This walk-through takes you through the experience of using eaSheets to allow non-EA users to edit EA data using their favorite editor – Microsoft Excel.
First, download the eaTeamWorks examples, un-pack them, and find the eaTeamWorks example repository.
Login to that as ‘Admin’ (no password)
In this example, we will
take some requirements from the repository,
save them into an Excel spreadsheet
make some changes in Excel, as a non-EA user might do
open the modified Excel spreadsheet in eaSheets
check what changes we are about to make, and finally,
save the changes into EA.
1. Open the requirements
In the eaTeamWorks example repository, find the package called ‘Requirements for review’ (may be under eaSheets/eaSheets examples)
Right-click, and choose Specialize / eaSheets / Open elements in sheet. You could open a Smart Sheet, but the result will be the same, only because this test data does not have any connection to other EA data.
Â eaSheets has found that only the name, description (notes) fields, and the ‘Importance’ tagged values are populated, so opens with just those columns. You can display others using ‘show /hide columns’
At this point, you might add conditional formatting to make the data easier to understand. We don’t be doing that in this example.
2. Save to Excel
Choose ‘Save…’ / Save to Excel, and save the sheet.
3. Make changes in Excel
You can now open the saves Excel spreadsheet in Excel
Note that not all changes which a user can make in Excel will result in changes in EA. for example, there are hidden columns and rows, which, if the Excel user deletes them, will mean the data will need to be manually processed in eaSheets. Charts, and new Excel pages can also not be processed by eaSheets.
Changes which users can make, which will show-up in eaSheets and EA are:
Adding new rows. The data we added is in a file in the eaTeamWorks example, so you don’t need to type all the new requirements. Find the file ‘requirement feedback.txt’, and copy the names and descriptions into those two columns.
Modifying the contents of cell. We changed some of the description/notes text, and changed the ‘Priority’ of some of the requirements
The Excel doesn’t need to add ‘Requirement’ into the first column: we’ will do that later.
4. Open the modified Excel spreadsheet in eaSheets
Go back into EA, and from the main EA menu choose ‘Specialize / eaSheets / Open Excel spreadsheet’ and open the Excel spreadsheet you opened above
As there are some new rows, we need to tell EA what element type we would like them to be. We might decide that these are not actually requirements, and so save them as some other element type. In this case, they look like requirements, so put ‘Requirement’ into the ‘Type’ column
We’re now ready to save the data into EA – or are we?
5. Check for changes
Before you save data from an external source, it’s a good idea to first check what you about to do.
Find the ‘Compare sheet with EA’ option in the eaSheets menu
This will annotate your eaSheet to show where there are:
New data rows
Rows with changes, and which fields have changed
In this case, the changes are exactly what we expected: some new Requirements, and a few changes to the descriptions and priority of some others.
6. Save the changes
The easy bit – just choose ‘IMPORT into EA’, and all the changes that the user made will be saved into EA.