JBoss.orgCommunity Documentation

Chapter 15. Workbench

15.1. Installation
15.1.1. War installation
15.1.2. Workbench data
15.1.3. System properties
15.2. Quick Start
15.2.1. Add repository
15.2.2. Add project
15.2.3. Define Data Model
15.2.4. Define Rule
15.2.5. Build and Deploy
15.3. Administration
15.3.1. Administration overview
15.3.2. Organizational unit
15.3.3. Repositories
15.4. Configuration
15.4.1. User management
15.4.2. Roles
15.4.3. Restricting access to repositories
15.4.4. Command line config tool
15.5. Introduction
15.5.1. Log in and log out
15.5.2. Home screen
15.5.3. Workbench concepts
15.5.4. Initial layout
15.6. Changing the layout
15.6.1. Resizing
15.6.2. Repositioning
15.7. Authoring
15.7.1. Artifact Repository
15.7.2. Asset Editor
15.7.3. Project Explorer
15.7.4. Project Editor
15.7.5. Validation
15.7.6. Data Modeller
15.7.7. Categories Editor
15.8. Embedding Workbench In Your Application

Here's a list of all system properties:

To change one of these system properties in a WildFly or JBoss EAP cluster:

These steps help you get started with minimum of effort.

They should not be a substitute for reading the documentation in full.

Provides capabilities to manage the system repository from command line. System repository contains the data about general workbench settings: how editors behave, organizational groups, security and other settings that are not editable by the user. System repository exists in the .niogit folder, next to all the repositories that have been created or cloned into the workbench.

The default layout may not be suitable for a user. Panels can therefore be either resized or repositioned.

This, for example, could be useful when running tests; as the test defintion and rule can be repositioned side-by-side.

Projects often need external artifacts in their classpath in order to build, for example a domain model JARs. The artifact repository holds those artifacts.

The Artifact Repository is a full blown Maven repository. It follows the semantics of a Maven remote repository: all snapshots are timestamped. But it is often stored on the local hard drive.

By default the artifact repository is stored under $WORKING_DIRECTORY/repositories/kie, but it can be overridden with the system property -Dorg.guvnor.m2repo.dir. There is only 1 Maven repository per installation.

The Artifact Repository screen shows a list of the artifacts in the Maven repository:

To add a new artifact to that Maven repository, either:

  • Use the upload button and select a JAR. If the JAR contains a POM file under META-INF/maven (which every JAR build by Maven has), no further information is needed. Otherwise, a groupId, artifactId and version need be given too.

  • Using Maven, mvn deploy to that Maven repository. Refresh the list to make it show up.


This remote Maven repository is relatively simple. It does not support proxying, mirroring, ... like Nexus or Archiva.

The Asset Editor is the principle component of Guvnor's User-Interface. It consists of two main views Edit and Metadata.

The Project Explorer provides the ability to browse different Organizational Units, Repositories, Projects and their files.

The Project Editor screen can be accessed from the Project menu. Project menu shows the settings for the currently active project.

Unlike most of the workbench editors, project editor edits more than one file. Showing everything that is needed for configuring the KIE project in one place.

By default, a data model is always constrained to the context of a project. For the purpose of this tutorial, we will assume that a correctly configured project already exists and the authoring perspective is open.

To start the creation of a data model inside a project, take the following steps:

This will start up the Data Modeller tool, which has the following general aspect:

The "Editor" tab is divided into the following sections:

The "Source" tab shows an editor that allows the visualization and modification of the generated java code.

The "Overview" tab shows the standard metadata and version information as the other workbench editors.

Once the data entity has been created, it now has to be completed by adding user-defined properties to its definition. This can be achieved by providing the required information in the "Create new field" section (see fig. "New field creation"), and clicking on the "Create" button when finished. The following fields can (or must) be filled out:

When finished introducing the initial information for a new field, clicking the 'Create' button will add the newly created field to the end of the entity's fields table below:

The new field will also automatically be selected in the entity's field list, and its properties will be shown in the Field tab of the Property editor. The latter facilitates completion of some additional properties of the new field by the user (see below).

At any time, any field (without restrictions) can be deleted from an entity definition by clicking on the corresponding 'x' icon in the entity's fields table.

As stated before, both entities as well as entity fields require some of their initial properties to be set upon creation. These are by no means the only properties entities and fields have. Below we will give a detailed description of the additional entity and field properties.

  • Description: this field allows the user to introduce some kind of description for the current entity, for documentation purposes only. As with the label property, this is conceptual information that will not influence the use or treatment of this entity or its instances in any way.

  • TypeSafe: this property allows to enable/disable the type safe behaviour for current type. By default all type declarations are compiled with type safety enabled. (See Drools for more information on this matter).

  • ClassReactive: this property allows to mark this type to be treated as "Class Reactive" by the Drools engine. (See Drools for more information on this matter).

  • PropertyReactive: this property allows to mark this type to be treated as "Property Reactive" by the Drools engine. (See Drools for more information on this matter).

  • Role: this property allows to configure how the Drools engine should handle instances of this type: either as regular facts or as events. By default all types are handled as a regular fact, so for the time being the only value that can be set is "Event" to declare that this type should be handled as an event. (See Drools Fusion for more information on this matter).

  • Timestamp: this property allows to configure the "timestamp" for an event, by selecting one of his attributes. If set the engine will use the timestamp from the given attribute instead of reading it from the Session Clock. If not, the engine will automatically assign a timestamp to the event. (See Drools Fusion for more information on this matter).

  • Duration: this property allows to configure the "duration" for an event, by selecting one of his attributes. If set the engine will use the duration from the given attribute instead of using the default event duration = 0. (See Drools Fusion for more information on this matter).

  • Expires: this property allows to configure the "time offset" for an event expiration. If set, this value must be a temporal interval in the form: [#d][#h][#m][#s][#[ms]] Where [ ] means an optional parameter and # means a numeric value. e.g.: 1d2h, means one day and two hours. (See Drools Fusion for more information on this matter).

  • Remotable: If checked this property makes the Entity available to be used with jBPM remote services as REST, JMS and WS. (See jBPM for more information on this matter).

The data model in itself is merely a visual tool that allows the user to define high-level data structures, for them to interact with the Drools Engine on the one hand, and the jBPM platform on the other. In order for this to become possible, these high-level visual structures have to be transformed into low-level artifacts that can effectively be consumed by these platforms. These artifacts are Java POJOs (Plain Old Java Objects), and they are generated every time the data model is saved, by pressing the "Save" button in the top Data Modeller Menu. Additionally when the user round trip between the "Editor" and "Source" tab, the code is auto generated to maintain the consistency with the Editor view and vice versa.

The resulting code is generated according to the following transformation rules:

  • The entity's identifier property will become the Java class's name. It therefore needs to be a valid Java identifier.

  • The entity's package property becomes the Java class's package declaration.

  • The entity's superclass property (if present) becomes the Java class's extension declaration.

  • The entity's label and description properties will translate into the Java annotations "@org.kie.api.definition.type.Label" and "@org.kie.api.definition.type.Description", respectively. These annotations are merely a way of preserving the associated information, and as yet are not processed any further.

  • The entity's role property (if present) will be translated into the "@org.kie.api.definition.type.Role" Java annotation, that IS interpreted by the application platform, in the sense that it marks this Java class as a Drools Event Fact-Type.

  • The entity's type safe property (if present) will be translated into the "@org.kie.api.definition.type.TypeSafe Java annotation. (see Drools)

  • The entity's class reactive property (if present) will be translated into the "@org.kie.api.definition.type.ClassReactive Java annotation. (see Drools)

  • The entity's property reactive property (if present) will be translated into the "@org.kie.api.definition.type.PropertyReactive Java annotation. (see Drools)

  • The entity's timestamp property (if present) will be translated into the "@org.kie.api.definition.type.Timestamp Java annotation. (see Drools)

  • The entity's duration property (if present) will be translated into the "@org.kie.api.definition.type.Duration Java annotation. (see Drools)

  • The entity's expires property (if present) will be translated into the "@org.kie.api.definition.type.Expires Java annotation. (see Drools)

  • The entity's remotable property (if present) will be translated into the "@org.kie.api.remote.Remotable Java annotation. (see jBPM)

A standard Java default (or no parameter) constructor is generated, as well as a full parameter constructor, i.e. a constructor that accepts as parameters a value for each of the entity's user-defined fields.

The entity's user-defined fields are translated into Java class fields, each one of them with its own getter and setter method, according to the following transformation rules:

  • The entity field's identifier will become the Java field identifier. It therefore needs to be a valid Java identifier.

  • The entity field's type is directly translated into the Java class's field type. In case the entity field was declared to be multiple (i.e. '[0..N]'), then the generated field is of the "java.util.List" type.

  • The equals property: when it is set for a specific field, then this class property will be annotated with the "@org.kie.api.definition.type.Key" annotation, which is interpreted by the Drools Engine, and it will 'participate' in the generated equals() method, which overwrites the equals() method of the Object class. The latter implies that if the field is a 'primitive' type, the equals method will simply compares its value with the value of the corresponding field in another instance of the class. If the field is a sub-entity or a collection type, then the equals method will make a method-call to the equals method of the corresponding entity's Java class, or of the java.util.List standard Java class, respectively.

    If the equals property is checked for ANY of the entity's user defined fields, then this also implies that in addition to the default generated constructors another constructor is generated, accepting as parameters all of the fields that were marked with Equals. Furthermore, generation of the equals() method also implies that also the Object class's hashCode() method is overwritten, in such a manner that it will call the hashCode() methods of the corresponding Java class types (be it 'primitive' or user-defined types) for all the fields that were marked with Equals in the Data Model.

  • The position property: this field property is automatically set for all user-defined fields, starting from 0, and incrementing by 1 for each subsequent new field. However the user can freely changes the position among the fields. At code generation time this property is translated into the "@org.kie.api.definition.type.Position" annotation, which can be interpreted by the Drools Engine. Also, the established property order determines the order of the constructor parameters in the generated Java class.

As an example, the generated Java class code for the Purchase Order entity, corresponding to its definition as shown in the following figure purchase_example.jpg is visualized in the figure at the bottom of this chapter. Note that the two of the entity's fields, namely 'header' and 'lines' were marked with Equals, and have been assigned with the positions 2 and 1, respectively).

    package org.jbpm.examples.purchases;
    * This class was automatically generated by the data modeler tool.
    @org.kie.api.definition.type.Label("Purchase Order")
    public class PurchaseOrder implements java.io.Serializable
    static final long serialVersionUID = 1L;
    private java.lang.Double total;
    private java.lang.String description;
    private java.util.List<org.jbpm.examples.purchases.PurchaseOrderLine> lines;
    private org.jbpm.examples.purchases.PurchaseOrderHeader header;
    private java.lang.Boolean requiresCFOApproval;
    public java.lang.Double getTotal()
    return this.total;
    public void setTotal(java.lang.Double total)
    this.total = total;
    public java.lang.String getDescription()
    return this.description;
    public void setDescription(java.lang.String description)
    this.description = description;
    public java.util.List<org.jbpm.examples.purchases.PurchaseOrderLine> getLines()
    return this.lines;
    public void setLines(java.util.List<org.jbpm.examples.purchases.PurchaseOrderLine> lines)
    this.lines = lines;
    public org.jbpm.examples.purchases.PurchaseOrderHeader getHeader()
    return this.header;
    public void setHeader(org.jbpm.examples.purchases.PurchaseOrderHeader header)
    this.header = header;
    public java.lang.Boolean getRequiresCFOApproval()
    return this.requiresCFOApproval;
    public void setRequiresCFOApproval(java.lang.Boolean requiresCFOApproval)
    this.requiresCFOApproval = requiresCFOApproval;
    public PurchaseOrder()
    public PurchaseOrder(java.lang.String description,
    org.jbpm.examples.purchases.PurchaseOrderHeader header,
    java.util.List<org.jbpm.examples.purchases.PurchaseOrderLine> lines,
    java.lang.Double total, java.lang.Boolean requiresCFOApproval)
    this.description = description;
    this.header = header;
    this.lines = lines;
    this.total = total;
    this.requiresCFOApproval = requiresCFOApproval;
    public PurchaseOrder(org.jbpm.examples.purchases.PurchaseOrderHeader header,
    java.util.List<org.jbpm.examples.purchases.PurchaseOrderLine> lines)
    this.header = header;
    this.lines = lines;
    public boolean equals(Object o)
    if (this == o)
    return true;
    if (== null || getClass() != o.getClass())
    return false;
    org.jbpm.examples.purchases.PurchaseOrder that = (org.jbpm.examples.purchases.PurchaseOrder) o;
    if (header != null ? !header.equals(that.header) : that.header != null)
    return false;
    if (lines != null ? !lines.equals(that.lines) : that.lines != null)
    return false;
    return true;
    public int hashCode()
    int result = 17;
    result = 31 * result + (header != null ? header.hashCode() : 0);
    result = 31 * result + (lines != null ? lines.hashCode() : 0);
    return result;

Using an external model means the ability to use a set for already defined POJOs in current project context. In order to make those POJOs available a dependency to the given JAR should be added. Once the dependency has been added the external POJOs can be referenced from current project data model.

There are two ways to add a dependency to an external JAR file:

Current version implements roundtrip and code preservation between Data modeller and Java source code. No matter where the Java code was generated (e.g. Eclipse, Data modeller), the data modeller will only create/delete/update the necessary code elements to maintain the model updated, i.e, fields, getter/setters, constructors, equals method and hashCode method. Also whatever Type or Field annotation not managed by the Data Modeler will be preserved when the Java sources are updated by the Data modeller.

Aside from code preservation, like in the other workbench editors, concurrent modification scenarios are still possible. Common scenarios are when two different users are updating the model for the same project, e.g. using the data modeller or executing a 'git push command' that modifies project sources.

From an application context's perspective, we can basically identify two different main scenarios:

Categories allow assets to be labelled (or tagged) with any number of categories that you define. Assets can belong to any number of categories. In the below diagram, you can see this can in effect create a folder/explorer like view of categories. The names can be anything you want, and are defined by the Workbench administrator (you can also remove/add new categories).

As we already know, Workbench provides a set of editors to author assets in different formats. According to asset’s format a specialized editor is used.

One additional feature provided by Workbench is the ability to embed it in your own (Web) Applications thru it's standalone mode. So, if you want to edit rules, processes, decision tables, etc... in your own applications without switch to Workbench, you can.

In order to embed Workbench in your application all you'll need is the Workbench application deployed and running in a web/application server and, from within your own web applications, an iframe with proper HTTP query parameters as described in the following table.


Path and Perspective parameters are mutual exclusive, so can't be used together.