Study Update Restrictions

After you publish the initial version of your Casebook Definition, Vault prevents you from making certain changes in any later versions you may create. If you were to make these changes, it could cause errors during the casebook amendment process.

For disallowed changes, Vault disables the appropriate control in the Studio Properties panel. In the image below, the Name, Event Group Type, and Repeating property fields are all disabled, even though the Properties panel is in Edit mode.

Disabled restricted properties in the Properties panel


The following changes are not allowed:


  • Changing the Name of any definition object record

Event Groups

  • Changing the order of Event Groups in the study schedule
  • Updating the Event Group Type of an event group
  • Switching from repeating to non-repeating

You can decrease the Repeat Maximum for an Event Group, but the change will only apply to new instances of the Event Group.


  • Updating the Event Type of an event
  • Moving Events between Event Groups


  • Switching from repeating to non-repeating (switching from non-repeating to repeating is allowed)
  • Switching from dynamic to non-dynamic
  • Updating the Restricted (blinding) setting for a Form

You can decrease the Repeat Maximum for an Form, but the change will only apply to new instances of the Form.

Item Groups

  • Switching between dynamic and non-dynamic (in studies not using progressive display)

You can decrease the Repeat Maximum for an Item Group, but the change will only apply to new instances of the Item Group.


  • Switching Data Type
  • Switching between Mandatory and non-mandatory
  • Decreasing Precision and Length values
  • On Items using Codelists, Post Go Live updates can be made to adjust the default length down to the maximum length value of the Codelist Code value. The max length for the Codelist (determined by looking at the Codelist Item with the longest Coded value) will show as an error or warning in Publishing Validations.
  • Updating an Item to reference a different Codelist or Unit
  • Updating an Item to change Allow Unknowns from allowed to not allowed
  • Updating the Allow Unknowns selection to an option that allows fewer unknowns than the previous (for example, you can’t switch from Date and Time to Time)

Derived Items (for studies using Cross-form Derivations)

  • Removing “Include in Data Entry” and/or “Include in Extracts” from Display Visibility


  • Changing Codelist Item Codes
  • Removing Codelist Items or Unit Items



Refer to Making Changes to Labs Post Go Live for more information about making changes to Labs data after deployment.


There are some workarounds if you do need to make one of these updates. For most, you can instead create a new design object definition, configure it with your new changes, and use it to replace the existing definition. For example, to change an item’s data type from Number to Unit, create a new Item with the Unit data type. Replace the existing Number-type item in the study schedule.

Replacing Design Definitions

To replace a design definition, perform configuration tasks in the following order:

  1. Create a new record to replace the existing design definition.
  2. Apply the desired configuration to the new record and save.
  3. In the study schedule, replace any instances of the previous definition with your new record. You may need to drag other components into the new record (for example, adding the required Item Groups to your replacement Form).
  4. Update any rules referencing your previous definition to reference your new definition record.
  5. Optional: Once you have removed all instances of the previous design definition from the schedule and from any rules, you can delete it.

Removing Codelist & Unit Items

If you need to remove a unit or codelist item, you can use the Hide checkbox to hide that option from data entry users. See Defining Default Units & Conversions for details.

You can also use Hide once you replace codelist and unit items for replacement workarounds.