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SIMUL8 supports Microsoft Visio files so that Visio owners can import any process diagram they have created with Visio 5 or above. The process diagram is intelligently read by SIMUL8 and converted into a simulation. Its a very fast way for any process owner to find out how their planned operation will work in practice.

Visio is often used to create process diagram. Process diagrams are static representations of how things (like people, products or transactions) will flow around a planned process. These diagrams do not take account of the time that each item spends in each activity. They also to not take account of the time that each item flowing through the process will arrive at each stage and whether the other Resources required for the stage to start will be available at that time. Simulation does this and has many other benefits.

There are 2 ways to exchange data with Visio. Visio, version 2002 and above, will support the new XML standards by using both XML and a Visio specific version VDX (Visio's XML).

XML or VDX are the recommended methods of exchanging data with VISIO. If VISIO 2002 is not installed import and export VISIO flowcharts using this method:

Use the File menu, Open, or File menu, Import option, Visio to select a VISIO drawing saved as .vdx (VISIO’s XML format). This imports the file to SIMUL8 with default simulation settings. Make changes to the file and then save as VISIO’s .vdx file type by either using the File menu, Save As option and selecting the appropriate file type, or using File menu, Export option, VISIO and select .vdx from the list.

This allows VISIO drawing to be opened and saved by SIMUL8 and simulation specific information to be added to the file. When changes are made in VISIO the simulation information in the file is retained, so that when the file is re-opened in SIMUL8 all information relating to SIMUL8 is still present and does not need to be re-entered.