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Data Dictionary Overview
Data Dictionary allows you to annotate the objects within a Database Mapper snapshot, including additional information and comments. Within your documentation, you may want to capture additional information like SLAs, persons responsible for the data, timeliness of the data, and other attributes. This additional information can be captured using the Database Mapper data dictionary. Add annotations to existing objects in your Database Mapper portal to capture any additional information you desire.
Note: Data Dictionary requires an existing solution with at least one snapshot generated. For more information about creating a solution and generating a snapshot, see the Generating Documentation article.
- Add business definitions to any item in the documentation
- Provide annotations useful to business users
Create Data Dictionary categories to enter your annotated data. Categories can be applied to varying object types within your solutions. Define the scope for each category, and set restrictions for technology and data types. For example, you can create a Use Case category that applies only to SQL Server database tables.
|Name||The name of the Data Dictionary category.|
|Scope||The Solutions and Solution items that are applicable to the Data Dictionary category.|
|Technology Type||The Technology type of the Data Dictionary category.|
|Required||Denotes if the Data Dictionary category is required in the documentation.|
|Displays previously deleted Data Dictionary categories.|
|Opens the Add Category window, and allows you to configure a new Data Dictionary category.|
|Opens the Edit Category window and allows you to edit the selected Data Dictionary category. Select Save to save your changes.|
|Opens the Confirm Action window. Select Delete to delete the selected Data Dictionary Cateogry|
|Restores the selected Data Dictionary category.|
Note: Data Dictionary categories can be applied only to specific solutions or solution items, or can be applied globally throughout your Database Mapper environment.
Note: Before your Database Mapper solutions are annotated with Data Dictionary entries, you need to create categories. A category is a field that contains information about different objects in the solution such as business owner, emergency contact, etc.
Data Dictionary categories can consist of one of the following data types:
|Text||The Data Dictionary category will store a simple text value on a single line.|
|List||The Data Dictionary category will store values in a bulleted list format.|
|Note||The Data Dictionary category will store a long text value.|
|DateTime||The Data Dictionary category will store a date and time value.|
|Number||The Data Dictionary category will store a numerical value.|
|DropDown||The Data Dictionary category will store a drop-down list of values, where you can select one value.|
|PickList||The Data Dictionary category will store a list of values where you can select multiple values.|
|MarkDown||The Data Dictionary category will store a lightweight markup where you can apply simple formatting like bold or italic. Add italics to your text in this format *text*. Add bold around your text in this format **text**.|
To add Categories to the Database Mapper Data Dictionary, complete the following steps :
1. Select Data Dictionary > Categories to open the Categories page.
2. Select the + button to open the Add Category form.
3. Enter a Name for your category, and select the Solution where you want the category to be applied. Note: All Solutions is selected by default. Selecting an individual solution allows you to make a selection in the Solution Item drop-down list. All solutions Items is selected by default.
4. Select the applicable Technology Type for your Data Dictionary category. Note: Global is selected by default, which applies to all technology types supported by Database Mapper.
5. Select the Data Type for your Data Dictionary Category. Note: If you select DropDown, or PickList, the Value List drop-down becomes selectable and allows you to select a previously created Value List.
6. Select the Required selector if you want the category to be required, and then select the Applicable Item(s) for the category from the drop down list. Select Save to create your category.
7. Return to the Solutions dashboard, and start a snapshot for the applicable solution(s) to have your category added to the documentation.
Success: You have now created a Data Dictionary category for your documentation!
Adding Values to your Categories
After successfully adding Data Dictionary Categories to your documentation, and creating a new snapshot, you can begin adding values to applicable objects. Add values to your Data Dictionary categories by completing the following steps:
1. Open the Database Mapper Documentation page, and then select the applicable solution.
2. Select a solution item from the solution explorer, and navigate to an object that applies to the category.
Note: Data Dictionary categories that have Global Entry values are populated automatically. Global Entry values are designated by aicon.
3. Select Edit to begin adding values to your category.
4. Enter the desired values, then select Save to commit your changes.
Note: While in the Edit menu, select Override global entry to make changes to a category with a global entry value. Enter your desired change, then select Save to save your changes. Select Revert to global entry to return the category to the global entry value.
Adding Data Dictionary Values in the Lineage view
Note: Your selected Solution must have Data Dictionary categories configured to add or edit values from within the Lineage view.
You can add and edit the values for your Data Dictionary categories from your selected solution's Lineage view. Add values to your existing Data Dictionary categories by completing the following steps:
1. Open the Lineage tab and select a Solution that has configured Data Dictionary categories.
2. Use the Solution Explorer to navigate to a lineage object with applicable Data Dictionary categories. Right click the object in the Lineage graph, and then select View Data Dictionary to open the Data Dictionary window.
Note: The There is no data to display message displays when your selected lineage object does not apply to any of your Data Dictionary categories.
3. Select Edit to begin making changes to your Data Dictionary entries. Make the desired change(s) to your entries, and then select Save to save your changes.
Success: You have saved your Data Dictionary entries from the Lineage view!
Select the view historybutton on the Documentation page or the Lineage page to open the Change History window and review the changes made to your Data Dictionary values.
|View||Select the Viewbutton to open the Data Dictionary Change window and display the changes for the selected time period.|
|Changed At||The date and time the Data Dictionary was changed.|
|Changed By||The user or event that made changes to the Data Dictionary.|
|Change Type||The type of change made to the Data Dictionary.|
|Summary||A brief display of the changes made to the Data Dictionary. To see more information about the changes, select the View button.|
Select the View button to display the changes made to your Data Dictionary values.
Note: The Show Changes only toggle is enabled by default. Deactivate the Show Changes only toggle to display Data Dictionary values that haven't been changed.
Deleting a Category
Delete a Data Dictionary category within your Database Mapper portal by completing the following steps:
1. Select the Delete button for the desired Data Dictionary category to open the Confirm action prompt.
2. Select Confirm to remove your Data Dictionary category.
Note: You can use the Show Deleted toggle to display previously deleted Data Dictionary categories.
Global Entries are default values that can be applied to varying objects within your documentation if you haven't already defined the values in the documentation view.
|Category||The Category assigned to the global entry.|
|Scope||The Solutions and Solution items that are applicable to the Data Dictionary Global Entry.|
|Technology Type||The Technology type of the Global Entry.|
|Displays previously deleted Data Dictionary Global Entries.|
|Opens the Add Global Entry window, and allows you to configure a new Data Dictionary Global Entry.|
|Opens the Edit Global Entry window and allows you to edit the selected Data Dictionary Global Entry. Select Save to save your changes.|
|Opens the Confirm action window. Select Delete to delete the selected Data Dictionary Global Entry.|
|Restores the selected Data Dictionary Global Entry.|
Note: You don't need to take a snapshot to make Global Entries applicable to your documentation.
Note: You need to create Data Dictionary Categories before creating Global Entries.
Add Global Entries to your Data Dictionary by completing the following steps:
1. Select Data Dictionary > Global Entries to open the Global Entries page.
2. Select the + Add button to open the Add Global Entries form.
3. Select the applicable category for your Global Entry.
Note: If you select a Category that only applies to a specific Solution, Solution Items, or Technology Type, your Global Entry will automatically copy the Solution, Solution item, and Technology Type selections from that Data Dictionary category.
4. Select the solution where you want the global entry to be applied. Note: All Solutions is selected by default. Selecting an individual solution allows you to make a selection in the Solution Item drop-down list. All solutions Items is selected by default.
5. Select the applicable Technology type for your Global Entry. Note: Global is selected by default, which applies to all technology types supported by Database Mapper.
6. Enter the default value for your Global Entry in the Value section.
7. Select the Applicable Item(s) for the Global Entry from the drop down list, and then select Save to create your Global Entry.
Note: When you generate new documentation, the global entries display on each applicable object.
Deleting a Global Entry
Delete a Data Dictionary Global Entry within your Database Mapper portal by completing the following steps:
1. Select the Delete button for the desired Data Dictionary Global Entry to open the Confirm action prompt.
2. Select Confirm to remove your Data Dictionary Global Entry.
Note: You can use the Show Deleted toggle to display previously deleted Global Entries.
Value Lists in Database Mapper are user-defined lists of supported values that can be selected to populate multiple Data Dictionary categories. For example, if you have created an employee category, you can add a value list to the category that lists each employee within your organization. If you decide to create another category that uses this same list of employees, you can add the value list to the category instead of re-creating your employee list.
|List name||The name of the Data Dictionary value list.|
|Opens the Add Value List window, and allows you to configure a new Data Dictionary Value List.|
|Opens the Edit Value List window and allows you to edit the selected Data Dictionary Value List. Select the + button to add new values, or select the icon to reorder the entries within your list. Select Save to save your changes.|
|Opens the Confirm action window. Select Delete to delete the selected Data Dictionary Value List.|
Note: Value Lists are applicable to categories that use the picklist or dropdown data types.
Create a re-usable Value List for your Database Mapper Data Dictionary by completing the flowing steps:
1. Select Data Dictionary > Value Lists to open the Value Lists page.
2. Select the + Add button to open the Value List form.
3. Enter a name for the value list, and enter a value. Select the + symbol to add the value to the list. You can add as many values as you want.
Note: You can select (delete) to remove an entered value. Selecting the Show-Deleted toggle displays all previously deleted values. Select the (restore) button to restore the value to the list.
4. After you are satisfied with the values in your list, select Save to create your value list.
Success: You can now use your value list for Data Dictionary categories with the picklist or dropdown data types.
Organizing a Value List
You can organize the entries within your Value List within the Create new value list, or Edit Value list windows.
Select the icon to begin ordering your list. Drag the entries into the selected order, and then select Save to save your changes.
Deleting a Value List
Delete a desired Value List in your Database Mapper environment by completing the following steps:
1. Select the Delete button for the desired value list to open the Confirm action window.
2. Select Delete to remove your Data Dictionary Value List.
The Grid View allows for bulk editing and analysis of Data Dictionary values through a single page on a solution-by-solution basis. The Edit View is the default landing option and shows the number of invalid or missing required values for the solution items. In the the example below, Adrian's SuperSimpleDB solution contains a SQL Server 2005-2019 item with 8 problematic values.
Grid Edit View
Edit View highlights missing values and allowed them to be edited for an entire solution on the page without having to go object to object. Expand each level to navigate the object hierarchy.
Since the screen is already in edit mode, enter new values (or edit/remove existing ones), then select Save.
Note: Use the Hide Valid Values option to focus only on entries with missing or invalid information. This filter can be used from both the Edit View and Analysis View.
Grid Analysis View
Analysis View provides a way to identify issues with data dictionary completeness for a solution. It shows a count of corrupted, missing required, and overall missing values for the solution.