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What’s new in Direct Planning 3.6?

Volume Software is please to introduce the new features brought by Direct Planning 3.6.

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Job details display

In the job details screen, a new strip now displays the same information, colours and alerts as those shown on the schedule. The various alerts display at the bottom of this strip.

Job movements

Direct Planning offers a new method for moving the jobs which are pushed against locked ones.
Positioning or enlarging a job may lead to the movements of the jobs located on its right.
Up until now, when these moved jobs were pushed against a locked jobs, Direct Planning
performed the unscheduling of these pushed jobs.

In this example, the duration of job A is increased. Job B is therefore pushed against job C which is locked.
As a result, it is unscheduled

A configuration option now allows you to prevent the unscheduling of these pushed job, in order to position them automatically after the locked job.

Same example, the duration of job A is increased. Job B is therefore pushed against job C which is locked.
As a result, job B is placed behind job C

Deletion of links between jobs

To help you delete links between jobs, a new entry is now available when right-clicking on a job.
If you select a single job of the route, the Delete links … menu will offer two actions: Delete incoming links and Delete outgoing links:

If multiple jobs are selected, this menu will offer the Delete links between selected jobs action.

Configurable lists

List groups

To enhance the management of large numbers of configurable lists, you now have to ability to create groups and assign a list to a group. In the display of configurable lists, you will see these groups and the configurable lists they contain:

The Die-cutting group and the lists it contains

Aggregation of numeric zones

Configurable numeric zones are now aggregated.
The total is displayed at the bottom of the list:

Programmable data

Conditional designations evolve to become Programmable data of a certain type (Text,
integer, date, etc.).

A programmable data can be used to perform calculations or create a character string.
This programmable data being created, you can link it to a configurable area of an entity or process information. It will therefore appear in the job details, as a non-enterable field.
A programmable data is then linked to a usage context: jobs, entities or machine record.

In the example above, we created the programmable data Days of transport (for the WO entity) which automatically calculates the difference between the configurable areas scheduled time and delivery time. This field being calculated, it cannot be entered manually.

Assignment of this programmable date to the OF entity in the entity configuration screen.

This screen also offers the ability to assign a programmable colour (see next section).

Conditional coloured square

Optionally, a coloured square can be displayed on the right of a configurable area. This offers the ability to transmit some information or a visual alert. The colour of this square is defined by a programmable colour formula.

This colour square can be attached to enterable configurable areas (text, integer, decimal or date type), but also to non-enterable configurable areas, assigned with programmable data.

Taking the same example as in the previous page, we created a programmable colour attached to the Days of transport programmable data, indicating that if the days of transport are above 1, then a red square is displayed.

As specified in the previous section, the assignment of this programmable colour was performed through the entity configuration screen:

Application launching

Using a new type of programmable formula, you are now able to launch an application or a Web URL with arguments derived from Direct Planning data.

You can also, for example, run an application offering more details about the scheduled job, or open a manufacturing file as a PDF.

For this, you will have to create an Application launching formula and link it with a given context: entity, job or machine record. Within these contexts, you will assign a configurable area with this application launching formula. When displaying the data, this configurable area will be materialized as a button which will enable you to launch the configured application.

In the example below, we configured the launch of an Internet address directing to Google maps and containing the delivery location as a variable. The See delivery location button will open the address in the default web browser of the station.
The See manufacturing file button points to a network location where are configured the address and name of the PDF file with the WO number as variable. The file will open in the default reader of the station.

The browser opens when clicking on the See delivery location button
Opening of the WO as a PDF file when clicking on the See manufacturing file button


Evolution of imports

The import directives are now strictly processed in order in which they appear in each import file. This cater for the cases where there are both creation and deletion directives for the same job in the same import file.

Data duplication

The duplication of a data (resource, entity, etc.) now keeps the colour of the source instead of randomly assigning one.

Hourly load

The status bar at the bottom of the screen now displays the hourly load corresponding to all selected jobs.

Example: 3 selected jobs for a load of 5:54

Machine calendar

From a machine calendar, in the contextual menu (right click) on a day, the new entry Create an exceptional schedule … is now available


In the list of machines, you can now display the Technical constraint column which indicates the name of technical constraint formula used.


In the list of users, you can now see the designation of the Schedule access level as well as the Default display mode for each user.

Backup reload

When reloading a schedule backup, a message now indicates that the import and backup check boxes must be selected again.