Content

Easy DMS - Document Management System

DMSDocumentWorkflow

How to work with Easy DMS - Document Management System

Information for IT administrators can be found at GitHub.

The package for generic Redmine is available for download here.

 

Table of contents

What is Easy DMS
What are the main features of Easy DMS
How to configure the plugin
How to create custom fields
How to configure document tagging
How to configure roles and permissions
How to activate Easy DMS on a project
How to configure Approval workflows
How to work with Easy DMS module
How to view activities related to Easy DMS
How to configure WebDAV
WebDAV troubleshooting

 

What is Easy DMS

Easy DMS is a document management system used to track, manage and store documents and reduce paper. It's capable of keeping a record of the various versions created and modified by different users (history tracking). Easy DMS is available as a separate plugin for Easy Redmine. It is aimed to extend the current Easy Redmine's Documents module. Easy DMS comes with WebDAV functionality so you can manage your documents directly from your file manager (such as Windows Explorer) in addition to standard web access. Easy DMS is intended to be used by any users who need to work with documents.

 

What are the main features of Easy DMS

  • Directory structure
  • Document versioning / revision history
  • Email notifications for directories and/or documents
  • Document locking
  • Multi (drag/drop depending on browser) upload/download
  • Multi download via zip
  • Direct document or document link sending via email
  • Configurable document approval workflow
  • Document access auditing
  • Integration with Easy Redmine's activity feed
  • Wiki macros for quick content linking
  • Full read/write webdav functionality
  • Optional document content fulltext search
  • Documents and files symbolic links
  • Document tagging
  • Trash bin

 

How to configure the plugin

After you have purchased and installed the plugin, you can configure it in More > Administration > Plugins. The plugin configuration is available by clicking on Configure.

Image201605191439_1.png

Available options are as follows (the default value in square brackets):

  • Maximum files upload [0] Limits maximum number of files uploaded at once. 0 means unlimited.
  • Maximum files download [0] Limits maximum number of files downloaded in zip or sent via email. 0 means unlimited.
  • Maximum email attachment size [0] Limits maximum file size that can be sent via email. 0 means unlimited. Number is in MB.
  • Maximum file size upload-able via AJAX [100] Maximum file size upload-able via AJAX
  • File storage directory [/files/dmsf] Where the uploaded files will be physically stored.
  • Physical file delete [No] Whether files are physically deleted after their deletion in the web interface.
  • File default notification [Deactivated] Allows set notifications per project.
  • Display notified recipients [Deactivated] When activated the user will be informed about all recipients of just sent the email notification.
  • Title format [‘’] - Title format used when a document is downloaded.
  • Act as attachable [No] - This feature provides a possibility to attach documents to tasks. The new/edit task form contains a Drag&Drop area for uploading documents.
    Image20190824143322_1.png
    The following selection "Project preferences" will show up in project settings under DMS tab only when the above checkbox is ticked in the plugin configuration.
    Image201605191439_72.jpg
  • Columns - You can select which columns will be visible in the main document view. (All custom fields are available as columns)
  • From - An email address from which are sent emails with documents.
  • Reply-to - An email address for reply-to field when documents are sent by email.
  • Links only - Send links only instead of documents.
  • Keep documents locked - Documents will be kept locked when approved.
  • WebDAV [Activated] WebDAV once enabled can be found at http://.../dmsf/webdav/[project identifier]
  • Webdav strategy [Read-only] Enables the administrator to decide if WebDAV is a read-only or read-write platform for end users.
  • Directory containing Xapian databases [files/dmsf_index] A location of Xapian full-text searching database.
  • Stemming Language [english] A language used for stemming.
  • Stem strategy [Stem none] This controls how the query parser will apply the stemming algorithm. The default value is STEM_NONE. The possible values are:
    • STEM_NONE: Don't perform any stemming.
    • STEM_SOME: Search for stemmed forms of terms except for those which start with a capital letter, or are followed by certain characters, or are used with operators which need positional information. Stemmed terms are prefixed with 'Z'.
    • STEM_ALL: Search for stemmed forms of all words (note: no 'Z' prefix is added).
    • Note that the stemming algorithm is only applied to words in probabilistic fields - boolean filter terms are never stemmed.

 

How to create custom fields

Custom fields can be applied on documents and folders. There in the Easy Redmine Administration is an item Custom field. If New custom field from the command toolbar is selected there is a new Easy DMS type available. Then there is a common New custom field form where can be specified the new custom field parameters.

Image201605191439_2.jpeg

 

How to configure document tagging

In order to use Documents tagging feature let's add a new DMS custom field named Tag as a list with possible values specified according to your requirements.

Image201605191439_3.png

When the custom field is saved, you find it in edit mode while uploading new document or new revision. Just select the appriate value of the tag and save.

Image201605191439_4.png

 

How to configure roles and permissions

Roles and permissions can be configured in More > Administration > Roles and permissions. Available permissions related to Easy DMS are as follows:

  • View DMS file revision accesses
  • View DMS file revisions
  • Browse documents
  • User preferences DMS tab is enabled in the project settings
  • View documents Documents can be downloaded, emailed, copied and moved. Approval workflow is available.
  • Folder manipulation Folders can be created, deleted, edited, locked, unlocked. Email notification can be switched on/off.
  • File manipulation Documents can be uploaded, locked, unlocked. Email notification can be switched on/off. Approval workflows can be applied. Symbolic links can be created/deleted.
  • Delete documents It allows enter the Trash bin and delete/restore documents.
  • Force file unlock A member is allowed to unlock a document locked by someone else.
  • File approval Enable/Disable document approval workflow approving.
  • Manage workflows Approval workflow tab is enabled in the project settings. Members are allowed to define approval workflows of the project.

 

How to activate Easy DMS on a project

I order to make Easy DMS available on a project, it is necessary to have checked the corresponding module in the Modules tab. To do so, go to the particular project's Settings > Modules > tick "Easy DMS" checkbox and click on Save. Immediately after, Easy DMS and Approval workflows tabs will appear in the top menu of the particular project as illustrated below. Each project member with corresponding permissions can set email notifications related to DMS documents and folders of the project.

Image201605191439_5.png

 

How to configure Approval workflows

This settings allows project managers to define approval workflows. The approval workflow feature as a part of Easy DMS allows users to create an approval chain for document approving. An approval workflow is defined by a logical name and by assigned users – approvers in a particular order with a given dependency. Each approval workflow consists of one or more approval steps. Each approval step includes one or more approver and their dependency. It means that we can assign a new user with a dependency AND or OR. So to proceed to a next approval step it is required an approval by one or all approvers. Consequently we are able to define serial or parallel workflow this way.

Approval workflows can be configured both on global and project level. The global level settings is available in More > Administration > Approval workflows. Here can be defined global approval workflows available in all projects as illustrated below. The project level settings is available in the corresponding tab on a particular project with Easy DMS module activated, as explained previously.

Image201605191439_7.jpeg

To create a new approval workflow click on the respective button in the top right corner. Then you are expected to enter a name of the new approval wokflow. If you already have created some approval workflows, you can copy one into the new one by selecting it from "Copy workflow from" in the dropdown menu.

Image201605191439_9.png

When everything is filled in, click on Create button. Just created workflow appears on the workflow list. In order to change the workflow name or to define workflow steps click on the workflow name. Then workflow update form appears. In the top of the form, you can update the workflow name. Edit the name there and click on Save button.

Image201605191439_11.png  

Using the New step button you can choose one or more approvals and by clicking on AND or OR button you will add a new approval step to the end or by choosing an existing step from the list to an existing step.

Examples

Adding a new step with a single approver

  1. Select a user from the list.
  2. Step value remains on its default value New step.
  3. Add a new approval step by clicking on the button ADD.

Adding a new step with more than one approver

  1. Select two or even more users from the list.
  2. Step value remains on its default value New step.
  3. Add a new step by clicking on the button AND or OR depending on the relation of approvers in the step.

Adding a next approver into an existing step

  1. Select a user from the list.
  2. Change Step value to the number of an exiting step.
  3. Add a new step by clicking on the buttons AND or OR depending on the relation of the new approver in the step.

Later on exiting approval steps can be removed or reordered by clicking on corresponding icons next to the step approvals.

Image201605191439_13.png

Approval workflow constrains

Deleting of an already used approval workflow causes that the affected documents remain in their last approval state: Assigned, Waiting for approval, Approved or Rejected but it is impossible to continue in an unfinished workflow. The approval log is also unavailable. Documents with the unfinished workflow remain locked. In order to reassign the workflow or in another way to update the document it is necessary to unlock the document first and then to create a new revision of the document either by uploading a new version of the document or by creation of a new revision in the document details.

In case of removing one of the steps of a particular workflow, the affected documents remain in their last approval state: Assigned, Waiting for approval, Approved or Rejected. If there are unfinished approval steps, it is possible to continue in the approval chain. The missing step is skipped. If the document is in the state Waiting for approval and the just removed step was the last approval step, the document remains in the state Waiting for approval and it is impossible to continue in approving.

In case of adding or reordering one or more approval steps into a particular workflow, the affected documents remain in their last approval state: Assigned, Waiting for approval, Approved or Rejected. The added steps are not included into already assigned workflows and therefore have no influence on assigned approval workflows. The updated workflow is reflected by documents with workflow assigned after the update.

 

How to work with Easy DMS module

Documents

The Documents module allows you to store all documentation relevant to a project at one place, sorted into folders. You can switch on the Documents module by going to the project Settings → Modules tab. Check the check box in front of the DMS item, which is the Document Management System Feature.

At the screen, you find two major areas: folder and files tree in the upper part of the screen, and an area for uploading files in the lower part of the screen.

Documents management

The documents are stored in folders, which should have such a structure that provides an easy orientation within the topic.

Image201605191439_14.png

New folder

You can create a new folder by clicking the button "Create folder" in the right upper corner. This takes you to the following screen:

Image201605191439_16.png

Type the new folder Title and select which already existing Folder it should belong to (the new folder will become a subfolder of the selected folder). You can add a description of the folder. You can use various types of text formatting, such as headings, lists, links to web pages, documents etc. When you are satisfied with the settings, click the Create button.

A new folder can be also created by copying an existing folder. Go to the folder you wish to create a copy of, and click the Edit icon. Or click the edit button directly in the main view:

Image201605191439_18.png

On the folder edit page click the Copy icon:

Image201605191439_19.png

Select the Target project and Target folder. Click the Copy button.

List of folders

  • Each line of the folder list contains:
  • the folder name
  • number of files the folder contains
  • folder size, date of creation, version, author
  • folder edit tools Image201605191439_20.png
  • possibility to erase a folder Image201605191439_21.png
  • notification flag Image201605191439_22.png

The editing tool uses the same form as is used for creating a new folder. You can change the folder title and description here and make it a sub-folder of a different folder. You can sort the folders in the alphabetical or reversed alphabetical order. You achieve this by clicking the sign of arrow right from the column name (unsorted, alphabetical order, reversed alphabetical order).

Document management tools

By right-clicking on a particular document in a DMS folder, a context menu appears with the following options: Download, Email, Delete, Edit. To edit the document online in real time, it is necessary to have Microsoft Office installed as the feature is not compatible with other office applications (including LibreOffice).

Image20191020180412_1.jpeg

Filtering

If you are unsure of what the name of the folder is, you can try applying a keyword. Go to the Filter field, located in the right upper corner, and begin to type the keyword.

Image201605191439_24.png

Only those folders with titles that contain the given sequence of letters will be displayed. As you continue typing, fewer folders remain.

Tagging

There is a pre-defined list of tags. If you select a tag from the list, there will be displayed documents and folders marked with that tag only. To clear the tag filter and to display all documents and folders again just select the empty item on the list.

Image201605191447_1.png

Download

Let's say you want to download all contents of a folder called “Training”. Check the check box in front of the folder title and then click the Download button (in the left upper corner): The whole content of the folder will be zipped into one file and saved on your hard-drive.

E-mail

You can e-mail the folder content to your partner. Check the check box in front of the folder title and then click the Email button. All contents of the folder will be zipped into one file. You will be asked to fill in the recipient's e-mail address, subject and you can add a piece of text explaining what are you sending. The zipped files are included automatically. However, be careful with sending the whole content of a folder as its size can exceed the e-mailing limits and your e-mail may not be delivered!

Image201605191439_27.png

Before sending you can check the attachment by clicking on the URL link Documents.zip. If the checkbox links only is checked, URL links of attached documents will be append to the email body instead.

Delete folder

You can erase a folder in two ways:

  • click the red cross that is located at the end of the line containing the folder title
  • check the check box in front of the folder title, then click the Delete button

Add documents

Once you have your folder structure set up, you can start filling it with files. You can, of course, add a new folder any time later.

New files can be added in two ways:

  1. using drag & drop method – you drag & drop the files you wish to add into the area called Upload; only for files with size < 100MB; does not work for Internet Explorer, it opens the document instead of adding it into the list
  2. click the Add Files button, located left under the update area, then browse for the file

You see a list of all ready-to-be-added files. Each line contains:

  • the name of the file
  • status
  • file size
  • possibility to remove the file from the list Image201605191439_29.png

You can add up to 20 files within one upload. For files over 2GB you need to have a 64b browser. If you don't have a 64b browser, use you archiving tool such as ZIP or RAR and compress and then split your original file into more smaller archives before uploading. When all the files are ready for upload into the folder, click the Start Upload button. You will see the upload status changing. If needed, you can stop the upload by clicking the Stop Upload button.

You can adjust the area size by dragging the bottom line up and down.

Image201605191439_30.png

When the files are uploaded, a similar screen appears:

Image201605191439_31.png

Here you can change the file title, add description and comment and assign an appropriate version. You can also select a corresponding tag from the pre-defined list. When satisfied, click the Commit button.

If a document of the same file name already exists in the current folder you are offered with a new revision of the document automatically.

Documents links

There is possible to create a link to another document or folder from the same or another folder of the same or another project. Links behave as if operating directly on the target document or folder. It means for example that if you download or email a link, the referenced file is sent to the user.

If the target document is going to be removed or moved the user will be warn about existing links and these links will be automatically removed.

Create a link in the current location to another file or folder

There is a command "Link from" in the command toolbar in the document or folder details form. After a click on that icon a new form New document link appears. The user is expected to choose a source project, folder and optionally document as the target of the link just being created.

Internal

Allow to create links to DMS objects.

Image201605191439_33.png

External

Allow to create links to external object using their URL.

Image201605191439_34.png

Create a link from the current file or folder to another folder

There will be a new command "Link to" in the command toolbar of the main view. After a click on that icon a new form New document link appears. The user is expected to choose a target project and folder where the link just being created will be located.

Image201605191439_36.png

List of documents

Your files are added into the folder:

You see the file titles and names, their size, last modification date, version, workflow state and who added them (the author). Furthermore, you can lock or delete files.

Image201605191439_38.png

Symbols and their meaning:

Image201605191439_39.png     file details
Image201605191439_40.png     lock to prevent changes for other members
Image201605191439_41.png     unlock to allow changes for other members
Image201605191439_42.png     delete file
Image201605191439_43.png     locked file
Image201605191439_44.png     notifications not active: activate (Project Manager or Administrator only)
Image201605191439_45.png     notifications active: deactivate (Project Manager or Administrator only)
Image201605191439_46.png     approval workflow not assigned: assign
Image201605191439_47.png     approval workflow assigned: start
Image201605191439_48.png     waiting for approval: approve
Image201605191439_49.png     document approved
Image201605191439_50.png     document rejected

Document details

If you click the Image201605191439_51.png symbol, you get to the page with detailed information about the file.

Image201605191439_52.png

You see the file history, its versions and workflow. You can download older revisions by clicking the corresponding Image201605191439_53.png sign. You can show/hide download and email entries by clicking the icon. You can delete a particular revision by clicking on icon . The file can be copied or moved to another folder or even project by clicking on icon. Then you are expected to select a target folder and project. The file is copied or moved by a click on a corresponding button Copy or Move.

As a project manager you also see statistics about who, when and how many times has downloaded individual versions.

You can add new revision by clicking the plus + sign next to the New Revision title at the top of the page. Following screen appears:

Image201605191439_54.png

You can change the title, description and add a new comment. If you add a new file (New content), a new version will be automatically assigned to it. It can be either a minor version (if the previous version was x.1, the new version will be x.2; usually for minor changes in the document), or a major version (if the previous version was 1.x, the new version will be 2.0; usually for extensive changes in the document).

When you finished all document settings, click the Create button and a new revision is added.

Notifications

It is possible for the Project Manager or the Administrator to enable/disable notifications for each document or document folder. If the notification flag is on, a notification e-mail is sent to all e-mail recipients after the document state has changed (creation, change, approval). The e-mail recipients are taken from the list of project members. E-mail notification settings of individual users are taken into account.

If the notification flag is set on a folder, notification e-mails are sent if any document state changed within the folder sub-hierarchy.

Please note that all email notifications related to Easy DMS are sent both for planned projects and projects in realization. On the contrary, email notifications related to other entities in Easy Redmine are not sent for planned projects.

There are several ways to enable/disable e-mail notifications from DMS:

  1. Plugin settings - In the plugin settings, you can specify whether the notifications are enabled or disabled for newly created directories. This is the "File default notifications" option that can be set to Activated X Deactivated.
  2. Project settings - In the project settings, there is Documents tab and inside it is the option Notifications: Default (no change) X Activated (I want to get notifications even when they are off) X Deactivated (I don't want to receive notifications even when they are turned on). This is the setting for the currently logged-in project member.
  3. Address book settings - For each directory, there is an icon for activating, respectively deactivating notifications.
  4. Document settings - For each document, there is an icon for activating, respectively deactivating notifications.
  5. User settings - In the user profile, everyone can set which notifications they want to receive.

Approval workflow

The approval workflow state is indicated by workflow status in the Workflow column and by the corresponding icon on the very right side. The initial state is None as it is shown by the last document on the picture below.

Image201605191439_55.png

If you move your mouse cursor over an icon or text, a help text in a bubble is displayed. In case of the command icon, it is the action represented by the icon state.

Image201605191439_56.png

In case of the workflow state there are listed next approvers.

Image201605191439_57.png

Approval workflow process

The process itself is clearly described on the diagram below.

Image201605191439_58.png

And now step by step:

1. Assign an existing approval workflow to the selected document by clicking on the icon:     Image201605191439_59.png

Then a workflow assignment form appears:

Image201605191439_60.png

All project and global approval workflows are selectable. Select a workflow and click on Submit button. The selected workflow is assigned to the document. The icon has changed to:     Image201605191439_61.png

2. In the next step the assigned workflow must be started by clicking icon:     Image201605191439_62.png

3. When the workflow is started, all approvers in particular steps are expected to do an approval. The icon is changed to and the document is locked to prevent all changes:     Image201605191439_63.png

If you are one of the approvers of the current approval step, the icon is click-able and you can do an approval by clicking on it. Then the approval form appears:

Image201605191439_64.png

You have three options here, either approve, reject or delegate the current approval step. In case of rejection or delegation you are obliged to comment it in the text field “Your note...”. Only members of the project are offered for delegation. Your decision will be confirmed by clicking the Submit button.

4. If you has just approved the document and you are the last person of the approval chain. The document is approved as a consequence of your approval. The icon is changed to and the status is changed to “Approved”:     Image201605191439_65.png

5. If you has just rejected the document. The approval chain is finished immediately and the document is in the state Rejected. The icon is changed to:     Image201605191439_66.png

6. If you approve it and you are not the last approver or you delegate your approval to someone else, the workflow approval continues.

Log

All workflow approvals are stored and are available in the log window. You can open the window by clicking the workflow status text:

Image201605191439_67.png

Email notifications

Email notifications are sent according to the table as follows:

Event

Receiver(s)

The approval workflow is started

All approvers of the first step

An approval workflow step is finished

All approvers of the next step and workflow owner

The document has been approved

All members of the project

The document has been rejected

All participants of the workflow and the workflow owner

An approval step has been delegated

The delegate

Due date has been reached

All approvers in the given step who haven't approved yet. These notifications are resent every working day.

Trash bin

If documents or folders are deleted by a user, they are moved into the Trash bin only in fact and can be restored again or definitively removed from the Trash bin with Delete documents permission. The Trash bin is available from the main DMS menu. The user interface of the Trash bin is very similar to the documents view except command icons. New command icons for restore and delete a folder or document are next to the deleted folders a documents. Once a document or folder is deleted from the Trash bin there is no way back!

Image201605191439_69.png

Personal settings

Every project member is allowed to customize the DMS module behavior as follows:

Image201605191439_70.png

There are two options:

Notifications – Activated(default), Deactivated – If deactivated, you won't receive any email notifications related to documents and vice versa.

Title format – File names of downloaded documents can be formated using following tags:

%t – document title

%d – the date when the document was uploaded

%v – version of the documentation

%i – ID number of the document

%r – revision number of the document

Fast links – If selected, you are expected to enter a document’s ID instead of selecting the document from a pick list when creating a document link.

Act as attachable

            Files & Documents – You can attach Files and Document to issues.

            Files – You can attach Files only to issues.

This feature provides a possibility to attach documents to tasks. The new/edit task form contains a Drag&Drop area for uploading documents. It’s also possible to link existing documents using the button Link from. Attached documents are stored in system folders visible from the user interface depending on permissions.

 

How to view activities related to Easy DMS

All changes related to a file revision are recorded as activities.

Image201605191439_71.png

 

How to configure WebDAV

The document module of the project can be mounted as a web folder. In a mounted folder is available a complete document and folder structure then. When a user does an operation such as download/upload a document or creating a new folder it is automatically recorded in DMS and it has the same effect as the operation would be done in the web interface of DMS.

Image201605191439_72.png

In order to mount a project documents in MS Windows system open Documents, right click on the Computer item in the tree and select Mount network drive. Fill-in URL of the project documents module in the following format:

https://[your domain]/dmsf/webdav/[project identifier]

In the next step you are asked to login and in case of a successful login a new folder with the project documents appears.

Image201605191439_73.png

 

WebDAV troubleshooting

Despite the fact that the WebDAV protocol is a standard used to access network locations, the client might face several problems especially in MS Windows. Here are a few tips how to deal with errors raised during mapping a network drive via WebDAV.

Microsoft Windows

This is dependent on what update level you are on windows. Please refer to this article for more information.

Windows 10, 8.1, 8 and 7

Windows 10, 8.1 and 8 use the WebClient Services to connect to a WebDAV Servers, by default the WebClient service is disabled, so we need to enable it, and also change the service to start automatically when Microsoft Windows starts:

Image201606071659_1.png

Then Start it and change the startup type to Automatically:

Image201606071659_2.png

Using the CMD

Check if the WebClient Service is running and set to "Start Automatically". From a command prompt, you can start WebClient Services by typing

net start webclient

You need to run cmd.exe with elevated privileges if you have UAC enabled. BasicAuthLevel

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