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Create Project to Use Model Design and Model Testing Dashboards

This example shows how to create a project to use the Model Design and Model Testing Dashboards to analyze your model. The project folder, and any referenced project folders, define the scope of the artifacts that the dashboard metrics analyze.

  • Model Design Dashboard — Use this dashboard to collect model metric data and assess the quality of the models in your project.

  • Model Testing Dashboard — Use this dashboard to assess the verification status and quality of your models and generated code.

Create Project

Create a project that organizes your model and any dependent files. To create a project directly from a Simulink® or System Composer™ model, on the Simulation tab, select New > Project > New Project from this Model and click OK. Simulink automatically identifies required files and places the model and files inside the project folder. For more information, see Create a Project from a Model.

Simulink model with mouse pointing to "New Project from this Model" button

Alternatively, you can create a new project and manually place your models and associated files inside the project folder. For information, see Project Setup.

Projects allow you to manage your files and settings, but you do not need to explicitly add files to the project, use source control, or add specific project labels to use your project with the dashboards. When you create a project, MATLAB® creates a .prj file and a resources/project folder structure that stores information about your project and files. The dashboard uses the project information and structure to identify and analyze the artifacts that are relevant to your design. By default, the project uses multiple XML files to store the definition of your project. For information on the project definition files and information on how to change the project definition file management, see Project Definition Files.

Open Dashboard

To open a dashboard, open your project and, on the Project tab, in the Tools section, click either Model Testing Dashboard or Model Design Dashboard.

Model Testing Dashboard and Model Design Dashboard buttons in Project Tools gallery

For information on the different types of dashboards, see Analyze Your Project With Dashboards.

Enable Artifact Tracing

When you open a dashboard on a project for the first time, the Enable Artifact Tracing dialog box opens and prompts you to enable artifact tracing for the project. Artifact tracing allows the dashboard to create a digital thread that monitors the project for changes and identify if the changes invalidate the metric results. For information on how the dashboards monitor files and detect outdated metric results, see Monitor Artifact Traceability and Detect Outdated Results with Digital Thread.

Click Enable and Continue to create a digital thread for the project. Note that clicking Enable and Continue is equivalent to selecting the Track tool outputs setting in the Digital Thread Settings dialog box.

After you click Enable and Continue, the dashboard:

  • Updates the project settings to turn on the setting Track tool outputs.

  • Performs the first-time setup and initial project analysis to identify software units and components, trace project artifacts to those units and components, and analyze the traceability relationships between artifacts.

  • Collects metric results for the currently selected software unit or component.

  • Creates a derived folder that contains two files:

    • artifacts.dmr — Contains a cached version of project analysis data that the digital thread collects when analyzing the project.

    • resultservice.dmr — Stores the metric results.

After the first-time setup and initial project analysis finishes, you can use the dashboard to explore the metric results. For more information, see Analyze Your Project With Dashboards.

Optional Project and Dashboard Settings

To use a dashboard, you only need to create and open a project. But you can also, optionally, modify your project settings and dashboard settings to reconfigure what you see in the dashboard. For general information on how to customize and use projects, see Set Up Project.

Specify Different Software Units and Components

The Project pane in the dashboard app displays the architecture of the software units and components that the dashboard identified in the current project. Software components use the Component icon and software units use the Unit icon .

Project panel showing a component model, Component1, that contains two unit models: Unit1 and Unit2

By default, the dashboards consider a model to be a unit if it does not reference other models. If you want to specify different models in your software architecture as units and components, you can add project labels to the entities and configure the dashboard options to recognize the labels. For more information, see Categorize Models in Hierarchy as Components or Units.

Project File Management and Source Control

By default, projects use multiple project files, but you can change the project definition file management to use a single project file instead. Using a single project file is faster, but is not recommended for source control. For more information, see Project Definition Files.

You do not need to use source control to use the dashboard, but if you choose to use your project with a source control system, make sure to:

  • Treat the project file (.prj) and the resources/project folder as source artifacts along with your models and any other required files.

  • Treat the derived folder, artifacts.dmr file, and resultservice.dmr as derived artifacts. You should not check the derived artifacts into source control. For more information, see Work with Derived Files in Projects.

For general information on how projects work with source control, see About Source Control with Projects.

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