Data Flow Diagram Model

DFD is an acronym for “data flow diagram”, being a graphical representation of the data flow through some information system in a way of modelling its process aspects, being often used as a step for creating some overview of the mentioned system, but usually not a detailed one. Data flow diagrams can also be used for visualizing some data processing used in the so called “structured design”. Each of the data flow diagrams can show the way each type of information can be input to as well as output from a system. It can also show in what way data can advance through this system. It’s very important to mention the exact place where this data is stored, not showing information about the timing of some process or about the processes operating in parallel or in sequence. “Data flow diagram” and “Flow Chart” are, if not identical, then very similar terms, and they both can be also used for the same purpose of illustrating a flow of some data. Flow diagrams are: Data Flows Diagrams, Entity Relationship Diagrams, Unified Modelling Language diagrams, Windows and Macintosh Graphics User Interface design diagrams, diagrams created with a usage of Structured Systems Analysis and Design Method (SSADM), and other. One of the most popular flow diagram is a data flow diagram, or DFD, used for representing of data flow in an information system graphically. With help of this diagram, you can always illustrate a system overview in outline using ConceptDraw PRO as well as the needed solution among those, which can be found in ConceptDraw STORE application.

As it was mentioned before, any data flow diagram, used for the visualizing data processing in a structured design, can be created in ConceptDraw PRO software, which users can make any other needed diagram any time they want within only a short period of time having the solutions extended with the pre-made templates and samples of such drawings. Data flow diagrams are widely used nowadays for a reason: with help of these diagrams you can always show what kind of information can be input to as well as output from some system as well as the way this data can advance via such system. With help of “DFD” you can also show where data can be stored and with help of ConceptDraw PRO drawing application you can do it within only a few hours or even minutes, if you have the stencil libraries and examples of such diagrams from the “solutions”, developed in order to simplify this task.

Data flow diagram is also known “bubble chart”. One of such diagrams is known to be called a “context-level data flow” one. This context-level data flow diagram includes a “Level 1 DFD”, which can be created for a reason of representing some of the system’s details, that are being modelled. The “Level 1 data flow diagrams” are used for showing the way some system is (or can be) divided into the smaller so called “sub-systems”, illustrating the way, in what these “sub-systems” deal with the “data flows”.

If you need to identify the internal data stores, you can simply make any needed data flow diagram using ConceptDraw PRO data flow diagramming software, as such type of diagrams is one of the three perspectives of the “SSADM”. The sponsor of the project as well as the end user, mentioned on the diagram, can be consulted at all the stages of a system's evolution. To conveniently track the mentioned “evolution”, DFD would be the best diagram for such purpose, as using this type of diagram as a simple way of representing the operating system is one of the best possible options. And you can also mention how the plans for the system can be implemented within the same drawing.

Data flow diagrams can be used to provide the end user with all the needed information about the inputting data. It can also be useful for mentioning the information about the system, which can be developed both on the analysis and design stages. There notations you can use for creating any needed data flow diagrams can be two - the “Yourdon and Coad” and the “Gane and Sarson” one. These notations can be used for defining different visual representations of the data flows, external entities, data stores and the other completely different processes.

The so called “Logical Data Flow Diagram” can be also created with help of ConceptDraw PRO software, as it is useful for capturing the data flows, which are usually very necessary for the system to operate. To describe the needed processes as well we the data required, a DFD can be also helpful. Mentioning another type of DFD, it’s important not to forget the “Physical Data Flow Diagram” (also known as “Current Physical Data flow diagram”), used for the purpose of showing the way in what a system is implemented right now.

In general, “Data flow diagram” is well known as a great tool for representing any needed data flow in a system. Being a part of the “Structured Systems Analysis and Design Methodology”, such diagram may be consisted of the different components: processes and functions. All the main DFD elements are processes, external entities, data store and data flow.

Data Flow Diagram Model solution

Example 1. Data Flow Diagram Model solution

This example shows production process of a traditional small enterprise. DFD diagrams are a useful way of visualizing a system and analyzing what it will accomplish.

DFD Model of small traditional production enterprise

Example 2. DFD — Model of Small Traditional Production Enterprise

If you want to make any DFD, then everything you need to do is to download ConceptDraw PRO software as well as the needed solution from “ConceptDraw STORE” application or from this site. Thus, having “Data Flow Diagrams Solution” can simplify your work with drawing all the needed data flow diagrams and models within both notations, including the “Yourdon – de Marco”, as this notation can help to illustrate the data flow diagram objects, being interpreted in a way of processes transform the input data flows into the output ones and data depositories serve them only for keeping the “ingoing” data, without changing them.

The “Object Library” full of the design elements, that can be used in your drawings, can be found in the “Data Flow Diagram Solution” from ConceptDraw STORE application to help you to represent any data storage, objects, data flows, processes and data flow entities.




Data Flow Diagrams Sample:

Data flow diagrams
Data Flow Diagram
DFD Library - Design elements
DFD Library
DFD Process of account receivable
DFD Process
UML Class Diagram
UML Class Diagram




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TEN RELATED HOW TO's:

Example of DFD for Online Store (Data Flow Diagram)DFD Example

Structured-systems analysis and design method uses data flow diagrams to represent the process of data flowing through a system. Talking about this might be useless without a proper example of DFD for online store (Data Flow Diagram). This DFD example shows all the distinctness that a diagram can bring into a scattered data structure. Data flow diagrams are used to show how data is processed within some business processes. Making DFD is a common practice for business process modeling and analysis. This diagram represents the online store business flow. It describes inputs and outputs within online selling process and depicts the interactions between its participants. This DF diagram can be used by system analysts to create an overview of a business, to study and discover its inherent strengths and weak points.Online Store Data Flow Diagram
Picture: Example of DFD for Online Store (Data Flow Diagram)DFD Example
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Process Flowchart

When trying to figure out the nature of the problems occurring within a project, there are many ways to develop such understanding. One of the most common ways to document processes for further improvement is to draw a process flowchart, which depicts the activities of the process arranged in sequential order — this is business process management. ConceptDraw PRO is business process mapping software with impressive range of productivity features for business process management and classic project management. This business process management software is helpful for many purposes from different payment processes, or manufacturing processes to chemical processes. Business process mapping flowcharts helps clarify the actual workflow of different people engaged in the same process. This samples were made with ConceptDraw PRO — business process mapping software for flowcharting and used as classic visio alternative because its briefly named "visio for mac" and for windows, this sort of software named the business process management tools. This flowchart diagram shows a process flow of project management. The diagram that is presented here depicts the project life cycle that is basic for the most of project management methods. Breaking a project into phases allows to track it in the proper manner. Through separation on phases, the total workflow of a project is divided into some foreseeable components, thus making it easier to follow the project status. A project life cycle commonly includes: initiation, definition, design, development and implementation phases. Distinguished method to show parallel and interdependent processes, as well as project life cycle relationships. A flowchart diagram is often used as visual guide to project. For instance, it used by marketing project management software for visualizing stages of marketing activities or as project management workflow tools. Created with ConceptDraw PRO — business process mapping software which is flowcharting visio alternative or shortly its visio for mac, this sort of software platform often named the business process management tools.business process flowcharts, flowchart symbols, process flow diagram, workflow diagram, flowchart maker
Picture: Process Flowchart
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Online Flow Chart

ConceptDraw PRO diagramming and vector drawing software extended with tools of Flowcharts Solution from the "What is a Diagram" Area of ConceptDraw Solution Park ideally suits for fast and easy Online Flow Chart designing. We propose to verify this right now.Online Flow Chart
Picture: Online Flow Chart
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Types of Flowcharts

A flowchart is a simple but very functional tool when it comes to understanding a workflow or to removing unnecessary stages from a process. When drawing flowcharts, keep in mind that there are four common types of flowcharts, like document flowcharts and data flowcharts that show control over a data or document flow over a system. To show controls on a physical level, use system flowcharts. In addition, to show controls in a program, you can draw a program flowchart. This flowchart diagram represents the piece of an article editing process, that involves the author and editor. It was created using the Basic Flowchart notation that consists from the basic flowchart symbols. The start and the end of the process are indicated with "Terminator" symbols. The "Process" symbols show the action steps consisting from making edits and searching for a compromise, when the author does not agree with the suggestions of the editor . The "Process" symbol is the general symbol in process flowcharts. The "Decision" symbol indicates a branching in the process flow. There are two branches indicated by a Decision shape in the current flowchart (Yes/No, Disagree/Agree). This basic flowchart can be used as a repeating unit in the workflow diagram describing the working process of some editorial office.Types of Flowcharts
Picture: Types of Flowcharts
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Basic Flowchart Symbols and Meaning

While creating flowcharts and process flow diagrams, you should use special objects to define different statements, so anyone aware of flowcharts can get your scheme right. There is a short and an extended list of basic flowchart symbols and their meaning. Basic flowchart symbols include terminator objects, rectangles for describing steps of a process, diamonds representing appearing conditions and questions and parallelograms to show incoming data. This diagram gives a general review of the standard symbols that are used when creating flowcharts and process flow diagrams. The practice of using a set of standard flowchart symbols was admitted in order to make flowcharts and other process flow diagrams created by any person properly understandable by other people. The flowchart symbols depict different kinds of actions and phases in a process. The sequence of the actions, and the relationships between them are shown by special lines and arrows. There are a large number of flowchart symbols. Which of them can be used in the particular diagram depends on its type. For instance, some symbols used in data flow diagrams usually are not used in the process flowcharts. Business process system use exactly these flowchart symbols.Flowchart Symbols and Meaning, workflow diagram symbols, process flow diagram symbols
Picture: Basic Flowchart Symbols and Meaning
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Diagramming Software for Design UML Component Diagrams

UML Component Diagram illustrate how components are wired together to larger components and software systems that shows the structure of arbitrarily complex systems. ConceptDraw Rapid UML solution delivers libraries contain pre-designed objects fit UML notation, and ready to draw professional UML Component Diagram.Diagramming Software for  Design UML Component  Diagrams (mac, win)
Picture: Diagramming Software for Design UML Component Diagrams
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Data Flow Diagram

There are many ways to define the flow of information within a system. Structured-systems analysis method often uses data flow diagrams to show data flow, data storages and data processing visualization. These diagrams are easy to develop and quite useful. Here is a dataflow diagram presenting an example of the manufacturing process flow. The oval process shapes represent a process that controls data within the current system. The process may produce data or make some action based on data. Data flows are represented by lines. They show the movement of information through the system. The direction of the data flow is depicted by the arrow. The external entities are shown by rectangles. They represent the external entities interacting with the system. The data store objects (unclosed rectangles) are used to show data bases participating in a process flow.Data Flow Diagram
Picture: Data Flow Diagram
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Data Flow Diagram (DFD)

In software engineering, it is important to understand how the system would cooperate with external sources, like data sources. To give this information a visual representation, data flow diagrams (DFD) were used for years. The entire system is usually divided into smaller ones, and all of them process data flows in appropriate ways. The visualizing business processes which engages the data transfer, is commonly preformed using DFDs (data flow diagrams). DFD is used to show the data flow processing and transformation. This DFD represents the electronic system of a customer purchase. It was created using Gane/Sarson notation. Data flow diagrams helps you to sort through and clarify transferring process making it available for analysis, and representation. ConceptDraw DFD solution introduces the vector library, containing the full set of icons from DFD notations.Data Flow Diagram (DFD)
Picture: Data Flow Diagram (DFD)
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Data Flow Diagram Symbols. DFD Library

Any information system receives data flows from external sources. In order to visualize them there is a list of data flow diagram symbols that describes how the system components cooperate. If you want to create a data flow diagram, ConceptDraw PRO Solution Park has DFD Library that contains both Yourdon and Gane-Sarson notations. This figure shows the content of vector libraries, delivered with ConceptDraw solution for data flow diagram (DFD). There are three libraries composed from about 50 vector objects used to make data flow diagrams. They include a complete set of objects utilized by Yourdon-Coad and Gane-Sarson notations - two primary notations that are apply for data flow diagramming. Also, one can discover additional "Data flow diagram (DFD)" library that provides a data flow diagram elements for designing level 1 and context-level data flow diagrams.Data Flow Diagram Symbols. DFD Library
Picture: Data Flow Diagram Symbols. DFD Library
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Data Flow Diagrams

There are a lot of structured analysis and design technique methodologies used to describe systems and data sources. To visualize data structures, data flow diagrams can be used for various purposes in the area of software engineering. Nowadays these diagrams are also used in the area of business analysis and information system analysis. This data flow diagram depicts an account processing system of a typical account department of a small manufacturing enterprise. It shows the data transmission through the order processing to shipping verification. This data flow diagram was created according to standard of Yourdon and Coad notation. The vector graphic objects of Yourdon/Coad notation symbols was delivered by ConceptDraw Data Flow Diagrams solution. The current DFD can be employed as an example of a business process model, representing the set of business events and interactions commonly engaged in a accounts receivable process.Data Flow Diagrams
Picture: Data Flow Diagrams
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