor from an existing tool to the tool you just added.
Connections go in through the left side (or top) of a tool and out through right side (or bottom) of a tool. Some tools accept multiple inputs indicated by multiple input anchors . Some tools have optional inputs indicated by a gray input anchor. All tools with an output anchor can be outputted to multiple streams.
Select the connection and press Delete. Downstream tools are not deleted.
- Right-click the connection and click Insert in Connection, then select a tool.
- Drag a tool from the tool palette or anywhere on the canvas and hover over an existing connection.
- Right-click the output anchor and click Insert After, then select a tool.
You can view a list of possible tool connections and make multiple connections at the same time. For example, this is useful for connecting multiple data inputs to a single downstream tool. To make multiple connections:
- Select a tool on the canvas. If the tool accepts both an input and output, specifically select the input anchor or output anchor of the tool to determine the list of possible connections to or from that anchor.
- Right-click the selected anchor and click View Possible Connections.
- In the Possible Connections window, select one or more tools from the Output Connections list to connect to one or more tools from the Input Connections list.
- Under Connection Type, select whether to make the connection Wired or Wireless.
- Click Connect.
If you view possible connections for multiple selected tools, only valid connections from output to input anchors are shown.
Double-click any connection to view and modify its properties in the Configuration window:
- Name: Type a name for the connection.
- Wireless: Select to set a connection to wireless.
- Fields: In the table, view data going through the connection.
For wireless connections, a wireless connection icon with colored bars indicates the number of connection coming into or out of an anchor: one bar = one connection; two bars = two connections; three bars = three or more connections. The connection becomes invisible unless the tool is selected.
Click a tool on the canvas to select it, then right-click to display a menu with these options:
- Cut: Cut the selected tool from the canvas.
- Copy: Copy the selected tool.
- Delete: Deletes the selected tool.
- Zoom: Select to:
- Zoom In
- Zoom Normal: Cancel zoom.
- Zoom Out
- All: Zoom to fit all tools in the window.
- Selected tools: Zoom to fit all selected tools in the window.
- View Possible Connections: View a list of possible tool connections to or from a selected tool. See Connect multiple tools at once.
- Add to New Container: Adds the selected tool or tools to a Container Tool. See Tool Container Tool.
- Bring to Front: Send the selected tool to the front if tools are overlapping. This is useful for layering Comment boxes or ordering overlapping tool annotations. See Comment Tool.
- Send to Back: Send the selected tool to the back if tools are overlapping. This is useful for layering Comment boxes or ordering overlapping tool annotations. See Comment Tool.
- Toggle between Make Incoming Connections Wired and Make Incoming Connections Wireless to change how the connections display.
- Toggle between Make Outgoing Connections Wired and Make Outgoing Connections Wireless to change how the connections display. Input and output anchors with a wireless connection display the icon , which presents colored bars indicating the number of connections coming into or out of an anchor: one bar = one connection; two bars = two connections; three bars = three or more connections. The connection becomes invisible unless the tool is selected.
- Cache and Run Workflow: Cache all data up to the selected tool. The workflow is run automatically to cache the data. Multiple caches can be used in a single workflow.
- Clear Cache: Remove a cache.
- Convert to Macro Input: Convert a selected input tool to a macro input tool. See Macro Input Tool.
- Insert After: Select a tool to insert after the selected tool. See Tool Categories
- Add Browse After: Add a Browse tool after the selected tool. If the selected tool has multiple output anchors, an option to add a Browse tool to each output will be available.
- Properties: Place the focus on the Configuration window for the selected tool.
When interacting with a tool that has been cached, viewing the tool's configuration does not clear that cache, but changing the tool's configuration causes the cached data to be released. Caches are cleared when a workflow is closed.
Select two or more tools to see alignment options.
- Align Horizontally: The selected tools align horizontally with the selected tool that was placed on the canvas first.
- Align Vertically: The selected tools align vertically with the selected tool that was placed on the canvas first.
Select three or more tools to see distribution options.
- Distribute Horizontally: The selected tools are arranged to have even space between them along the horizontal axis.
- Distribute Vertically: The selected tools are arranged to have even space between them along the vertical axis.