Working with ACL projects

ACL projects are the highest level of organization in ACL, and they store all of the information associated with a data analysis project. In order to use ACL for any analysis tasks, you need to determine whether you want to create a new project or use an existing project before you start working. In ACL, the project you are working with is displayed in the Overview tab in the Project Navigator and the contents of the log are displayed in the Log tab. The main ACL project file (.acl) stores most of the project information, but a set of additional files store particular types of information about the project, such as the log or indexes.

Project Navigator: Overview tab

ACL projects contain a number of different project item types that you can view and work with in the Project Navigator.

Table 1 lists and describes the icons that identify ACL project items in the Project Navigator treeview.

Table 1. Icons displayed the Project Navigator


Item type



An ACL table, which consists of two parts: a table layout and an associated data source. The table layout contains information about how to display the data, such as record length and field names. The data source is a file or data set (e.g., database table) that contains the content of the table.

Server Table

A table with a table layout that resides locally in ACL, and an associated data source on an ACL Server. The table layout connects to the data source using a database profile and/or server profile.


A series of ACLScript commands that can be run from within the ACL project.

Server Script

An ACLScript file (.bat) that is located on an ACL Server.


An ACL project item that contains one or more field definitions that have been saved for reuse with other tables.


The top-level entry in the treeview is the ACL project. Projects are stored in physical files with a .ACL file extension.


A record of the commands issued when working with the ACL project.


A folder inside the ACL project file (.ACL). These folders only exist in the ACL project. They are not physically created as Windows folders.

Project Navigator: Log tab

Table 2 illustrates and explains the various icons that identify entries in the Log tab in the Project Navigator.

Table 2. Icons displayed in the Log tab


Item type



A group of log sessions within a specific date range.

Session entry

Individual sessions indicated by date and time. Sessions are created whenever you open the project, or when you create a session manually.

Command successful

Identifies a command completed successfully.

Command failed

Identifies a command that failed.

ACL project files

The following file types are used to record information for ACL projects. When you back up or archive a project, you must ensure that you copy all of the files to restore the complete project.

Two additional file types can be created from an ACL project. These file types are not required by the project, however you may want to include them in any backup process.

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