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Creating Approvals In RT

Using the CreateTicket action

The key to creating an Approval is the CreateTicket event. To make a queue use the approval system, you need to create a Scrip to be triggered when the ticket is created. This scrip will cause a CreateTicket action to occur, using data from a custom template.

Expected Results of using the Approvals queues.

The book says that approvals do 3 things automatically:

  • A ticket cannot be closed until all of its approvals are resolved.
  • If rejected, its original ticket (and all other approvals) are rejected.
  • When an approval-ticket is resolved/rejected comments are attached to the original ticket.

Defining the template

All the juice behind an Approval is stored in a template. Create a new custom template local to your queue, and define the new template to look something like this :

===Create-Ticket: codereview
Subject: Code review for  {$Tickets{'TOP'}->Subject}
Depended-On-By: {$Tickets{'TOP'}->Id}
Queue: ___Approvals
Type: approval
Content: Someone has created a ticket. you should review and approve it, so they can finish their work

_NOTE:_ There is an error in the documentation for RT3. This caused me a good bit of trouble. The Depended-On-By line in the documentation example is incorrect. The value on this line must be "TOP" (as shown here) and not "{$Tickets{'TOP'}->Id}" as the docs show.

_2nd NOTE:_ In RT 3.2.0 this is fixed and you must use "{$Tickets{'TOP'}->Id}" because just using "TOP" does not properly build the link. Also in template your template you need "Queue: Queuename" or RT will tell you it can't assign the ticket to a queue.

_3rd NOTE:_ In RT 3.4.0rc1 you must use "TOP". Also default Approvals queue name is ___Appovals that you have to enable first and rename it to just "Approvals" or the above template will not work.

_4th NOTE:_ In RT 3.6.0 I had to use the following 2 lines in the template, {$Tickets{'TOP'}->Id()} and Refers-To: {$Tickets{'TOP'}->Id()}. Another thing that has not been mentioned is the permissions. I had to give the person who will be approving the tickets the following grants: [=ModifyTicket], [=OwnTicket], [=ShowTicket].

_5th NOTE:_ In the book "RT Essentials" this topic is described on page 94. The sample scripts there show the Depended-On-By: and Depends-On: commands within the Content area, which does not work. Moving them above the Content: area works correctly. [This has bitten me twice and I hope putting it here will prevent me from suffering a third time :)]

The dependencies between the tickets will force the Approval ticket to be closed before the original ticket can be written off.

Approvals Notification And Permissions

If you want different groups of people to have access to different sets of approvals, you will need to set up a few new Queues. No Ticket of type "Approval" will appear in the normal ticket lists, but tickets of this type from any Queue will be shown on the Approvals page. By managing your permissions, you can set up Approval systems for various organisational departments.

You'll need to give the people who are to approve things permissions to see tickets in the ___Approvals queue. You can do this by granting Global permissions on ticket roles (Owner, AdminCc, etc), or by granting them just on the ___Approvals queue. To find the admin page for the ___Approvals queue, check "include disabled queues" and search Queue name matches "Approvals".

You'll want to grant ShowTicket to AdminCC's (which ever role your template attaches the approving group to the approval ticket as). If the approval link isn't showing you may need to set Configuration > Global > Group Rights > $mygroup > ShowApprovalsTab.

Group Approvals

Sometimes you want to create tickets so that any one person from a group can approve it. One way to do that is as follows:

Create a group that contains the list of users that can approve. In the Approval template, add an AdminCC field. This will contain the group, but you cannot just list the group name, unfortunately; that would just create an unprivileged user with the same name as the group. You have to list the group's Principal ID. I suppose you could find out what that is manually and enter it directly, but that's not very manageable. Instead, put some Perl code in the field as follows:

 AdminCC: {
   my $group_name  = 'Group Name';
   my $groups      = RT::Groups->new( $RT::SystemUser );

         'FIELD'    => 'Name',
         'OPERATOR' => '=',
         'VALUE'    => $group_name );

This inserts the ID of the group named "Group Name" in the AdminCC field. Be sure to replace the group named "Group Name" with the appropriate name of your group.

Now you need to modify permissions for the Queue that contains the Approval so that the AdminCC role can approve it.

Now when you create a ticket with approvals, the approval will show the group name and all of its members in the AdminCC field, and anyone listed there can approve that ticket. If the user that approves it also takes it, then you can easily see in the original ticket's "Depends On" section who approved it. You can automate this via another scrip. Create the following scrip on the Approval queue:

Condition: On Resolve
Action: User Defined
Template: Global Template: Blank
Stage: Transaction Create
Custom Action Preparation Code:
  my $Actor = $self->TransactionObj->CreatorObj->Id;
  if( $Actor != $self->TicketObj->OwnerObj->Id ) {
    $RT::Logger->info("Auto assign ticket #". $self->TicketObj->id ." to user #". $Actor );

    my ($status, $msg) = $self->TicketObj->SetOwner( $Actor );
    unless( $status ) {
      die "Error: $msg";
  return( 1 );

One of the features of doing it this way is that you can continue to have a single Approval queue and different people can approve different tickets since the rights are based on the AdminCC role and not a specific user or group.