Kine's Info

What I found and what I know about Microsoft Dynamics NAV

The Art Of Nav – Big Picture of NAV

Today I have for you something, what everyone wants to have, but it was nearly impossible to create. After you see it, you will know why. I prepared it for you in more formats. You can look at it as PNG file, you can walk through it with some VRML viewer, you can open it as Visio file. You can read it and import it as CSV file. You can browse it as HTML file. You can view it as SVG file. It is on you, how you will visualize the result. I must say, I have tried many ways, but in most cases the tools were weak and my 2GB of RAM was not enough.

 

What's the hell is this "line hell"?

Ladies and Gentleman,

"Big Picture of NAV" is there. You can download the files on the "The Art of NAV" project page. And what the files are about? The files are generated from data, describing ALL NAV TABLE RELATIONS WITH CONDITIONS AND FILTERS. In the visualizations, the tables are represented by boxes where first line is table name and rest are all fields in the table. The relation descriptions are part of the edge text (source conditions, target filters). All is based on NAV 5.00SP1 W1 objects. When you take the result files and you will want to print it in 1:1 scale, the output will be over 5x5 meters in size. Visio cannot save the diagram as bitmap for 1:1 scale (it seems because the size). You cannot see whole diagram in Visio (on common display resolution), because zoom cannot be less than 1%. My computer had problems to generate any graph from the sources. My 3GHz Core 2 DUO worked on it many minutes. I have used the excellent software Graphviz to make the graphs, but as you can see, it is too much for any tool on the world to make some nice readable chart (or I didn't find the correct settings :-)).

I prepared for you NAV objects, which I used to extract the relations from object text file. It will fill the NAV table with all necessary data and you can browse it in prepared window. You have list of all fields in the database on top, related tables for selected field in middle, and fields relating to the selected field on bottom. You need to use these objects on the database, from which the object file is created, because the form is based on the virtual tables of the database. The objects are extracting 100% of relations in the database, which are defined. You can use them to extract relations from you own databases. Just export all tables as text and run this tool in the same database.

All files can be found in the download section of project "The Art of NAV".

Do you understand now, why we do not have any official diagram with the NAV table structure? :-D

File description and viewers I tested:

SVG – vector format – ZGRViewer – sometime needs to set bigger java heap by adding parameter "-Xmx512m" (the size is on you, this example is 512MB) when calling the java package

HTML – HTML exported from MS Visio – Internet Explorer – use the Internet explorer, you can search within the graph. Firefox is showing just plain bitmap.

VRML – the graph in 3D world – FLUX Player – needs big memory, you can look at the graph in 3D space and if you use the FLUX studio, you can add cameras, interactivity, animations etc. Welcome into "NAV Space".

VSD – MS Visio file created by importing the SVG file – MS Visio – You can look at the graph in Visio and print it from there (over 5x5 meters). Hart to edit etc. because the size and SVG source limitations...