Repair Artifact Captions when downgrading a Visual Paradigm Project

Lately I was forced to downgrade a Visual Paradigm Project [1] from version 10.1 to version 9.

As stated in the Visual Paradigm Know-How Area ([2]) this could easily be done by exporting the project to XML (note: not XMI) and re-import it in the older program version. But after doing so all of my artifact’s captions were stick to the upper left corner of the diagrams. There was no chance to move the captions to the correct positions but only to replace the artifacts with new ones. But this is a very time consuming (and annoying) task.

Then I found a more automated solution:

  1. Open the exported xml-file with a text editor (like Notepad++ [3]).
  2. Find and remove all caption-tags.
    In Notepad++ this can be done using the function „search & replace“ in combination with the regular expression „“. Replace with an empty string.
  3. Import the modified xml-file in the older Visual Paradigm installation. Now there are no captions shown at all.
  4. Select all elements in your diagram (STRG+A) and simply move the selection a bit. As a result all captions appear at their original positions (inside the artifacts).

Please note: this does the the job for me. But I really cannot guarantee for success on bigger or more complex Visual Paradigm Projects. Just give it a try—if you have to downgrade, there’s nothing to loose :-).

Formatting XML with Notepad++

When there is need for a fast and powerful editor I really like Notepad++ [1]. But it bugged me a bit that there isn’t a function for formatting XML.

Recently I stumbled over the plugin “XML Tools” [2] which added the desired functionality. Like!

Two small drawbacks:

  • the default shortcut for formatting is set to CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+B … seriously ?? Anyone out there who can use that shortcut without a cramp in his fingers ?? Fortunately you can simply change that in the shortcut-dialog…
  • the plugin formats if and only if the XML is syntactical correct


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One of my favorite Eclipse-shortcuts

Have you ever turned a variable to a constant and—following the Java Code Conventions—also changed it’s name to upper-case? Sure, “ALT + SHIFT + R” does a good job but what if you have plenty of such adjustments to do?

There’s help out there—and because I always forget the following command I want to dedicate a post to one of my favorite Eclipse-shortcut:

"Strg + Shift + X"

Just mark the text you want in upper case and use this combination. By the way – the little brother of “Strg + Shift + X” is “Strg+Shft+Y” (to lower case).

Appendix: There’s a nice Eclipse-plugin available which shows you (very insistently) the usable shortcut of an action when triggering it by mouse: mousefeed [1]. Although it seems that this plugin isn’t actively developed anymore it’s worth a try.


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