Creating variables

You create variables in the Variables view. When you create variables, consider the following practices:

  • Use a common naming style.

  • Use descriptive names, especially if the variables will be visible in the user interface. If you know that a variable will be displayed to a user, such as in Workspace, provide a Title string. If you choose to add a variable title, in Workspace, the title is displayed when displaying the variable in place of the variable name.

  • Variables are case-sensitive. Ensure that you reference variables using the same case in your process.

When using variables, you should consider the following best practices:

  • You can create as many variables as a process requires. However, to conserve database resources, use the minimum number of variables required, and reuse variables when possible.

  • If you are creating an input variable and the process is to be invoked using a watched folder, the variable must be of type document , or a list or map variable that contains document values. (See document .)

Note: Some variable types have properties that you can configure. For example, you can configure the default values of many variable types.

To create a variable:

  1. In the Variables view, click Create New Variable  .

    You can also right-click the Variables view and select Create New Variable.

  2. In the Name box, type a name for the variable, following these naming rules:

    • Must be a valid XML element name that contains only valid XML characters.

    • Must not start with a digit.

    • Must be less than 100 characters long.

    • Must be unique and therefore cannot be id , create_time , update_time , creator_id , or status , which are reserved variables always in the process data model.

  3. In the Title box, type a label for the variable that can be displayed in user interface windows or dialog boxes. Otherwise, the variable name is used in these locations.

  4. In the Description box, type a description of the variable so that future developers can understand the purpose of the variable.

  5. In the Type list, select the data type of the variable. The data type you choose depends on the values that the variable will hold and the requirements of the process. (See Variable types reference .)

    If the data type is not in the Type list, click the ellipsis button, select Find Type, type a search string in the Search box, click Search, select a data type from the displayed list, and then click OK.

    The search string is a series of characters. Any data type that contains that series of characters is found. The search does not use wildcard characters, such as an asterisk (*).

  6. If the Type is a map or a list , in the Sub-type list, select a data sub-type. For other data types, this list is not used.

  7. If the variable is used to store process data, select Process Variable in the Purpose area.

    • If the variable stores input data that is provided when the process is initiated, select Input.

    • If the variable stores data that is returned to the process initiator when the process is complete, select Output.

    • If the variable stores input data that is mandatory to initiate the process, select Required.

  8. If the variable is used to store a constant data value that is used for all process instances, select Configuration Parameter.

  9. To specify a length for the datatype definition, do one of the following:

    • To indicate a maximum length, select Maximum Length, and enter a numeric value in the box.

    • To indicate no limit, select Unlimited.

  10. If the variable requires specific settings, type the required information in the Datatype Specific Settings area. This step only applies to some kinds of variable types. (See Variable types reference .)

    If you provide a default value for a Configuration Parameter variable, when you save the process the value can be updated on the server.

  11. Click OK.

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