Oracle Tutor 14 - Converting Visio files to Tutor procedures
By mkeane on Oct 29, 2010
Note - the toolbar button is titled "Import Model," not "Convert" as is described below.
Visio diagrams provide the greatest opportunity for time saved in redeveloping BPM oriented content into Oracle Tools because there are so many of them in the organizational environment. At the same time, Visio diagrams are the greatest challenge to convert because templates may not resemble BPMN or may not be used at all, and the flexibility inherent in Visio allows for non-standard model development. A customer maintained mapping file has been provided which improves the ability to map from non-standard symbols used in Visio diagrams, but models to be converted should be reviewed carefully to assure a clean and efficient conversion.
Source Model Preparation
Make sure the Visio Model conforms to the following rules:
- Ungroup all model objects
- Flow connectors are placed between all appropriate model objects, and are connected to the symbol
- Symbol text is associated with the symbol and is not a Text Box grouped to the symbol
- Symbols created with non-standard templates have been mapped to OBPC (See Customizing OBPC below)
- All process symbols contain text
- Swimlanes contain named roles or actors
General Conversion Issues
Some symbols, which are BPMN 2.0 compliant, will not be converted, especially if they are dropped on tasks to turn them into different types of tasks or sub processes. The table VisioMasterMap.xml is provided and can be maintained by the customer. See Appendix 2: Visio Import technical Details for more information. Excluded Master symbols which map to null currently include:
- Ad Hoc processes
- Loop processes
- Title Block
- Activity Looping
- Multiple Instance
Incoming Visio models may contain undefined symbols, which appear to map to process objects but do not. If these objects are placed within the sequence flow they will be converted to tasks. If these objects are erroneously converted to tasks, the customer can add the objects to the mapping file. If the customer has licensed BPA or BPM, a more efficient approach is to import the Visio files into BPA or BPM, clean up the resulting models to valid BPMN standards, and then export them to Tutor.
Visio Model to Tutor
How to Use this Feature
Open a Tutor Document, and click on the Convert button on the Tutor toolbar. From the Tutor Convert dialog, browse to the folder containing the desired Visio file and click OK to convert the file. Note that the Convert button is the same for both Visio and XPDL files, and the .vdx or .xpdl file extension drives the conversion.
Visio models contain a wide variety of symbols, which conform to a varying degree to BPMN notation. The general symbol conversion rules found in Appendix 1 will apply, but customers can map their own symbols as described in the Customizing OBPC section.
Model Converted to Tutor Procedure
Below is the task section of the procedure. The conversion notes and opening sections are not shown.
Some models use complex numbering schemes for task identification. When converted to Tutor, only Tutor numbering will be provided, unless the task number is part of the task name. In that case, revision of the content in Tutor is advised.
Tutor currently cannot present text associated with Start or End events, and this text will not be converted.
This information is from the Oracle Business Process Converter user manual and was written by Chuck Jones, Consulting Director, Oracle Tutor.