Creating a Requirement Source

The Requirement Sources give information about the original source of the requirements. It distinguishes three different types: stakeholders, documents or external systems. Once created, the requirement sources are automatically linked to the requirements. So it is easily possible to get more information about the sources used in the requirements.

To create a new requirement source node, select Requirement Sources in the context menu of a requirements analysis.

You can create multiple requirement source nodes with specific names (set in the properties view) to group your source elements.

Requirement Sources Overview

By double-clicking on the Requirement Sources node, an overview over all requirement source elements opens.

The list of requirement source elements can be sorted by clicking on the column headers of the overview list. You can filter the requirement source elements by inserting a filter text in the filter section. Double-clicking on a column opens the corresponding requirement source element.

Specifying Requirement Source Elements

In the context menu of the requirement source node you can then create a new stakeholder by clicking Stakeholder, create a new document by clicking Document, and create a new external system by clicking External System.

An alternative way to create a new requirement source element is to select a word in glossary entry, requirement source element or requirement editor, right-click on it and choose "Create stakeholder", "Create requirement document", or "Create external system". If no requirement sources exist yet, a new one will be created; if multiple requirement sources exist, you are asked where the requirement source element should be created.

If no word is selected in the requirement editor while choosing Create stakeholder, Create document, or Create external system, an appropriate word will be automatically chosen according to the actual context. The chosen word is displayed in a confirmation dialog. Click the button OK to create a new entry with this word. If there is no appropriate word, an error dialog will appear.

Confirm dialog

Error dialog

Each requirement source has a name, a definition, a status field (Options: New, In consolidation, Consolidated) and a comment field. For each requirement source you should at least specify the name.


In the Definition field you can describe e.g. the role of the stakeholder.

Stakeholder contact list

Furthermore, a contact list of all persons belonging to a stakeholder group can be added in the Contact list section. You can add, remove or move contact information with the corresponding buttons under the table.

Formats of email address, telephone or mobile number are checked. If the input does not comply with the format, an error dialog appears and the input will not be saved.

Email address format error dialog

Telephone number format error dialog

Mobile number format error dialog


In the Definition field you can describe e.g. the content and editor of the document.

Document files

You can add local files or file links in Files section.

If you have added a file, then you can edit and remove the file, write a file description and add the version of the file.

Local file

When adding a local file, it will be copied into the Document folder of the project directory (next to your .af3_20 file). If you want to send the model file, you should also send the Document folder.
By clicking the link of the file path, the file is opened. If the file cannot be opened, a dialog will ask, whether to delete the reference to this file and its information.

If you edit or remove the local file, a dialog will ask, whether to delete the file in the project directory.

After editing the file

After removing the file

File link

You can also add a file link by adding a URL. If the URL has no scheme name (e.g. "http://", "https://", "ftp://", "file://"(for local files), etc.), the default scheme name "http://" will be added. You can edit and remove the file link. By clicking the "File link", the link will be opened in a browser. Links to local files open the file directly. If the link cannot be opened, a dialog will ask, whether to delete the reference to the file and its information.

External System

In the Definition you can describe the external system.

Consolidating Requirement Sources

The status field supports the consolidation of requirement sources. For details on the status field see the help topic for Consolidating Glossary Terms

Connection between Glossaries, Requirement Source Elements and Requirements

After you specified a requirement source element, it will be highlighted. A blue color is used to highlight a name or an abbreviation of a requirement source element.
Red is used to highlight a synonym. Contact names defined within a Stakeholder are highlighted brown.

The highlighting function features correct recognition of multiple word terms that are split by blanks or special characters. Also terms surrounded by special characters like brackets or slashes are correctly highlighted. An additional feature is the maintained highlighting with terms followed by plural "s" or "es" endings.

An auto-completion dialog opens, when you start typing a source name in the requirement specification and pause for a second.

When you hold the mouse cursor for a second on a highlighted name of a requirement source element, a pop-up shows additional information. In the pop-up you can see the definition of the requirement source element and whether it is a stakeholder, a document, or an external system. When you click on the name in the pop-up, the editor of the requirement source element is opened.

If there are two or more requirement source elements and/or glossary entries with the same name, the entries are sorted by type: first comes the Stakeholder, then Document, then External system, and last Glossary Entry.

The requirement sources always belong to one requirements analysis node. The requirement source elements of one analysis will not be highlighted in another analysis or project.