Trace Tree Window

Standard traces are pre-defined, commonly-used traces that can be quickly assigned to a measurement or a quantity worksheet item. When you have only a few traces, they can be quickly selected from the Trace Selection Window using a simple list. But when you have hundreds of traces, it can be useful to organize and select them using a hierarchical tree.

User Preference to Organize Traces in a Tree

The first step is to check the "Organize Traces in a Tree" option in the "General" tab of the User Preferences Window. With that user preference selected, you can organize your standard traces in a tree by selecting the Main Menu's Options/Edit Standard Traces option.

Organizing Traces in a Tree

The Standard Trace Tree Window will be displayed with the organizing tree on the left and the list of traces assigned to the current folder displayed on the right. Initially the only folder in the tree will be the root folder "Standard Traces".


Figure 1: The Standard Trace Tree Window

Organizing Tree -  The left part of the window contains the organizing tree. You can create and maintain the tree using the following context menu options:

WARNING: Folders with no traces assigned to them will be discarded when the window is closed. For new users, a hint will be displayed any time there is an empty folder


Figure 2: The Empty Trace Folder Hint Window

List of Traces -  The right part of the window shows a list of the standard traces assigned to the currently selected folder in the trace tree on the left. You can create, edit or delete traces using the following context menu options:

Re-Assigning Traces -  To move a trace from one folder to another, do the following:

  1. In the Tree, put the focus on the folder currently containing the trace you want to re-assign.
  2. If necessary, scroll the tree and open folders so the folder you want to move the trace to is visible.
  3. In the list, click down on the trace you want to move and drag it to the destination folder in the tree.
  4. Release the mouse and the trace will be moved to the destination folder.

Re-Sizing the Tree and List -  You can resize the entire window by dragging one of the edges or corners. As you do, the tree and list will change size to fit the window. The list will change width while the tree width will stay the same.
To change the tree width, click down between the tree and list and drag until the tree is the desired width.

Trace Grid Edit

Press the "Grid Edit..." button to edit the traces in a grid. Grid editting makes it easy to change a trace property across multiple traces. Pressing the button will display the Standard Trace Grid Edit Window.

Drag/Drop Descriptions to Create Traces

New users often need to create many new traces to match their estimating system. If they have the names of those traces in an application such as Microsoft Word, they can easily create a new trace by dragging the description and dropping it one of the traces in the list. When the drop is made, the Standard Trace Edit Window is displayed to create the new trace. Initially the new trace will have the dropped description and all the properties of the trace the description was dropped on.

Selecting Traces using a Tree

Selecting a trace for a measurement can be invoked in several ways:

You can also select a standard trace by pressing the "Browse..." button in the Trace Edit Dialog when editing a quantity worksheet item.

In all the cases above, if you have selected the user preference for organizing traces in a tree, the Standard Trace Tree Window will be displayed in selection mode.


Figure 3: The Standard Trace Tree Window, Selection Mode

There are only a few differences between maintenance mode (described above) and selection mode:

To select a trace, navigate to the desired folder in the tree; then double-click on the desired trace in the list.