Preconditions for quality management

Preconditions and follow-up actions are essentially governance rules for project areas, team areas, timelines, and iterations. You define preconditions and follow-up actions for individual quality management operations, such as saving a test artifact. Preconditions are checked before an operation runs; follow-up actions are checked afterward. You can configure the preconditions and follow-up actions of an operation differently for each role.

Quality management teams typically use preconditions and follow-up actions for review and approval, Electronic Signature, and test execution. You can assign preconditions and follow-up actions in the Administration web UI or in the Eclipse client. For more information about configuring preconditions and follow-up actions, see these resources:

The following tables list the preconditions and follow-up actions for quality management.

Table 1. Preconditions for quality management
Precondition Description Affected operation Configurable?
Allow Test Data Record Selection Before Execution Use this precondition to allow test data records to be selected before execution. Execute Test Case No
Disallow Execution of Test Case Execution Record if Owner is Not Executing it Use this precondition to prevent test case execution records from running if anyone other than the owner attempts to run the execution record. Execute Test Case No
Disallow Modifications to Completed Approval Groups Use this precondition to prevent completed approval groups from being modified. Save Formal Review No. For more information, see Disallow modifications to completed approval groups precondition.
Disallow Modifications to Formal Review of Approved Artifacts Use this precondition to prevent modifications to the Formal Review section of approved artifacts. Save Formal Review No
Disallow Saving of Test Plans, Test Cases, Test Scripts, Test Suites, and Results with State Approved or Retired Use this precondition to prevent users from editing and saving certain test artifacts after the artifacts are approved.
Note: This does not apply to the Formal Review section.
Save Test Plan, Save Test Case, Save Test Script, Save Test Suite, Save Test Case Results, and Save Test Suite Results Yes. For more information, see Allowing users to edit approved artifacts.
Disallow Transition to Approved Until All Test Cases Approved Use this precondition to prevent test plans from moving to the Approved state until all of the associated test cases are approved. Save Test Plan No
Disallow Saving Test Cases without the Required Number of Test Scripts Use this precondition to restrict the number of test scripts associated with a test case. Save Test Case Yes. You can set the maximum number of test scripts- specify a positive integer or leave the value empty for the following options:
  • Maximum number of test scripts
  • Maximum number of manual test scripts
  • Maximum number of automated test scripts
Disallow Transition to Approved Until All Test Scripts Approved Use this precondition to prevent test cases from moving to the Approved state until all of the associated test scripts are approved during a Save Test Case operation. None No
Disallow Transition to Under Review until Associated Work Items Resolved Use this precondition to prevent certain artifacts from moving to the Under Review state until all of the associated work items are resolved. Save Test Plan, Save Test Case, and Save Test Suite No
Do not allow Execution of Test Case Execution Record until the Test Case and the associated Test Plan are approved   Execute Test Case No
Electronic Signature Required for Lock, Unlock Use this precondition to require an Electronic Signature when users lock or unlock certain test artifacts. Save Test Plan, Save Test Case, Save Test Suite, Save Test Script, Save Test Case Results, and Save Test Suite Results Yes. You can require free-form comments or predefined comments to apply the Electronic Signature.
Electronic Signature Required for Formal Review Use this precondition to require that an Electronic Signature is supplied when the status of an approval or review record is changed for a test plan, test case, test suite, test script, execution result, or test suite log. Save Formal Review Yes. You can require free-form comments or predefined comments to apply the Electronic Signature. For more information, see Requiring electronic signatures for reviews.
Require an Actual Result for Script Steps Use this precondition to make the Actual Results column of a manual test script mandatory under certain conditions. Save Test Case Result Yes. For more information, see Defining a precondition to mandate actual results in a manual test script.
Table 2. Follow-up actions for quality management
Follow-up action Description Affected operation Configurable
Archive approval groups after a state group transition You can use this action to automatically archive an approval group after a state change. Archived approval groups are for record, but not longer useful to satisfy any other constraint. Save Test Case, Save Test Case Result, Save Test Plan, Save Test Script, Save Test Suite, Save Test Suite Result No

Precondition configurations

Each individual quality management operation, such as Save Test Case, can have several preconditions that are defined for it. Preconditions are defined as part of a configuration, which includes the operation, the role that can do the operation (who), and the time frame of the operation (when). All of the operations in the following image apply to the Everyone role, which is the default, and have no limits on when each operation can be done.

Preconditions and Follow-up Actions

If you want to assign a different role (who) or time frame (when) to a precondition than the default values, you must copy a configuration or create a configuration by clicking the Configure command.

By default, the configurations that are you set in the project area apply for all time periods. However, you can customize configurations so that they apply only for a specific timeline, iteration, or iteration type. Additionally, the Show archived time periods icon toggles the display of configurations for timelines or iterations that have been archived.

Note: The current iteration determines which preconditions apply to an artifact; it is not based on attributes specified in the artifact. For example, if you set the Planned For field in a work item to an iteration other than current, it does not change which preconditions apply to the work item. When the current iteration matches the timeline, iteration, or contains the iteration type that is defined in the When field of the configuration, artifact actions in the configuration must meet the specified preconditions or follow-up actions in order to be performed.

Data Migration Administrator role

Administrators can use the Data Migration Administrator role to create data that is exempt from the normal constraints that are enforced by preconditions and follow-up actions. For example, you might need to migrate data into the Quality Management application by using the REST API. In that case, you can use the Data Migration Administrator role to bypass the process behavior rules and migrate data that violates the version 4 process constraints. With the REST API, you can read and write data without using the web interface.

You can combine this role with other roles, but you must place this role in the first position in the list of selected roles, as the next image shows.

For example, if you need to be exempt from preconditions and follow-up actions so that you can upgrade the software, you might take these steps:

  1. Assign the Data Migration Administrator role to the user who is going to upgrade the software.
  2. Move that role to the first position in the list of roles.
  3. Log in as that user and upgrade the software.

After the upgrade, if you want the user to have the same operational constraints as everyone else, remove the Data Migration Administrator role from the user's role list. If you only move the role in the priority list, the change might not be effective. In addition, if the role will no longer be used after the upgrade, remove the preconditions and follow-up actions that are configured for the role.


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