Releases are special copies of a dashboard that are frozen, which means that they can't be edited after creation. The main purpose of releases is that you can share a specific version of a dashboard with chosen groups (other departments, clients, etc.), while you are still able to work and enhance the original version of the dashboard.
After updating your dashboard, you can create a new updated release and share it again, or create a new version of the existing release, which keeps previously saved release sharing.
A release is a group of versions (at least 1 and max 10). When a new release is created, version 1 of that release is automatically created and activated. Creating new versions for that release will create new copies of the dashboard and all elements the dashboard is referencing (similar to the Duplicate Tree functionality, which is described in detail here). New duplicated elements are not visible in the lists of elements and are frozen (not editable).
Each version is a part of exactly one release. Inactive versions can be deleted. The active version cannot be deleted.
The version number is automatically generated and cannot get changed by the user. The first version of a release is always Version 1. If a version was deleted the new version gets the new highest number. For example:
- If version 2 is the highest and version 1 is deleted, the new one is version 3
- If version 2 was the highest and deleted, a new one is version 2
After navigating to Dashboards in the main sidebar menu, you will have two tabs at the top of the page, where you can switch between Working versions (normally created/shared dashboards) and Releases.
While working versions and releases are technically all just dashboards, with these tabs you have an easy way of switching between your working versions of dashboards and your releases.
Splitting of working versions and releases of dashboard
Clicking on the Releases tab at the top of the page will show the releases list in the collapsible table. Clicking on the caret symbol on the left will expand release versions. Release versions are collapsed by default. In the screenshot below we can see an example of how Releases could look:
- Release 1 has one version which is active
- Release 2 has 3 versions where version 2 is active
Example of Release overview
It is also possible to see which release version is active by clicking on the Show Details option in the three-dot menu on the right:
Active version number in the Show Details popup
You can create a release from any working version of a dashboard, either from the overview list or in edit mode of any working version. Regardless of which option you chose, you will end up with the same popup for creating a release.
While you are in the overview list of your working version dashboards, find the dashboard you want to create a release for and click on the three dots at the far right of your dashboard. After clicking you will get a context menu where you can select the Release dashboard option.
Release dashboard from the overview list
Navigate to any working version of a dashboard you want to create a release for by clicking on it in the overview list. Afterward, switch to edit mode and click on the three-dotted button in the top right of the screen. After clicking you will get a context menu where you can select the Release dashboard option.
Release dashboard while in edit mode
You will see the Release dashboard option only if you have dashboard-write permissions.
After clicking on the Release dashboard in any of the explained ways, a new popup will appear where you can configure certain options for your release.
While creating a release(or release versions) also creates copies of all underlying elements. These elements are frozen and will not be visible to you in their respective overview lists (widget overview list, dataset overview list, etc.)
After opening the create release popup, we can first see all the references your dashboard has behind the scenes and check if you have all the needed permissions and shares to create a release for this dashboard.
If you don't, you will see an error message telling you exactly what permissions you are missing or what element you don't have access to because they are not shared with you.
If you have every permission to create a release for the dashboard, you will see something similar to the following content:
In this modal, you will be able to set a Name. This name will be appended as a postfix to every element's name that will be created during the duplication. Empty text as release name is not allowed.
In addition, at the bottom of the popup, you can also see a list of all the elements that will be created during the creation of the release. Note that the names of these elements also include your selected name as postfix.
Under the Share section, you will also have the option to immediately select groups you want to share the release with.
When you are happy with your settings, click the OK button to create the release. After everything was done successfully, you will be navigated to the newly created release.
There are two ways to open Create Version popup:
- 1.In the dashboards list, by clicking the three-dot menu and selecting "Release dashboard". After Create Release popup is open, click on the "Create Version" tab.
- 2.In the Releases list, by clicking the three-dot menu and select the "Create Version" tab.
This operation will create a new version of the selected release(chosen from the dropdown). The dashboard from where the "Release Dashboard" menu item was clicked will be the new version for the selected release.
In this modal, the user is able to select a release for which the new version will be created by using Release drop-down. User is mandatory to select a release, in order to save the version. The user is also able to set a version description in the Description field.
Under the Share section, toggle Active is used to set the version as active immediately upon confirming creation. It is turned off by default.
Additionally, the same as for release creation, at the bottom of the popup, the user can also see a list of all the elements that will be created during the creation of the version. Note that the names of these elements also include the selected release name as postfix.
To create a version, click on the OK button. After everything is done successfully and the toggle Active was turned on, the user will be redirected to the newly active version.
This operation will create a new version for the selected release where the "Create Version" menu item is clicked.
In this modal, there is no "Create Release" tab, only the "Create Version" tab is available, since the release is already selected depending on which one the user chose to open the modal.
In this case. the user will see a Dashboard drop-down menu, where a dashboard can be selected for this release version. The rest of the fields and behavior remains as presented above.
Each release is limited to have max 10 versions. If a limit is reached, it is not possible to create more versions for that release.
When a user wants to create a new version release from the dashboard list("Create Version" tab), the Release dropdown will show only the releases whose version number didn't reach the limit. Also, in the Releases list, the option "Create Version" will not be shown for these releases.
Releases having a version limit reached will have a warning symbol shown on the right side, which shows an explanation when hovered:
Release Versions limit warning
To remove this warning and enable adding new versions for a specific release, the user needs to delete one of the existing inactive versions for that release.
You can view all the releases you've created or that have been shared with you in the dashboard overview list by selecting the Releases tab at the top.
To view a release just click on the one you want to open. A release is basically a group of versions that reference the dashboards that you are viewing with read-only access, which means that you can't go into edit mode and change it.
The main point of having a release version concept is having the option to switch between different versions. The active release version is a version that is used when the user clicks on a release in the Releases overview list. Each version is referencing its own frozen dashboard, so when the user clicks on a release, an active version dashboard will be loaded.
To activate a specific release version, click on one of the available inactive release versions. A confirmation dialog shows up, and if everything went successfully, the desired release version is activated.
In the following example, the active version is switched from Version 2 to Version 4:
Activating different release version
Creating a sharing URL to a release active dashboard that may be only temporarily available is not a good way to reference the release itself. A new option is available now to get the release URL that can be used to access the release itself later.
The option can be found through the three-dot menu in the releases list by clicking on Create release URL. URL is then copied to the user's clipboard.
By accessing this URL, the user will always land on the active version dashboard automatically.
Copy release URL option in three-dot menu
If you want to share a release, you can either select the groups you want to share your release with during the creation of the release as explained above, or via the normal sharing process like with any other element. Note that when sharing a release, you can't select any access type (Read/Write) like in other elements, because elements are always shared with read-only permissions.
When you have group management rights, you can also share releases in the settings of any group under the Elements section.
Release sharing is always applied to all release versions. If the release is shared with a specific group, and new release versions are created, the new version frozen-dashboard and its elements have automatically updated sharing to be as in release.
While in the overview list of your releases, find the release you want to delete and click on the three dots at the far right of your release. After clicking, you will get a context menu where you can select the Delete option.
After selecting Delete, a modal will open where you need to confirm that you really want to delete the release. As a measure to prevent unintentional deletion of releases, you will need to enter the release name in the input field of the modal before you are able to click on the delete button.
Deleting a release means, all release versions and all their frozen dashboards with frozen duplicated elements will also be deleted.
Deleting a release
While in the overview list of your releases, find the release version you want to delete and click on the three dots at the far right of a release version. After clicking, you will get a confirmation dialog that informs the release version and all its frozen elements will be deleted.
Deleting a release version means the release version and referenced frozen dashboard with frozen duplicated elements will also be deleted.
Deleting a release version
The active release version cannot be deleted.
When someone shared a release with you that you want to change yourself, you have the option to create a duplicate of the complete release that you can edit afterward (so it basically creates a working version of a release).
To do that, navigate to the release you want to duplicate, select the three-dotted button in the top right, and click on Duplicate Tree. This will start the process described in the duplicate tree section here. After creating a duplicate, you will be able to see all the elements in their respective lists, with the owner set to you.
Creating a duplicate of a release
There are three places from where a Release can be shared:
- 1.Using three-dot menu in the Releases list and clicking share. The share modal is opened and groups can be selected to which a release will be shared. This way, the release is shared with read permissions only.
- 2.When creating a new Release, in the Create release popup (shown above), groups can be selected to which a release will be shared. This way, the release is shared with read permissions only.
- 3.Using Group Management, choosing a group and finding an element Release that can be shared either with read or write permissions.
A user that has write permissions to a Release(and Dashboard Write permissions) can create or delete a version for that Release. Also, the user can change the active version of that Release.