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General Ordering

In a Sequence diagram, the workflow is represented by the sequence of Messages down the diagram. Messages near the top of the diagram are passed before Messages lower down the diagram.

Sequence Diagram example, before the General Ordering has been added.

In the diagram, Message 1 is earlier than Message 2. However, in a complex diagram, or when representing finely timed operations or parallel processing, this might not be apparent. You can reinforce the sequence using a 'General Ordering' arrow.

Click on the Message arrow. A small arrow displays at the source anchor point.

Grabbing the General Ordering icon for dragging on a UML Sequence diagram.

Click on this arrow and drag it to the start of the next Message in sequence (Message 2 in the example). The General Ordering arrow displays, indicating that the second Message follows the first.

Sequence Diagram example, after the General Ordering has been added.

You can have more than one General Ordering arrow issuing from or targeting a Message, if necessary.