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DSM Version Control

This guide references the new DSM. Built on customer feedback, the new DSM offers a completely redesigned experience. Learn more about why we made the new DSM.

Version control in DSM fundamentally improves how you build and iterate on your design system. Ensure it stays a reliable source of truth by releasing updated versions of your design system to the team only when ready.

Versions provide a read-only format that allows collaborators to view and pull assets without interfering with your current work. Versions are also helpful when teams are working on projects that require an older or newer instance of your design system.

Draft mode

The draft is a staging environment where admins and editors can edit a design system before releasing a version to the rest of the team. It always reflects the latest work in progress, and it's where all edits to the design system take place.

If you have not released any versions, you are in draft mode by default. If you have released a system version, you can switch back to the draft at any time to made edits or view the most current work in progress. 

When viewing the DSM documentation site, you can verify whether or not you are in draft mode by checking the top-left corner of the page.
In the DSM Sketch plugin window, draft mode is indicated to the right of the design system name.

Creating a new version

To create a new design system version:

  1. Sign in to the DSM website and open your design system.
  2. At the top-left of the page, click the Draft drop-down.
  3. Click Release a new version.
  4. Enter the Version name and an optional Version description
  5. Click Release version.

The new version is pushed to all team members, and they can access the updated system immediately.

When you publish a new version, all signed-in users receive a notification. That notification links to a page that shows the version history and release notes. If someone is viewing your design system, but they aren't signed in, they won't see this notification.

Switching versions

To switch and view a different system version:

  1. Sign in to the DSM website and open your design system.
  2. At the top-left of the page, next to the system name, click the version drop-down.
  3. Click your preferred version.

The page will refresh, and the selected version will be shown.

In Sketch, you can switch versions via the DSM Sketch plugin. Open the plugin and, to the right on the system name, click the version drop-down and select the preferred version.

Viewing version history

To view a complete version history with release notes:

  1. Sign in to the DSM website and open your design system.
  2. At the top-left of the page, next to the system name, click the version drop-down.
  3. Click Release notes.

The page will display a list of all published versions and your current draft. If you click the ••• menu to the right of a version name, you'll notice options to view, revert to, and compare previous versions.

When you compare a previous version, you'll see a list of items that were added, removed, or changed in that version. Changed items will be compared side by side to highlight differences.

Reverting to a previous version

At any time, you can revert to a previous version of your library. When you do so, the draft updates to reflect your selected version.

Any changes made to the draft will be lost. If you've made changes that you don't want to lose, publish your draft before reverting to a previous version.

To revert to a previous version:

  1. Sign in to the DSM website and open your design system.
  2. At the top-left of the page, next to the system name, click the version drop-down.
  3. Click Release notes.
  4. To the right of the preferred version, click the ••• menu and select Revert to this version.
  5. To confirm, click Revert.

At the top of the page, there will be a notification that the draft has been reverted to a previous version. To view the updated draft, click View draft.


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