Packaging Custom Development

We frequently get asked how to move a customization from one instance of innovator to the other. In this post we’ll go over how to add items to a package, how to export that package, and how to import it into a different instance of Innovator.

Adding custom ItemTypes to a package:

The first step in moving something between Innovator instances is adding it to a package. If you select an item from the main search grid, there is an administrative action to add the item to a package.

There are a few things to note about adding items to packages.

1. An Item can only be added to one package. If you’ve made any changes to an existing item, make sure to take note of those for when we choose what to export.

2. Make sure to package all of the custom items related to what you’re packaging. If you forget to package a method which is used in a server event your future import will fail.

3. Package all forms for new ItemTypes. Even if you haven’t modified a default form, you should still package it up.

Export Process:

Once all your custom configurations are packaged up, you can move to the export tool. You can find the tool on the downloads page.

1. Once you input your Innovator URL, click the “…” button to populate the list of databases you can choose from. After you’ve selected the database with your custom items, log in as root.

2. Select an export location for your XML files.

3. The button between the two boxes will populate the left box with a list of packages. You can choose to export whole packages, entire types of items within a package, or you can burrow down and export individual XML files. Once you’ve selected the items you want to export, click export in the top left corner.

The export location you selected will have folders for any packages you exported, as well as the file. This file tells the import tool which packages to import. The folders contain XML files which are made up of the relevant metadata needed to recreate your items from scratch.

Import Process:

1. Enter the information for the Innovator instance you wish to import to.

2. Select the path to the file you just created with your export.

3. The left box will automatically populate with the packages listed in the manifest file. You can select which packages you wish to import. Ensure the type is set to merge, and the mode is set to thorough.

Once the import is complete, you can open the instance of innovator you imported to. Your modified or new ItemTypes should be available exactly as they were in the previous instance.

Extra Tips:

Packaging isn’t always easy. Here are some tips to help you package like a pro:

1. Keep a list of items you modify so that you know what to export.

2. If you create a new item, immediately add it to the package.

3. If for some reason your exports fail, check the logs for more context.

4. This Community Project allows you to add an item to a package from the tab or tear-off window.


Subscribe to our blog and follow @ArasLabs on Twitter for more helpful content! You can also find our latest open-source projects and sample code on the Aras Labs GitHub page