projectdoc Toolbox

Document a possible option for an architecture decision. Choose this document type to describe the alternative for a decision in more detail. This is typically a subpage of an architecture decision document.

Documentation Type


Provides a detailed description of an alternative solution to a problem. It shows what has been evaluated and why this alternative has not been selected as the solution for a particular problem.

The alternative document is usually a subdocument to a decision document. It is not collected on its own homepage.


The document type architecture alternative provides the following properties:


Please note that only information about specific properties is provided here. Common document property used by all document types are documented by Document Properties.



 Describe the alternative without evaluating it in the context of the problem.


Provide an evaluation how the problem would have been solved with this alternative. This could provide a list of pros and cons.

Reason for Denial

Document the exact reason why this alternative has been rejected.

Subordinate Alternatives

Divide complex alternatives into their components.


These are internal notes that are usually not exported and only visible to team members with write access.

But this is not a safe place to store sensible information. It is just a convenience for the reader to not be bothered with notes stored here for the authors for later use. The security level is about suppressing the representation by a CSS style. Therefore consider this as a convenience for the reader, not as a security tool.


The text of notes sections is also indexed.


For a document the references section contains pointers to resources that prove the statements of the document.

Often these proofs are not easily distinguishable from further information. In this case you may want to skip the reference section in favour for the resource list.


For further information please refer to References and Resources.


The resources section provides references to further information to the topic of the document.

This may be information on the internet provided by the resource or information in the team's information systems. Anything the reader of the resource might want to know, may be listed here.


For further information please refer to References and Resources.

Related Doctypes

Architecture Decision

The Architecture Decision document explains why a particular option has been selected. The alternative document allows to store information about alternatives and why they have been not be viewed as proper solutions. Please make sure that the information in this documents are really relevant for later reviews. Otherwise keep them as short as possible.


The Alternative is a general form of alternative which is part of the documentation of a Decision. The architecture alternative points at alternatives that are relevant from the system's architectural point of view.