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erwin Evolve 2020.1.1 - User Guide

Getting Started Creating Sites and Pages Data Layout Options Filtering Data Property Groups Data Visualizations Displaying Diagrams Using Web Modeler Automatic Diagrams (Diagram Designer) Navigating your Site Workflow Explained Social Interaction Features Questionnaires Reference Configuration and Administration Customizing Your Site Troubleshooting Upgrading

Key Concepts

Key Concepts

To help understand Evolve and the instructions in this guide, this page lists the key concepts you'll run into when working with Evolve.


Evolve deployments are called Sites - that is a collection of custom web pages based on data from a CW Model. In Evolve, these web pages are called Index Pages and Object Pages.

You can deploy your Site in two ways: as a Static Site, or a Dynamic Site - or both, if you have a Dynamic license.

You can create as many Sites as you like but only one per Model.

See URLs, file paths and directory structures to understand the URLs used to access your Sites.

Top-level IIS Site

The top-level IIS Site is only used when Dynamic Sites have been deployed and lists all the Sites the logged on user has permission to view. Users can choose a Site to view and then that Site is displayed.

Evolve Static

A Static Evolve Site is a read-only deployment which displays data from your repository taken at a fixed point in time. It is therefore not live data and does not allow anyone viewing the web pages to edit it.

Static Sites do not support user login and therefore do not support access control or social features such as Comments, Questionnaires and Favorites.

Evolve Dynamic

A Dynamic Evolve Site shows live data from the CW repository and allows people viewing the data to edit it - assuming you have configured it that way and the users have sufficient permissions to do so.

Using Evolve's social features, a Dynamic Site enables Followers to read the data, create a custom homepage and set favorite pages, while Contributors can additionally edit data and participate in the review and approval workflow.

Index Pages

Index Pages are the top-level pages in your Site. They are the pages that the main Menu navigation links to and they are generally the starting point for users browsing your Site.

Index Pages essentially display lists or representations of objects which can be expanded on by supporting Object Pages which show more information about the object in question.

There are three types of Index Page:

1.Object listing pages, such as lists, tables, or boxes.

2.Graphical pages, such as dashboards and charts.

3.Diagram pages, showing CW Modeler diagrams or visualization diagrams.

Object Pages

An Object Page is used to present the details of an object instance - you select an object on an Index Page, and the Object Page displays its properties. You must have an Object Page configured for each type of object you want to see the details of in your Evolve Site.


An Object Page can be configured to offer more than one View of the object being observed. If you make more than one Object Page for an Object Type, these pages will be offered as Views to the user. The links to the different Views are displayed as sections in the page's left-hand navigation panel.

Layouts and Behaviors

There are many ways you can display your data in Evolve web pages. The basic display options for Index Pages and Object Pages are simple lists or property groups. You can however use a wide variety of layouts and behaviors to extend on these basic display options to include elements such as Pie Charts, Bubble Charts, Cost/Benefit Charts, Bar Charts, Maps, Roadmaps and Tables.

Evolve Designer

Evolve Designer is the desktop application you use to create, configure and manage your Evolve Sites. It is installed on the web server machine which hosts your Evolve Site.

Diagram Designer

Diagram Designer is the desktop application you use to create and configure Diagram Visualizations. It is installed on the web server machine which hosts your Evolve Site.


Roles are used to group users for the purpose of control Site access and capabilities.

You use Roles to control visibility to your Site pages, as well as whether those users are Social or Contributing users - so who is a read-only user and who can also edit data.

In addition, Roles are used in Evolve Workflow to determine which users must review and approve other users' edits to data.


A Deployment is the location of your published Evolve Site running on a web server. Once you create and configure your Site, you deploy it to the web server so other people can access it.


Workflow is a component of Evolve which provides some useful workflow processes based on creating, editing and deleting data, as well as reviewing content.


The terms mentioned above are only some of the concepts you'll come across when working with Evolve.

For a full list of the common concepts and terms, please use the Glossary in the left-hand pane.


Meta Model Considerations

Meta Model Considerations

Your model's meta model is a consideration for Evolve for the following reasons:

1.When you create an Evolve Site, certain changes are made to your model's meta model

2.Certain Evolve features, such as graphs, dashboards or features on Object Pages, can only be used if your objects have specific corresponding Property Types or Association Types

3.If you change your meta model - such as by creating new Object Types, Property Types or Association Types, then you must use the Update Meta Model feature in Evolve Designer to ensure Evolve is aware of the changes.

Throughout this documentation, when meta model changes are required or are enforced, the topic is highlighted in the following way:

This feature requires specific Property Types or Association Types for the Objects in question – and therefore may require changes to your meta model.

Displaying Diagrams in Evolve Sites

Displaying Diagrams in Evolve Sites

          This page explains how to display diagrams in your Evolve web pages.

There are two types of diagram that can be displayed in Evolve web pages:

          CW Modeler diagrams - any diagram created in CW Modeler in your model.

          Visualization diagrams - auto-generated diagrams created using Diagram Designer.

Both of these types of diagram can be displayed in either Index Pages or Object Pages.

When a diagram is displayed in a page, the objects on it are clickable - but you must have Object Pages for each of the Object Types otherwise the user will see an error.

On CW Modeler diagrams you can also configure Diagram Popouts to display the data behind objects on your diagrams in a pop-out panel on the diagram page itself.


In order to display a diagram in Evolve, your model must contain a Template Diagram with the same Rule and Category as the one you want to show. 

Note: There must be just one template for each Rule/Category combination.

If you try to display a diagram that does not have a corresponding Template Diagram, Evolve will not be able to show it.

What do you want to do?

Display a CW Modeler diagram in your Site

Display a Visualization diagram in your Site

Display object data with a Diagram Pop-out

Display a diagram on the home page of your Static Site

Users, Roles and Access Rights

Users, Roles and Access Rights

Evolve Web Platform 2020.0.1 and below:

Users, Roles and Access Rights are only relevant to Dynamic Sites.

Static sites are open to everyone to see who has access to the URL, and as the data is fixed and read-only permissions are irrelevant.

If your Site configuration includes Access Rights and Roles, but you want to publish a Static version of the Site, then those elements are ignored in the generation.

Evolve Web Platform 2020.0.2 and above:

Whilst the Roles and Access Rights for the generated content are still operated at generation time, the gate to access to the site can now be controlled by Evolve Web Platform. This means that, when Static Authentication is turned on, users must be given 'Static' access, at a minimum to be able to access the site.

If Static Authentication is turned off, Evolve Web Platform will still be required to check the usage mode, but will then pass through any requests for data, without further authentication.

In order to view an access controlled Evolve Site, a User must log in with a valid Username and Password (or be given permission through Active Directory or SAML2 group acess). There are three types of User:

Static Users - who can access a pre-generated static site. (If Static Authentication is turned off, anyone with access to the webserver will be admitted).

Social Users - who only have read-only access to data, but can use all the Social features of Evolve, so they can Rate objects, set Favorites, collaborate using Comments and Questionnaires, and can Share pages with other Users

Contributors - who can do all of the above, but can additionally Edit data as well, and can be involved in Workflow tasks.

Diagrammers - who have the same rights as Contributors, but can additionally edit and create Diagrams using eModeler.

All Evolve Sites can have Static and Social Users, however a special license is required to have Contributors - and the license also controls how many Contributors you can have.

Web Modeler, for example, is a licensed application. Additional licenses are required on a per user basis in order to use Web Modeler on your Evolve Site.

Controlling who can see what?

There are two factors that determine which content a User can see in an Evolve Site:

Roles - determine which Site pages a User can view

CW Suite Access Rights - determine which objects a User can see, and whether they can create, read, edit or delete those objects.

NOTE: With Active Directory or SAML2 Authentication and a large number of users, it is likely that only Roles are used.


Roles are used to determine which pages within the Site a User is able to view. That means the Menus and links in the interface are updated to remove all links to pages that the Role determines the User should not be able to see.

If a page has no Roles assigned to it, then all users in any Role can view it.

As an Evolve Administrator you can create as many Roles as you like, assign Users to those Roles, and then specify exactly which pages a Role is able to view.

If a User is in more than one Role, Evolve looks at all relevant Roles to see if the User is able to view the page.

Roles are also used with Evolve Workflow to specify who must approve changes made to data by other users.

For details on Roles and assigning Users to Roles, see: Working with Roles.

CW Suite Access Rights

While the type of User you are (Social User or Contributor) specifies what you can do in Evolve, and Roles control which pages you can see, CW Suite Access Rights and Extended Access Controls are used to determine what capabilities a User has with specific objects at a granular level.

CW Suite Access Rights can be used to make a User Read-Only, control which Models they can see, and what they can do with certain types of objects, like ones that are Frozen.

Extended Access Controls can be used to specify whether a User can Create, Read, Update or Delete objects based on either their Object Type or Category.

CW Suite Access Rights and Extended Access Controls are the final level of access control within Evolve. Even though a User might be a Contributor, and they can view a Table listing some Processes, they may not be able to edit all of the Processes listed. They may not even see all the Processes - and another User may see a different list of Processes.

For full details on CW Suite Access Rights and Extended Access Controls, please refer to the CW Suite documentation.

Active Directory or SAML2 Authentication

You can configure an Evolve Dynamic Site to automatically authenticate users based on Active Directory or SAML2 group membership.

Users authenticated in this way only have to browse to the Evolve URL and they are automatically signed in, without having to enter a username and password.

As an Evolve Administrator, you can state that Users in a specific Active Directory group should be Static Users, Social Users, Contributors or Diagrammers and you can assign them to an Evolve Role, and a CW Group.

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