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January 2021 Release Notes

Your Kahua experience is improving as we work to release new features and correct errors. Below is an account of the improvements you'll find in the latest release:

Desktop Hosts

Dashboard Enhancements - Negative Value Support for Line and Bar Charts

Line and Bar charts now support negative value display on the y-axis. Negative values are only available to display on linear y-axis selection. Charts with logarithmic y-axis select do not support negative values.  


Communications – New ‘Conversation’ Type

New type of Communication has been added called Conversation.


This new Communications type can be used to document any type of Conversation, including a hallway chat, a phone call, or even some text exchanges.  You’ll be able to enter information about all participants, the date/time of the conversation, as well as full detail of the interaction.


Enabled by default, this new Communications type, as well as other Communications types, can be enabled/disabled in Configuration | Communications | Settings:



File Manager – Markup Carryover to subsequent file Versions

By default, for Files & Media folders, all Markups will now be copied over to subsequent Versions of that file. However, File Manager may be configured (see below) to instead not copy markups, or to only copy ‘open’ markups.  This configuration will respect inheritance and can be further controlled with folder-level configuration if necessary.

NOTE: versions resulting from the RENAME action do not take this setting into consideration.  In the case of a file RENAME (which results in a new file version), all markups will always be copied to the renamed version of the file.

File Manager – Introduction of Controlled Folder Types

With this release, Kahua introduces the ‘Controlled’ folder type to File Manager.  



The new ‘Controlled’ folder type will be enabled by default, but can be ‘turned off’ with a File Manager Configuration (see the Workflow tab):


However, if enabled, this new folder type will be available when creating new folders in File Manager:



Like the standard ‘Files’ folder, which enables files of any type to be managed and shared across both internal and external project stakeholders, files stored in ‘Controlled’ folders benefit from an additional set of attributes and functionality that provide:

  1. Revision Management
  2. Review and Approval Workflow with ‘Ball-in-Court’ tracking
  3. Distribution Management

Controlled Folders are also optimized to be used as robust Drawing Logs, but they may be used to manage any type of document.  You can create as many Controlled folders as you need  (just as you can with standard ‘Files’ folders), and each folder can be associated with different document types, each of which may have their own workflow, their own set of reviewers, and their own default distribution. 

Other features of the ‘Controlled’ folder type include:

  • provides an efficient way for document contributors, such as Architects, Consultants, and Subcontractors, to upload and submit their documents directly into a shared Project Drawing Log, and to monitor the status of their documents throughout their approval cycle
  • based on a strong permission-based security model, ‘Controlled’ folders better enable the management & control of who can upload, view, and markup which documents
  • may optionally be set up as a document register (e.g., a “Drawing Log”), to identify documents before they’re actually received, to use due dates to drive submissions, and to help better enforce nomenclature of inbound documents
  • optimizes the bulk upload of files, utilizing sophisticated smart-matching algorithms
  • option to configure file formats that are acceptable within any folder, and also specify whether any supplemental files are required (e.g. native CAD files)
  • option to configure enforced file naming conventions (with support for ISO 19650)
  • option to configure unique document number
  • option to detect Revision gaps upon upload
  • automatic rendering of all CAD formats into PDF for easy viewing, while preserving the native formats (including DWGs generated up through AutoCAD 2021)
  • ability to Markup and Annotate documents using either Kahua’s built-in markup tool, or Kahua’s integration with Bluebeam
  • automatic carry forward of Markups/Comments to new Revisions (with configuration options to suppress, or only carry forward open items)
  • support for Thumbnail View and Cross-Folder Viewing and Processing
  • out-of-the-box workflow which can be easily adapted to align with your own organization’s processes; supporting everything from the most basic “Submit & Release” workflow, to a comprehensive workflow that includes:
    • a ‘Document Control’ QA Check
    • an integrated and collaborative Design Review process
    • an automated Distribution & Release process
  • full “ball-in-court” visibility from the Drawing Log as document revisions progress through the QA Check and Design Review workflows so that everyone, including the document author, can monitor the status of each document revision
  • QA Check allows specific revisions to be Accepted or Rejected based on Acceptance Criteria – Rejected documents are automatically returned back to their authors with an indication of necessary action

New Design Review app

Kahua’s new Design Review app, has been re-released as a HUB app and is now available to any Kahua user who has a platform license. In addition to gaining all the typical benefits of being a HUB app, several new features have been introduced:
  • ability to process Drawing Revisions and other documents from File Manager into a Design Review set
  • each Design Review set can be automatically generated with pre-established workflows and distributions
  • the built-in Design Review workflow will automatically route documents to the appropriate individuals based on a combination of Discipline (Architectural, Mechanical, etc.) and the type of documents (drawings, specifications, etc.) being reviewed
  • the pre-configured, but editable, workflow will automatically send notifications to Design Review participants:
    1. as their review is needed,
    2. to remind them of an upcoming or overdue deadline, and
    3. to announce completion of the Design Review, with details about the status of each document in the Design Review set
  • time-bound workflow may be enabled such at that review can be auto-advanced to the next step if the current step’s due date has been reached
  • new collaborative markup and review sessions allow multiple participants to view and markup the same document at the same time, enabling each participant to see other participants’ markups “as they happen”

  • Markups may be optionally extracted to generate document-specific comments, which can then be assigned out for action as Tasks.  Ad hoc comments may also be created as necessary.
  • in addition to document-specific markups/comments, comments may also be added that extend across the entire Design Review set
  • at the completion of the Design Review process, all document revisions in the Design Review set are automatically “round-tripped” back to File Manager:
    1. release status (Approved, Rejected, etc.) and ball-in-court are updated in File Manager
      • approved documents are automatically Released and merged into the “Current Set”
      • rejected documents are automatically returned to their authors with instructions to address outstanding issues and then resubmit
    2. markups/comments from the Design Review are merged back into File Manager
    3. notifications automatically are generated based on associated Distributions, ensuring that everyone on the project team has the latest approved revision of a document 
    4. any previous ‘Current Set” revisions are automatically marked as superseded

New RETRY action for Rendering Documents

Kahua has now made available a new RETRY action in the VERSIONS section of File Manager (all folder types) and in the REFERENCES section all other apps. This new action provides the ability to re-attempt the rendering of any document that didn't previously render successfully. Prior to the introduction of this new action, the only option available to re-render a file was to re-upload the file. This new RETRY action will attempt a re-render of any Microsoft Office document, CAD file, Model, or any other format supported by Kahua’s rendering engine. See below for examples. 


FILE MANAGER (all Folder types):



Portable Views

Portable View Word Templates now support conditional behavior for table and list tokens.  This allows you to filter out Items that are not desired to be included in the output.   For example, on a Contract, you can now omit items that have a Status that is not “Void”.  To construct the token, the following parameters must be included and are highlighted in the same table token below:

Where.Operator – defines the condition that needs to be met.  Supported Operators:

    Equals, DoesNotEqual, Contains, DoesNotContain, In, IsGreaterThan, IsGreaterThanOrEqualTo, IsLessThan,         IsLessThanOrEqualTo, IsEmpty, IsNotEmpty, IsNull, IsNotNull, IsTrue, IsFalse

Where.Path – defines the attribute to evaluate

Where.Value – defines the value being evaluated

Sample token:













Sample Portable View Output, noting there are no items with a status of “Void” included:

Domain Passwords

Kahua takes account security very seriously. We have updated our minimum password requirements for special characters to one and the restriction for using past passwords to 10.  This change will affect users on initial login after the release and will require them to update their password if they do not meet these minimums.   Additionally, any updates to the Authentication settings will enforce these changes. These changes will not impact customers using Single Sign On.

Account Date/Time Format

We have updated Account Settings to allow users to pick their desired date/time formatting. Previously, the date/time formatting was derived from the user’s PC/Mac.  Based on the setting selection, the format of the date and time will be displayed to match the user’s Account Settings. This provides better handling of date/time formats, particularly when sending external documents.  All existing accounts have been updated to match the format that corresponds with their selected language.  An example is provided on the Account Settings screen to help the user make the selection that best corresponds with their desired formats.  

Employee Profile 
We have added four additional attributes to the Employee Profile app in Contacts to help collect basic information about the employee. This data can be used in other apps throughout Kahua, such as the OSHA Injuries and Illnesses app, to help collect information.

Reports CSV

Kahua has streamlined retrieving report data.  Previously, Kahua allowed opening a report in CSV or Excel, however, this content was generated from the report PDF.  This caused issues with the data format and alignment.  We have updated this to generate the content directly from the database.  To get the data, click “Download Data”, which will download a CSV file that opens in Excel or whichever application your machine is associated with for CSV.  With this change, only the PDF will be available using the “Save to Kahua” button.  

Be aware, some reports compile data from multiple sources.  In those cases, multiple downloads will be present.   Additionally, on reports that have nested layers, such as some WBS reports, the download will not be available.   It is recommended to retrieve this data directly from the data store.

Other Enhancements

Updated the Open action on files in Shared Folders to be disabled rather than throw an error message when selected.

Mac Host

Support for Exhibits Component

Mac host now supports associating Exhibits with records. This feature is most commonly found in Cost Management applications. 


Other Enhancements

Updated the Open action on files in Shared Folders to be disabled rather than throw an error message when clicked
Updated iconography on application context menus to match other hosts
Fixed issue where References column in log was displaying the file names rather than a count
Added support for reminder notifications in Approvals

Mobile Hosts

Child Items Insert

Users can now insert additional child item records without returning to the parent record to add.

Contact Interaction

Tap a contact link within any hub application to display options, including Open Contact, Call, or Text.

Other Mobile Enhancements

Updated References to display the PDF version on the document in the PDF Viewer. The Details display has been moved under the Actions section and is labelled Details.

Updated Weather component to support deleting individual results

Kahua Host Updates

All Kahua hosts have been updated with various enhancements and bug fixes.  The Windows host will automatically update upon first launch after the release.

Download the appropriate app for your device:

Kahua for Mac

Kahua Mobile for iOS on iTunes

Kahua Mobile for Android on Google Play

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