Please note : This help page is not for the latest version of Enterprise Architect. The latest help can be found here.

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Specification Manager - Overview

The Specification Manager is a document-based interface to a selected Package in the model, providing the means of creating and reviewing elements as text representations of model objects in that Package. You can rapidly define or edit properties of the elements in the Specification Manager window itself, and also immediately open a range of windows and dialogs to add or review further properties and characteristics specific to each element. A key feature of the Specification Manager is the speed and ease with which you can create, filter and review a large number of elements from one point, without necessarily developing or examining complex detail on each element.



Design > Package > Specification View

Context Menu

Right-click on Package | Specification Manager

Keyboard Shortcuts


The Specification Manager View

The Specification Manager initially displays as a tabbed view in the application work area, containing a:

  • Tailored instance of the Navigator Toolbar
  • List header bar of column names, and
  • Blank work area

The selected Package defaults to the first top-level View or Package in your model, and the element type defaults to any type held in the Package.

If you prefer, you can drag the 'Specification Manager' tab out of the application workspace and use it as a floating or docked window.

To begin you:

  • Select an existing Package to review, or create a new Package, using the Navigator toolbar
  • If you want to select a specific type of element to review, use the second button from the right in the Navigator toolbar - this also provides the option of switching back to displaying elements of any type in the Package

You can also adjust the list header bar to include the columns that show the information of interest to you, and the display Filter bar to further isolate particular elements for review. For an existing Package, the Specification Manager might now resemble this:

The display shows:

  • The element names and any notes they might have (you can configure the display to hide the notes)
  • The text values of each property represented by a column, where those values have been set; you can quickly edit any of the values
  • Icons in several columns, which indicate that the element has an associated object, file or linked document; you can double-click on these icons to display the object properties or document in the window in which it was created and, if necessary, you can edit the details
  • The elements in parent/child relationships

After you become familiar with what each indicator icon represents, you can display them all within the single 'All Indicators' column to save space.

When you click on an element in the display, it is marked by a vertical colored line in the left margin to indicate that the element is selected, and a vertical or horizontal line against the element property you clicked on, to indicate that the focus is on that property. In the illustration, the status of the 'Logout Use Case' element is selected. If you click again on the element property, the margin line changes color, to indicate that the property is open for editing. For example:

Adding, displaying and changing information

When you create or review an element on the Specification Manager, you operate through one of three areas:

  1. The Navigator toolbar, which provides options to:
         -  Change the Package or type of element under review
         -  Open tools to create, display or review the properties, characteristics and associated records of the Package
            or specific elements in the Package
         -  Configure the appearance of the Specification Manager display and the types of information you might
            develop from the data in the display
  2. The display area itself, where you can:
         -  Perform in-place editing by directly editing text (such as Version, Phase or element notes) or selecting alternative
            values from drop-down lists (such as Difficulty, Status or Priority)
         -  Double-click on an indicator icon and review the record or document attached to the element
         -  Drag in elements from any page of the Diagram Toolbox
  3. The element context menu, which you can display by right-clicking anywhere on an entry in the display; this provides options for:
         -  Creating and deleting elements
         -  Editing element properties (including adding and reviewing extended properties, or Tagged Values)
         -  Locating the element in the Project Browser and
         -  Refreshing the display


  • In the Corporate and extended editions of Enterprise Architect, a User Security system can be applied that restricts or enables access to a range of operations and functions; if you cannot access a function in the Specification Manager, check with your System Administrator or Security Administrator to see if you have access permissions to work with that function

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