CDP 4 User Manual


Plugin: Basic Reference Data Module


Categories can be created and applied to concepts in the CDP™ Data Model to organize and manage it. According to ECSS-E-TM-10-25, a category is a

representation of a user-defined category for categorization of instances that have common characteristics1

It provides a mechanism to "label" concepts in the CDP™ Data Model, and provides structure and meaning to an engineering model setup. The categories are defined and managed in the RDL, and can be applied to specific concepts in the CDP4™.

This section describes how categories can be managed, and a high level description of how categories can be used.

Managing Categories

Open the Categories Browser by selecting the Categories img icon on the Reference Data tab. This browser contains a list of all the Categories contained in all the RDLs that are opened at that moment for the selected data source. Categories are shown with a Short Name, a Name, Super Categories, and Container RDL.

Persons with a role that has the permission Modify on the ClassKind Site Reference Data Library are able to access the Basic RDL to create, edit or delete categories.

Various types of rules can be setup that use one or more defined categories to express relationships between various modelling concepts, see the section on rules itself for more details. For the use of categories in rules, and setup the correct and meaningful relationships between modelling concepts in these rules using the categories, it is important to set these up properly. It is advisable to have the RDL management available for a limited group of users only.

A description of the available functionalities is given below. Next to these it is possible to use the generic functionality using the Search img and Help img icons. To make sure the latest data is shown in the browser, it is always possible to refresh it using the Refresh img icon. The categories modal dialogs further have the generic functionality on the Aliases, Definitions and HyperLinks tabs, described in the topic standard tabs.

Create Category

To create a new Category, select the Create Category img icon or in the context menu select Create a Category. On the Basic tab, provide the mandatory fields for Name and Short Name. Furthermore, it is required to provide the Container RDL, see the management and usage of RDLs.

Optionally, tick the check box for the Abstract field.


On the Permissible Classes tab, select the Classes to which the category can be applied. At least one permissible class should be selected to allow a new category to be created.


Optionally, it is possible to indicate one or more super categories on the Super Categories tab. The super categories can be used to build up a hierachical set of related categories.


After providing further details, click Ok to create the category.

Edit Category

To edit a category, select the Edit Category imgicon or in the context menu select Edit. It is possible to edit all the available fields on the Basic, Permissible Classes and Super Categories tabs, as well as optional items on the other tabs for Aliases, Definitions, and Hyperlinks.

After making the required changes, click Ok.

Please note that editing categories should be handled with extreme care, as this will have a large impact on all engineering models that use concepts that depend on it. It is advisable to only edit categories to fix apparent mistakes.

The browsers in the CDP™ Client of the user that performed the editing action will be updated immediately. Other CDP™ Clients will be updated with a [refresh][Refresh].

On the Advanced tab, a Revision Number is given, see the description of Revision Number for details.

Inspect Category

To inspect a category, select the Inspect Category imgicon or in the context menu select Inspect. In the Inspect modal dialog, all the details can be seen on the Basic, Permissible Classes and Super Categories tabs, as well as optional tabs for Aliases, Definitions, and Hyperlinks. Additionally the status of the category is given by the check box for Deprecated, see the description of Delete below.

The Advanced tab provides information that may be useful mostly to CDP™ database administrators. Given are the UniqueID and the Revision Number.

Delete Category

A category should not be deleted from the CDP™.

To delete a category, select the Delete Category imgicon or in the context menu select Delete. Items from the CDP™ are never completely deleted, but they are marked as Deprecated. This Deprecated status is an indication to users that it should not be used anymore.

Export Categories

To export categories, select the Export Categories img icon or in the context menu select Export.

Applying and Using Categories

The categories can be used in the definitions of the concepts to which they are applicable, by the selection on the Permissible Classes tab. It is in principle possible to add any number of categories.

As an example, when a category has been created with permissible classes Element Definition and Element Usage, this category can be applied to an element definition when this is created or edited by adding this category on the Categories tab of the element definition.

As such, users can create any required category to support their needs, either generic or domain specific, to setup and use an engineering model in the CDP™4. The categories are available on various modelling items in the CDP™4, e.g. on element definitions, element usages, parameter types, relationships or requirements. Please note that this is only possible on concepts that include the CategorizableThing1 superclass as defined in ECSS-E-TM-10-25.

Categories can be used to provide a more formal structure to the CDP™ Data Model, which can be combined with rules and checking mechanisms to suggest or enforce a particular setup of a CDP™ Data Model. The use of categories will also allow the easier retrieval of specific information in the CDP™ Data Model, e.g. to use in the setup of calculation sheets. Categories can however also be used for more informative or informal reasons, e.g. labelling to allow easier navigation, filtering or sorting for particular domains.

Apart from the use of categories in rules, the categories can be inspected and used in the CDP™ Client, in a CDP™ Workbook, and in customised applications, e.g. for the integration of Domain Specific Tools (DSTs).

Related Topics

  1. Source ECSS-E-TM-10-25-Annex-A, v2.4.1, ToC Reference Manual, section 4.13 

Last modified 4 years ago.

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