Bug #4361

Workflow Run Manager column "Workflow Name" can be confusing

Added by Oliver Soong about 11 years ago. Updated over 10 years ago.

workflow run manager
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This is a general problem with workflow naming that seems to come up here. Consider two of the attachments to, CalledModel.xml and CalledModelCopy.xml. The files are identical, and differ only in filename. If I open both, Kepler will display the different filenames in the window title. If I run both, though, they show up in the Workflow Run Manager with the same name.

The problem is that there is the filename and there is the workflow name saved in the XML. I'm not sure how significant a problem this might be in practice, but I know I tend to rename files on my computer a lot.

Related issues

Blocks Kepler - Bug #3672: Open/Save Workflow as KAR ArchiveResolved11/13/2008

Blocks Kepler - Bug #4278: Changes to a reopened KAR are not saved to the new KARResolved08/03/2009


#1 Updated by Bertram Ludaescher about 11 years ago

What are the constraints, between those two names, i.e. (1) the filename, and (2) the workflow name as specified in the MOML?

From what you say, the names can be different. So we could have N files f_1,...,f_n all with the same workflow name "foo".

If that is so, in what usage scenarios would one use f_i and when would one use 'foo'?

The different uses of (1) and (2) might help in determining what to do about this..


#2 Updated by Matt Jones about 11 years ago

These naming issues are at least partly due to the change from saving plain XML files to saving KAR files that wrap the XML plus other resources. There are a series of bugs in the system, including the need to properly name workflows, that are being dealt with in bug # 3672 and bug # 4278.

#3 Updated by Derik Barseghian about 11 years ago

I've run across this in the past; I agree it's confusing. When a user runs a workflow they expect the workflow name to be the name they see in the Kepler title bar, which is the filename. Right now it causes difficulty and confusion in WRM/provenance, but I imagine it's going to and already has come up in other places. Even if the title bar showed the workflow name, a user searching for this workflow at the OS level will struggle if the filename is different. And vice versa, if a user renames a workflow with the OS and begins to think of it by this name, they will struggle to find it via workflow name searches within Kepler systems. And yes, there will be added complexity once we're using kars more frequently and e.g. a user renames a kar filename from the OS.

If there were no such thing as a workflow name stored inside the moml (and refactoring was done) this confusion could go away, a new user's assumption could be correct: workflow name == filename. My impression of similar features in other programs is that they're rarely used (e.g. Word's Document Properties => Title).

All that said, I think when this discussion has taken place in the past, there were strong reasons brought up for keeping workflow name and filename two distinct things, not the least of which is that a significant amount of work would have to take place--e.g. a clean soln would probably mean changing the ptolemy moml format.

The provenance module used to allow configuration of the workflow name, but the group decided to remove that to simplify things. Right now afaict there is no way to do so. If we add a way, imo it should be extremely obvious.

Another soln to this particular problem is simply for WRM to display a filename column to search against instead of workflowname, but I believe the group disliked that idea since it subverts the desire for the prominence of workflow name.

#4 Updated by Derik Barseghian over 10 years ago

Changing this to an enhancement request. This is a general Kepler issue.

Adding a filename column to the WRM could help avoid this confusion, but most of the time it would be the same as the workflow name column and just be taking up valuable space in the WRM. If WRM could add and hide column dynamically, having a filename column might then be a good idea.

#5 Updated by Redmine Admin over 7 years ago

Original Bugzilla ID was 4361

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