Validate a structured diagram

When you run validation, Visio checks your diagram against rules that describe well-formed processes, and presents a list of any issues for you to review. For example, connectors in flowchart diagrams must be attached to other shapes or validation will identify this as an issue.

Four templates include rule sets by default:

  • Business Process Modeling Notation (BPMN) diagram
  • Basic Flowchart diagram
  • Cross Functional Flowchart diagram
  • Microsoft SharePoint Workflow diagram
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Run validation on a diagram

  • On the Process tab, in the Diagram Validation group, click Check Diagram.

If there are problems, the Issues window opens with a list of issues. If some of the issues don’t apply to your diagram, you can ignore them.

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Ignore issues that don’t apply to your diagram

In the Issues window, right-click the issue you want to ignore. You have two options for ignoring issues:

  • Click Ignore This Issue to hide a single issue.
  • Click Ignore Rule to hide all issues raised by a particular rule.

You can view issues that are ignored by right-clicking in the Issues window and then clicking Show Ignored Issues. Ignored issues are shown in shaded rows with lighter text, and have Yes in the Ignored column. You can stop ignoring an issue or a rule by right-clicking it and then clicking the appropriate command.

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Import validation rules into a diagram

You can import a rule set into any diagram, including diagrams created in earlier versions of Visio.

  1. On the Process tab, in the Diagram Validation group, click the arrow next to Check Diagram, and then point to Import Rules From.

The Flowchart Rule Set is available to any diagram, but it is intended to be used in process diagrams. It is the default active rule set in the Basic Flowchart and Cross Functional Flowchart diagrams.

If other diagrams that have associated rules are currently open, the file names are listed in this menu.

  1. Click Flowchart Rule Set or the name of an open diagram. If you click the name of a diagram, all rule sets that are associated with that diagram are imported.

You can then click Check Diagram to validate against the imported rule sets.

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Specify which rule sets are active in a document

  1. On the Process tab, in the Diagram Validation group, click the arrow next to Check Diagram, and then point to Rules to Check.

The rule sets for the diagram are listed. Active rule sets have a check mark next to them.

  1. Click an active rule set to make it inactive. If you open the menu again, the check mark is gone, showing that the rule set is inactive.

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Remove validation issues from a diagram

Validation issues stay with a diagram even if the Issues window is closed. If you save a diagram that has issues, whoever opens the diagram can view the issues by clicking the Process tab and then selecting the Issues Window check box. The Issues window opens with the saved issues. You can remove saved issues from a diagram along with other personal information.

  1. Click the File tab.
  1. Click Info, and then click Remove Personal Information.
  2. On the Personal Information tab, select Remove these items from the document.

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Remove validation rule sets before sharing a diagram

Validation rule sets are one of the items you can remove from a diagram to reduce the file size before sharing it.

  1. Make all rule sets in the document inactive, as described in the section Specify which rule sets are active in a document.
  2. Click the File tab.
  1. Click Info, and then click Reduce File Size.
  2. Select Remove inactive validation rule sets.

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