Creating a Project

How to:


In Developer Studio, you start building a reporting application as a project consisting of different kinds of files. The project can be a stand-alone application in the development environment or a web-based application implemented through the deployment feature.

Before you begin local or remote project development, you must create a project directory that contains the associated files using the Project Wizard. The Project Wizard enables you to name the project, designate a directory for it, and optionally add other directory paths to data sources from which the project can retrieve information, or paths to other resources.

When you have completed the Project Wizard, the new project is added as a node in the Explorer under Projects on localhost. By default, in the Developer Studio Edition, a Projects node is created with folders labeled HTML Files, Maintain Files, Master Files, Procedures, and Other. Maintain is not available in the Power Reporter. These folders are called virtual folders because they apply a logical structure to a project, but do not actually exist as physical directories.

Tip: You can organize a project in many ways. For details, see Organizing a Project.

To create a self-service reporting application, you typically add files to each of these folders with the exception of the Maintain Files folder, which is optional. To add data maintenance functions, use the Maintain Files folder to launch the Maintain Development Environment. For more information, see the Maintain Getting Started manual.

A sample project, called SESSION, is available for you to use.

Tip: You can drag any component of a project (for example, an HTML file, Master File, or Procedure) between projects or Explorer environments.

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Reference: File Types

The major project components are organized in folders:

A project can use all of the following types of files.

File Type



Includes files that contain the executable functions of a project, such as procedures (.fex).

File description

Includes Master Files (.mas) and Access Files (.acx).

Data source

Includes files that contain data values.

HTML resource

Includes files displayed to the end user through a web browser, such as webpages and HTML files (.htm, .html), graphic images (.gif, .jpg), and Java executable objects (.class).

Temporary data file

Includes temporary hold files (.ftm) that Developer Studio creates during processing and a number of temporary work files used internally.

Procedure: How to Create a Project Directory
  1. Do one of the following:
    • Right-click the Projects on environment name node and choose New Project.


    • Highlight the Projects on environment name node and click the New icon on the Main toolbar.

    The Create a Project - Step 1 of 2 dialog box opens, as shown in the following image.

    Create a Project dialog box

  2. In the first input field, type a name for the new project. The name can be up to 64 characters in length. It can include spaces.

    Developer Studio creates a new subdirectory on the WebFOCUS Reporting Server under APPROOT. APPROOT is a variable defined in the edaserve.cfg file. The default setting for APPROOT is install_drive:\ibi\apps.

    For example, if you create a project named Sales, Developer Studio creates a directory named Sales under APPROOT. The newly created directory will contain all project files, including the .gfa file. The .gfa file is an XML control file that contains Information about the project, such as associated deployment scenarios, folder names and file types visible in the project, files used in the project, and search path configuration.

    Important: Do not modify the .gfa file manually. Modification may corrupt the project.

    Directory names do not support spaces. If you include a space in the project name (for example, human resources), Developer Studio replaces the space with an underscore in the subdirectory name (for example, human_resources).

  3. The Project Wizard displays the project name as the default directory in the second input field.

    In the second input field, you can optionally enter the name of a directory associated with another project. In that case, the new project and the existing project will share project files.

    Note: Project directories are created in lowercase.

  4. Before you entered information on the dialog box, the default location and name of the new project was shown as IBFS:/environment_hostname/DEV. This value represents the location of the project in the Information Builders File System (IBFS), where environment hostname is the name of the WebFOCUS server on which the project will be created, and DEV is an internal string indicating that you are working in the project (development) area. The value of the IBFS location translates to the value of APPROOT.

    Once you enter information on the dialog box, the location and name changes to a value like IBFS:/localhost/DEV/sales/Sales.gfa, where Sales is the project directory, and Sales.gfa is the project control file created by the Project Wizard.

    The following image shows a completed dialog box.

    Create a Project dialog box

  5. Click Next to continue.
  6. A message is displayed if the directory does not exist. Click Yes to create the new directory. Click No to change the name.

    The Create a Project - Step 2 of 2 dialog box opens, as shown in the following image.

    Create a Project dialog box

  7. From this dialog box, you can add other directories to the project path. Files in those directories are visible to the project and can be made accessible for development and deployment. The order of directories in the list box represents the search sequence that the project uses.

    To add directories to the project, click Add. From the Browse For Folder dialog box, select a folder to add to the project path. The dialog box displays the folders available on the WebFOCUS Reporting Server based on the value of APPROOT.

    By default, baseapp is automatically added to the search path for project resources. You can use the baseapp folder to place common (shared) files in a central location. This is shown in the following image.

    Browse folder dialog box

    Click OK. The directory (folder) is added. To add more directories, repeat this step.

    If you highlight a directory in the list box on the Create a Project dialog box, click Add, and select a directory in the Browse For Folder dialog box, the new directory will be added after the highlighted directory.

    • To change the order of the directories, select the directory and click Move Up or Move Down.
    • To remove a directory from the list, select the directory and click Remove.

    When you are satisfied with the order of the directories and have no other changes, click Finish, and the new project is added to the Explorer.

Tip: You can change directory paths for a project after you exit the Project Wizard. See Viewing and Modifying Project Properties.

Note: If you create a project with the same name as another project, the location of the gfa file directory is shown next to it in the Explorer window. The following image shows the gfa file directory.

File directory dialog box