PCS PaP and CT import user manual



It is a user guide that has a detailed description of the template excel file. It describes how to fill the data on your own and what are the rules to follow when importing the pre-constructed products: Pre-arranged Paths (PaPs) and Catalogue Paths (CT) into PCS.

  • The description and format of the Excel file
  • PCS front-end behavior when the file is uploaded/imported
  • Errors and warnings that can occur

Catalog Excel file format

The excel import file consists of the following sheets and in the following order:


The import excel file has the following constraints:

  1. no  hidden sheets
  2. do not change the sheet names
  3. each sheet starts from the first row (A1)with the column header. Some header has merged cells described later when introducing each sheet.
  4. do not change the color of the header
  5. do not change the column header's text or order
  6. enter data in each row, the sheets can contain mandatory or optional blank cells
  7. delete blank rows

Note: please check the sheet before importing the file otherwise, the data will not be read properly and leads to errors!

All of these sheets will be described in more detail in the sections below.

Parameter set codes Sheet

This is the first sheet in the excel file, these predefined sets help to import the pre-constructed products into the system. It defines the train parameters and some additional information as OTHER comments.  These comments will be presented in the dossier at the common parameter section, in the "Comment" text area.

Columns definitions:

  • AGENCY: mandatory field, creator IM, should a be  registered valid IM agency in PCS, it is a text field
  • PARAMETER SET CODE: mandatory field, name of the parameter, should be a unique name,  it is a text field 
  • MAX TRAIN LENGTH (m): mandatory field, number format, max. 5 digits long. The value must be greater than the value entered in the "Length of set of carriages" column.
  • MAX TRAIN WEIGHT (t):  mandatory field, number format max. 5 digits long. The value must be greater than the value entered in the "Weight of set of carriages" column.
  • MAX LENGTH OF SET OF CARRIAGES (m): optional field, number format max. 5 digits long. The value must be less than the value entered in the "Train length" column.
  • MAX WEIGHT OF SET OF CARRIAGES (t): optional field, number format max. 5 digits long. The value must be less than the value entered in the "Train Weight" column.
  • REFERENCE LOCO: mandatory field, loco type number that has been registered previously in the system and published by the creator IM, a text field with 12 character limit
  • PROFILE: optional field, container profile, should be text field  in the format of “P/C XX/YY” (for ex. “P/C 70/400”)
  • PLANNED SPEED: optional field, number format max. 5 digits long. It must be less than the max traction speed of the loco type.
  • MIN BRAKED WEIGHT PERCENT: optional field, number format with 2 digits long
  • OTHER: optional field, place additional comments if needed,  it is a text field

For further information regarding parameter set code and mandatory train parameters in detail click on the links.

Activity Types Legend Sheet

The next sheet is the "ACTIVITY TYPES" sheet. The definition of activity types for the locations is the same as today in PCS. It defines the activity type codes, the responsible IM agency with its description. You can add as many as you need, there are NO limits to adding the number of activity types:

  • AGENCY: mandatory field, activity types are classified according to the type of agency. Two types will be used: RNE or IM agency:
    • RNE: the pre-defined parameters based on TAF/TSI regulation are marked by RNE.
    • IM agency: It's a text field, IMs have the possibility to define their national activity types in English. The default language setting in PCS is English, and if you have other language settings then PCS translates. This information is not presented in the GUI
  • CODE IN TEMPLATE: mandatory field, the code is also classified according to agency type, described above:
    • RNE activity types: pre-defined word abbreviation (pd) and the 2 digits number (e.g.: pd01= Commercial stop)
    • IM's defined: free text field, it can be anything depending on the IM needs. It could be defined according to the RNE format.
  • ACTIVITY TYPE CODE: mandatory field, code of the activity type, this code is used for mapping purposes between the excel file and DB, text field with 4 character limitations. The mapping table is available in PCS under the Administration/Activity types submenu.
  • ACTIVITY TYPE DESCRIPTION: optional field, a brief description of the activity type, its a text field


Note: Use a comma to separate activity types!

Valid formats are:

  • a,b (without space in front and after the comma)
  • a, b (with space after the comma)
  • a , b (with space in front and after the comma)


The location sheet should contain all location names used in the catalog.

Columns definitions:

  • Agency name: mandatory field, name of the responsible IM agency where the location has been  previously registered and published in PCS, its a text field 
  • Location name in the template: mandatory field, name of the location used in the template excel import, its a text field
  • Location name in PCS: mandatory filed, location name in PCS, synchronized with BigData with CRD (Common Repository Database). 
  • Primary location code (PLC abbreviation will be used further in the user guide): PLC for the location. This information equals with CRD's primary location code, its a number format 5 digits long
  • ENEE_code: optional field, ENEE code for the location, in a standard international format

Note: one location in one row, no matter if it belongs to the same or new agency name or country!

Rules should be followed when adding a location:

  1. Must enter location name into 'B' and 'C' column
  2. The ENEE code must be valid
  3. The primary location code must be valid
  4. There should be at least one code (PLC or ENEE or both but PLC code has priority over ENEE code)

There are several ways to resolve a location used in an Excel file to a PCS location:

  1. If the PLC is present, then PCS tries uniquely to resolve the location:
    1. First, only from PLC
    2. Next, from PLC and ENEE id combination
  2. If PLC is NOT present or no location was resolved with the 1 case, then PCS tries again uniquely to resolve the location:
    1. First, only from ENEE id
    2. Next, from ENEE id and location name from ENEE code
    3. And finally, from the ENEE id and "location name in template" column

If the operation can’t be uniquely resolved, then it displays a warning (or data error) message so that the user has the possibility to enter the correct value. This will be described in later front end behavior.


In the older version, it was possible to create the timetables (origin-destination pairs) on separate sheets but in the new version, it contains all timetables in one sheet. One line is one PaP dossier. It has a new structure that can be divided into 3 main sections:

  • "Basic data": the column headers are wide because the first two rows merged together in the sheet. It contains the basic information for the pre-constructed products:
    • PAP ID: unique PaP name, a mandatory text field with 12 character limitations, do not leave empty!
    • DOSSIER TYPE:  optional text field, define the type of Fix or Flex. This information is not relevant to CT import. If this value is not present, the PaP will be imported as Fix PaP by default.
    • INVOLVED RFC: optional text field, number of the RFC in the following format: C02, C03 (C=Corridor & number of the Corridor). If the PaP is passing through more Corridors than these Corridors can be added as involved participants. This information is not relevant to CT import. Note: do not add your own corridor number, the is filed is to define other involved Corridors!
    • DIRECTION: mandatory field, define the origin-destination direction. This information is not relevant to CT import. It works the same way as before, could be in the following format without spaces:
      • N-S or
      • S-N or
      • E-W or
      • W-E
    • ORIGIN: mandatory field, origin location where the PaP section starts, previously defined at the "LOCATIONS" sheet in the "LOCATION NAME IN TEMPLATE" column
    • DESTINATION: mandatory field, destination location where the PaP section ends, previously defined at the "LOCATIONS" sheet in the "LOCATION NAME IN TEMPLATE" column
    • PARAMETER RECOMMENDATION: optional filed, mark it with a letter 'X' if the parameters as a recommendation, the default value is a restriction

           Important: One time, can be used once in one origin-destination pair!


  • Calendar: It is a mandatory field and must not be empty.  It shows the weekly circulation days when the train is running. The train must run at least one day! ! It works the same day as before in the old version, mark the running days with a letter 'X'. The column header consists of 2 rows.  The first row is 7 cells merged together with the header name and the second row represents the weekdays 1-7 format:

  • Location: defines the PaP section sequence of locations starting from the Origin until Destination. The location header itself consists of two rows:


          See a simple example if the origin point is Forbach with an intermediate Saarbruecken Rbf Nord until the destination of Neunkirchen (Saar) Hbf:


Pre-condition & rules:

  • Locations of the PaP section must be defined in the "LOCATIONS" sheet in 'B' or in 'C' columns!
  • Adding a new location you must copy the location header (both rows)
  • Add as many locations as you need, moving in the right direction

   In the first row of the header is merged of 13 cells horizontally together. The second row defines the followings values:

  • NAME: mandatory field, origin location where the PaP section starts, previously defined at the "LOCATIONS" sheet in "LOCATION NAME IN TEMPLATE" column. Also, the origin and destination locations must be the same as in the "TIMETABLES" sheet, in 'E' (Origin), and an 'F' (Destination) columns.
  • PATH NR:  optional identifier on path section level
  • PARAM: mandatory field, the parameter that has been defined in the "PARAMETER SET CODE" sheet in 'B' column
  • NOTE: optional field, any note or comment that will be saved to the dossier at the common parameter section in the 'Comment' text area
  • ACTIVITY TYPE: mandatory field, enter the same activity type code which was previously defined at the "ACTIVITY TYPES LEGEND" sheet in the 'B' column.
  • SJT: optional field, Standard Journey Time, not relevant for CT import, valid formats are:
    • HH:mm
    • HHmm
    • HH.mm
    • HH mm
  • MNS: optional field, Max number of stops, not relevant for CT import
  • TST: optional field, Total Stopping Time in minutes, not relevant for CT import
  • ARR: optional field, arrival time, valid formats are:
    • HH:mm
    • HHmm
    • HH.mm
    • HH mm
  • ARR TZ: optional field, arrival timezone offset. If it is empty the default timezone offset will be used (UTC+1) as in the GUI. If the timezone offset is applied than  PCS will propagate it automatically the same way as it works on the GUI.
  • DEP: optional field, departure time, valid formats are
    • HH:mm
    • HHmm
    • HH.mm
    • HH mm
  • DEP TZ: optional field, departure timezone offset, If it is empty the default timezone offset will be used (UTC+1) as in the GUI. If the timezone offset is applied than  PCS will propagate it automatically the same way as it works on the GUI.
  • PROTECTED: optional field, mark it with a letter 'X'  if the location will be protected

Distances sheet

Last sheet of the excel import file. Also, works the same way as in the old import sheet. You can define the distance between  locations:

Column definitions:

  • LOCATION 1: mandatory field, the starting point
  • LOCATION 2: mandatory field, the ending point
  • DISTANCE (km): mandatory field, number format, represents the distance in KM between LOCATION 1 and LOCATION 2


  • The header should consist of three columns: “Location1”, “Location2” and “Distance (km)”
  • The location point names must be defined in the LOCATIONS sheet
  • The distance must be number


PCS import front-end (***not updated yet into the new prototype***)

PCS Excel import is located under "Pre-constructed Products" as an "Excel importer".

When the file is uploaded, PCS checks for 2 types of errors and warning:

  • Format errors, when the uploaded file does not satisfy the predefined rules. These errors must be fixed directly in the file. After that, the file must be uploaded again. A wrong reference loco in the parameter matrix results also this kind of error. Please check the second image below that shows an error for missing loco types. In this case, either the C-OSS Managers fix the import template and enter the correct loco type or the IM has to publish the missing loco type in PCS.


  • Data errors, when PCS cannot resolve some entity from the Excel (e.g. operation point, activity type). These errors also must be fixed but PCS offers “Fix action” in the front-end, so no need of uploading the file again.
  • Warnings, similar to data errors but with the possibility to be ignored and completed after the import process finishes (directly in the catalogue dossiers). However, PCS again offers “Fix action” in the front-end.

Import process

Once all errors and warnings are resolved (or ignored), PCS shows a “Report” section, describing what will happen if the import is run.

If the report complies with your objectives, then just click the “Import” button to start it.
The Import now runs in the background and has 3 different statuses. Each status displays a different message on front-end:

  • “The import process is waiting to be executed…” – means that the import is registered by PCS and is waiting for its turn to be executed 
  • “The import process is running and is expected to finish at: <time>” 

  • “Import process successfully finished on: <date>” 

PCS will show the result of the import and will classify the actions with three types:

  • Inserted
  • Updated
  • Skipped

PCS will keep the last import report for the user’s agency. If another user, from the same agency, triggers new import, the saved one will be overridden.

Multiple imports

Users can do multiple imports and PCS will try to match the existing PCS catalog dossiers with the values in the file. Afterwards, a report will be shown.

When doing a Re-Import, PCS provides 5 options:

  • “Re-Import Parameter Set Codes” – Overrides the existing Parameter Set Code Templates in PCS, with the values from the Excel file.
  • “Re-Import Validation Rules” – Overrides the existing Validation Rules (checks) for the Train Parameters in PCS
  • “Re-Import Distances” – Overrides the exiting distances values in PCS
  • “Re-Import Activity Types for Path Sections” – Overrides the activity types for all path sections in the file
  • “Import Notes for Path Sections” – Overrides the notes for all path sections in the file

For all new values in the excel file (parameter set codes, distances, new path sections…), the options are ignored and the values are always imported in PCS. Thus, the options are only influencing the existing values.

There are 3 reasons why one dossier can be skipped: the dossier is published, closed, or when re-importing RNE-C, the user agency is NOT the leading one.

Important: Once the catalogues are imported in PCS, all of them will be promoted to the “Path Elaboration” phase and the traffic lights of the IMs will be set to Processing. Later, the dossiers must be: Accepted, so that they can be published.

Excel format and data errors

As we said before, the errors and warnings must be fixed (or warnings can be ignored). PCS will guide you with the fixing process by providing a: description of the error,in the excel sheet, and the cell where the problem is located.

These are all possible error and warning messages that PCS can show:

  • parametre_matrix sheet is missing
  • Sections sheet (Cxy_sections) is missing
  • Minimum number of sheets allowed = {0}
  • The number of timetable sheets (total {1}) must be equal with the number of sections defined (total {0})
  • No sheets for {0} pair declared in Cxy_sections sheet
  • The cell content type should be {0}
  • The input file is missing
  • Row is empty
  • ENEE_Reference_Codes sheet is missing
  • Distances sheet is missing
  • Your agency is not responsible for RFC {0}
  • Activity type without description
  • First parameter name should be placed in E17
  • Invalid validity check flag. Valid values are: 'y', 'yes', 'n', 'no'
  • The first agency name should be placed in C19
  • Invalid parameter reference code
  • Unknown parameter reference code. Valid values are: {0}
  • Parameter reference code is not defined
  • Invalid parameter value
  • Invalid parameter length (max. {0})
  • Invalid validity check flag. Only 'n' or 'no' is accepted
  • Missing value for mandatory parameter {0}
  • The default direction is not specified
  • Invalid direction on Cxy_sections sheet
  • Missing origin
  • Missing destination
  • Invalid direction
  • Origin name {0} must correspond to the names given in the Cxy_sections sheet
  • Destination name {0} must correspond to the names given in Cxy_sections sheet
  • The timetable should start from B4
  • Invalid timetable header cell content. Expected value = {0}
  • Invalid calendar availability flag. Valid values are: empty cell, '-' and 'x'
  • Empty calendars are not allowed
  • Invalid path number. Only numbers are allowed
  • Invalid time format. Supported time formats are: 'HH:mm', 'HHmm', 'HH.mm' and 'HH mm'
  • Invalid activity type
  • Activity type {0} cannot be resolved
  • Missing origin in timetable sheet
  • Missing destination in timetable sheet
  • The section {0}-{1} or {1}-{0} is not defined in Cxy_sections sheet
  • Invalid distances header
  • Missing location name
  • Missing location’s distance
  • Mandatory PaP ID must be set
  • The origin and first path section name does not match
  • The destination and last path section name does not match
  • Direction is missing
  • Invalid length of PaP ID. The PaP ID can be max. 12 characters
  • Agency name {0} can't be resolved uniquely
  • Location {0} from agency {1}, can't be resolved
  • Location {0} can't be resolved in Distances sheet
  • Agency {0} can't be resolved
  • Location {0} with eneeId {2} (id = {1}) is inactive. Please contact PCS support team
  • Responsible agency for the location {0} is {1}. The import file uses agency {2} from another country which is not correct
  • Multiple locations exists with name {0} and responsible agency {1}
  • Multiple locations exist with name {0} in the Distances sheet
  • Mandatory location {0} from agency {1}, can't be resolved
  • Mandatory location {0} can't be resolved in the Distances sheet
  • Mandatory location {0} with eneeId {2} (id = {1}) is inactive. Please contact PCS support team
  • Multiple locations exists for mandatory location {0} and responsible agency {1}
  • Multiple locations exist for mandatory location {0} in the Distances sheet
  • PaP ID {0} is not unique in the timetable sheet
  • There is no loco type defined for loco type number: ()
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