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Produce messages (error, warning, message) in Control Containers only if activated

Sometimes, Control Containers produce error messages even if they are deactivated by feeding an empty table into their input connection.



(Note that this is a made up example of something which can happen if input tables might be from different sources and have different columns so that they need separated treatment.)


According to the product team, this is expected behaviour since a selection does not allow zero columns selected. This might be true (which I doubt a bit), but it is at least counter-intuitive. If this behaviour cannot be avoided in total, I have a proposal which would improve the user experience without changing the entire workflow validation logic.

(The support engineer understands the point and has raised a defect.)


Instead of writing messages inside Control Containers directly to the log output (on screen, in logfile) and to mark the workflow as erroneous, I propose to introduce a message (message, warning, error) stack for tools inside Control Containers:

  1. When the configuration validation is executed:
    1. Messages (messages, warnings, errors) produced outside of Control Containers are output to the screen log and to the log files (as today).
    2. Messages (messages, warning, errors) produced inside of Control Containers are not yet output but stored in a message stack.
  2. At the moment when it is decided whether a Control container is activated or deactivated:
    1. If Control Container activated: Write the previously stored message stack for this Control Container to the screen and to the log output, and increase error and warning counts accordingly.
    2. If Control Container deactivated: Delete the message stack for this Control Container (w/o reporting anything to the log and w/o increasing error and warning count).

This would result in a different sequence of messages than today (because everything inside activated Control Containers would be reported later than today). Since there’s no logical order of messages anyways, this would not matter. And it would avoid the apparently illogical case that deactivated Control Containers produce errors.