Designer 11 Help

Designer 11 Help
ADOBE® LIVECYCLE® DESIGNER 11 HELP
Legal notices
Legal notices
For legal notices, see http://help.adobe.com/en_US/legalnotices/index.html.
Last updated 12/4/2013
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Contents
Chapter 1: Welcome to Designer
About Designer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
Using Designer in different spaces
New features in Designer
..................................................................................... 1
.............................................................................................. 2
Where to find documentation, samples, and tutorials
................................................................... 2
Chapter 2: Getting Started
About forms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
About form designs
................................................................................................... 5
Form design layouts
................................................................................................... 5
Parts of a form design
................................................................................................. 6
Installing and configuring Designer
Looking at the workspace
.................................................................................... 9
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Steps to creating a form design
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25
Chapter 3: Create Form Designs
Create, open, and save . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29
Page layout
Styles
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54
Printing forms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61
Tabbing order
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 73
Building actions in forms
Spell checking in forms
Hyphenate text
Hyperlinks
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 92
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 96
Prepare for translation
Macros
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 82
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 87
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 97
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 99
Chapter 4: Test and troubleshoot
Previewing and testing forms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 102
Addressing warning messages in the Report palette
Displaying validation errors in Acrobat
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 107
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 119
Chapter 4: Guidelines for forms
Best practices for HTML forms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122
Rendering PDF forms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122
Choosing the type of PDF form
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 123
Applying formatting by using client-side scripts
Saving object formatting
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 124
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 125
Unavailable commands for dynamic forms in Adobe Reader
Font behavior
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 126
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 126
Objects and properties for static PDF forms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127
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Chapter 4: Import documents
Importing PDF files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 128
Reviewing the results of a PDF file import
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 131
Importing tagged PDF files
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 134
Matching unavailable fonts
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 134
Adding a new mapping to the font-mapping table in Designer
Font-mapping table in ConvertPDF_FontMap.txt
Character-mapping table in ConvertPDF_CharMap.txt
Importing PDF documents as artwork
Importing Word files
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 135
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 135
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 136
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 137
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 140
Copying spreadsheet data from Microsoft Excel
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 142
Creating a form from the content of a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet
Importing InfoPath files
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 143
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 144
Importing Adobe Output Designer Form files
Importing XForms Model files
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 146
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 146
Chapter 5: Using tables
About tables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 148
To create a simple table
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 152
To create a table using the Table Assistant
To create a table from existing objects
To create a table within a table
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 152
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 154
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 155
To import a table from Microsoft Word
To create a table using subforms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 157
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 157
To create a nested table using subforms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 159
To create a table that grows using the Button object
Selecting, copying, moving, and navigating
Inserting and deleting
Formatting a table
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 164
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 167
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 172
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 172
To create a table style for the custom library
To create a calendar using a table
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 187
Aligning, resizing, and arranging tables
Working with data in tables
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 188
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 192
To create a table that groups data
To make a table optional
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 185
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 198
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 202
To perform calculations in a table
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 205
Working with pagination in tables
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 207
Working with header and footer rows in tables
Working with cells and cell contents
Working with table sections
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 213
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 214
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 219
Creating choice sections in tables
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 222
Creating data bindings and conditional statements for choice table sections
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 224
Chapter 6: Using subforms
About subforms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 225
Subforms that position content
Subforms that flow content
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 227
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 228
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Creating and configuring subforms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 229
To specify how a subform manages content
To position subforms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 230
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 231
To specify how to merge data between subforms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 232
To define custom data-binding properties for a subform
Using subform sets
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 233
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 233
Creating repeating and multipage subforms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 234
To control subform and subform set breaks by using conditional statements
Using choice subform sets
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 238
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 239
Working with forms that have a flowable layout
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 240
Chapter 7: Using fragments
About fragments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 258
When to use fragments
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 259
Naming and organizing and fragments
Fragment references
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 260
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 260
How fragment references are resolved
Binding fragments to a data source
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 262
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 263
Creating and inserting fragments
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 263
Editing and embedding fragments
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 265
Fixing overrides and broken fragment references
Fragments tips
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 266
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 268
Chapter 8: Working with Objects
About Objects . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 269
Using objects
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 273
Adding, copying, and deleting objects
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 337
Selecting, grouping, and moving objects
Aligning and sizing objects
Formatting
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 339
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 342
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 349
Creating an insertion point
Formatting captions
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 359
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 360
Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 362
Formatting field values and using patterns
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 364
Setting up an object for other languages
Using special objects
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 378
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 381
Chapter 9: Object Properties
Layout properties in the Layout palette
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 385
Border properties in the Border palette
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 385
Font properties in the Font palette
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 386
Paragraph properties in the Paragraph palette
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 386
Accessibility properties in the Accessibility palette
Master page properties in the Master Page tab
Master page properties in the Pagination tab
Page set properties in the Page Set tab
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 387
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 389
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 390
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 390
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Chapter 10: Properties in the Object palette
Barcode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 392
Button
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 398
Check box
Circle
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 405
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 408
Content area
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 409
Date/time field
Decimal field
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 410
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 416
Drop-down list
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 418
Email submit button
Flash field
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 424
HTTP submit button
Image field
Image
Line
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 422
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 427
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 428
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 430
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 432
List box
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 432
Numeric field
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 437
Paper Forms Barcode
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 445
Password field
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 449
Radio button
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 453
Rectangle
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 457
Signature field
Subform
Subform set
Table
Text
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 459
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 461
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 465
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 467
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 486
Text field
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 487
Chapter 11: Working with Data Sources
About data connections . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 494
Updating data connections and the Data View palette
To work with the Data View palette
Schema filtering
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 496
Connecting to a data source
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 497
Modifying and deleting a data connection
Binding fields to a data source
Field types
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 495
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 496
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 503
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 504
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 515
Dynamically populating form object properties from a data source
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 522
Chapter 12: Creating Accessible Forms
About accessible forms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 543
Reading order versus tabbing order in accessible forms
Designing accessible forms
Forms for users with vision impairment or disabilities
Forms for users with reduced mobility
Color in accessible forms
Support for screen readers
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 543
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 544
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 545
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 546
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 546
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 547
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Design tips for authoring forms for screen readers
Create a PDF form with accessibility tags
Creating accessible PDF forms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 547
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 548
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 548
Making objects accessible
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 550
Making tables accessible
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 553
Add structural navigation in forms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 555
Checking the accessibility of a form
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 555
Chapter 13: Setting Security
Importing digital IDs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 557
Using XML encryption
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 559
Using digital signatures
Using password fields
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 561
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 564
Using PDF security options
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 565
Chapter 14: Creating Forms for Optimal Performance
General design considerations for performance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 568
Optimizing performance for objects
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 569
Structuring data for performance
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 572
Choosing fonts for performance
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 574
Design considerations for printing
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 575
Performance considerations for importing forms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 575
Performance considerations for accessible forms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 576
Performance considerations for scripts
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 576
Performance considerations for XML Form Object Model expressions
Resolving log messages for optimal performance
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 577
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 578
Chapter 15: Considerations for Creating Forms for Server Processing
Creating forms for Adobe LiveCycle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 580
How Forms processes captured data
How Forms renders forms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 581
How Forms prepopulates forms
Designing forms for Forms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 580
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 581
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 581
Optimizing and improving performance for Forms
Creating HTML forms
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 585
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 587
Chapter 16: Creating Forms for Process Management
Preparing a form for use in Workspace . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 603
How Workspace handles buttons in PDF forms
Fields in the Process Fields object
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 605
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 605
Chapter 17: Working with the Keyboard
Default keyboard shortcuts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 607
Controlling the palettes with a keyboard
Customizing keyboard shortcuts
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 615
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 616
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Contents
Chapter 18: Menu, Command, Toolbar, and Dialog Box Reference
Menus and Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 619
Toolbars
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 635
Dialog Box Reference
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 638
Chapter 19: Glossary
A . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 701
B
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 701
C
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F
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 703
I
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 703
P
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 704
R
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 704
S
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 704
T
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 705
U
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 705
X
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 705
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Chapter 1: Welcome to Designer
Welcome to Adobe® LiveCycle® Designer 11.
About Designer
Note: Effective March 10, 2012, Adobe is deprecating the Guides capabilities of Adobe® LiveCycle® ES. The Guides
functionality is available for upgrade purposes only and will be removed from the product after two major releases.
Designer is a point-and-click graphical form design tool that simplifies the creation of forms. Form recipients can fill
a form online, submit the data, and print it, or print and fill the form by hand. You can design a form, define its logic,
and modify it to match paper counterparts or to meet strict legislative requirements. Form developers can use Designer
to create applications that generate dynamic, data-driven documents and produce customized business documents for
print, web, or archival. Using form designs, form developers can create Guides (deprecated), interactive data capture
applications by leading users through a series of visually appealing and streamlined panels, improving usability and
reducing data entry errors.
You can also build and maintain data capture solutions that read from, validate against, and add to corporate data
sources. With Designer, you can integrate PDF documents into existing workflows by binding forms to XML schemas,
XML sample files, databases, and web services.
Forms and documents that are created in Designer can be merged with business data and rendered as a number of file
types, including Adobe PDF, HTML, SWF, and printing for PCL, Adobe PostScript® and Zebra (ZPL) printers.
More Help topics
“Using Designer in different spaces” on page 1
“New features in Designer” on page 2
Using Designer in different spaces
Designer is available in two ways: bundled with Adobe® Acrobat® Professional and as part of the Adobe® LiveCycle®
Enterprise Suite 4 (ES4) software platform.
As part of the LiveCycle platform, you use Designer with Adobe® LiveCycle® Workbench 11, where you create, manage,
and automate business processes and forms. You design the form and add objects in Designer, which operates outside
Workbench. When you create or open a form design, it opens in Designer and a corresponding tab is displayed in
Workbench.
Designer works with the files in your local file system. In Workbench, you synchronize the files that you need from an
application and check in any forms created in Designer. You must also check in any referenced files, such as images or
fragments.
Using Designer with Acrobat Professional users can create, manage, and automate business processes and forms. User
can also consolidate the data they receive from the people who are filling the form using Adobe® Reader®.
For more information about LiveCycle ES4, see LiveCycle Overview.
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Welcome to Designer
New features in Designer
Preview your XDP forms in HTML in Designer
Besides previewing the PDF rendition of forms, now you can also preview the forms in HTML rendition. While
designing the form in Adobe LiveCycle Designer, click on the new Preview HTML tab, to preview the form as it would
appear in a browser.
See HTML Preview.
Preview your XDP forms in HTML in Forms Manager
You can now use Forms Manager to preview and manage your LiveCycle forms. You can launch Forms Manager from
within LiveCycle Designer. To configure Forms Manager to launch from the LiveCycle Designer, see Launch Forms
Manager from LiveCycle Designer.
Accessibility Checker
An accessible form is one that a wide range of people can use, including those with disabilities that affect how they are
able to interact with the form on a computer screen. You can now use the Accessibility Checker to test the accessibility
of your LiveCycle Designer forms against a set of accessibility rules. For more details, see “Checking the accessibility
of a form” on page 555.
Add document title to the PDF title bar
You can now add the document title to the PDF title bar. If a user opens the PDF, the document title will display on
the title bar of the window. For more details, see “To add document title to the PDF title bar” on page 32.
Where to find documentation, samples, and tutorials
The following resources can help you start building forms and applications.
Learn about LiveCycle Learn about LiveCycle and get important information about Designer that was not available
when the product documentation was written.
Documentation
Description and location
LiveCycle Overview
Provides an overview of LiveCycle.
See LiveCycle Overview.
Workbench Help
Available from the Help menu when you install Workbench.
Creating Dynamic Forms with Adobe LiveCycle
Designer by J.P. Terry
Shows you how to use Designer to create interactive and dynamic forms.
Available at Adobe Press.
Get started with samples and tutorials
These tutorials take you through the process of creating forms for LiveCycle applications. Form samples help you learn
about form design techniques and provide a starting point to creating a form design. Scripting samples demonstrate
quick and simple form solutions.
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Welcome to Designer
Documentation
Description and location
Quick Start tutorials
Designed to get you started on creating forms using Designer. See any of the following
tutorials: Creating a purchase order form, Creating a purchase order form that has a
flowable layout, and Creating and using fragments in form designs.
Tutorial for creating a LiveCycle application
See Creating Your First LiveCycle Application.
Designer form fragment tutorial
Walks you through the steps of working with form fragments.
See Designer form fragment tutorial.
Form samples
Designer includes a selection of complete samples, each one accompanied by a form
design, sample data, and/or schema, and the final version of the form. The samples are
installed with Designer in the default location installation directory under
\...\EN\Samples.
Add calculations to forms
Use FormCalc to build calculations into Designer forms.
Documentation
Description and location
FormCalc Reference
See Introducing FormCalc.
Enhance forms by using scripts
Use scripts to build intelligence into forms.
Documentation
Description and location
Scripting Basics
Provides an overview of how you can use scripting to develop and enhance forms that
are created in Designer.
See Scripting Basics
Scripting samples
You can experiment with the sample forms and apply the techniques to your own work.
Go to the Adobe Developer Connection to get the latest sample forms.
Scripting Reference
Describes the objects, properties, and methods that are available for scripting in the
Designer environment.
See Scripting Reference.
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Chapter 2: Getting Started
About forms
A form is the document that a user views or interacts with. It is derived from a form design that you create using
Designer.
Forms typically collect or present structured data and are the front end to a business process. Designer creates forms
and documents that can be merged with business data and rendered in a number of file types, including PDF
documents, HTML, Flash (SWF file), and printing for PostScript and Zebra (ZPL) printers.
Forms can capture or present information in three different ways.
Interactive forms
Forms can be designed to capture data directly from end users. Users fill the form and select options online, and return
the form data according to some prescribed process. These forms are known as interactive forms. You can author
interactive forms that the user fills using Acrobat Professional or Adobe Reader, or you can author forms for Adobe®
LiveCycle® Forms Standard 11 that the user fills in a web browser.
Interactive forms have many benefits over paper-based forms:
• Although interactive forms may look like traditional paper-based forms, they eliminate cumbersome and timeconsuming effort required to process paper forms. Using interactive forms to provide business solutions makes
sense in the worlds of the Internet and enterprise-wide computing.
• You can deliver interactive forms through Internet, intranet, or email. You can automate the document exchange
process, store forms in reliable formats, and protect document content and integrity.
• Interactive forms allow you to streamline your data collection process. An interactive form can collect and integrate
data into your existing core data collection systems, thereby extending their value. The form might integrate data
directly to your data collection system or use a program on the server, such as a CGI script,an ASP page, Java Server
Pages (JSP), or servlet.
• Using interactive forms, you can also establish online forms-based workflow processes using built-in logic to route
the form electronically from one user to the next. Interactive forms can also support assistive technologies, such as
screen readers, so that you can extend the form to users with disabilities.
In the simplest scenario, end users only require Adobe Reader to electronically fill the form and send the form data to
the originator of the form or print the form and send the paper copy of form and data to the originator. If you have
purchased Forms, the interactive form can be in PDF or HTML. In this case, users open and fill the form using a web
browser.
Interactive forms typically include data entry features such as selection lists, drop-down lists, check boxes,
automatically generated calculations, validation messages, digital signatures, and Submit and Execute buttons. Form
authors can use built-in FormCalc functions and custom scripting by using JavaScript™ to extend the functionality of
interactive fields. Interactive forms can include command buttons so that users can save the data to a file or database
or to send the data by email to a specified address. In addition, validations can be added to ensure the accuracy of userentered data. The form can provide feedback such as messages to prompt for specific types of data.
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DESIGNER 11 HELP
Getting Started
Non-interactive forms
Forms can be designed to present information to end users. The data can come from a variety of data sources, such as
databases, web services, or enterprise content management systems. The end user views the form already prepopulated
with data. The end user cannot modify the data in the form or add new data to the form. These types of forms are
known as non-interactive forms. A typical scenario for these types of forms involves Forms as part of the solution.
Forms merges the form design with data and renders the form, prepopulated with data, to the end user. A classic
example of a non-interactive form is a credit card statement or telephone bill.
In yet another scenario, a form might be designed to initially present information to the end user, and then provide
the capability for the end user to supply additional information and send it to the initiator or server for further
processing.
Print and fill forms
Another type of form is the print-and-fill form. The form author creates a form design in Designer and typically saves
it as a PDF. The end user opens the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, prints the form, and fills the form manually.
The form is then returned to its originator by fax or land mail.
More Help topics
“Guidelines for forms” on page 122
About form designs
Form design is the term that describes the form during its creation or design process. The form design specifies the
layout, data capture, and final presentation rules for the form. The presentation rules are applied when the form is filled
with data. How the form is filled with data depends on the purpose of the form, which in turn influences the type of
form you create.
In Designer, you add functionality to your form by adding objects, such as a place to enter text, or a button for sending
the form by email. Static objects are available that present fixed text or graphic information. These objects include
circles, lines, rectangles, images, and text
Form design layouts
Fixed layout
The most common type of forms have a fixed layout; that is, they have a predetermined layout, always with a fixed
number of pages regardless of the amount of data available to fill it. For example, a course registration form that an
end user can either print and fill by hand, or fill in Acrobat or Adobe Reader. When filled, the form retains its original
layout and number of pages. Fields that are not filled remain empty. Conversely, if the amount of data is more that the
form can hold, the form cannot expand to accommodate excess data. For example, if a course registration form has 5
rows where end users list their course selections, and enough data is available to fill 10 rows, only 5 rows can be filled.
Similarly, if an end user lists only 2 course selections, you will still see 5 rows, 2 that are filled and 3 that are empty.
This form can be interactive, where an end user fills the form typically in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or it can be noninteractive, where a server process merges the form with data from a data source. Similarly, Forms typically renders
non-interactive forms that have a fixed layout to present information from a data source.
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DESIGNER 11 HELP
Getting Started
Flowable layout
In addition to forms that have a fixed layout, you can define sections of the form that will expand and shrink in
response to the amount of data that is merged when the form is rendered. You do this by wrapping various sections
(groups of subforms) in subforms that are set to flow content. Then, at run time, only the subforms that are necessary
for displaying the exact amount of data are instantiated.
This type of form has a flowable layout with a varying number of pages. The subforms adjust depending on the amount
of data merged with the form when it is rendered, or the subforms expand when end users need to add more data. For
example, you may decide to let end users add to the form the number of rows they need to list their selections, remove
rows from the form, and then return the form data electronically. Depending on how many rows they add, the form
may extend over two or more pages.
Interactive forms that have a flowable layout are sometimes referred to as client-side forms. Acrobat and Adobe Reader
7.0 and later support this type of interactive forms.
You can also create forms that have a flowable layout for use with Forms. In this scenario, Forms merges the form
design with data. For example, such forms as a telephone bill or credit card statement are typically non-interactive
forms and designed to present users with information from a data source. Users then print these forms or store them
electronically. These forms are sometimes referred to as server-side forms because the merging of the form design and
data occurs at the server.
More Help topics
“About forms” on page 4
“Creating interactive forms that have a flowable layout” on page 243
“Parts of a form design” on page 6
Parts of a form design
You create a form design by dragging objects from the Library palette onto one or more pages in the Layout Editor and
working in the Object palette to modify the properties specific to the object you select. The object that you select
determines which tabs are available in the Object palette. Many other palettes are available that contain specific
properties that you may want to change. For example, you can use the Font palette to change the font family, size, and
style of text in a selected object.
You place the objects you want in the form design on pages. If you want an object to appear on each page of the form
design, you place it on a master page. For example, you can include a logo, watermark, or introductory information
that always appears in the same location on each page of the form design.
The following key components make up a form design:
• Master pages
• Pages
• Content areas
• Subforms
• Fields
• Boilerplate objects
Form design elements are displayed in the Hierarchy palette.
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Getting Started
Designer automatically generates XML source code for each object as you build the form design. Because Designer
automatically generates the XML source code for you, you can create form designs without having any knowledge
about XML.
Master pages
Every form design contains at least one master page that Designer creates automatically. Master pages are designated
to format pages, and they help to facilitate design consistency because they can provide a background and layout
format for more than one page in a form design.
You can use the supplied master page to format pages, edit the master page’s settings, or add additional master pages
if needed. If you are creating a simple interactive form, you would probably use the supplied master page without
changing its settings.
At the very least, master pages define the orientation and dimensions of pages. You can use master pages to define these
aspects of a form design:
• Page size and orientation
• Headers and footers
• Watermarks and company logos
Each master page is created with a default content area that covers the whole page. You can add text, images, and other
boilerplate objects to a master page. These objects are displayed on all of the pages that the master page formats. (See
“Using master pages” on page 43.)
Note: Text fields, numeric fields, and date/time fields on master pages will not be interactive on Acrobat 6-compatible
forms. Users cannot modify the associated data in these fields.
You manipulate master pages in the Master Pages tab.
Pages
Pages represent the pages of a form. Each page derives its size and orientation from a master page and, by default, each
page is associated with the default master page that Designer creates. Each page is created with a default subform that
covers the whole page. (See “Setting up pages” on page 42.)
If your form design contains more than one master page, you can choose which master page to assign to a page. (See
“Using master pages” on page 43.)
You work with pages in the Design View tab.
Content areas
Content areas define where objects can be placed on pages. When you design a form, you cannot place an object on a
page unless it is inside the area bounded by a content area.You can add content areas to master pages only.
Whenever you create a new master page, Designer creates a default content area on the master page.
A form design that has a fixed layout will typically contain one content area. A form design that contains sections that
adjust to accommodate data can have one or more content areas. You can specify whether the objects in each content
area should be positioned from top to bottom, or from left to right and top to bottom. (See “Using content areas” on
page 294.)
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Subforms
Subforms are container objects that you can use to group form design objects, including fields, boilerplate objects, and
other subforms. When they are grouped, you can control whether the subform and the grouped objects appear on your
form based on data bindings that you configure for your form. You can also configure subform objects to be repeatable,
which lets you have multiple instances of a single subform and its grouped objects appear on your form. This allows
you to create more flexible and adaptable form designs.
Subforms are essential when creating forms that contain sections that expand to accommodate data because they
provide the dynamic capabilities to be visible, to remain hidden, and to grow, all in response to data and user
interaction at run time. (See “Subform” on page 461.)
Tables
Tables are essentially structured container objects that you can use to organize your form design content in
meaningful, logical ways. Each cell of a table is a separate container capable of storing form design objects. (See “Using
tables” on page 148.)
Tables are very similar to subforms in terms of functionality and behavior. Like subforms, tables can be dynamic,
which means they can repeat and grow in response to data and user interaction at run time. (See “Subform” on
page 461.)
Field objects
Designer provides a number of field objects that are capable of capturing, merging, and displaying data. A field object
provides a data-entry region, and users can interact with field objects by entering or selecting an associated data value.
(See “About Objects” on page 269.)
The following objects are field objects:
• Button
• Check box
• Date/time field
• Decimal field
• Signature Field
• Drop-down list
• Email Submit button
• HTTP Submit button
• Image field
• List box
• Numeric field
• Paper Forms Barcode
• Password field
• Print button
• Radio button
• Text field
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Boilerplate or static objects
Boilerplate or static objects are read-only objects that improve the aesthetic appeal of a form and may provide context
or assistance for users. They can be added to pages or master pages. (See “About Objects” on page 269.)
The following objects are boilerplate objects:
• Circle
• Image
• Line
• Rectangle
• Text
Installing and configuring Designer
LiveCycle Designer is available as a standalone installer and is also bundled with LiveCycle WorkBench. To know more
about installing Designer as part of Workbench, see Installing and running Workbench in this document. If you are
using a standalone installer for Designer, follow these steps:
1 Launch the Designer installer by double-clicking setup.exe.
2 Proceed and provide your details and the serial number on the Personalization screen.
3 If you accept the license agreement, click Next to proceed.
4 (Optional) change the default installation path, if you want to install Designer ES4 at a location of your choice. Click Next.
5 (Optional) If you have a previous version of LC Designer installed, the installer provides an option to migrate,
delete, or ignore the user settings of the previous installation. Click Next.
6 Click Back to change any preferences. To install Designer, click Install.
7 Click Finish when the installation completes.
Configuring JVM settings
By default, a Java Virtual Machine (JVM) is initialized when Designer is launched.
Note: To initialized the JVM, install JDK 1.5 or later.
You can modify the JVM configuration and the default behavior using the supplied INI file. The file name is
JVMSettings.ini and it is available at [Designer Install Directory]\cfg\ location. The various configurable
parameters are:
JVMOnDemand specifies if the JVM is initialized with Designer (value 0) or is initialized only when required (value
1). By default, the value is 0.
JVMHeapSizeCustomization specifies if the heap size for JVM is determined by the JVM itself (value 0) or by Designer
(value 1). By default, the value is 0.
JVMInitialHeapSize specifies the initial heap size in KB. This setting is relevant if JVMHeapSizeCustomization = 1.
If the value is <1025, it is set at 1025 (default value).
JVMMaxHeapSize specifies the maximum heap size in KB that JVM can grow to. This setting is relevant if
JVMHeapSizeCustomization = 1. If the value is <2048, it is set as 4096 (default value).
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Looking at the workspace
About editors
By default, the Designer workspace consists of an area called the Layout Editor where you create and lay out your form
design and a Script Editor where you can write scripts to extend the capabilities of the form design.
As you become comfortable working with form designs, you can customize the workspace to suit your requirements.
A. Script Editor B. Palettes C. Layout Editor
Layout Editor
The Layout Editor is the main area where you create and maintain the form design. It contains four tabs:
Design View tab Displays the pages that make up the form design. The pages in Design View contain a form design’s
content. The first time you start Designer or create a new form design, the Design View tab displays a page ready for
objects to be added. Objects in the master page appear in the page but cannot be selected.
Master Pages tab Displays the master pages that can be applied to pages in Design View. Master pages specify the
layout and the background for the form design. You add objects that will occur in the same position throughout the
form design on a master page. The Master Pages tab is hidden by default. Objects in the Design View page do not
appear in the master page.
XML Source tab Displays the XML source code that describes the structure of the form design and its objects. It is
recommended that you do not edit the XML source code directly.
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Preview PDF tab Displays a PDF form based on the current form design. As you work, if you have Acrobat or Adobe
Reader installed, you can preview the form in the Preview PDF tab. Use the Preview PDF tab to view and test the
operation of a form or template as if it were a PDF file. You can set options for previewing interactive forms or
printable forms in PDF by using the Form Properties dialog box (Preview tab).
Note: To preview a form in the Preview PDF tab, in Acrobat, ensure that the Edit > Preferences > Internet > Display PDF
In Browser option is selected.
By default, not all the tabs are displayed. The Design View tab is displayed; however, the Master Pages tab and the XML
Source tab are not displayed. The Preview PDF tab is displayed only when Acrobat or Adobe Reader is installed.
Tabbed palettes are arranged around the Layout Editor to provide easy access to the tools without cluttering your
workspace.
For more information see “To customize the Layout Editor” on page 17.
Script Editor
The Script Editor is where you create, modify, and view the calculations and scripts of a particular form. For example,
you can use the Script Editor to write a simple calculation that adds two numeric fields or complex scripts that alter
the appearance of the form based on end-user actions. Designer supports scripting either in its own scripting language
called FormCalc or in JavaScript.
By default, the Script Editor appears at the top of the Designer workspace, but you can dock it anywhere. It has both a
single-line view and a multiline view that you can switch between, depending on your needs. Single-line view is
designed to maximize the amount of space dedicated to the Layout Editor and other palettes. Multiline view is
designed to maximize the amount of space for writing script.
Show Lists all form design events that support user-defined scripting. Any events that do not apply to a particular
object appear dimmed. Events that contain a calculation or script display an asterisk (*) beside the name of the event.
Displays the event you have currently selected in the Show list for the current object
and all of its child objects. If you select the uppermost object in the Hierarchy palette, this option displays the event
you have currently selected in the Show list for all objects on your form.
Show Events for Child Objects
Displays a list of available built-in FormCalc or JavaScript functions, depending on the scripting
language you currently have selected in the Language list.
Functions
To place a function onto your script editing field, select a function from the list and press Enter.
Checks all of the scripts in a form for correct syntax and reports any errors on the Warnings
tab in the Report palette.
Check Script Syntax
Language Specifies the scripting language you want to use for the current calculation or script. Two options are
available:
• FormCalc FormCalc is a native Adobe calculation language typically used for shorter scripts, such as simple
calculations.
• JavaScript JavaScript is the default scripting language for new forms.
The scripting language that is displayed in the Language list matches the scripting language option you select as the
default for new forms in the Workspace panel in the Options dialog box. However, if you change the scripting
language setting for the current form on the Defaults tab in the Form Properties dialog box, the scripting language
that is displayed in the Language list changes similarly for any new scripts on new events. Changing the scripting
language option in the Form Properties dialog box does not change the scripting language for existing scripts. If an
event already contains script and that script is deleted, the Script Editor continues to use that same scripting
language for the duration of your Designer working session.
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Run At Specifies where the calculation or script will execute. Three options are available:
• Client Calculations and scripts execute while the client application (for example, Acrobat, Adobe Reader, or a web
browser) processes the form.
• Server Calculations and scripts execute while the server application (for example, Forms) processes the form.
• Client and server Calculations and scripts execute while the server application (for example, Forms) processes the
form, except in cases where the HTML client application supports client-side scripting. For example, a script that
accesses a database to prefill data on a form.
For more information, see Scripting Using Designer.
More Help topics
A Quick Way to get to the Script Editor in Designer
About palettes
The palettes provide easy access to the tools without cluttering your workspace. Palettes can include one or more tabs,
each containing common properties. For example, the Object palette can include one or more tabs.
You can arrange the palettes in the workspace to suit your work style. For example, you can hide the rarely used palettes
and move the frequently used ones into one palette window.
As you work in the Layout Editor, the information that appears in certain palettes changes to reflect the selected object.
For example, if you select an object, the information in the Layout palette changes to display information about the
object’s size and position.
Hierarchy palette
The Hierarchy palette is a graphical representation of the contents in the Design View and Master Pages tabs.
Whatever you select in the Hierarchy palette is also selected in the body or master page that it is associated with. See
“Hierarchy palette menu” on page 627.
Data View palette
If a data connection exists, the Data View palette displays the hierarchy derived from the data connection. The top
nodes in the hierarchy represent each data connection and display the name of the data connection. A data connection
provides a link between the form and the data source.
When you design a form based on a data connection, Designer builds a data structure for your form based on that data
source. You can filter the nodes to work with and quickly create a form using some or all of the data source. You then
use binding to link a node from a data source to an object on the form. See “Connecting to a data source” on page 497.
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Tab Order palette
The Tab Order palette displays a numbered list of all the objects on the form, where each number represents the
position of the object within the tabbing order.
The Tab Order palette may show the following visual markers in the list:
• A gray bar marks each page of the form. The tabbing order on each page starts with the number 1.
• The letter M inside a green circle indicates master page objects (visible only when viewing the form on the Design
View tab).
• A range of numbers indicates objects within a fragment reference.
• A yellow background indicates the currently selected object.
• A lock icon beside the first object on the page indicates that the object cannot be moved within the order (visible
only when viewing the form on the Master Pages tab).
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For more information see “Using the Tab Order palette” on page 76.
PDF Structure palette
The PDF Structure palette displays a view of the hierarchical structure of tagged PDF documents, which provide
accessibility and a defined tabbing and reading order for assistive technologies, such as keyboard access and screen
readers. See the “PDF Structure palette menu” on page 628.
For information about PDF documents as artwork, see “Importing PDF documents as artwork” on page 137.
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Object Library palette
The Object Library palette contains all the objects that you can add to a form design. Objects are organized into
categories:
Standard Contains the most commonly used form objects, such as check boxes and text fields.
Barcodes Contains a list of barcode objects.
Custom Contains preformatted objects, such as address blocks and phone number fields.
For information about using the library palettes, see “Managing library palettes” on page 21.
Fragment Library palette
The Fragment Library palette contains the fragment libraries that are currently open. A fragment library corresponds
to a folder in your file system that contains the fragment source XDP files.
Each fragment library has an expandable panel in the library that lists the available fragments.
My Fragments A location for the fragments that you create. You can insert them in a form design or use them to create
new fragments.
Style Catalog palette
Use the Style Catalog palette to manage styles sheets, and to edit and apply styles to objects in a form design. The Style
Catalog palette lists the various style sheets available with a form and the styles included with each style sheet. The Style
Catalog includes a different panel for each style sheet. Each panel lists the styles included with that style sheet. The first
panel is the Internal Style Sheet panel. Below the internal style sheet panel are panels for each Designer Style Sheet file
(XFS) file that you add to the Style Catalog. See “Styles” on page 54 .
Layout palette
Use the Layout palette to set the following properties for the selected object::
• Size and position of the object.
• Whether the object should ignore the defined height and width, and expand to reveal all of its content.
• Position of the anchor (insertion) point. You can rotate an object around its anchor point in a 90°, 180°, or 270°
increment.
• Align selected objects in subforms that flow content.
• Margins around the object.
• Caption position and width. You can also hide the caption.
For more information, see “Formatting objects” on page 355.
When you select an object, the Layout palette automatically displays the selected object’s settings. You can edit most
of an object’s layout settings directly in the Layout Editor. For example, to change an object’s position, you can drag it
to the new location on the page.
Border palette
Use the Border palette to edit the border properties for objects in the form design. You can edit the borders individually
(left, right, top, and bottom) or together. You can also specify the type of border corner and background color.
For more informaiton, see “Border properties in the Border palette” on page 385.
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Object palette
Use the Object palette to modify properties that are specific to the selected object. The object that is selected in the
Layout Editor determines which tabs are available in this palette.
Accessibility palette
Use the Accessibility palette to specify custom text for an object that a Microsoft® Active Accessibility (MSAA)compliant screen reader reads as it passes through the form. (See “Making objects accessible” on page 550.) If custom
screen reader text is available for the object, the screen reader will read the custom text and not the tool tip.
You can also change the default order in which the screen reader searches for text to read on an object-by-object basis,
and you can turn off screen reader text for any object.
For more informaiton, see “Accessibility properties in the Accessibility palette” on page 387.
Font palette
Use the Font palette to change the font family, size, style, and scale, as well as the baseline shift, letter spacing, and
kerning of the text in one or more selected objects. You can change the font properties of text in text objects, in the
caption area of objects such as text fields, decimal fields, and numeric fields, and in the value area of text field objects.
For more information, see “Formatting text” on page 349.
Paragraph palette
Use the Paragraph palette to change the alignment, indentation, line spacing, and hyphenation of the selected text. You
can also set the radix alignment for a Numeric Field object. The options that appear in the Paragraph palette depend
on what is selected.
For more information, see “Formatting paragraphs” on page 352.
Use the Paragraph palette to create lists and to change the alignment, indentation, line spacing, and hyphenation of
the selected text. You can also set the radix alignment for a Numeric Field object. The options that appear in the
Paragraph palette depend on what is selected.
Drawing Aids palette
Use the Drawing Aids palette to specify the grid and ruler settings and drawing units. You can also show or hide object
boundaries and specify boundary border style. The settings for snapping objects to other elements on the page and
guideline definitions are also included on the Drawing Aids palette.
The horizontal and vertical rulers, the grid, and the long cross hairs help you position objects precisely across the width
or length of a page. When visible, rulers appear along the top and left side of the active body or master page. Markers
in the ruler display the pointer’s position when you move it. Changing the ruler origin (the (0, 0) mark on the top and
left rulers) lets you measure from a specific point on the form design.
You can also show or hide object boundaries on the form design. Showing boundaries is useful for displaying objects
that do not have borders on the form. You can also specify border style for fields, subforms, content areas, groups, and
other objects.
When you move objects, the snapping options enable you to automatically position them in relation to other elements
on the page. Objects can snap to the grid, a guideline, another object, or the center of the page.
You can use guidelines as a visual cue or as elements for object snapping. Use the guideline definitions lists to add or
remove horizontal or vertical guidelines.
For more information, see “To use the drawing aids” on page 19.
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Info palette
The Info palette displays the metadata associated with the selected objects. This metadata is stored in the XML source
as named children of a <desc> element. You can edit some metadata for the form design by using the Form Properties
dialog box (Info tab).
Report palette
The Report palette provides information about the form design. The Warnings tab lists errors that are reported as you
work in the form design, the Binding tab lists fields based on how you defined their binding data, and the Log tab shows
a log of actions reported by Designer.
To clear the Warnings tab, you must address the errors listed. To clear the Log tab, click the palette menu and select
Clear Warnings. See “Addressing warning messages in the Report palette” on page 107.
How To palette
The How To palette contains a list of help topics about common procedures in Designer. You can scroll the list to
locate a topic of interest and click More Info to see the steps.
More Help topics
“Data View palette menu” on page 627
“Tab Order palette menu” on page 627
“Object Library palette menu” on page 632
“Style Catalog palette menu” on page 628
“Layout palette menu” on page 629
“Border palette menu” on page 629
“Object palette menu” on page 629
“Accessibility palette menu” on page 629
“Font palette menu” on page 630
“Paragraph palette menu” on page 630
“Drawing Aids palette menu” on page 630
“Info palette menu” on page 631
“Info (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 655
“Report palette menu” on page 631
“View a list of bound fields” on page 514
Customizing the workspace
To customize the Layout Editor
You can customize the Layout Editor to show or hide tabs, resize pages, and zoom in and out.
To show or hide tabs
• To show or hide the Design View tab, select View > Design View.
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• To show or hide the Master Pages tab, select View > Master Pages.
• To show or hide the XML Source tab, select View > XML Source.
• To show or hide the Preview PDF tab, select View > Preview PDF.
To zoom in and out
• To size the page to 100%, select View > Actual Size.
• To size the page to fit in the Layout Editor, select View > Fit Page.
• To size the page to fit the width of the Layout Editor, select View > Fit Width.
• To zoom in or out of the Layout Editor, select View > Zoom, enter a value from 25% to 500% in the Zoom To box,
and then click OK. You can also use the Zoom To box
in the toolbar.
• To magnify an area, select View > Zoom Area. The pointer changes to a magnifying glass. Using the magnifying
glass, click and drag the area that you want to magnify.
• To display a specific page, zoom out so that you can see the entire page and scroll down to the page that you want
to display.
To customize the Script Editor
You can show or hide the Script Editor and change the view from single-line to multiline.
• To show or hide the Script Editor, select Window > Script Editor.
• To change from single-line to multiline view, drag the Expand button on the Script Editor palette border until the
palette is the required size.
For more information, see Scripting Using Designer.
To customize the palettes
You can customize the palettes to show or hide palettes, dock or move palettes, or size or reset palettes.
To show or hide palettes
• To show a palette, select Window > [name of palette].
• To hide a palette, select palette menu > Hide Palette.
• To show or hide all palettes on one side of the Layout Editor, click Expand on the palette border. Click it again to
collapse the palettes.
• To show or hide all the palettes that are in the selected location, select Window > Workspace, and then select one
of the commands.
To dock or move palettes
• To dock a palette on the side of the window, drag the palette bar to the side of the Designer window.
• To dock palettes together, drag the palette bar to the bottom of another palette. This procedure applies only to
palettes that are docked to the Designer window; it does not apply to floating palettes.
• To move and dock a palette, drag the palette bar.
• To move a palette without docking it, Ctrl+drag the palette bar.
• To move a palette into another palette window, drag the palette tab to the target palette. You cannot move a sub-tab.
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To size or reset palettes
• To change the size of a palette, drag any side of the palette.
• To reset palette locations, select Window > Reset Palette Locations.
To use the drawing aids
You can use the Drawing Aids palette to show or hide rulers and object boundaries, set the grid, and set other
preferences.
To show or hide the drawing aids
• To quickly show the Drawing Aids palette, double-click the rulers.
• To show or hide the object boundaries, select Show Object Boundaries.
• To show or hide guidelines, or the grid, select Show Guidelines and Show Grid.
• To show or hide rulers, select Horizontal Ruler and Vertical Ruler.
• To show or hide cross hairs, select Long Crosshairs.
To use the grid
• To enable snap to grid, select Snap To Grid.
• To set the grid’s origin, type new coordinates for the origin in the X and Y Origin boxes.
• To set the grid’s interval, type new values in the X and Y Interval boxes. For example, if the grid is in 1-inch units
and you specify an interval of 10, 10 grid points are displayed per inch.
To set snapping options
• To automatically place objects at locations on the grid, select Snap To Grid.
• To automatically place objects on guidelines you define, select Snap To Guideline.
• To automatically position the edge of an object using another object, select Snap To Object.
• To automatically place the center of an object at the vertical or horizontal center of the page, select Snap To
Guideline.
To use guidelines
• To automatically place objects on guidelines, select Snap To Guideline.
• To add a guideline, starting from the upper-left corner of the Layout Editor, drag the pointer onto the page. To
remove a guideline, select its triangle in the ruler and drag it off the page.
• Alternatively, under Guideline Definitions, to add a horizontal or vertical guideline, click
location. To remove a guideline, select it and click
and enter a numeric
.
• Use the Drawing Aids palette menu to select preset guidelines (for example, to add guidelines for a standard US
Letter or Legal-sized page).
To set other drawing aids
• To set the rulers’ unit of measurement, select a unit from the Units list.
• To set the color of object boundary borders, click Styles, click the Color box, select More Colors, and either choose
a predefined color from a palette or create a custom color by clicking Define Custom Color.
• To set the object boundary border style, click Styles and select the border style for the required object.
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• To set the color of grids or guidelines, click the Color box, select More Colors, and either choose a predefined color
from a palette or create a custom color by clicking Define Custom Color.
To customize the toolbars
You can customize the toolbars to show, hide, dock, or move toolbars, create new toolbars, remove toolbars that are
no longer needed, add frequently-used commands or remove unused commands from a toolbar, or reset to the default
toolbars.
To show, hide, dock, or move a toolbar
• To show or hide a toolbar, right-click a toolbar and select or deselect the toolbar that you want to show or hide.
• To dock a toolbar, drag the toolbar to the top of the Designer window.
• To move a toolbar, drag the toolbar to the new location.
To create a toolbar
1 Select Tools > Customize.
2 In the Toolbars tab, click New.
3 Type a name for the toolbar and click OK.
4 Add commands to the toolbar as required.
To delete a toolbar
1 Select Tools > Customize.
2 In the Toolbars tab, select the toolbar that you want to delete and click Delete.
Note: You can only delete user-created toolbars.
To rename a toolbar
1 Select Tools > Customize.
2 In the Toolbars tab, select the toolbar that you want to rename and click Rename.
3 Rename the toolbar and click OK.
Note: You can only rename user-created toolbars.
To show or hide tool tips
1 Select Tools > Customize.
2 Show or hide toolbar tool tips:
• To show tool tips , select the Show Tool Tips check box.
• To hide tool tips, clear the Show Tool Tips checkbox.
To add or remove a command on a toolbar
1 Select Tools > Customize.
2 In the Commands tab, select the toolbar that you want to edit in the Edit Toolbar list.
Add or remove a button:
• To add a command to a toolbar, select the command that you want to add and then click Add Tool to Toolbar.
Use Move Tool Up and Move Tool Down to position the command in the toolbar.
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• To add a separator after a command in the toolbar, select the command in the toolbar, and then click Add
Separator to Toolbar. Use Move Tool Up and Move Tool Down to position the separator in the toolbar.
• To remove a command or separator from a toolbar, select the command or separator and then click Remove
Tool from Toolbar.
3 Click Close.
To reset toolbar commands to the default
1 Select Tools > Customize.
2 In the Commands tab, select the toolbar that you want to reset in the Edit Toolbar list.
3 Click Reset Toolbar to Default.
Note: You cannot reset user-created toolbars.
To customize the tool tips for objects
You can display tool tips that show the position, the size, and the name of the object as you work on a form design.
• To show or hide the position of tool tips, select Tools > Options > Workspace, select or deselect Display Position
And Size Tool Tips While Editing, and then click OK.
• To show or hide the object tool tips, select Tools > Options > Workspace, select or deselect Display Object Name
Tool Tips While Pointing, and then click OK.
More Help topics
“Layout Editor” on page 10
“Drawing Aids palette” on page 16
“Drawing Aids palette menu” on page 630
“Aligning and sizing objects” on page 342
Managing library palettes
Object Library palette
You can add categories to this palette, rename existing categories, move objects between categories, and remove
categories from this palette. You can also create and add your own objects to the categories. Each category corresponds
to a folder in the file system.
To add a category to the Object Library palette
1 In the Object Library palette menu, select Add Group.
2 Type a name for the category and click OK. Adding a category to the Object Library palette creates a folder in the
file system.
To view the location of the new folder, click the category in the Object Library palette and, in the Object Library
palette menu, select Group Properties. Notice the folder location in the Location box.
To delete a category from the Object Library palette
1 In the category menu, select Remove Group.
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2 Do one of the following tasks:
• To delete a category, select Remove Group and All Its Objects.
• To delete a category and move the objects to another category, select Remove Group and Move Objects to
[category name].
3 Click OK.
To move an object to a different category in the Object Library palette
❖ In the Object Library palette, right-click the object that you want to move and select Move Object To > [category
name].
Only categories that allow objects to be added to it or removed from it are listed.
To customize the view in the Object Library palette
❖ Do one or both of these tasks:
• To change the size of the icons, in the category menu, select View > [icon size].
• To sort the icons, in the category menu, select View > Sorted List.
To set permissions for an Object Library palette category
1 In the category menu, select Group Properties.
2 Do one of the following tasks:
• To allow objects to be added to a category, ensure that Allow Objects To Be Added is selected.
• To allow objects to be removed from a category, ensure that Allow Objects To Be Removed is selected.
• To allow objects to be modified in a category, ensure that Allow Objects To Be Modified is selected.
To add an object to the Object Library palette
1 In the Object Library palette, select the category where you want to store the object.
2 Drag the object into the Object Library palette.
3 In the Add Library Object dialog box, type the name of the object.
4 (Optional) Type a description for the object.
5 Click OK.
If another object of the same name exists in that category, Designer prompts you to confirm whether you want to
replace the existing object.
From the Group Properties dialog box, some categories may have been set up to prevent objects from being added,
removed, or modified. If a category prevents new objects from being added, the objects are added to the first
category that accepts them.
To delete an object from the Object Library palette
1 In the Object Library palette, select the category where the object is stored.
2 Right-click the object and select Remove Object From Library.
Using the Group Properties dialog box, some categories may have been set up to prevent objects from being added,
removed, or modified. You cannot delete an object if the category prevents it.
3 When you are prompted to delete the object, click Yes. The object is removed from the file system.
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To rename an object in the Object Library palette
1 In the Object Library palette, select the category where the object is stored.
2 Right-click the object and select Object Info.
Using the Group Properties dialog box, some categories may have been set up to prevent objects from being added,
removed, or modified. You cannot delete an object if the category prevents it.
3 In the Name box, type a new name.
4 (Optional) In the Description box, type a description.
5 Click OK.
If another object of the same name exists in that category, Designer prompts you to confirm whether you want to
replace the existing object.
To restore default objects in the Object Library palette
You can restore the default objects in the My Favorites, Standard, Barcodes, and Custom categories in Designer.
Important: When you restore objects, all the objects provided with Designer are restored. Designer replaces any missing
objects and overwrites all objects that have the same names as the originals.
❖ Do one or both of these tasks:
• To restore default objects in all categories at once, in the Object Library palette menu, select Restore Default
Objects For All Groups.
• To restore default objects in a single category, select one of the categories: My Favorites, Standard, Custom. or
Barcodes. Then in the category menu, select Restore Default [category name] Objects.
To share an Object Library palette category with other form authors or form developers
You can place the Object Library palette objects in a shared folder or web folder where other form authors or form
developers can access them.
1 Create a shared folder or web folder that other form authors or form developers can access.
2 Create subfolders for each of the categories in the Object Library palette you want to share.
3 Copy the objects from their existing location to the new location.
4 In Designer, select the category that you want to share in the Object Library palette.
5 In the Object Library palette menu, select Group Properties.
6 In the Location box, type or browse to the location of the new category subfolder that you created in step 2.
7 Click OK.
8 Repeat steps 4 to 7 for each of the categories.
To share an Object Library with other form authors or form developers
You can place your Object Library of categories and objects into a shared folder or web folder where other form
authors or developers can access them.
To create a shared library by using an existing library
1 Add and remove categories and objects from your existing library until you create the structure you want to achieve
for the shared library.
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2 For each category, in the Object Library palette menu, select Group Properties and set the appropriate user
permissions.
3 Locate the Objects folder in the directory where Designer is installed, and copy the Objects folder and all of its
subfolders to a shared folder or web folder that form authors or developers can access.
4 Rename the LocalLibrary.xml file located in the Object folder to avoid confusion. For example, rename the file as
SharedLibrary.xml.
5 Add the shared library to Designer by following the procedure “To add a shared library” on page 24.
To create a shared library without using an existing library
1 Create a shared folder or web folder that form authors or developers can access.
2 Create subfolders within the shared folder for each of the categories in the Library that you want to share.
3 Copy the Library objects from their existing location to the new shared location.
To view the current location of objects or categories in the Library, click the category in the Object Library palette
and select Group Properties from the category menu. Notice the folder location in the Location box.
4 Using the form, create a new object library file, where Category_name is the name to appear as a category title in
the Object Library palette, and folder is the location or relative path to the folder that contains the objects for the
category.
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<objectLibraryTabSet>
<tab name="Category_name" directory="folder" permission="adm"/>
<tab name="Category_name" directory="folder" permission="adm"/>
.
.
.
</objectLibraryTabSet>
5 Save the new object library file to the root of your shared folder with an .xml file name extension.
6 Add the shared library to Designer by following the procedure “To add a shared library” on page 24.
To add a shared library
1 In the Object Library palette menu, select Shared Library Location.
2 In the Location box, type the name of or browse to the shared folder that contains the object library file for the
shared library you want to add.
3 Click OK.
Fragment Library palette
You can view the fragments in a fragment library as a list of fragment names or as a detailed view that includes the file
names. You can also view a preview of the selected fragment. A preview of the selected fragment appears at the bottom
of the Fragment Library palette.
Fragment libraries are folders in your file system. To create or delete a fragment library, you simply create or delete a
folder. After you create a fragment library, you can open it in Designer.
To open a fragment library
1 In the Fragment Library palette menu, select Open Fragment Library.
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2 Select the fragment library.
• If you are using the stand-alone version of Designer, select the folder that corresponds to the fragment library.
• If you are using Designer with Workbench, select the LiveCycle application folder that corresponds to the
fragment library.
3 Click OK.
To set the view in the Fragment Library palette
❖ Set the view in the Fragment Library palette menu:
• To view the fragments as a list, select View > List.
• To view the fragments as a detailed list, select View > Details.
To preview the selected fragment
❖ In the Fragment Library palette menu, select Show Preview Pane.
Steps to creating a form design
Basic steps to creating a form design
Here are the basic steps to creating a form design using Designer:
• Plan the form design
• Create the form design
• Save the form design
• Preview and test the form design
• Publish the form design
• Distribute the form
Plan the form design
Keep these considerations in mind when planning a form design:
Data capture requirements Consider the data you hope to gather or distribute and how you will capture and process
it. Will users manually enter all data, or can any data be prepopulated in the form?
Calculations or scripts to associate with the data and where they will be run (client, server, or client and server) Script
will only run on a server if you are deploying forms through Forms and/or Adobe® LiveCycle® Output 11.
Security requirements. Will users require a password for such things as opening, printing, copying text or applying
signatures? See “Setting Security” on page 557, “Using password fields” on page 320, and “Using signature fields” on
page 324.
Determining user needs Your primary design objective should be to satisfy the needs of the people who use your
forms. The clearer your goals, the better the form design.
Create a library of fragments Consider creating fragments for logos, headers, address blocks, and footers that can be
shared among form designs.
• Decide whether you will use the FormCalc or JavaScript language.
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• Examine which security options you will apply to the form.
• Set accessibility standards, if needed.
Considering form usability When planning a form, remember to build usability into the design. Here are a few points
to consider:
• A form should be easy to use. A simple layout with clear, meaningful captions will make the form easier to
understand. Forms can validate user input and supply prompts to assist users who enter data. If Forms is available,
some of the information can be filled in ahead of time through merged data. If you are adept at scripting, you can
also develop scripts to process or route data and forms automatically from the click of a button.
• A form should be accessible to users with disabilities.
See “About accessible forms” on page 543 and “Tabbing order” on page 73.
Create the form design
There are several ways you can create a form design. You can start with a blank form, template, or PDF document. If
you are creating your first form design using Designer, try one of the tutorials or look at one of the sample forms
installed with Designer.
Start with a sample form
If you prefer not to try one of the tutorials, you can start by looking at one of the sample forms installed with Designer.
The sample forms illustrate form design techniques, from simple to complex. Designer includes a selection of complete
samples, each one accompanied by a form design, sample data and/or schema, as well as the final version of the form.
If one of the sample forms suits your requirements, use it as a starting point. For more information about sample
forms, see “Sample Forms” in Sample Form Snippets and Forms.
You can start a form design based on a template and modify the design to suit your requirements. The Template
Manager contains a variety of templates from which to choose.
Considerations when creating form designs
You will need to consider form-specific details when creating form designs. The following table lists items that you
may want to keep a record of as you work on a form design.
Item
Specifications
Page size and orientation (for master page)
Page size (for example, Letter)
Orientation (for example, Portrait)
Logos and graphics
Required file format (for example, TIF)
Form properties
Store title of form with form properties (Yes or No)
Locale setting (for example, Viewer’s system locale)
Default scripting language (for example, JavaScript)
Accessibility
Tool tips required for objects (specify the objects requiring tool tips)
Screen reader precedence (for example, Tool Tip)
Tabbing order
Setting (for example, Western)
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Item
Specifications
Common font and drawing properties
Line thickness (for example, same thickness for all lines)
All captions (same typeface and size)
All data values (same typeface and size)
Object properties
Field borders and background color (Yes or No)
Background color of fillable areas (for example, an RGB value)
Field names (for example, see supplied “Field Name” list)
Form intelligence
Fields that must be filled (identify the fields)
Prompts to specify for required fields (specify the required prompts)
More Help topics
“Creating forms from Workbench” on page 30
“Creating forms based on a template, sample, or existing form” on page 30
“Form design layouts” on page 5
Save the form design
Save your form design as you work.
If you are using Designer with Workbench, the form designs are saved in a LiveCycle application to ensure that they
are available to others who are logged in to the same server. If you are using the stand-alone version of Designer, form
designs are saved using the current name and location.
More Help topics
“Saving forms for Acrobat and Adobe Reader” on page 36
“Working with Data Sources” on page 494
Preview and test the form design
Previewing and testing your form designs ensures that they look and behave the way you intended.
Preview your form design as you work by using the Preview PDF tab. When you preview a form design, Designer
renders your form as a PDF file. See “To preview and test forms in the Preview PDF tab” on page 103.
You can test a form using sample data. Testing the form with sample data ensures that data and fields map and that
repeating subforms appear as expected. You can automatically generate sample data to preview and test your form
instead of creating a sample data file. If your form contains repeating subforms or subform sets, you can specify the
number of times the data will be repeated when you preview the form. See “To preview a form using sample data” on
page 104.
You can also preview how your form will print by generating sample data to print with the form. If the form contains
repeating subforms or subform sets, you can specify the number of times the data will be repeated when you print the
form. See “To print a form with sample data” on page 71.
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More Help topics
“To set preview options for an interactive form” on page 103
“To set preview options for a non-interactive form” on page 103
Publish the form
This feature is available only in the stand-alone version of Designer.
Publishing a form to a shared folder or web folder allows users or applications access to it. If the form design contains
links to fragments, images, or other resources, the links are modified to reflect the new location of the file. Keep in
mind that all the files in the form will be copied into a single folder.
If you are working outside of Workbench and want to publish to the repository, you can set up a web folder on your
file system and map it to the location in the LiveCycle repository.
More Help topics
“Publishing to the LiveCycle repository” on page 37
“To publish a form to a repository” on page 37
Distribute the form
This feature is available only in the stand-alone version of Designer.
If you have Acrobat 8 or later, you can send PDF forms to multiple recipients by using the Acrobat Distribute wizard.
The wizard is available from the File menu in Designer.
More Help topics
“Distributing forms” on page 36
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Chapter 3: Create Form Designs
Create, open, and save
Creating forms
You create a form design by dragging objects from the Object Library onto the Layout Editor. Alternatively, you can
drag objects defined in an XML schema onto the Layout Editor.
The process for creating forms in Designer is different in the stand-alone and Workbench versions of Designer.
Creating forms with the stand-alone version of Designer
When you start Designer, you are prompted to create a new form, create a new form from a template, or open an
existing form. You can also explore the sample forms. When you select the New Form or New From Template option,
the New Form Assistant appears.
The New Form Assistant guides you through a series of steps where you choose the type of form design or template to
create, how people will fill it, and how you will get the information back.
If you prefer, you have the option of making the New Form Assistant unavailable.
If you have Acrobat 8 or later, you can send PDF forms to multiple recipients by using the Acrobat Distribute
wizard.The wizard is available from the File menu in Designer. Sending the form by using the wizard certifies the form
originator's identity to form recipients and encrypts the data that the recipients submit when they return a filled form.
It also adds usage rights to the form so that form fillers can save the form in Adobe Reader.
To create a form design using the New Form Assistant
1 Select File > New. The New Form Assistant appears.
2 In the Getting Started panel, select a method for creating the new form, and then click Next.
3 Follow the on-screen instructions to create a form.
4 Name and save the form.
To create a form design without the New Form Assistant
1 Select File > New. The New Form Assistant appears.
2 Click the Do Not Use Assistant link. The Assistant Options dialog box appears.
3 Set the options for using the New Form Assistant and click OK. The New dialog box appears.
4 In the Standard tab, click an icon to select a page size, and then click OK. An untitled form design is created.
To view the whole page, the actual size of the page, or an area equivalent to the width of the page, click Actual Size
,Fit Page , or Fit Width on the toolbar. The current zoom setting is also displayed in the toolbar.
To start with a blank form
❖ Click the New button
on the toolbar.
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Creating forms from Workbench
In Workbench, use the Form Design perspective to create and manage XDP and PDF forms for a LiveCycle
application. When you create a form, it opens in Designer, where you can lay out the form design and add objects.
Workbench displays a tab with an image of the first page of the form design, but all form editing is done in Designer.
When you create a form design, you can specify a data model, a data submission method, the Acrobat or Adobe Reader
version, and the form type. You can also select Adobe Reader features for the form, such as commenting, digital
signatures, and encryption.
1 Create a form design from either Designer or Workbench:
• In Designer, click File > New.
• In Workbench, select File > New > Form.
2 Follow the onscreen instructions and then click Finish.
Creating forms based on a template, sample, or existing form
You can create forms based on a template, sample, or existing form in both the stand-alone version of Designer and
Designer with Workbench.
1 Open the template, sample, or existing form on which you want to base the form design.
2 Select File > Save As.
3 Browse to the location in which to save the form design.
4 In the File Name box, type a file name for the form design.
Note: If you create a form using a template that was created in a previous version of Designer, you can use the
Compatibility tab (Form Properties dialog box) to update it to version 7.
Using forms as a model for Guides
Note: Guides is deprecated.
You can use Designer PDF or XDP form designs as the model for creating Guides in Workbench. If you have an
existing form guide from an earlier release of LiveCycle, you can open it in Guide Builder and your existing Guide
definition is imported into Guide Builder. For more information, see Guides based on XDP or PDF forms.
Note: You cannot create a Guide based on a form design created by importing a PDF file as artwork.
Creating forms by importing a PDF
You can import a PDF document to use as the basis for creating a new form design. For more information, see
“Importing PDF files” on page 128.
You can create forms by importing a PDF document in both the stand-alone version of Designer and Designer with
Workbench.
If you have PDF forms that were created in Acrobat or another application, you can import them as background
artwork. After you import the PDF forms, you can add objects to make them interactive.
If you are creating a PDF form design, you can select the Acrobat or Adobe Reader target version. With the target
version chosen, you can see when an object is not appropriate for that version.
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More Help topics
“Creating and managing templates” on page 38
“Import documents” on page 127
“About forms” on page 4
“Guidelines for forms” on page 122
Considerations for creating forms for use with Acrobat and Adobe Reader
Keep these considerations in mind when creating forms to be opened and filled in Acrobat or Adobe Reader:
• Consider which version of Acrobat and Adobe Reader people are using when filling the form. Setting the target
version of Adobe Reader and Acrobat in Designer can help you create a form design that is compatible. See
“Selecting the Acrobat and Adobe Reader target version” on page 35.
• Acrobat supports full interactive functionality, including form filling, local saving, digital signatures, review and
markup, database and web service calls, and printing.
• Adobe Reader supports a smaller set of functionalities and provides users with the ability to fill and print forms,
and in some situations, submit them. To extend the functionality of Adobe Reader to match that of Acrobat, you
must set usage rights for the form using Adobe® LiveCycle® Reader® Extensions 10 For more information, see
“Using PDF security options” on page 565.
• Acrobat and Adobe Reader support client-side data exchange processing for interactive PDF forms.
• Server-side data processing, such as dynamic rendering and redisplay of forms at run time, is available through
Forms. For more information see “Designing forms for Forms” on page 581.
More Help topics
“Guidelines for forms” on page 122
“Distributing forms” on page 36
Adding details about the form
You can add descriptive information about a form design or template (for example, file description and author’s name)
in the form design or template. If you want to save the information as metadata with the PDF form, select Enable
Plaintext Metadata in Form Properties > PDF Security tab. When the metadata is saved, it is available to other Adobe
applications, such as Acrobat and search utilities. In Acrobat, the metadata appears on the Description tab of the
Document Properties dialog box.
You can also add custom properties, such as copyright URLs, to a form.
In Acrobat, the metadata appears in the Custom tab of the Document Properties dialog box.
Keep in mind that certain case-sensitive keywords are reserved for property names:
• Title
• CreationDate
• Creator
• Producer
• Subject
• Keywords
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• ModDate
• Trapped
• Author
To add information about a form
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 Enter the information on the Info tab. For a complete list and description of the items on this tab, see “Info (Form
Properties dialog box)” on page 655.
3 Embed the information for other applications to use:
• Click the PDF Security tab.
• In the Permissions area, select Use A Password To Restrict Printing And Editing Of The Document And Its
Security Settings, and then select the required security settings.
To add custom properties
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 In the Custom Property box on the Info tab, click the Add button.
3 Type the name of the property and press Enter.
4 Type the value of the property and press Enter.
5 Repeat steps 4 and 5 for each property you want to add.
6 For a complete list and description of the items in this tab, see “Info (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 655.
7 Embed the information for other applications to use:
• Click the PDF Security tab.
• In the Permissions area, select Use A Password To Restrict Printing And Editing Of The Document And Its
Security Settings, and then select the required security settings.
To remove custom properties
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 In the Custom Property box on the Info tab, select the property, and click the Remove button.
To add document title to the PDF title bar
By default, the PDF output of a document displays the file name in the Adobe Reader or Adobe Acrobat title window.
You can add the document title of static XFA forms to the PDF title bar. If a user opens the PDF, the document title
will display on the title bar of the window.
1 To open the Xml source for a document, click View -> XML Source.
Verify if the following tag is available in the Xml:
<?originalXFAVersion http://www.xfa.org/schema/xfa-template/3.3/ ?>
2 If the tag exists, append DisplayDocTitle:1? to the tag. The resultant tag should be:
<?originalXFAVersion http://www.xfa.org/schema/xfa-template/3.3/ DisplayDocTitle:1?>
If the tag does not exist, add the tag with the DisplayDocTitle:1? append.
<?originalXFAVersion http://www.xfa.org/schema/xfa-template/3.3/ DisplayDocTitle:1?>
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Note: You need to add this tag along with the other processing instructions. in the following parent node:
<template xmlns="http://www.xfa.org/schema/xfa-template/3.6/">
3 Save the document.
To set user permissions on a PDF form
You can set user permissions for accessing, printing, and editing PDF forms output through Designer.
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 In the PDF Security tab, select Use A Password To Restrict Printing And Editing Of The Document And Its Security
Settings, and then select the required security settings.
More Help topics
“Using PDF security options” on page 565
Saving forms
When you save a form, the file format must be compatible with the way the form will be used in the user community.
You can save a form as a PDF file or an XDP file. Each file type has different uses:
Adobe Static PDF Form (*.pdf) Saves forms as static PDF, based on the Acrobat and Adobe Reader target version
specified. Static PDF forms render once and are displayed on the client in the Acrobat or Adobe Reader target version.
They are not rerendered in response to user interaction. The PDF form may have been designed with a flowable layout;
however, when the static PDF form is created, its layout is fixed and the resulting PDF form will not rerender on the
client. Static PDF forms can be interactive or non-interactive.
Adobe Dynamic XML Form (*.pdf) Saves forms as dynamic PDF, based on the Acrobat and Adobe Reader target
version. The form design can contain dynamic elements. Dynamic PDF forms render on the client in Adobe Reader
and, depending on the end-user interactions, can rerender on the client several times. Changes to the appearance of
an object are possible in Adobe Reader because Adobe Reader has enough information to rerender the final output.
For example, objects can change color, pagination can change, and objects can appear or disappear. If the end user
clicks a button that adds a new row to a table, the form is rerendered in Adobe Reader.
Adobe XML Form File (*.xdp) Sets the default file type for new forms to the native XML-based file format created by
Designer. Use this option if you will be using Forms.
Designer Template (*.tds) Saves the basic structure for a form as a template. It can contain components and settings,
such as fonts, page layout, formatting, and scripts. Use it as a starting point for a new form.
When Designer is integrated with Workbench, files are saved in the Workbench folder on your local system:
• If you are using Windows® XP, the Workbench folder is located in \Documents and Settings\<user name>.
• If you are using Windows Vista®, the Workbench folder is located in \Desktop\<user name>.
After you save a form, check in the form and any referenced files in Workbench.
To save a form design
You can save form designs by using their current name and location, or save a copy by using a different name or
location.
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When Designer is integrated with Workbench, form designs are saved in an application in Workbench. Saving form
designs in an application ensures that they are available to others who are logged on to the same server. When you save
a form design in Designer the corresponding image of the form in Workbench is updated. After you save a form, check
in the form and any referenced files, such as fragments or images, in Workbench.
You can save a form design in several formats. PDF forms saved in Designer should only be edited in Designer.
❖ To save a form design, do one of the following actions:
• Select File > Save.
• In the toolbar, click Save
.
Note: If you are using Designer with Workbench, check in the form and any referenced files in Workbench.
To check in a form in Workbench
1 In Designer, in the toolbar, click the Switch To Workbench button.
2 In Workbench, open the Applications view.
3 Navigate to the form you saved, right-click the form and select Check-in.
To save a copy of a form design
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 Click the Save Options tab and set the save options:
• To embed accessibility information within a PDF form file, select Generate Accessibility Information (Tags) For
Acrobat.
• To create a log file of the saved PDF form file, select Generate Log File When Saving. The log file is placed in the
same directory as the saved form.
• To embed the form fonts in the saved PDF form file, select Embed Fonts.
3 Click OK.
4 Select File > Save As.
5 To make a copy of the form design under a different name, browse to the location in which to save the form design.
In the File Name box, type a different filename.
6 To change the file type, from the Save As Type list, select one of the options.
Note: Notice the message above the Save Options area that indicates the Acrobat and AdobeReader target version for
the form. You can change the target version by selecting File > Form Properties > Defaults > Target Version > Choose
Version To Run Form In.
7 Click Save.
Note: Sample form designs and templates are provided. To use them, see the associated readme files. The sample form
designs are installed in the EN\Samples folder of the Designer installation folder. The sample templates are installed
in the Templates folder of the Designer installation folder. Templates can be viewed and managed through the
Template Manager.
More Help topics
“Import documents” on page 127
“Adding details about the form” on page 31
“Selecting the Acrobat and Adobe Reader target version” on page 35
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Opening forms
In addition to opening form designs (XDP), templates (TDS), or PDF forms created and modified using only Designer,
you can open other files of different formats. These formats are described in detail in “Import documents” on page 127.
Note: PDF forms created in a program other than Designer must be imported.
When you open a file, either a form design, template, or a file of another format, Designer attempts to match fonts in
the file with fonts that are available on your computer. If the file contains an unavailable font, Designer displays a
dialog box showing the missing font and a suggested replacement. You can accept the replacement font or change it.
Later, when you save the file, you can indicate whether you want the replacement fonts saved with the file.
If you open a form that was created in a previous version of Designer, you can use the Compatibility tab (Form
Properties dialog box) to update it to the current version.
You can open forms in Designer or in Workbench. To open a form in Workbench, in the Applications view, doubleclick the form. When you open a form from Workbench, the form opens in Designer. In Workbench, a corresponding
tab is displayed with an image of the first page of the form.
If you are using Workbench, you might need to synchronize files, such as images or fragments, from Workbench to
your local system. In Workbench, forms and fragments are managed in the Applications view, and images are
managed in the Resources view. To synchronize a file, right-click the file, and select Synchronize.
1 Select File > Open.
2 Browse to the location or Workbench application where the form design is stored, select the file, and click Open. If
the file contains fonts that are not available on your computer, the Missing Fonts dialog box appears.
3 If necessary, select a font substitution method:
• To accept the suggested replacement fonts, click OK.
• To change the replacement font, click Change Substitute Font. Select a font and font style and then click OK. In
the Missing Fonts dialog box, click OK.
Note: This font substitution is not permanent. Designer must map the unavailable fonts every time the form opens.
To make the font substitution permanent, before saving the file, select File > Form Properties > Save Options and then
selecting Embed Fonts.
Selecting the Acrobat and Adobe Reader target version
You can design a form to run on a specific target version of Acrobat and Adobe Reader. Designer displays warning
messages when you try to use a feature that the selected target version does not support.
When you specify a target version of Acrobat and Adobe Reader, you must ensure that you have the correct version of
Acrobat installed that matches the target version saved; otherwise, you may get an error or warning message when you
click the Preview PDF tab. The target version you select is also displayed at the bottom of the Save As dialog box when
you save a form.
The preview will use the same format as the saved form. You can right-click the Preview PDF tab to see which format
is currently selected. To indicate the format of an unsaved form, you must change the Tools > Options > Document
Handling > Default File Type For New setting.
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 Click the Defaults tab and, in the Choose Version To Run Form In list, select the target version of Acrobat and
Adobe Reader.
3 Click OK.
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More Help topics
“Defaults (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 656
Saving forms for Acrobat and Adobe Reader
When you create forms for Acrobat and Adobe Reader, you must save them as PDF files. PDF files saved from
Designer should only be edited using Designer.
You can select the target version of Adobe Reader or Acrobat that you plan to run the form on. Selecting the target
version allows you to see features that are not supported. See “Selecting the Acrobat and Adobe Reader target version”
on page 35.
1 Select File > Save As.
2 In the File Name box, type the name for the file.
3 In the Save As Type, select the required type.
4 Click OK.
Note: Ensure that you have the version of Acrobat installed that matches the target version saved; otherwise, you may get
an error or warning message when you click the Preview PDF tab.
More Help topics
“Saving forms” on page 33
“Addressing warning messages in the Report palette” on page 107
“Target version warning messages” on page 108
Distributing forms
This feature is available only in the stand-alone version of Designer.
If you have Acrobat 8 or later, you can send PDF forms to multiple recipients by using the Acrobat Distribute wizard.
The wizard is available from the File menu in Designer.
The Acrobat Distribute wizard is designed for form authors who want to distribute forms and collect the form data
locally on their computers. When you select File > Distribute Form, the Distribute Forms wizard opens and walks you
trough a few step-by-step panes to prepare a form for distribution. Sending the form by using the wizard certifies the
form originator's identity to form recipients and encrypts the data that the recipients submit when they return a filled
form. It also adds usage rights to the form so that form fillers can save the form in Adobe Reader. When you close a
form design in Designer, you can choose to distribute the form (if you started the form design process in Acrobat).
To distribute a form using Designer
1 Save the form as a PDF file.
2 To distribute the form, select File> Distribute Form.
Publishing forms
This feature is available only in the stand-alone version of Designer.
You can publish your form designs to a shared or web folder where many users or other applications can access them.
If a form design contains links to external files, the links are modified to reflect the new location of the file. You need
write access to the folders to which you publish. Your network administrator can set up the permissions you require.
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More Help topics
“Saving forms” on page 33
Publishing to the LiveCycle repository
If you are using the stand-alone version of Designer and want to use resources, such as images and fragments, that
reside in the LiveCycle repository, you can set up a web folder on your file system and map it to the repository. When
you publish the form, links to the resources are maintained. You use the Publish to Repository command to copy the
files into the LiveCycle repository.
Alternatively, you can create the form design on your file system. When you complete the form design, you can drag
and drop the folder and any sub-folders into the appropriate folder in the Workbench Resources view.
You need access to LiveCycle to read and write files in the LiveCycle repository.Your network administrator can set
up the permissions your require.
To publish a form to a repository
You can put a copy of a form and its linked files in a shared or web folder where it can be accessed by many users or
other applications. When you publish a form to a repository, changes to file names, file types, and references to external
files (images) occur only in the published copy. If the form contains a link to an external file, when the form and files
are published, the list in the form is modified to reflect the new location of the file.
You can publish the form in PDF or in XDP format.
• When you publish the form in PDF, information such as images and schemas is embedded in the form, and no
external files are copied to the publish folder.
• When you publish the form in XDP format, the links to externally referenced files are modified to be a relative path.
The relative path lets you have one location for images that multiple forms can reference without having to have
multiple copies of the images.
If the externally linked files are not contained in a folder below the shared or web folder, the files are copied to the
publish folder and the links in the XDP file are adjusted to reflect the new absolute path location of the files.
When publishing a form to the LiveCycle repository, all external files are copied to the web folder.
To publish a form to the repository
1 Select File > Publish to Repository.
2 (Optional) To change the file type, select a new file type in the Save As Type list.
3 Click Save.
Before you publish a form to a repository, you can optionally specify additional save options.
To set save options prior to publishing a form:
1 Select File > Form Properties > Save Options and do one or more of the following:
• To embed accessibility information in a PDF form file, select Generate Accessibility Information (Tags) For
Acrobat.
• To create a log file of the saved PDF form file, select Generate Log File When Saving. The log file is placed in the
same directory as the saved form.
• To embed the form fonts in the saved PDF form file, select Embed Fonts.
2 Click OK.
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Creating and managing templates
A template provides the basic structure for the form design and contains predefined file-creation information that
Designer applies to the form design. Templates contain definitions of objects used in a form design as well as the form
design’s page layout. A template can store any properties that you would use in more than one form design, including
these:
• Master page layouts, which influence the format of pages
• Boilerplate objects, including formatted headers and footers
• Embedded images or objects that link to frequently used graphics, such as logos or watermarks
• Any text variables or floating fields that you use as placeholders for data
• Predefined formula equations and script fragments
• File properties and file creation information
• Other properties that facilitate or automate your work
More Help topics
“About forms” on page 4
“Creating forms based on a template, sample, or existing form” on page 30
Creating a template
Creating a template is very much like creating a form design. However, in a template, you design the layout and select
the file settings and preferences that you would typically need in more than one form design. You can optionally
include and define any objects that could be applied to more than one form design. Including layouts and properties
that are common to many form designs saves you time because less work is needed to prepare form designs that are
based on the template.
One of the easiest way to create a template (TDS) file is by using the New Form Assistant. The New Form Assistant
guides you through the steps involved in creating a template, such as previewing and selecting the template you want
to use, entering business contact information, and adding email submit and print buttons. However, if you prefer not
to use the New Form Assistant, you can select Tools > Template Manager to open the Template Manager dialog box
where you can directly select the template you want.
To create a template in the stand-alone version of Designer
1 Open the New Form Assistant by using one of these methods:
• Select File > New.
• In the toolbar, click the Down Arrow next to the New button and select New.
2 In the New Form Assistant, select Based on a Template and click Next.
3 Follow the onscreen instructions to customize the template to suit your needs.
4 Select File > Save As.
5 In the Save As Type list, select Adobe Designer Template (*.tds).
6 Click Save.
To create a template with Designer and Workbench
1 In Designer, select File > New.
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2 Follow the onscreen instructions until the New Form Assistant opens in Designer, and then select Based on a
Template.
3 Follow the onscreen instructions to customize the template to suit your needs.
4 Select File > Save As.
5 In the Save As Type list, select Adobe Designer Template (*.tds).
6 Click Save.
Managing templates
The Template Manager contains a variety of sample templates that are provided with Designer. It can also contain any
templates you create and use with Designer.
Use the Template Manager to do these tasks:
• Preview templates
• Select a default template for creating form designs
• Add, delete, and rename templates, as well as add and remove groups
In the Template Manager, you can also add or delete tabs, move templates between tabs, and determine where in the
file system Designer stores templates. Each tab corresponds to a folder in the file system. By default, template files are
stored in the Designer Templates folder.
By default, templates are stored in the Designer Templates folder (\EN\Templates).
Each time you open Designer, the application copies the template files in the Templates folder to the user profile for
each language. This could be an issue in certain multiuser environments where disk quotas are restricted. To save disk
space, set up a common directory for templates. For further information about setting up a common directory for
templates, see the technical note at http://kb2.adobe.com/cps/524/cpsid_52464.html.
To add a template to the Template Manager
1 Select Tools > Template Manager.
2 Click the tab in which to add the template.
3 In the palette menu, select Add Template.
4 Browse to the appropriate folder, select the template file (TDS) you want to add, and click Open. A copy of the
template file is added to the Template Manager.
To delete a template from the Template Manager
1 Select Tools > Template Manager.
2 Click the tab where the template is stored.
3 Right-click the template and select Delete Template.
4 When you are prompted to delete the template, click Yes. The file is removed from your computer’s file system.
To rename a template in the Template Manager
1 Select Tools > Template Manager.
2 Click the tab where the template is stored.
3 Right-click the template and select Rename Template.
4 Type a different name for the template, and press Enter.
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To specify a default template in the Template Manager
1 Select Tools > Template Manager.
2 Click the tab where the template is stored.
3 Select the template.
4 Click Set Selected as Default.
To restore the default templates in the Template Manager
You can restore the default templates that are available in the Blank tab and the Common Forms tab in the Template
Manager dialog box.
Important: When you restore templates, all of the templates that were provided with Designer in the Blank tab and the
Forms tab are restored. Designer replaces any missing templates and overwrites all templates with the same names as the
originals.
1 Select Tools > Template Manager.
2 Click either the Blank tab or the Forms tab.
3 In the palette menu, select Restore Default Templates.
To add a tab to the Template Manager
When you add a tab to the Template Manager, a subfolder with the same name is created in the Designer Templates
folder.
1 Select Tools > Template Manager.
2 In the palette menu, select Add Category.
3 Type a name for the tab and click OK.
To delete a tab from the Template Manager
When you delete a tab from the Template Manager the corresponding folder is removed from the Designer Templates
folder.
1 Select Tools > Template Manager.
2 Click the tab you want to delete.
3 In the palette menu, select Remove Category.
4 When you are prompted to remove the tab, do one of these actions:
• To delete the selected tab and its associated category folder and templates, select Remove The Category And
Delete All Contained Templates.
• To move the templates to a different tab before deleting the selected tab and its associated category folder, select
Remove The Category And Move The Contained Templates To The Following Category: [tab name], and then
click the tab where you want to move the templates.
5 Click OK.
To move a template to a different tab in the Template Manager
1 Select Tools > Template Manager.
2 Click the tab you want, right-click the template that you want to move, and select Move Template To > [tab name].
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To determine where the template files are stored
1 Select Tools > Template Manager.
2 Click the tab you want.
3 In the palette menu, select Category Properties. The Template Category Properties box displays the location of the
templates that are currently listed in the selected tab.
To customize the view in the Template Manager
1 Select Tools > Template Manager.
2 Click the tab you want.
3 In the palette menu, select View and perform one of these actions:
• To display the template names as icons, select Large Icons.
• To display the template names in a list, select List.
Importing a template
You can import any template file (TDS) into Designer and copy the template into the Template Manager, create a new
form based on the template, or edit the template.
When you import a template, a copy is automatically added either to the templates folder that is indicated in the form’s
XML source code or to the folder named Other, if no location is specified. The imported template appears in the
Template Manager, listed in the corresponding tab. If a template with the same name already exists in the tab, Designer
displays a message prompting you to replace the existing file.
1 Open the template file you want to import by using one of these methods:
• Select File > Open, browse to the folder you want, select the template file (TDS), and click Open.
• In Windows Explorer, double-click the template file (TDS).
• Drag the template file (TDS) from Windows Explorer into the Designer workspace.
2 In the Template Options dialog box, select one of these options:
• To add the template to the Template Manager, select Copy This Template Into The Template Manager.
• To create a PDF form based on the template, select Create A New Form Based On This Template.
• To open the template in Designer for editing, select Edit This Template.
3 Click OK.
Creating and customizing a form based on a template
Template files (TDS) sometimes contain customizable text or images within field captions, text objects, and static
images. When you create a form based on a template that contains fields with customizable text or images, the New
Form Assistant opens enabling you to change the information displayed in each field to suit your own needs. For
example, the sample templates available in the Template Manager contain customizable text and images, which you
can replace with your company’s name, address, telephone number, and logo.
The information that you enter for each field is saved and reused to repopulate the same fields in the New Form
Assistant the next time you open the template.
To create a form based on a template in the stand-alone version of Designer
1 Open the New Form Assistant by using one of these methods:
• Select File > New.
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• In the toolbar, click the down arrow next to the New button and select New.
2 In the New Form Assistant, select Based on a Template and click Next.
3 Follow the onscreen instructions to customize the new form to suit your needs.
4 Name and save the file.
To create a form based on a template with Designer and Workbench
1 In Designer, select File > New.
2 Follow the onscreen instructions until the New Form Assistant opens in Designer, and then select Based on a
Template and click Next.
3 Follow the onscreen instructions to customize the new form to suit your needs.
4 Name and save the file.
Page layout
Setting up pages
Pages represent the canvas on which you build your form design. To lay out a form design, you drag objects, such as
Text Fields, from the Object Library palette onto the page. Use the Design View tab to view, add, delete, and edit pages.
To show or hide a page
You can show or hide pages in a form design by using different methods:
• To show the Design View tab if another tab is active, in the Layout Editor, click the Design View tab.
• To show or hide the Design View tab, select View > Design View.
To add a page
You can add a page by using the Insert menu or Hierarchy palette.
If the Hierarchy palette is not visible, select Window > Hierarchy.
• To add a page, click the Design View tab and select Insert > New Page.
• To add a page in the Hierarchy palette, right-click the required page-level subform and select New Page.
To delete a page
You can delete a page by using the Insert menu or Hierarchy palette.
if the Hierarchy palette is not visible, select Window > Hierarchy.
• To delete a page, click anywhere on the page and select Edit > Delete Page.
• To delete a page in the Hierarchy palette, right-click the page-level subform that corresponds to the page and select
Delete.
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To move between multiple pages
If your form design has multiple pages, you can easily move from one to another by using the Layout Editor or
Hierarchy palette.
If the Hierarchy palette is not visible, select Window > Hierarchy.
• In the Design View tab, scroll up or down to the required page.
• In the Hierarchy palette, click the required page.
To reorder pages
If you need to change the order of the pages, you can use the Hierarchy palette.
If the Hierarchy palette is not visible, select Window > Hierarchy.
1 In the Hierarchy palette, select the subform that corresponds to the page you want to move.
2 Drag the subform to a new position below the “form1” node.
3 Repeat steps 1 and 2 until all the pages are in the order you prefer.
To rename a page
You can change the name of a page by using the Hierarchy palette or the Binding tab of the Object palette. The default
name of a page node in the Hierarchy palette is “(untitled Subform) (page 1)”, “(untitled Subform) (page 2)”, and so on.
If the Hierarchy palette is not visible, select Window > Hierarchy.
• In the Hierarchy palette, right-click the page node and select Rename Object. Type a new name for the page.
• With the Design View tab selected, click anywhere on the page, click the Object palette and, in the Binding tab, type
a new name for the page.
Using master pages
Master pages allow you add objects that will appear in the same position throughout the form design. They are useful
when you want to adjust the size and position of content areas, add page numbering, and create single- or double-sided
features (such as headers and footers).
A typical form design that has two pages with different dimensions contains at least two master pages, one for each
page. If a form design has multiple pages that have the same dimensions and orientation, the form design needs only
a single master page.
You can start designing pages immediately with the default master page. If your design is more complex (for example,
you need to create design components such as page headers and footers), it is best to work with those components
directly on the master page.
You can place objects anywhere on a master page. Each master page can have a unique design, which you can apply to
one or more pages. Master pages save you the effort of creating the same layout directly on individual pages, one page
at a time. If several pages that have the same layout also need the same set of objects (for example, a standard footer),
placing and maintaining one set of those objects on a master page is more efficient than duplicating the objects on
every page. When the objects are placed on a master page, all associated pages display those objects in the background.
Changing the master page after automatically updates all associated pages.
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Use the Pagination tab to indicate whether the master page is used in odd (front), even (back), or blank pages and its
placement in the page set. You can also choose whether pages that are rendered according to the selected master page
should contribute to the total page count.
More Help topics
“Headers, footers, and other background items” on page 48
“Applying master pages to forms whose number of pages vary” on page 50
“Master page properties in the Master Page tab” on page 389
“Master page properties in the Pagination tab” on page 390
To use master pages with repeating subforms
You can assign a different master page for any pages that occur after the first page in a form if you have a repeating
subform that does not fit on one page but requires subsequent pages. For example, the subform may begin in the
middle of the first page in the form. To have the subform begin at the top of the pages that occur after the first page,
you create a different master page.
When to add a master page
Normally, you add additional master pages when your require two or more different page sizes, a different page
orientation, or different print mode settings. Form filling is not supported on Master page fields. It is recommended
to use master page to show only static and read-only content. Use normal pages for data capture fields.
If a form has a fixed layout, the number of pages in the form is also fixed. If the form contains subforms that adjust to
accommodate the amount of data being merged, Forms adds additional pages automatically if the amount of data to
be merged cannot completely fit on a single page.
Note: When you create a form design for a form that has a fixed layout that accepts merged data, you must ensure that
filled objects do not expand to the point that they overrun the content area. Otherwise, unwanted pages may get added
to the form automatically when the form is rendered.
A form design may contain more than one content area. For example, a master page may have two content areas to
provide a two-column layout, and two master pages of this type (one odd and one even) may be needed to support
double-sided pages.
To show or hide a master page
You can show or hide a master page by using different methods.
• To show the Master Pages tab if another tab is active, in the Layout Editor, click the Master Pages tab.
• To show or hide the Master Pages tab, select View > Master Pages.
To add a master page
You can add a master page by using the Insert menu or Hierarchy palette.
If the Hierarchy palette is not visible, select Window > Hierarchy.
• To add a master page, click the Master Pages tab and select Insert > New Master Page.
• To add a master page in the Hierarchy palette, right-click the Master Pages node and select New Master Page.
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To delete a master page
You can delete a master page by using the Edit menu or Hierarchy palette.
If the Hierarchy palette is not visible, select Window > Hierarchy.
• To delete a master page, click the Master Pages tab, select the content area that corresponds to that master page and
select Edit > Delete Master Page.
• To delete a master page in the Hierarchy palette, right-click the master page and select Delete.
To move between multiple master pages
If your form design has multiple master pages, you can easily move from one to another by using the Layout Editor or
Hierarchy palette.
If the Hierarchy palette is not visible, select Window > Hierarchy.
• In the Master Pages tab, scroll up or down to the required page.
• In the Hierarchy palette, click the required master page.
To reorder master pages
If you need to change the order of the master pages in a form design, you can use the Hierarchy palette.
If the Hierarchy palette is not visible, select Window > Hierarchy.
1 In the Hierarchy palette, drag the master page to a new position below the Master Pages node.
2 Repeat step 1 until all of the master pages are in the order you prefer.
To rename a master page
You can change the name of a master page by using the Hierarchy palette or the Master Page tab of the Object palette.
If the Hierarchy palette is not visible, select Window > Hierarchy.
• In the Hierarchy palette, right-click the master page, select Rename Object, and type a new name for the master
page.
• With the Master Pages tab selected, click anywhere on the master page, select the Object palette and, in the Master
Page tab, type a new name for the master page.
To add page numbering
In the Master Pages tab, you can add an object that displays the current page and total page count of the form, for
example, Page 1 of 30.
1 In the Object Library palette, click the Custom tab category.
2 Click the Page n of m object, and then drag it onto the form design.
To specify the size of a master page
In the Master Pages tab, you can view changes to a form’s basic page layout, including the page size. When you select
a master page in the Hierarchy palette, you can change its basic page layout properties in the Master Page tab of the
Object palette.
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Content areas define the region in which objects can be placed on the pages of a form. If you are creating a form that
contains subforms set to flow content, it is best to define the size and position of all content areas before you add other
objects to the master page.
1 In the Hierarchy palette, under the Master Pages node, select the master page you want to resize.
2 In the Object palette, select a page size from the Paper Type list.
3 If you selected the Custom type, type the page dimensions in the Height and Width boxes.
To specify the orientation of a master page
In the Master Pages tab, you can view changes to a form’s basic page layout, including the orientation. When you select
a master page in the Hierarchy palette, you can change its basic page layout properties in the Master Page tab of the
Object palette.
1 In the Hierarchy palette, under the Master Pages node, select the master page you want to orient.
2 In the Object palette, select Portrait or Landscape.
Note: Set the page orientation explicitly as portrait or landscape for the Custom Paper Type. If the form width is
greater than the form height, the orientation does not change to landscape automatically in when Custom Paper Type
is selected.
Specifying white space around the edges of a form
In a traditional printed document, margin refers to an area around the outside edges of the page where no printing
occurs. In interactive forms, the term margin refers only to the buffer of white space around the inside edges of an
object’s border.
To increase the amount of white space around the outside edges of a form, you must reduce the size of the content area
on the master page. By default, the border of the content area is 0.25 inches from the edges of the form. To create extra
white space in which to place a header or footer or to make adjustments to support printer limitations, you must make
the default content area smaller.
The area bounded by the content area determines where objects can be placed on the pages of a form. The default
subform on a page is the same size as the default content area on a master page, and the margin settings of the default
subform are set to 0 inches. Changing the margin settings of the default subform on a page also influences where
objects are positioned. Increasing the subform’s margin settings decreases the area where the subform’s objects may
be rendered.
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A. Objects can be placed on pages inside the area bounded by a content area. The border represents the edge of the content area. B. This area
external to the content area represents white space on the page.
All of the objects that you place on a master page are displayed on each associated page, regardless of whether you place
those objects inside or outside the content area. If you are setting up a watermark, you place the objects that make up
the watermark inside the content area.
If you are designing a form that contains subforms that flow content, and you do not want the objects on the master
page to interfere with objects that are placed on pages, you must position the master page objects outside the content
area; that is, somewhere on the white space that you create on the master page. If you place objects inside the content
area, other objects may be placed on top of the master page objects when the form is rendered.
More Help topics
“Using content areas” on page 294
“About subforms” on page 225
“Copying, moving, and resizing content areas” on page 296
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Headers, footers, and other background items
If most of the pages in your form design require a certain amount of standardized, fixed content, you can place that
content on master pages to provide a consistent background and make editing easier. For example, you can arrange
text, images, and geometric shapes on a master page to have them appear in the same location on multiple pages.
If you create headers and footers and arrange other background items on the master page, follow these general
guidelines:
• If you are creating a form that contains subforms set to flow content, it is best to define the size and position of all
content areas before you add additional objects to the master page.
• Objects can be placed anywhere on a master page, inside or outside the content area. As a general rule, do not place
objects inside the content area unless you intend to have other objects placed on top of the master page objects when
the form is rendered. If you are setting up a watermark, place it inside the content area.
• You will need text objects to hold read-only text, image or image field objects to position images (such as a logo),
and you may consider adding geometric objects such as circles, lines, or rectangles to improve the appearance of
the form design.
• All of the objects on a master page are displayed as background objects on pages when the form is rendered.
More Help topics
“Copying, moving, and resizing content areas” on page 296
Assigning additional master pages to complex form designs
Master pages provide the underlying format and background for pages. All new form designs are created with a default
master page, which is applied to the first page. Additional pages are formatted according to the layout of the default
master page unless you create a different master page to use.
A form design can contain any number of master pages, each having a unique layout. If some of the pages need
different layouts or boilerplate objects, you can create a master page for each unique layout.
To assign a master page to a specific page
1 Select the subform by using one of these methods:
• In the Design View tab, select the default subform on the page.
• In the Hierarchy palette, select the subform that corresponds to the page.
2 In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab and, in the Place list, select On Page > [page], where [page] is the name
of the master page you want use.
Example of assigning a second master page to a form design
The following example provides steps for assigning a second master page to a page in an interactive form design or a
form design that has a fixed layout.
This form design contains two pages and two master pages. The first master page has a portrait orientation and the
second master page has a landscape orientation.
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A. Page 1 B. Page 2
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A. Master page 1:Portrait B. Master page 2:Landscape
1 Click the Design View tab.
2 Select the subform on page 2.
3 In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab and, in the Place list, select On Page > [page], where [page] is the name
of master page 2.
Page 2 inherits the layout of master page 2 and now has a landscape layout.
Applying master pages to forms whose number of pages vary
Forms containing subforms that are set to flow content have a varying number of pages. When the form is rendered,
objects are placed inside content areas and, if the data fills the content area, a page break is automatically inserted. By
default, all of the pages inherit the format of the default master page.
When more than one master page is available, each one can influence how pages are formatted. In this case, the layout
of a master page is applied when the subform that it is associated with is rendered. That is, if the subform is rendered
on page 2 of the form, the format of the assigned master page is applied to page 2.
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Two options are available for applying master pages to forms whose number of pages vary. The nature of the type of
form should dictate which of these options are used.
First, you can limit the number of times a master page is used in a form by setting minimum and maximum pageoccurrence settings. For example, the first master page needs a minimum and maximum page-occurrence setting of
one to indicate that it always occurs only once. For master pages, the default minimum count is 0 and the maximum
count is -1. For the second master page, the layout can be rendered on a page an infinite number of times.
Alternatively, you can define the placement of the master pages in the page set, such as in the first printed page, the
last printed page, or the printed pages that occur in between. For example, a pay statement has company and
employee-specific information on the first page. Subsequent pages show very little company or employee information
and a significant amount of time card information. You can define two master pages. The first master page will have
the company logo and contact information first, outside the content area. A small content area will follow to receive
employee-specific information. The second master page will have a larger content area, possibly covering the whole
page, to receive time card information.
By default, all form designs are created with the option of applying master pages by setting minimum and maximum
occurrence values. Although different, the result of the rendered page using either option is the same. However, if the
form is intended for double-sided printing, use the placement options.
Keep in mind that if you define the placement of the master pages in a form design and then you switch to setting pageoccurrence values, you may need to make some changes to the form before it will behave as expected. Also, defining
the placement of master pages is recommended only for form designs saved as Acrobat 8 (Static) PDF forms or for
form designs intended for printing, including PCL and Postscript.
To use the first master page one time only
You can set minimum and maximum page-occurrence values to use the first master page one time only, or you can
specify the master page’s placement as the first page in the page set.
By default, all form designs are created with the option of applying master pages by setting minimum and maximum
occurrence values. Although different, the result of the rendered page using either option is the same. However, if the
form is intended for double-sided printing, use the placement options.
Keep in mind that if you define the placement of the master pages in a form design and then you switch to setting pageoccurrence values, you may have to make some changes to the form before it will behave as expected. Also, defining
the placement of master pages is recommended only for form designs saved as Acrobat 8 (Static) PDF forms or for
form designs intended for printing, including PCL and Postscript.
To use the first master page one time only by specifying minimum and maximum page-occurrence values
1 In the Hierarchy tab, click the first master page, Page1.
2 Click the Object palette and do the following tasks:
• Select Restrict Page Occurrence.
• Select Max and then type 1 in the corresponding box.
3 Save the form design.
To use the first master page one time only by specifying the master page’s placement in the page set
1 In the Hierarchy tab, click the first master page, Page1.
2 In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab
3 Select First Page (in Page Set) in the Placement list.
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4 Save the form design.
Controlling the order and visibility of pages
Page sets allow you to control the order and visibility of pages in the form design. Form designs contain at least one
page set.
More Help topics
“Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362
“Setting up pages” on page 42
“Page set properties in the Page Set tab” on page 390
“Using page sets to control single-sided and double-sided printing in a form” on page 69
“Specifying page placement and printing options in existing form designs” on page 62
“To specify the master page placement in a page set” on page 64
To move between multiple page sets
❖ In the Hierarchy palette, click the page set.
If the Hierarchy palette is not visible, select Window > Hierarchy.
To add or delete a page set
• To add a page set, in the Hierarchy palette, right-click the Master Pages node and select Insert Page Set.
• To delete a page set, in the Hierarchy palette, right-click the page set and select Delete.
To reorder page sets
1 In the Hierarchy palette, drag the page set to a new position below the Master Pages node.
2 Repeat step 1 until all of the page sets are in the order you want.
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To rename a page set
1 In the Hierarchy palette, right-click the page set and select Rename Object.
2 Type a new name for the page set.
Note: You can also rename the selected page set in the Page Set tab of the Object palette.
To manage page sets by controlling the number of occurrences of each page
1 In the Hierarchy palette, select the page set.
2 In the Object palette, select Page Occurrence from the Printing list. Designer notifies you that if you previously
selected Print on Front Side Only or Print on Both Sides and are now switching back to the Page Occurrence option,
you may need to make changes to the form before it will behave as expected. Click Yes to continue.
Setting page break controls
Designer provides ways to control the page breaks that are inserted when a form that has a flowable layout expands
beyond the bottom edge of a rendered page:
Widow and Orphan Control Lets you prevent a single line of text from being separated from the rest of a paragraph
when a page break is introduced. A widow is the last line of a paragraph that appears by itself at the top of the next page.
An orphan is the first line of a paragraph that appears by itself at the bottom of a page.
Keep With Next Lets you keep a text object or text field object with the next object in the document when a page break
is introduced.
Allow Page Breaks Within Content Allows page breaks within the content of a text object or text field object.
When both the Keep with Next and Allow Page Breaks Within Content options are selected, the Allow Page Breaks
Within Content option is considered first followed by the Keep with Next option.
The Widow and Orphan, Keep With Next, and Allow Page Breaks Within Content options are not available for objects
on a master page or in artwork.
You can set the default page break options for new forms, page break options for an individual form, and page break
options for selected objects by using the various options in the Form Properties dialog box, Options dialog box, and
Object palette.
To control widow and orphan lines for new forms
Use the Formatting page in the Options dialog box to control widow and orphan lines for new forms. The widow and
orphan functionality can prevent a single line of text in all text and text field objects in the form from being separated
from the rest of a paragraph when page breaks are introduced. The widow and orphan control ensures that a minimum
of two lines from the paragraph are kept together.
To control widow and orphan lines for new forms:
1 Select Tools > Options.
2 Click Formatting and select Widow and Orphan Control.
3 Click OK.
To control widow and orphan lines for a form
Use the Formatting tab in the Form Properties dialog box to control window and orphan lines in all text and text field
objects for individual forms.
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The default setting that initially appears in the Form Properties dialog box is inherited from the Options dialog box on
the Formatting page. The default setting automatically applies to all new forms. If you change the default setting in the
Form Properties dialog box, the new setting overrides the setting in the Options dialog box for the current form. The
Widow and Orphan Control option in the Options dialog box does not change.
Note: To modify widow and orphan lines for new forms, use the Options dialog box. (See “To control widow and orphan
lines for new forms” on page 53.)
To control widow and orphan lines for an individual form:
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 Click the Formatting tab and select Widow and Orphan Control.
3 Click OK.
To remove widow and orphan control from a form
You can remove widow and orphan control from the text and text field objects.
To remove widow and orphan control from a form:
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 Click the Formatting tab and deselect Widow and Orphan Control.
3 Click OK.
More Help topics
“To allow page breaks within a text object” on page 329
“To keep a text object with the next object in the form” on page 329
“Allowing page breaks within a text field” on page 331
“To keep a text field with the next object in the form” on page 331
“Formatting (Options dialog box)” on page 674
“Formatting (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 657
Styles
You can create and manage style sheets and styles to provide consistent formatting within a single form or across
multiple forms. For example, you can control the look of caption and field value text, the appearance of object borders
and background colors, as well as the size and style of radio buttons and check box objects.
You use the Style Catalog to manage styles sheets, and to edit and apply styles to objects in a form design. The Style
Catalog lists the various style sheets available with a form and the styles included with each style sheet. The Style
Catalog organizes the style sheets into different panels, one for each style sheet. The first panel is for the internal style
sheet, which is embedded within the form. Below the internal style sheet panel are panels for each external style sheet
(Designer Style Sheet.xfs) that you add to the Style Catalog. Each panel bar shows the name of the style sheet. If you
hover the mouse over the panel bar, the location of the style sheet is displayed in a tooltip. Menus are also available on
each panel bar and a context menu is available with each listed style. Additional commands are available on the Style
Catalog menu.
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An internal style sheet is automatically associated with each new form you create. The internal style sheet is useful
when you are creating a single form and you want the style sheet and styles embedded in the form for easy editing.
However, if you are creating more than one form design, you can create multiple external style sheets in Designer, and
add them to any number of form designs.
You can extract the styles from the internal style sheet to a new external style sheet for use in other forms. Alternatively,
you can add the styles in various external style sheets to the internal style sheet by embedding the external style sheets
within the form design.
Also, using options in the Form Properties and Options dialog boxes, you can specify default fonts for captions and
values in new or existing forms to quickly change the fonts for all form objects.
To sort the style sheets in the Style Catalog
The Style Catalog organizes style sheets into different panels, one for each style sheet. The first panel is for the internal
style sheet. Below the internal style sheet panel are panels for each Designer Style Sheet file (XFS) file that you add to
the Style Catalog.
By default, Designer arranges the style sheets in the order they are added to the Style Catalog. You can resort the
external style sheet files list in the Style Catalog by name or by type of style sheet.
❖ On the Style Catalog palette menu, point to Sort, and then perform one of the following actions:
• To sort the list of style sheets by name, click Name.
• To sort the list of style sheets by type, click Type.
• To unsort the list of style sheets, click Unsort.
To select a default style sheet for new forms
You can select an Designer Style Sheet (XFS) file for ne w forms. When you create a new form, the selected XFS file
appears in the Style Catalog ready for use.
1 Click Tools > Options.
2 Select the Formatting panel.
3 Select Use Style Sheet.
4 Click the browse button, and select the Designer Style Sheet (XFS) file to use.
To add a style sheet to a form
You can add one or more Designer Style Sheet (XFS) files to a form. After you add a new style sheet, the Style Catalog
displays a new panel listing the styles that are available for use in the form.
You can add the styles in the XFS files listed in the Styles catalog to the internal style sheet, by embedding the styles in
the form. See “To embed a style sheet” on page 56.
You can hover the mouse over the panel toggle bar, to display the location of the style sheet.
1 Select Windows > Style Catalog.
2 On the Style Catalog palette menu, click Add style sheet.
3 In the Open dialog box, navigate to and select the Designer Style Sheet (XFS) file to use.
4 Click Open.
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To create a new style sheet
When you create a new style sheet, Designer opens a blank Designer Style Sheet (XFS) file in which to create new styles.
Designer displays style sheets using a different background color than forms to distinguish them. In the Hierarchy
palette, the top-level subform is named Style sheet.
1 Click the Style Catalog menu, and select New Style Sheet.
2 Name and save the style sheet file.
To embed a style sheet
You can embed the styles from any number of Designer Style Sheet file (XFS) files within a form design, for ease of
editing.
When you select the Embed Style Sheets command, Designer adds the styles from all of the external style sheet panels
in the Style Catalog to the internal style sheet panel. Any references from form objects or default styles are reset to the
new internal styles and the references to the external style sheets are removed from the form.
The Embed Style Sheets command is available when the Style Catalog contains one or more external style sheets.
1
Click the Style Catalog menu.
2 Select Embed Style Sheets.
To extract styles to a new style sheet
You can extract the styles from the internal style sheet to a new Designer Style Sheet file (XFS). You can also replace
the internal style sheet with a reference to the new external style sheet, when needed.
1 Click the menu on the Internal style sheet panel.
2 Select Extract Styles To A New Style Sheet.
3 In the File Name box, enter a name for the new style sheet file.
4 (Optional) Select Replace Internal Style Sheet With Reference To The New External Style Sheet.
5 Click Save.
To remove a style sheet
You can remove an external Designer Style Sheet file (XFS) from the Style Catalog at any time.
The Style Catalog organizes the style sheets that are available with a form into different panels. The first panel is for
the internal style sheet. You cannot remove the internal style sheet. Below the internal style sheet panel are panels for
each Designer Style Sheet file (XFS) referenced by the form.
1 Click the menu on the panel of the external style sheet you want to remove.
2 Click Remove Style Sheet.
To replace a style sheet
You can replace any Designer Style Sheet file (XFS) in the Style Catalog at any time. The Style Catalog organizes the
style sheets that are available with a form into different panels. The first panel is for the internal style sheet. You cannot
replace the internal style sheet. Below the internal style sheet panel are panels for each Designer Style Sheet file (XFS)
referenced by the form.
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Note: If the style names are the same in two different style sheets, when you replace the one style sheet with the other, the
objects in the form are automatically updated with the style properties from the replacement style sheet.
1 Click the menu on the panel of the external style sheet you want to replace.
2 Click Replace Style Sheet.
To edit a style sheet file
You can edit the styles in an external Designer Style Sheet file (XFS). You do not need to add a style sheet file to the
Style Catalog to edit it.
1 To open a style sheet for editing, do one of the following actions:
• If the style sheet file is in the Style Catalog, click the menu on the style sheet panel you want to edit, and then
click Edit Style Sheet. Designer opens the style sheet file.
• If the style sheet is not in the Style Catalog, click File > Open to select and open the file in Designer. Designer
adds the styles to the Internal Style Sheet panel.
2 In the Style Catalog, right-click the style to edit, and select Edit Style.
3 In the Style Editor, change formatting options as needed.
4 Save a close the style sheet file.
Create a new style from an object
You can create a new style from an object in an external Designer Style Sheet file (XFS).
1 Click the menu on the external style sheet panel you want to use to create the new style.
2 Select Edit Style Sheet.
3 On the Design View tab, right-click the object to use to create the new style, point to Styles, and then click Create
New Style From Object.
4 In the Style Editor, name the style and select formatting options as needed.
5 Click OK.
6 Save changes and close style sheet file.
Creating a new style for an object type
You can create new styles in the internal style sheet of a form design, or in an external Designer Style Sheet file (XFS)
file.
When creating a style for an object with caption, value, or border formatting, you can select an existing style of the
same object type or of the Common Style type from which the new style can inherit the properties specified in the style
sheet.
After you create the new style, it appears in the Style Catalog.
To create a new style in the internal style sheet
You create a new style for the internal style sheet within the current form design.
1 Click the menu on the internal style sheet panel.
2 Select Create New Style. The Style Editor dialog box is displayed.
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3 Select the General panel.
4 In the Style Name box, type a name for the style.
5 In the Type list, select the object type you want to create a style for.
6 Select formatting options as needed, and then click OK.
7 Save changes and close the style sheet file.
To create a new style in an external style sheet file
To create a new style in an external Designer Style Sheet file (XFS), open the style sheet file in Designer and create styles
in that file.
1 Click the menu on the external style sheet panel to which you want to add a style.
2 Select Edit Style Sheet.
3 In the Style Catalog, right-click the style to edit, and select Create New Style. The Style Editor dialog box is
displayed.
4 Select the General panel.
5 In the Style Name box, type a name for the style.
6 In the Type list, select the object type you want to create a style for.
7 Select formatting options as needed, and then click OK.
8 Save changes and close the style sheet file.
Creating a common style
A common style is a generic style type, which can be referenced by any object type. As a result, you can define a single
common style with properties, which can be inherited by all other object types. By default, a common style defines
caption text formatting, value text formatting, and border properties. You can choose to define only text formatting
properties or only border properties.
To create a common style in the internal style sheet
You create a common style for the internal style sheet within the current form design.
1 Click the menu on the internal style sheet panel.
2 Select Create New Style. The Style Editor dialog box is displayed.
3 Select the General panel.
4 In the Style Name box, type a name for the style.
5 In the Type list, select Common Style.
6 Select formatting options as needed, and then click OK.
7 Save changes and close style sheet file.
To create a common style in an external style sheet file
To create a common style in an external Designer Style Sheet file (XFS), open the style sheet file in Designer and create
the common style in that file.
1 Click the menu on the external style sheet panel in which you want to create a common style.
2 Select Edit Style Sheet.
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3 Click the menu on the internal style sheet panel.
4 Select Create New Style. The Style Editor dialog box is displayed.
5 Select the General panel.
6 In the Style Name box, type a name for the style.
7 In the Type list, select Common Style.
8 Select formatting options as needed, and then click OK.
9 Save changes and close the style sheet file.
To apply a style to an object
The Style Catalog lists the styles that are available with each style sheet. Each style in a style sheet is associated with a
particular object type. You can apply a style to the same object type. For example, you can apply a Text Field style to a
Text Field object. If the style you want to apply is not compatible with the selected object, the Apply Style command is
unavailable.
You can also create common styles with properties that you can apply to all object types. See “Creating a common
style” on page 58.
1 On the Design View tab, select the object type you want to apply a style to.
2 In the Style Catalog, right click the style you want to apply.
3 Click Apply Style.
To remove a style from an object
You can remove a style directly from an object on the Design View tab.
1 On the Design View tab, select the object you want to remove a style from.
2 Right-click, and select Styles > Remove Style.
Editing a style
You can edit styles in the internal style sheet of a form design, or in an external style sheet that references an Designer
Style Sheet file (XFS). You edit the styles in an internal style sheet in the current form design. You edit the styles in an
external style sheet, by opening the XFS style sheet in Designer. When you edit a style sheet file in Designer, the page
background (in the Design view) is colored to differentiate it from the white background used for form designs.
With the internal style sheet, changes are immediately applied to all objects that use that style. With external style sheet
files, the chances are applies when you save the form.
To edit a style in the internal style sheet
1 In the Style Catalog, expand the internal style sheet panel.
2 Right click the style you want to edit, and select Edit Style.
3 In the Style Editor, select options as needed, and click OK.
4 Saves the changes.
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To edit a style in an external style sheet file
1 To open the style sheet file for editing, do one of the following actions:
• If the style sheet file is in the Style Catalog, click the menu on the external style sheet panel to edit, and then click
Edit Style Sheet. Designer opens the style sheet file.
• If the style sheet is not in the Style Catalog, click File > Open to select and open the style sheet file in Designer.
2 In the Internal Style Sheet panel, right click the style you want to edit, and click Edit Style.
3 In the Style Editor, select formatting options as needed, and click OK.
4 Save the changes.
Deleting a style form a style sheet
You can delete a style from the internal style sheet of a form design, or from an external style sheet that references an
Designer Style Sheet file (XFS). You delete styles directly from the internal style sheet of a form design. You delete the
styles from an external style sheet, by opening the XFS style sheet in Designer.
To delete a style from the internal style sheet
1 In the Style Catalog, expand the internal style sheet panel.
2 Right click the style you want to delete, and select Delete Style.
3 Click Yes to confirm that you want to delete the style.
To delete a style from an external style sheet
1 In the Style Catalog, click the menu on the external style sheet panel.
2 Select Edit Style Sheet. Designer opens the style sheet file, temporarily removes the associated panel from the Style
Catalog, and adds the styles to the internal style sheet panel.
3 In the internal style panel, right click the style you want to delete., and click Delete Style.
4 Save the changes and close the style sheet file. Designer moves the remaining styles from the internal style sheet
panel back to the external style sheet panel.
To set a default style for new objects
You can select default styles for new objects from any style sheet in the Style Catalog. You can select a default style for
most objects in the Object Library. The default styles you select for an object type are shown in the Style Catalog in
bold italic text.
When the Apply Default Styles To New Forms option is selected and you add a new object to a form, Designer
automatically applies the default styles for that object type to the new object.
1 In the Style Catalog, right click the object style you want to set as a default.
2 Click Set As Default Style.
To apply default styles to new objects
Before you can apply default styles to new objects, select a default style for each object type you add to your form
design.
1 Click the Style Catalog menu.
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2 Select Apply Default Styles To New Objects.
To edit default styles for new objects
You can change or clear the default styles for new objects.
1 Click the Style Catalog menu.
2 Select Edit Default Styles Settings.
3 Click the list next to the objects you want and do one of the following actions:
• To clear the default style, select None.
• To change the default style, select a substitute style.
More Help topics
“Default Fonts (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 658
“Default Fonts (Options dialog box)” on page 675
“To set a default font for captions in new forms” on page 361
“To set a default font for captions in an existing form” on page 361
“To set a default font for values in new forms” on page 378
“To set a default font for values in an existing form” on page 378
Printing forms
Setting up forms for printing
For forms intended for printing, you can select single-sided or double-sided printing for each page set in the form
design. For forms intended for double-sided printing, you can specify which side of the paper the master page is used:
odd (front), even (back), no odd/even restrictions, or blank.
Keep in mind that specifying single-sided or double-sided printing is recommended only for form designs saved as
Acrobat 8 (Static) PDF forms or for form designs intended for printing, including PCL and Postscript.
When setting up forms for printing, it is recommended that you review the input data and consider preparing sample
data files or have Designer automatically generate a sample data file to determine whether the layout, formatting,
content, and behavior of a form responds as expected when it is printed. For example, when setting up forms for
double-sided printing, you need to have sample data files for testing how a rendered form looks when the printed page
ends on an odd page or an even page, and when the rendered form fits on one printed page.
You can also specify print settings for PDF forms. For example, for Acrobat 8 (Static) PDF forms and Acrobat 8
(Dynamic) XML forms, you can select the number of copies to print and whether to print single-sided or double-sided.
When a user chooses to print the form, these options are automatically applied. For all PDF forms, you can specify that
the form be printed immediately when it is opened. In this case, the Print dialog box appears when the user opens the
form, and you can choose to print the form on the user’s default printer or on a printer that you specify.
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More Help topics
“Specifying page placement and printing options in existing form designs” on page 62
“To use master pages in a form intended for double-sided printing” on page 63
“To specify the master page placement in a page set” on page 64
“Inserting a blank page after the first page in a form intended for double-sided printing” on page 67
“Using page sets to control single-sided and double-sided printing in a form” on page 69
“To automatically print a PDF form when it is opened” on page 73
Specifying page placement and printing options in existing form designs
In form designs created using a version earlier than Designer 8, you control repetitive rendering of pages by specifying
the Restrict Page Occurrence, Min, Count, and Max options in the Object palette for the selected page set or master page.
You can update an older form design to use page placement and printing options, which also take occurrence into
account. Using the page placement and printing options, you can specify the pages on which a master page is used as
well as the settings for single-sided and double-sided printing.
The result of specifying single-sided printing in a form design closely matches the result of setting minimum and
maximum page set and master page-occurrence values. Therefore, it is recommended that you begin by updating the
form design for single-sided printing. Then, when you are satisfied that the form renders properly, you can update the
form design for double-sided printing, if necessary. When you select double-sided printing, you can control whether
the master page and other objects, including subforms, subform sets, and tables, occur on the odd (front) or even
(back) pages.
Notice that when you select the page placement and printing options in the form design, Designer disables the
occurrence settings because management of the page set occurrences is now controlled by the placement and printing
options that you select. Therefore, it is recommended that you back up the form design before you begin.
To specify page placement and printing options in existing form designs
1 In the Hierarchy palette, select the page set.
2 In the Object palette, select Print on Front Side Only from the Printing list. Designer notifies you that the Restrict
Page Occurrence option will be disabled. Click Yes to continue.
3 Select the first master page in the page set and click the Master Page tab in the Object palette. Notice that the Restrict
Page Occurrence option is now disabled. Before this option was disabled, this master page had a minimum and
maximum page-occurrence setting of one, indicating that it always occurs only once.
4 Click the Pagination tab and notice that the Odd/Even and Placement lists are now enabled and that there are no
placement restrictions for this master page.
5 To specify that the master page occurs once, select First Page (in Page Set) from the Placement list.
6 Preview the form in the Preview PDF tab to confirm that the master page is used once.
7 Select the next master page in the page set.
8 For master pages in the page set where the minimum page-occurrence setting was 0 and the maximum setting was
1, select one of these options from the Placement list in the Pagination tab in the Object palette:
• To specify that the master page is used for pages between but not including the first and last pages, select Rest
of Pages.
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• To specify that the master page is used for all pages but not including the first page, select No Placement
Restrictions.
9 For master pages in the page set where the minimum and maximum page-occurrence settings were one, select Last
Page (in Page Set) from the Placement list to specify that the master page is used for the last page.
10 Preview the form in the Preview PDF tab.
To specify double-sided printing for an existing form design
1 Follow the previous procedure for specifying page placement and single-sided printing options in existing form
designs.
2 Select File > Form Properties.
3 Click the Defaults tab and, in the Choose Version To Run Form In list, select Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later.
4 Click the Preview tab and, in the Preview Type list, select Print Form (Two-sided).
5 (Optional) To test the form that you are previewing by using a data source that you created, use the Browse button
to navigate to the file. You can also enter the full path to your test data file in the Data File box. You should plan to
have several data source files available for testing forms that are intended for double-sided printing. For example,
you should have a data source file that fills only one page, a data source file where the rendered form ends on an
even page, and a data source file where the rendered form ends on an odd page.
6 (Optional) To test the form you are previewing by using an automatically generated data source, click Generate
Preview Data. If the form contains repeating subforms or subform sets, indicate the number of times each subform
or subform set will repeat in the data file. You can use the Browse button to navigate to the location where you want
the file saved. Type a name for the file and then click Generate.
7 In the Preview Adobe XML Form As list, select Static PDF Form, and then click OK.
8 In the Hierarchy palette, select the page set.
9 In the Object palette, select Print on Both Sides from the Printing list.
10 Preview the form in the Preview PDF tab. It is recommended that you preview the form as you work. If you
encounter unexpected behavior in the previewed form, review the settings for the Place and After option in the
Pagination tab for the subforms, subform sets, and tables in the form design. For example, a subform that is set to
be placed at the top of the next even page may cause an unexpected empty odd page in the middle of the form.
11 Here is a list of ways that you can set up the form for double-sided printing:
• “To use master pages in a form intended for double-sided printing” on page 63
• “To specify the master page placement in a page set” on page 64
• “Inserting a blank page after the first page in a form intended for double-sided printing” on page 67
• “Using page sets to control single-sided and double-sided printing in a form” on page 69
To use master pages in a form intended for double-sided printing
For forms intended for double-sided printing, you can specify which side of the paper the master page is applied to:
odd (front), even (back), no odd/even restrictions, or blank.
You can use master pages for the odd (front) and even (back) sides of a form intended for double-sided printing. For
example, you may want the page numbers of a double-sided printed form to appear at the lower-right corner of the
odd (front) printed pages and the lower-left corner of an even (back) printed pages.
Select the Blank Pages option when you need a blank page inserted between two odd (front) double-sided printed
pages.
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Note: The options in the Odd/Even list are not relevant for form designs that are based on setting minimum and
maximum page-occurrence values.
1 In the Hierarchy palette, under the Master Pages node, select the master page.
2 In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab.
3 In the Odd/Even list, select the printed page where the master page is applied.
More Help topics
“Specifying page placement and printing options in existing form designs” on page 62
“To specify the master page placement in a page set” on page 64
“Inserting a blank page after the first page in a form intended for double-sided printing” on page 67
“Using page sets to control single-sided and double-sided printing in a form” on page 69
To specify the master page placement in a page set
Form designs contain at least one page set. For forms intended for printing, you need to specify where in the page set
the master page is used; for example, in the first printed page, the last printed page, or the printed pages in between.
Note: The first page in the root page set cannot be blank; it must contain a content area.
In addition, for form designs that contain more than one page set, you must specify a break in a subform for printing
to transition from one page set to the next.
Note: Specifying master page placement is not relevant for form designs that are based on setting minimum and
maximum page-occurrence values.
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The Only Page (in Page Set) option is useful when the rendered form can be printed on one side of a printed page. For
example, although the data fits on one printed page in the form below, two pages are printed because there is a master
page for the first printed page and a master page for the last printed page in the page set. In the example, the header
information appears on the first_page master page and the footer information on the last_page master page.
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To prevent two pages from being printed when everything can fit on one page, create a master page and select the Only
Page (in Page Set) option. Whenever the data of the rendered form fits on one side of a printed page, this master page
is used.
1 In the Hierarchy palette, under the Master Pages node, select the master page you want to place.
2 In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab.
3 In the Placement list, select the placement of the master page.
More Help topics
“Specifying page placement and printing options in existing form designs” on page 62
“To use master pages in a form intended for double-sided printing” on page 63
“Inserting a blank page after the first page in a form intended for double-sided printing” on page 67
“Using page sets to control single-sided and double-sided printing in a form” on page 69
Inserting a blank page after the first page in a form intended for double-sided
printing
To insert a blank page after the first page in a form that is intended for double-sided printing, the page set must include
master pages for the first, odd, and even printed pages. For example, you may want a blank page to print on the back
side of the cover letter. By specifying that the area that follows the cover letter subform begin on an odd page, a blank
page will be inserted as the first even page when the form is printed.
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A. This page uses the front_page master page B. The blank page is inserted as the first even page by using the blank_page master page C. This
page uses the odd_page master page D. This page uses the even_page master page E. The area after this subform is set to Go To Next Odd Page
To insert a blank page after the first page in a form intended for double-sided printing
1 Add a new master page to the page set.
2 Click anywhere in the master page.
3 Click the Pagination tab and select Blank Pages from the Odd/Even list.
4 Select the subform or subform set that occurs before the blank page.
5 Click the Pagination tab and select Go To Next Odd Page from the After list.
6 Preview the form in the Preview PDF tab.
More Help topics
“Setting up forms for printing” on page 61
“Specifying page placement and printing options in existing form designs” on page 62
“To use master pages in a form intended for double-sided printing” on page 63
Using page sets to control single-sided and double-sided printing in a form
For forms intended for printing, you can specify single-sided or double-sided printing for each page set in the form
design.
Note: Specifying single-sided or double-sided printing is recommended for form designs intended for printing, including
PCL and Postscript.
For example, you may want to create a form design to be used to generate a preprint and plain copy form. A preprint
form is a form that is printed on paper that already has items printed on it. A plain copy form is a form that is printed
on blank paper.
For this example, you create five master pages that are combined into page sets. You can specify which page sets print
single-sided and which ones print double-sided.
MasterPage1 Contains the title page information and is used in the first page in the page set and prints single sided.
MasterPage1 includes a page break in a subform that allows printing to transition to the PrePrint page set.
MasterPage2 The paper that the preprint form is printed on contains the company logo and contact information. This
master page leaves room for that information outside the content area. A small content area follows next to receive
employee-specific information. It occurs once for the preprint form and therefore is assigned as the first page in the
second page set. The second page set requires double-sided printing.
MasterPage3 Has a larger content area, possibly covering the whole page, to receive more information. It is used for
the second and subsequent pages of the preprint form. It is assigned the Rest of Pages placement option in the second
page set. MasterPage3 includes a page break in a subform that allows printing to transition to the PlainCopy page set.
MasterPage4 Has the company logo and contact information first, outside the content area. A small content area
follows next to receive employee-specific information. It occurs once for the plain copy form and therefore is assigned
as the first page in the third page set. The third page set also requires double-sided printing.
MasterPage5 Has a larger content area, possibly covering the whole page, to receive more information. It is used for
the second and subsequent pages of the plain copy form. It occurs 0 to infinite times. It is assigned the Rest of Pages
placement option in the second page set.
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The master pages are grouped into page sets:
• The Main page set is set to print single-sided.
• The PrePrint page set is set to print double-sided.
• The PlainCopy page set is set to print double sided.
The form is rendered according to the order of the page set in the hierarchy:
• The first subform is always placed on MasterPage1.
• The next subform is placed on MasterPage2 and then MasterPage3 if the form is a preprint form, or on
MasterPage4 and then MasterPage5 if the form is a plain copy form.
More Help topics
“Controlling the order and visibility of pages” on page 52
“Specifying page placement and printing options in existing form designs” on page 62
“To use master pages in a form intended for double-sided printing” on page 63
“To specify the master page placement in a page set” on page 64
“Inserting a blank page after the first page in a form intended for double-sided printing” on page 67
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To print the contents of the Design View or Master Pages tab
1 In the Layout Editor, click the Design View tab or Master Pages tab.
2 Select File > Print.
3 Set the required options and then click OK.
Note: The options that display in the Printer and Print range sections of the dialog box depend on the printer that your
computer is connected to. For more information about your printer’s options, see the printer documentation.
More Help topics
“To print a form with sample data” on page 71
To print a form with sample data
Designer lets you print a final version of the current form design with sample data. When you print the form, the data
values from the sample XML file will appear in the respective objects.
By testing your form with sample data, you can see the final product and verify your design.
1 Select File > Print.
2 Select Print Form With Data.
3 (Optional) To print the form with a data source, use the Browse button to navigate to the file. You can also enter
the full path to your test data file in the Data File box.
4 (Optional) To print the form with an automatically generated data source, click Generate Data File. If the form
contains repeating subforms or subform sets, indicate the number of times each subform or subform set will repeat
in the data file. You can use the Browse button to navigate to the location where you want the file saved. Type a
name for the file and then click Generate.
5 Click OK.
More Help topics
“Create a data connection to an XML schema” on page 497
To create sample data to print with your form
You can print a final version of the current form design using sample data to ensure that the form prints correctly. If
you do not have sample data, you can create it using Acrobat.
After you create the sample data file, you can specify which data file to use when printing the form. The next time you
print the form in Designer, the sample data will appear in the respective objects.
1 In Designer, save the form design as a PDF file.
2 Open the PDF file in Acrobat and enter values in the fields you want to test.
3 In Acrobat, do these tasks:
• Select Advanced > Forms > Export Form Data.
• In the Export Form Data As dialog box, name the file and save it as XML Data Package (*.xdp).
4 In Designer, do these tasks:
• Select File > Print.
• Select Print Form With Data.
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• To print the form with a data source, use the Browse button to navigate to the test data XML file. You can also
enter the full path to your test data XML file in the Data File box.
• Click OK.
More Help topics
“To print a form with sample data” on page 71
To automatically generate sample data to print with your form
You can generate sample data to print with your form instead of creating a sample data file using Acrobat. Also, if your
form contains repeating subforms or subform sets, you can specify the number of times the data will be repeated when
you print the form.
Designer generates sample data that is valid for the corresponding objects in the form, with a few exceptions:
• Sample data is not generated according to any validation scripts that may be specified for an object.
• The minimum and maximum count for a subform will restrict the number of repeating subforms that you specify
for the generated sample data file.
• The default value you select for a 2D barcode is retained in the generated sample data file.
After you generate the sample data file, you can edit the file, if required.
Specify which data file to use when printing the form. The next time you print the form in Designer, the sample data
will appear in the respective objects.
1 Select File > Print.
2 Select Print Form With Data.
3 Click Generate Data File.
4 In the Data File box, use the Browse button to navigate to the location of the test data file. You can also type the full
path, including a file name, for the test data file.
5 In the Repeating Elements list, select the number to the right of a subform and type the number of times it will
repeat in the data file.
6 Click Generate.
More Help topics
“To print a form with sample data” on page 71
To specify settings for printing a PDF form
To print a PDF form, you can specify the settings in the form design, instead of placing the effort on the user to
properly configure the print job. For example, you can select the number of copies to print and single-sided or doublesided printing or select page scaling options. These settings are automatically applied when the user prints the form.
Note: Specifying settings for printing is recommended only for form designs saved as Acrobat 8 (Static) PDF forms or
Acrobat 8 (Dynamic) XML forms.
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 Click the PDF Print Options tab and select Use These Print Settings for Printing This PDF Form.
3 Select the number of copies to print.
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4 Select one of the following options for duplex printing. To print double-sided, the selected printer must support
duplex printing.
• To print on one side of the paper, select Simplex.
• To print on both sides of the paper where the paper flips along the long edge, select Duplex Flip Long Edge.
• To print on both sides of the paper where the paper flips along the short edge, select Duplex Flip Short Edge.
5 Select one of the following options for page scaling:
• To use the page scaling options selected in the Adobe Acrobat/Reader Print dialog box, select Use Adobe
Acrobat/Reader Setting.
• To set Page Scaling to None in the Adobe Acrobat/Reader Print dialog box, select No Page Scaling. The Adobe
Acrobat/Reader user can change the Page Scaling setting. Select Prevent User From Changing to prevent Adobe
Acrobat/Reader users from disabling page scaling.
• To automatically select the paper source based on the page size, select Paper Source By Page Size.
6 Click OK.
More Help topics
“To automatically print a PDF form when it is opened” on page 73
To automatically print a PDF form when it is opened
You can specify that the Print dialog box appears when the PDF form opens, allowing the user to print the form
immediately.
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 Click the PDF Print Options tab and select Automatically Print the Form When it is Opened.
3 (Optional) To print the PDF form by using the default printer on the user’s computer, select Print to the User’s
Default Printer.
4 (Optional) To print the PDF form using a specified printer, select Print To and select the printer from the list. You
can also type the printer name. This is useful when you want to specify a printer that is not available to you. The
printer name must match exactly the name of the printer as installed on the user's computer.
5 Click OK.
Tabbing order
Many users use the Tab key to move between fields and buttons in a form instead of using the mouse. Designer lets
you set the tabbing order between objects in a form.
Tabbing order is important for interactive forms and forms that have a fixed layout. For interactive forms, the tabbing
order affects the end user’s experience when filling the form.
For both interactive and non-interactive forms, tabbing order is critical if your forms need to be accessible to users
with vision or mobility impairments. These users typically do not use a mouse to navigate through the form, so they
depend on the keyboard keys and a good tabbing order sequence to ensure that they have full access to all the fields on
the form.
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Accessible forms require a tabbing order, whether the form is interactive or designed for print. Additionally, a screen
reader will read the form in geographic order, which in Designer is set when you use the default tabbing order.
Designer automatically sets a default tabbing order for each form. This tabbing order can be easily changed to better
reflect the logical flow of the form and to accommodate particular user requirements.
How the default tabbing order works
The default tabbing order for objects in a form is from left to right, top to bottom, starting from the upper-left corner.
Tabbing order respects the existence of subforms, radio buttons, and content areas. For example, if two subforms exist
side-by-side, and each subform contains a number of field objects, the tabbing sequence will go through the fields in
the first subform before moving on to the next.
Note: Designer does not include circle, line, or rectangle objects in the tabbing order.
Tabbing order is also determined by the vertical position of objects on a page and its master page.
The tabbing order starts from the object with the smallest vertical coordinate and ends with the object with the largest
vertical coordinate, regardless of whether the object is on the body or master page.
For objects that contain objects, such as content areas, all child objects are tabbed through before tabbing to the next
higher-level object.
The following list provides an example of the tabbing order for objects on body and master pages:
• Image object on the master page with a vertical coordinate of 1.
• Content area object on the page with a vertical coordinate of 4. All objects in the content area are tabbed through
before tabbing to the subform object on the master page.
• Subform object on the master page with a vertical coordinate of 10. All objects in the content area are tabbed
through before tabbing to the text object on the master page.
• Text object on the master page with a vertical coordinate of 12.
Because the tabbing order is important, ensure that you position objects precisely on the form, relative to each other.
For example, you can position and size an object using its coordinates and you can snap objects to points on a grid.
You can change the default tabbing order if you require a different sequence in your form. For example, you may want
to change the tabbing order to move through objects in a column, from top to bottom, and then left to right.
Note: In Acrobat 6.0.2, tabbing to a group of radio buttons makes the upper-left radio button active. Use the Tab key to
move through the radio buttons. In Acrobat 7.0.5 and later, the selected radio button becomes active. Use the arrow keys
to move between the radio buttons in a group and the Tab key to move out of the group.
More Help topics
“To position objects” on page 347
“Viewing the default tabbing order” on page 74
“Changing the tabbing order” on page 76
Viewing the default tabbing order
One of the final tasks to do when creating a form is to set the tabbing order. Before you do this task, make sure you
have finished laying out the form design so that all the objects are in their correct position on the form. First, you
should examine the default tabbing order, which is created automatically by Designer.
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When you design or open a form in Designer, the tabbing order is not visible. To see the tabbing order for the form,
select View > Show Tab Order or click Show Order on the Tab Order palette.
Note: If the Tab Order palette is not visible, select Window > Tab Order.
The tabbing order is displayed on the form as a series of consecutive numbers inside colored shapes:
•
Numbers inside a gray circle indicates the default tabbing order for the objects in the content area.
•
Numbers inside a green circle indicate the tabbing order for master page objects.
•
Numbers inside a lavender square indicate the tabbing order for the objects inside a fragment.
Examine the default tabbing order carefully to determine whether it suits your particular requirements or whether you
need to change it. Even if you modify the tabbing order, you can quickly return to the default tabbing order by selecting
the Automatic option in the Tab Order palette.
Note: While viewing the tabbing order, you cannot edit any parts of the form.
To hide the tabbing order and return to normal form-editing mode
Perform one of the following actions:
• Select View > Hide Tab Order
• Click Hide Order in the Tab Order palette
• Open a different palette, such as the Hierarchy palette.
More Help topics
“How the default tabbing order works” on page 74
“Changing the tabbing order” on page 76
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Using the Tab Order palette
The Tab Order palette provides an alternative view of the tabbing order on the form. It shows all the objects on the
form as a numbered list, where each number represents the position of the object in the tabbing flow. The palette is
also where you modify the tab order, if required.
To open the Tab Order palette, select Window > Tab Order.
The Tab Order palette may show the following visual markers in the list:
• A gray bar marks each page of the form. The tabbing order on each page starts with the number 1.
• The letter M inside a green circle indicates master page objects (visible only when viewing the form on the Design
View tab).
• A range of numbers indicates objects within a fragment.
• A yellow background indicates the currently selected item.
• A lock icon beside the first object on the page indicates that the object cannot be moved within the tabbing order
(visible only when viewing the form on the Master Pages tab).
The list shows exactly the same tabbing order numbers as the numbers displayed on the form itself.
The difference is that the numbers displayed on the form are for information purpose only, whereas the numbers on
the list can be changed to modify the tabbing order.
In the Tab Order palette, you can also show or hide the tabbing order on the form and switch between the default and
custom tabbing order.
More Help topics
“Changing the tabbing order” on page 76
“Viewing the default tabbing order” on page 74
Changing the tabbing order
After examining the default tabbing order, you may decide that you need a different sequence for some of the objects
on the form. For example, if you have two groups of address fields situated side-by-side, you may want to tab through
the fields in the first group before moving to the second group.
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You change the position of an object in the tabbing order by moving the object up or down in the Tab Order palette
list. You can move a single object or a group of objects. When you move the object to a new place in the order, Designer
reassigns the numbers to accommodate the object in its new place.
For example, you have four objects on the page, which are arranged in the following layout.
Therefore, their default tabbing order will be as shown in this illustration.
You may want to change this tabbing order to a more logical one, such as First Name, Last Name, Telephone, Email.
All you have to do is move the LastName object one position up in the list. The tabbing order numbers are reassigned
to reflect this move.
Although the tabbing order for the objects on the master page and the objects inside a fragment are displayed on the
form, you cannot change the order for these objects on the Design View tab. For the master page objects, click the
Master Pages tab and customize the tabbing order. (See “Changing the tabbing order on master pages” on page 80).
For the fragments, open the required fragment and change the order inside the fragment. (See “To change the tabbing
order in fragments” on page 80).
If your form has more than one page, the tabbing order for each page starts at the number 1, and you can change the
order only inside each page.
Before you change the tabbing order, you should prepare your working area in the following way:
1 Select Window > Tab Order. The Tab Order palette appears on the left side of the working area.
2 Click Show Order and then select Custom.
The tabbing order numbers displayed on the form are now inside blue squares
. This square visually indicates
that you are now in custom tabbing mode and can change the position of one or more objects in the tabbing
sequence.
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More Help topics
“Using the Tab Order palette” on page 76
“To change the tabbing order for a single object using the mouse” on page 78
“Changing the tabbing order for a group of objects” on page 79
“To view the tabbing order using visual aids” on page 82
To change the tabbing order for a single object using the mouse
You change the tabbing order by selecting the objects and changing their positions in the Tab Order palette list.
To change the order using drag-and-drop
❖ Drag the selected object up or down the list and place it at the required location. A black handle marks your current
position within the list before you place the object.
To change the order using the arrow buttons
❖ In the Tab Order palette, click the up or down arrow buttons until the selected object is placed in the correct
position.
To change the order using the menu
❖ In the Tab Order palette menu, select Move First, Move Up, Move Down, or Move Last.
To change the order by editing the number
❖ In the Tab Order palette list, click the selected object to make the number listed beside the object name editable.
Then, type the new number indicating the new position of the object in the tabbing order and press Enter.
To change the order using copy and paste
❖ Select Copy from the Tab Order palette menu and, in the list, select the object above which to place the object you
are moving, and then select Paste or Paste After from the menu.
More Help topics
“Changing the tabbing order” on page 76
“To change the tabbing order for a single object using keyboard shortcuts” on page 78
“Changing the tabbing order for a group of objects” on page 79
“To view the tabbing order using visual aids” on page 82
To change the tabbing order for a single object using keyboard shortcuts
Note: You must use the mouse pointer in conjunction with the keyboard to change the tabbing order by using keyboard
shortcuts.
You change the tabbing order by selecting the objects and changing their positions in the Tab Order palette list.
To change the order using the menu
❖ Press Ctrl+Up Arrow or Ctrl+Down Arrow to move the object one position up or down in the list.
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To change the order by editing the number
❖ Press F2 to make the number listed beside the object name editable. Then type the new number that indicates the
new position of the object in the tabbing order and press Enter.
To change the order using copy and paste
❖ Press Ctrl+C to copy the selected object to the clipboard. Then press the Up Arrow or Down Arrow repeatedly until
you highlight the object above which you want to place the object, and press Ctrl+V to paste the object from the
clipboard.
More Help topics
“Changing the tabbing order” on page 76
“To change the tabbing order for a single object using the mouse” on page 78
“Changing the tabbing order for a group of objects” on page 79
“To view the tabbing order using visual aids” on page 82
Changing the tabbing order for a group of objects
Instead of moving individual objects to their new location within the tabbing order, you can move a group of objects
all at once. This method works only for the objects that are positioned in sequence in the list of objects.
If you have a selection of objects that are scattered throughout the list, you must make them sequential first and then
move the group.
After you select a group of sequentially ordered objects, you move the group to a new location in the tabbing order by
using the same methods you used for moving a single object.
To select a sequential group of objects using the mouse
1 In the Tab Order palette list, click the first object in the sequence.
2 Press Shift and click the last object in the sequence.
To select a sequential group of objects using the keyboard
1 In the Tab Order palette list, click the first object in the sequence.
2 Press Shift+Down Arrow or Shift+Up Arrow until all objects in the sequence are selected.
To change a group of individually selected objects to a sequential group
1 In the Tab Order palette list, click the first object and then press Ctrl and click each object that you want to select.
2 In the palette menu, select Make Sequential. The selected objects are moved together into a sequentially ordered
group.
To change the order to geographic (left-to-right)
1 In the Tab Order palette list, select the objects in the sequence.
2 In the Tab Order palette menu, select, Make Geographic.
To change the geographic order to right-to-left
1 In the Tab Order palette list, select the objects in the sequence.
2 In the Tab Order palette menu, select, Make Geographic Right-To-Left.
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More Help topics
“Changing the tabbing order” on page 76
“To change the tabbing order for a single object using the mouse” on page 78
“To change the tabbing order for a single object using keyboard shortcuts” on page 78
“To view the tabbing order using visual aids” on page 82
Changing the tabbing order on master pages
Although the tabbing order for the objects that are located on a master page is displayed on the Design View tab, you
can change the order for these objects only on the Master Pages tab.
The objects on the master page are placed in two areas, one above the content area and one below the content area.
The tabbing order is set for objects within each of these two areas. Consequently, you can only change the tabbing
order within each area.
Note: The upper-left object on each master page is locked in the first tabbing position and cannot be moved.
When you change the tabbing order on a master page, any pages in your form that are using this master page are
affected by the change.
More Help topics
“Changing the tabbing order” on page 76
“To change the tabbing order for a single object using the mouse” on page 78
“To change the tabbing order for a single object using keyboard shortcuts” on page 78
“Changing the tabbing order for a group of objects” on page 79
To change the tabbing order in fragments
If you use fragment references in your form, the tabbing order inside a fragment is visible when viewing the order for
the form. To change the tabbing order inside a fragment, you must open the fragment source file for editing, make the
change, and save the file. Any forms that use this fragment are affected by this change.
1 Select View > Hide Tab Order.
2 Select the fragment reference.
3 Select Edit > Fragments > Edit Fragment.
4 Select View > Show Tab Order.
5 Change the tabbing order as required.
6 Save and close the fragment source file.
More Help topics
“Changing the tabbing order” on page 76
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To return to the default tabbing order
If you decide that you do not want the customized tabbing order on your form, you can quickly return to the automatic
(default) tabbing order. You will lose any changes made to the tabbing order.
1 On the Tab Order palette, select Automatic.
2 In the message box, click Yes to acknowledge that the custom tab order will be removed.
Excluding text and image objects from the tabbing order
You can exclude text and image objects from the tabbing order to improve usability and flow of the tabbing on the
form.
For example, on the form below, the user will need to tab through the title of the form (Purchase Order) before
reaching the P.O. Date field.
If the text and image objects are excluded from the tabbing order, the tabbing flow on this form will change to include
only the fields that require user input or action.
Excluding text and image objects from the tabbing order is not recommended if one or more of the following is true
for your form:
• Your form will be used with a screen reader.
• Your form contains hyperlinks inside the text objects.
You can exclude the text and image objects for both the default and the custom tabbing order.
To exclude text and image objects
❖ Do one of the following actions:
• Select Tools > Options > Tab Order and, in the Tab Order panel, select Only Show Tab Order For Fields.
• In the Tab Order palette menu, select Show Fields Only.
More Help topics
“Viewing the default tabbing order” on page 74
“Changing the tabbing order” on page 76
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To view the tabbing order using visual aids
On a complex and busy form, it may be difficult to see how the tabbing flows from one object to the next. You can use
visual aids to help you see the tabbing flow on the form.
With the visual aids turned on, when you hover the pointer over the object, blue arrows show the tabbing flow for the
two preceding and two following objects in the tabbing order.
❖ Do one of the following actions:
• Select Tools > Options > Tab Order and, in the Tab Order panel, select Display Additional Visual Aids For Tab
Order.
• In the Tab Order palette menu, select Show Visual Aids.
More Help topics
“Viewing the default tabbing order” on page 74
“Changing the tabbing order” on page 76
Building actions in forms
Use the Action Builder dialog box on the Tools menu to build common interactive capabilities in forms, without
writing scripts. Using actions, you can control how you present form objects and data and how the objects and data
respond to form filler interaction.
Here are examples of what you can do with actions:
• Add buttons that a form filler can click to add or remove sections in the form or rows in a table.
• Set the value of a field, such as prepopulating a date/time field object with the current date or a numeric field object
with a specific value.
• Set the background color of fields.
• Hide or show objects or set the focus to a specific field.
• Create custom actions by using scripting objects and the function within the scripts.
• Build actions within fragments.
Note: To display the actions within a fragment file in the Action Builder dialog box, you must embed the fragments file
within the Adobe XML Form (XDP) document or edit the fragment in Designer. The Action Builder dialog box does not
display actions within a fragment that you create in a fragment library.
Note: Actions may not work with HTML forms and Guides.
You can add actions to most form fields and objects.
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When you click the object link in the Action Builder dialog box, the Select an Object dialog box appears, displaying the
objects in the form that you can select to create a condition or result.
You build actions by adding one or more conditions that must be met, and one or more results that occur when the
conditions are fulfilled. You can build simple actions with just one condition, where the results begin when that
condition is met. Alternatively, you can combine multiple conditions to build more complex actions, where the results
can begin at different times depending on the conditions you add.
Designer generates a script for each action and monitors the scripts for changes. If Designer detects that the script has
been modified, it performs the following actions:
• Stops monitoring the script, giving the form author ownership of the script.
• Displays a message on the Log tab in the Report palette, indicating that the script is no longer managed and can be
edited.
Designer does not modify unmanaged script in any way.
Designer inserts the script that it generates for an action at the beginning of the script in the Script Editor, before any
unmanaged scripts.
The Report palette lists warning messages about broken actions. Broken actions occur when an object that was used
to create a condition or result is deleted from the form. Broken actions are indicated in the Action list. A missing object
link also appears next to the relevant condition or result. Double-click the warning message in the Report palette to
open the Action Builder dialog box and highlight the broken action.
Note: Designer does not monitor changes that you make to radio buttons and choice lists. If you change the items in the
list, reorder items, change the display text or save value, or delete a radio button, the action can break without generating
a broken action warning.
Combining conditions
If you combine a trigger condition with other conditions, the trigger condition must be met last. Only the trigger
condition can start the action results, after all other conditions are met first. As a result, you can add only one trigger
condition to an action. For example, you cannot build an action with two trigger conditions, where the form filler is
required to click a button and click a check box at the same time. The Action Builder dialog box displays an error
message if you add more than one trigger condition to an action. However, keep in mind that an action does not
require a trigger condition. You can build an action without adding a trigger condition. If you do not add a trigger
condition to an action, the conditions can be met in any order. Any one of the conditions in the action can display the
results, after all other conditions are met.
When you add multiple conditions to an action, the Action Builder dialog box sorts the list of conditions, as shown
below. The trigger condition (if you have added one) appears at the top of the list. All other conditions are grouped
under the trigger condition. The and/or link appears next to the grouped conditions. The and/or link is not available
with the trigger condition. When you select and, all conditions in the group must be met before the actions results
occur. When you select or, at least one of the conditions in the group must be met before the action results occur.
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A. Trigger condition B. And/or toggle link
Build an action
When you build an action, you add one or more conditions and one or more results. The results occur when the
conditions are fulfilled. You can add as many conditions and results as you need. However, you can add only one
trigger condition to an action, because the trigger condition must be met last. For example, you cannot build an action
where the form filler must click a button and a check box at the same time, to initiate the results. The Action Builder
dialog box displays an error message if you add more than one trigger condition to an action.
Note: If you build an action using the ‘is changed’ option for a condition, when the form is viewed in Acrobat or Adobe
Reader, the results may not be applied until the field is exited.
For each condition you add, click the object link to open the Select an Object dialog box and choose an object. The
Select An Object dialog box only shows the objects in the form that you can use for a condition or result. For each result
you add, you select an option in the Select a Result list, and then choose various other options depending on the object.
The options available for each result vary depending on the object you select.
Note: If you build an action that adds or removes instances of subforms, be sure to name each subform object. If the action
references any unnamed subforms, the action could fail.
Keep in mind that the following results are not compatible with HTML forms or guides.
• Attach a File to the Form
• Close the Form
• Go to a Specific Page
• Reset All the Fields in the Form
• Save the Form
• Set the Zoom Level
Designer generates a default name for each action, which consists of the object name followed by the scripting event
that the condition is generated within (<name of object>.<name of scripting event>).
For information on events, see Events.
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Note: If you create an action in the Enter event and run the form in Acrobat 7.1.3, the background or foreground color
of the field does not change until the user exits the field.
1 Select Tools > Action Builder.
2 Click the Add A New Action
button.
3 In the Condition area, click the Add A Condition
button.
4 Click the object link.
5 Select the object for the condition. Repeat steps 3 and 4 as needed. If you add three or more conditions, the and/or
link appears next to the conditions. Click the link to change the relationship between the conditions as needed.
6 In the Result area, click the Add A Result
button.
7 In the Select a Result list, select a result and then choose options as needed. Repeat steps 6 and 7 as needed.
Rename an action
❖ Click the action name and type a new name. You can give two or more actions the same name.
Revert to the default name
❖ Delete the new name.
Edit an action
Use the Actions dialog box to view and edit the actions in a form. Actions are listed on the left side of the dialog box,
and the conditions and results for the selected action appear on the right. Add, delete, and modify condition and results
as needed.
For existing conditions, the Select an Object dialog box only shows the object associated with that condition and other
objects of the same type. To change the object type for an existing condition, delete the condition and then create
another condition.
For existing results, the Select an Object dialog box shows all objects in the form that you can select for a result. To
change the object for an existing result, select a different object.
1 Select Tools > Action Builder.
2 Under Actions, select an action, and select options as needed.
Remove an action
You can remove an action from a form at any time.
1 Select Tools > Action Builder.
2 Under Actions, select the action to remove.
3 Click the Remove An Existing Action
button.
Build a custom result
You can create a custom result for an action by using a script object that contains a function. A script object is an object
you can use to store JavaScript functions and values separately from any particular form object.
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Note: Designer does not validate parameters and return values. Ensure that the parameters you type are correct and the
return value is valid.
1 Select Tools > Action Builder.
2 Click the Add A New Action
button.
3 In the Condition area, click the Add A Condition
button.
4 Click the object link.
5 Select an object for the condition. Repeat steps 3 and 4 as needed. If you add three or more conditions, the and/or
link appears next to the conditions. Click the link to change the relationship between the conditions as needed.
6 In the Result area, click the Add A Result
button.
7 In the Select a Result list, select Call A Script Object Function.
8 Click the Call Script Object link and, under Variables, select the script object.
9 Select a function from the list.
10 Type the parameters in the box. Example: Call script *(script object)* function (function name) with parameters
*(funcParam1, funcParam2)* and "(No Return Result)".
11 (Optional) Select Assign Return Result To, click the object link, and select an object for the return result.
For more information, see Creating and Reusing JavaScript Functions .
Setting the zoom level in a PDF form
When a user opens a PDF form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, they see the initial view of the document. You can build
an action to set the initial viewing area of a PDF to a specific zoom level or page magnification. For example, you can
set the zoom level to a specific percentage of the page size or to automatically fit the width or height of the page.
1 Select Tools > Action Builder.
2 Click the Add A New Action
button.
3 In the Condition area, click the object link.
4 In the Select An Object dialog box, select the name of the form at the top of the form hierarchy. The default name
is form1.
5 Click OK.
6 In the Condition area, select When Form <form name> Has Finished Loading.
7 In the Select a Result list, select Set The Zoom Level.
8 In the Set Zoom To list, select the option you want.
9 Click OK.
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Spell checking in forms
To select the default locale
Before you check the spelling in a form, you should verify that the correct default form locale is selected. The locale
option that is selected in the Default Form Locale list in the Form Properties dialog box specifies the default language
that Designer uses to check spelling. For quick reference, the current spell-check language is indicated in the upperright corner of the Check Spelling dialog box, just below the title bar.
If you apply different locale options to individual objects in the form by using the Locale list in the Object palette, those
locale settings override the default form locale setting. That is, when the locale setting for an object is different from
the locale setting for the form, Designer identifies the words (text) associated with these objects as being misspelled.
When applying different locale options to individual objects, keep in mind that the objects that are within tables and
subforms automatically receive the same locale setting as the table and subform object.
Note: If you select a locale option (language) that the spell-check feature does not support, a message appears indicating
that objects with that particular locale setting will not be spell checked.
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 Click the Defaults tab and, in the Form Locale list, select the language you want the spell-check feature to use.
3 Click OK.
More Help topics
“To check spelling while you type” on page 87
“To check the spelling in a form” on page 88
“Form Properties dialog box” on page 655
To check spelling while you type
You can set up Designer to identify spelling errors as you type by selecting the Check Spelling While Typing option in
the Spelling panel of the Options dialog box.
When the Check Spelling While Typing option is selected, a wavy red line appears under misspelled words in text
objects, caption fields, or the various fields in the Object and Accessibility palettes, regardless of the options selected.
You can use the options in the Spell Check list to specify the type of text to spell check when you use the Check Spelling
dialog box.
When checking the spelling in a form, Designer always refers to the internal dictionary and your custom dictionary
(My Custom Dictionary). You can also add other custom dictionary files (*.clam) to expand the list of correctly spelled
words to which Designer refers. For more information, see “Adding a word to the list of ignored words” on page 90.
To see a list of the dictionaries you currently have available, select Tools > Options, and click Spelling. The Spelling
panel displays a list of the installed dictionaries. Notice that My Custom Dictionary is selected at all times and cannot
be removed.
Keep in the mind these other points when you check spelling as you type:
• When the Check Spelling While Typing option is selected, a wavy red line appears under misspelled words in text
objects and caption fields only when the insertion point (vertical, flashing bar used for entering text) is placed in or
directly next to text.
• You can change the color of the wavy underline by selecting Tools > Options > Spelling > Wavy Underline Color.
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• You can quickly correct spelling errors by right-clicking a misspelled word and selecting one of the suggested words
from the context menu. Designer displays a maximum of four alternate spelling suggestions on the context menu
for each misspelled word. To see more than four suggestions, use the Check Spelling dialog box.
To set up Designer to identify spelling errors as you type
1 Select Tools > Options and, in the Spelling panel, select Check Spelling While Typing.
2 To correct a spelling error while typing, place the insertion point in or directly next to the underlined word, and
right-click and perform one of these actions:
• To correct the misspelled word, select one of suggested words in the context menu. If no spelling suggestions
are available for the misspelled word, the text nospelling suggestions appears instead.
• To add the word to My Custom Dictionary, select Add to Dictionary. This selection adds the underlined word
to all languages in the dictionary. Designer no longer identifies the word as being misspelled.
• To disregard all occurrences of the misspelled word, select Ignore All. This selection adds the word to the list of
ignored words, and Designer temporarily does not identify the word as being misspelled. All spell checks
disregard the word until you restart Designer. The list of ignored words is cleared each time Designer is started.
More Help topics
“To select the default locale” on page 87
“To check the spelling in a form” on page 88
“To edit the custom dictionary” on page 90
“Options dialog box” on page 672
To check the spelling in a form
You can check the text for spelling errors in selected objects or in an entire form by using the Check Spelling dialog box.
By default, Designer checks the spelling in all of the text associated with the various objects in a form, such as text,
captions, tool tips, custom screen reader text, and list box entries. However, you can control the type of text that
Designer checks by selecting options in the Spell Check list available in the Spelling panel of the Options dialog box.
When you select the Static Text and Captions options, you can also select specific text or captions in the form to spell
check. If the Static Text and Captions options are not selected, Designer will not check the spelling in any selected text
objects or caption fields.
When checking the spelling in a form, Designer always refers to the internal dictionary and your custom dictionary
(My Custom Dictionary). You can also add other custom dictionary files (*.clam) to expand the list of correctly spelled
words to which Designer refers. For more information, see “Adding a word to the list of ignored words” on page 90.
To see a list of the dictionaries you currently have available, select Tools > Options, and click Spelling. The Spelling
panel displays a list of the installed dictionaries. Notice that My Custom Dictionary is selected at all times and cannot
be removed.
1 (Optional) If you want to check the spelling in specific text objects or caption fields, press Ctrl and select the
necessary objects.
2 Select Tools > Check Spelling. The Check Spelling dialog box appears with the first misspelled word highlighted in
red under Not in Dictionary.
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3 To remove spelling errors, perform one of these actions:
• To correct the misspelled word, select one of the words in the Suggestions list, and then either click Change to
replace this occurrence of the misspelled word or click Change All to replace all occurrences of the misspelled
word. If the word you want is not in the list of suggested words, you can type the correct spelling directly in the
Check Spelling dialog box, and then click Change or Change All as needed. If you clicked Change or Change All
and want to revert the changes, click Undo.
• To disregard this one occurrence of the misspelled word, click Ignore Once.
• To disregard all occurrences of the misspelled word, click Ignore All. This selection adds the word to the list of
ignored words, and Designer temporarily does not identify the word as being misspelled. All spell checks
disregard the word until you restart Designer. The list of ignored words is cleared each time Designer is started.
• To add the word to My Custom Dictionary, click Add to Dictionary. This selection adds the highlighted word
to all languages in the My Custom Dictionary and Designer no longer identifies the word as being misspelled.
After you correct a spelling error, the Check Spelling dialog box automatically advances to the next misspelled
word. A message is displayed when Designer completes the spell check.
More Help topics
“To edit the custom dictionary” on page 90
“Check Spelling dialog box” on page 640
“Options dialog box” on page 672
To add a word to all languages in the custom dictionary
When you spell check a form, Designer may identify a word as being misspelled when the word is actually spelled
correctly. For example, Designer generally will not recognize company or industry-specific product terminology and
acronyms. As a result, Designer provides each user with a custom dictionary (My Custom Dictionary) where you can
create a customized list of properly spelled words. My Custom Dictionary is listed under Installed Dictionaries in the
Spelling panel in the Options dialog box and is always selected by default. Designer refers to My Custom Dictionary
whenever you spell check a form; therefore, you cannot delete My Custom Dictionary.
The words that you add to the custom dictionary are automatically added to all languages (locales). Designer considers
the word to be spelled correctly regardless of the locale that is currently applied to the form or to a selected object.
However, if the word you want to add to the Custom Dictionary does not belong to all languages, you can use the Edit
Dictionary dialog box to add the word to selected languages. After you add a word to the Custom Dictionary, Designer
recognizes the spelling of the word as correct and removes the wavy red line from under the word.
❖ Right-click the misspelled word and select Add to Dictionary.
To add a word to selected languages in the custom dictionary
If the word you want to add to your custom dictionary (My Custom Dictionary) does not belong to all languages, you
can use the Edit Dictionary dialog box to add the word to selected languages. After you add a word to My Custom
Dictionary, Designer recognizes the spelling of the word as correct for the selected language and removes the wavy red
line under the word.
1 Select Tools > Edit Dictionary.
2 In the Language list, select the language you want.
3 In the Word box, type the correct spelling of the word you want to add.
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4 Click Add.
5 Repeat steps to add the word to another language.
More Help topics
“To add a word to all languages in the custom dictionary” on page 89
“To edit the custom dictionary” on page 90
“Edit Dictionary dialog box” on page 649
To edit the custom dictionary
From time to time, you may want to edit your custom dictionary (My Custom Dictionary) or review the contents. In
the Edit Dictionary dialog box, you can select options from the Language list to view the words that are associated with
all languages or individual languages. You can also change the spelling of any listed word, add words to all or selected
languages, and delete words from all or selected languages.
To open the Edit Dictionary dialog box
❖ Select Tools > Edit Dictionary.
More Help topics
“To add a word to all languages in the custom dictionary” on page 89
“To add a word to selected languages in the custom dictionary” on page 89
“Options dialog box” on page 672
“Edit Dictionary dialog box” on page 649
Adding a word to the list of ignored words
Sometimes Designer may identify a word as being misspelled when it is actually spelled correctly. However, in such
cases you may not always want to add the word to your custom dictionary. As an alternative, you can create a list of
words that Designer ignores temporarily when spell checking a document. Designer recognizes the spelling of ignored
words as being neither correct nor incorrect, and disregards them when performing a spell check.
You cannot view or edit the list of ignored words. Therefore, it is a good idea to remember the words you add. The list
of ignored words remains in place until you close Designer; each time Designer is started, the list is cleared.
You can quickly add a word to the list of ignored words while typing in one of the fields in a form or in the Object or
Hierarchy palettes by using the commands on the context menu (right-click). Using the buttons in the Check Spelling
dialog box, you can also add a word to the list of ignored words while spell checking in a form.
To add a word to the list of ignored words while typing
❖ Right-click a misspelled word in any field in a form or in the Object or Hierarchy palette and select Ignore All.
Designer temporarily disregards all instances of the word as being misspelled until Designer is restarted.
To add a word to the list of ignored words while spell checking a form
1 Select Tools > Check Spelling. The Check Spelling dialog box appears with the first misspelled word highlighted in
red under Not in Dictionary.
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2 Perform one of the these actions:
• To disregard only this occurrence of the misspelled word, click Ignore Once. Designer ignores the word and
advances to the next misspelled word.
• To disregard all occurrences of the misspelled word, click Ignore All. Designer ignores all instances of the
misspelled word and advances to the next misspelled word. All spell checks disregard all occurrences of the
misspelled word until you restart Designer. The list of ignored words is cleared each time Designer is started.
More Help topics
“To add a word to selected languages in the custom dictionary” on page 89
“To edit the custom dictionary” on page 90
“Check Spelling dialog box” on page 640
“Edit Dictionary dialog box” on page 649
To add a dictionary
You can add additional dictionary files to Designer to suit your needs. That is, if you want to expand the list of correctly
spelled words that Designer refers to when spell checking a form, you can add one or more custom dictionary files
(*.clam) for a specific language or for all supported languages. For example, you can add a custom dictionary of unique
terms for specialized industries such as medicine, law, engineering, insurance, or finance. Keep in mind that if you
want to add the words in a custom dictionary file to a particular language instead of all languages, you must include
the correct language extension in the custom dictionary file name. Let’s say you want to add a custom dictionary file
to French Canadian only, you must add fr_CA to the file name like this, [file name]-fr_CA.clam. If you do not include
a language extension in the file name, the words in the file will be considered correct for all languages.
Note: You can also add more standard dictionary files (*.lex) for languages that Designer does not already support, by
manually adding the files to the folder located at \Program Files\Common Files\Adobe\Linguistics\Providers\Proximity.
You can use the options in the Spelling panel of the Options dialog box to add dictionaries and select which
dictionaries are used when performing spell-check operations.
1 Select Tools > Options.
2 Select Spelling from the list on the left and then click Add a Dictionary. The Custom Dictionary File dialog box
appears.
3 Browse to the dictionary file you want to add to Designer and click Open. The dictionary is added to the list of
installed dictionaries.
More Help topics
“To remove a dictionary” on page 92
“To edit the custom dictionary” on page 90
“Options dialog box” on page 672
“Edit Dictionary dialog box” on page 649
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To remove a dictionary
The Installed Dictionary list in the Spelling panel of the Options dialog box shows the dictionaries currently available
for spell checking a form. You can delete one or more of the custom dictionaries you no longer need. When you delete
a custom dictionary, it is removed from the list of installed dictionaries. The actual dictionary file (*.clam) is not
removed from your computer’s file system.
Note: You cannot remove My Custom Dictionary because Designer always refers to this dictionary whenever you spell
check a form.
1 Select Tools > Options.
2 In the Spelling panel, select the dictionary you want to delete from the Installed Dictionaries list.
3 Click Remove a Dictionary.
More Help topics
“Adding a word to the list of ignored words” on page 90
“To edit the custom dictionary” on page 90
“Options dialog box” on page 672
Hyphenate text
Use hyphenation to improve text alignment in a given area by reducing the amount of white (empty) space between
the last word on a line and the right margin. If a word is too long to fit entirely on a single line, the word is hyphenated
at the proper hyphenation point, which forces a line break as close to the right margin as possible. Hyphenation makes
each line of text approximately the same length to give the text a more uniform layout. Designer uses a hyphenation
dictionary, metrics such as line spacing and font size, as well as other linguistic information to determine where various
words can be legally and optimally hyphenated.
You can hyphenate the text in text objects, in the caption area of objects such as text fields, decimal fields, and numeric
fields, and in the value area of text field objects (default text and text the form filler enters). For example, you can
indicate the number of letters to allow in a word before it can be hyphenated; hyphenate capitalized words, such as the
first word of a sentence; hyphenate words that are all capital letters, such as acronyms; and add or remove all
hyphenation from the form.
You can set default hyphenation options for all new forms or customize hyphenation settings for individuals forms.
Set hyphenation options in these areas:
Options dialog box (Formatting panel) Use the options in this dialog box to specify default hyphenation settings for
all new forms. Changing theses options does not affect the currently opened form.
Forms Properties dialog box (Formatting tab) Use the options in this dialog box to specify hyphenation settings for the
currently opened form only.
Paragraph palette (Hyphenation option) Use this option to enable or disable hyphenation in individual objects.
Note: When you create a form, the Form Properties dialog box automatically inherits the default hyphenation settings
for new forms from the Tools Options dialog box. To create a form that has different hyphenation settings or to change
the default settings in an existing form, use the Form Properties dialog box. The settings in the Form Properties dialog box
override the settings in the Options dialog box for the current form. When you change the hyphenation settings in the
Forms Properties dialog box for the current form, the settings in the Options dialog box (for new forms) do not change.
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More Help topics
“Hyphenation in selected paragraphs” on page 354
“Paragraph properties in the Paragraph palette” on page 386
“Formatting (Options dialog box)” on page 674
“Formatting (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 657
Considerations for setting hyphenation
Keep the following points in mind regarding the various options you must select for objects that contain hyphenated
text:
Hyphenate option in the Paragraph palette
Although the hyphenation you select in the Form Properties and Options dialog boxes apply to the entire form, you
can use the Hyphenate option in the Paragraph palette to add or remove hyphenation in individual objects. Using the
Hyphenate option, you can manually adjust text layout on an object-by-object basis.
The Hyphenate option is available in the Paragraph palette only when you select the Using the Allow Hyphenation in
Text and Field Captions option or the Allow Hyphenation in Text Field Values option, or both on the Form Properties
(Formatting tab) or the Options (Formatting panel) dialog boxes. The Hyphenate option displays a colored square
when these two options are in a mixed state, where either Allow Hyphenation in Text and Field Captions or Allow
Hyphenation in Text Field Values is deselected. That is, when you select the Hyphenate option for an object when these
two options are in a mixed state, the check box displays a colored arrow, which changes to a colored square to remind
you that one of the options is deselected.
When Hyphenate New Items is selected in the Options dialog box on the Formatting panel, the Hyphenate option is
automatically selected with new objects added to a form.
Currently Editing palette menu
The commands in the Currently Editing palette menu (Edit Caption or Value, Edit Caption, or Edit Value) determine
when the Hyphenate option is available in the Paragraph palette (does not apply to text objects). That is, the Allow
Hyphenation in Text and Field Captions option and the Allow Hyphenation in Text Field Values option are applied
according to the command you select. For example, if you select the Allow Hyphenation in Text and Field Captions
option, you must also select either the Edit Caption or Value command or the Edit Caption command to make the
Hyphenate option available.
Use these commands to select the area (caption, value, or both) to hyphenate in each object that contains hyphenated
text. For example, to hyphenate the text in text objects and the captions in text field objects, select the Allow
Hyphenation in Text and Field Captions option and either the Edit Caption and Value menu command or the Edit
Caption command. Alternatively, to hyphenate the default or user input text in the value area of text objects, select the
Allow Hyphenation in Text Field Values option and the Edit Value menu command. The default command for text
fields, decimal fields, numeric fields, and signature fields is Edit Caption or Value.
Expand to Fit options
It is recommended that you select the Expand to Fit (Height) option for each object that contains hyphenated text.
When a word is too long to fit entirely on a line, hyphenation forces a line break and divides the word over two lines.
As a result, the object that contains the text needs to expand in height to accommodate additional lines when needed.
However, you can also manually enlarge objects to the correct size where hyphenation can occur. Text objects expand
in width (as needed) when you enter text, even if you do not select the Expand To Fit (Width) option.
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Allow Multiple Lines option
(Applies to the value area of text objects only) Select this option on the Field tab of the Object palette for each text
object to hyphenate the text in, in the value area of text field objects. This option enables the text to break onto more
than one line where the height of the field permits.
More Help topics
“Hyphenation in selected paragraphs” on page 354
“Paragraph properties in the Paragraph palette” on page 386
“Formatting (Options dialog box)” on page 674
“Formatting (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 657
Setting and removing hyphenation in forms
You can hyphenate the text in, and remove hyphenation from, text objects, the caption area of objects such as text
fields, decimal fields, numeric fields, and signature fields, and the value area of text field objects (default text and text
the form filler enters).
To set hyphenation for new forms Use the Formatting panel in the Options dialog box. The numbers you enter and
the options you select on the Formatting panel are used as default settings in the Form Properties dialog box on the
Formatting tab.
To set hyphenation for individual forms Use the Formatting tab in the Form Properties dialog box. The numbers you
enter and the hyphenation options you select on the Formatting tab apply to the current form only. You can change
the hyphenation settings for the current form to suit your needs. The default settings that initially appear in the Form
Properties dialog box are inherited from the Formatting panel in the Options dialog box, which automatically apply
to all new forms. If you change the default settings in the Form Properties dialog box, the new settings override the
settings in the Options dialog box for the current form. The hyphenation options in the Options dialog box do not
change.
Note: Before you set hyphenation for forms, it is recommended that you become familiar with the different options you
need to select for objects that contain hyphenated text. (See “Hyphenate text” on page 92)
To remove hyphenation from forms Use the You can remove hyphenation from the text in text objects, in the caption
area of objects such as text fields, decimal fields, numeric fields, and signature fields, and in the value area of text field
objects.
To set hyphenation for a new form
1 Select Tools > Options.
2 Click Formatting, enter the values, and select the options to apply to new forms:
• In the Words With At Least <x> Letters box, enter the minimum number of letters that a word must contain to
be hyphenated.
• In the After First <x> Letters box, enter the minimum number of letters in a word that must appear on a line
before the hyphen.
• In the Before Last <x> Letters box, enter the minimum number of letters in a word that must appear on the next
line, after the hyphen.
• To hyphenate words that begin with a capital (uppercase) letter, such as the first word of a sentence, select
Hyphenate Capitalized Words.
• To hyphenate words that are all capital letters, such as acronyms, select Hyphenate Words in ALL CAPS.
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• To hyphenate the text in text objects, and in the caption area of objects such as text fields, decimal fields, numeric
fields, and signature fields, select Allow Hyphenation in Text and Field Captions.
• To hyphenate the text in the value area of text field objects (default text and text entered by the person filling the
form), select Allow Hyphenation in Text Field Values.
• Select Hyphenate New Items to hyphenate the text in new objects added to the form.
For descriptions and example usage of the above options, see “Formatting (Options dialog box)” on page 674.
3 Click OK.
To set hyphenation for an individual form
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 Click the Formatting tab, and enter the values and select the options to apply to the current form:
• In the Words With At Least <x> Letters box, enter the minimum number of letters that a word must contain to
be hyphenated.
• In the After First <x> Letters box, enter the minimum number of letters in a word that must appear on a line
before the hyphenation point.
• In the Before Last <x> Letters box, enter the minimum number of letters in a word that must appear on the next
line after the hyphenation point.
• To hyphenate words that begin with a capital (uppercase) letter, such as the first word of a sentence, select
Hyphenate Capitalized Words.
• To hyphenate words that are all capital letters, such as acronyms, select Hyphenate Words in ALL CAPS.
• To hyphenate the text in text objects, and in the caption area of objects such as text fields, decimal fields, numeric
fields, and signature fields, select Allow Hyphenation in Text and Field Captions.
• To hyphenate the text in the value area of text field objects (default text and text entered by the person filling the
form), select Allow Hyphenation in Text Field Values.
For descriptions and example usage of the above options, see “Formatting (Form Properties dialog box)” on
page 657.
3 Click Hyphenate All Text.
Click Edit > Undo Hyphenate All text to immediately undo hyphenation.
To remove hyphenation from a form
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 Click the Formatting tab and do one of the following actions:
• To remove hyphenation from the text in text objects and in the caption area of objects, deselect Allow
Hyphenation in Text and Field Captions.
• To remove hyphenation from the text in the value area of text field objects, deselect Allow Hyphenation in Text
Field Values.
• To remove all hyphenation, click Remove All Hyphenation.
3 Click OK.
To immediately restore all hyphenation, click Edit > Undo Remove All Hyphenation.”
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Hyperlinks
Use hyperlinks to provide links to external websites, email addresses, and PDF and HTML files. You can insert URL
and email hyperlinks within static text objects (including floating fields) or within the caption area of objects such as
text field, image field, and drop-down list objects.
When using hyperlinks with Dynamic XML forms, you must select target version as Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9 or
later.
Note: Designer can not anticipate the content of run-time data. If you intend to populate a form with rich text that
contains hypertext links, you must set the target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later.
To render an XDP form design to HTML when the hyperlinks point to resources in a LiveCycle application, use the
correct notation and check the file in to the LiveCycle server. For the hyperlinks, use the http://<LiveCycle server
name>:<port number>/repository/Applications/<application name>/<version>/<folder>/<filename> notation. In
Workbench, check in the form design to the same LiveCycle server and location.
Note: The hyperlink menu commands are not available with button objects such as Print and Reset, and with read-only
text.
To insert a hyperlink
1 Select the text where you want to insert a hyperlink.
2 Click Insert > Hyperlink.
3 Do one of the following tasks:
• Select URL, and either type or select a valid website address, or click the browse button to select a file located on
your computer. When you select a file, the relative path for the document appears in the URL box.
• Select Email and type one or more valid email addresses and, optionally, a subject line.
4 Click OK.You can also use the Undo Hyperlink and Redo Hyperlink commands in the Edit menu to quickly revert
text or a hyperlink to its former state.
To remove hyperlink
❖ Place the insertion point within the hyperlink, right-click, and select Remove Hyperlink.
You can also use the Undo Hyperlink and Redo Hyperlink commands in the Edit menu to quickly revert text or a
hyperlink to its former state.
To edit a hyperlink
1 Place the insertion point within the hyperlink, right-click, and select Edit Hyperlink.
2 Make the necessary changes, and click OK.
To test a hyperlink
After you insert a hyperlink, it is recommended that you test it to make sure it opens correctly.
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You can test links on either the Design View tab or the PDF Preview tab. On the Design View tab, when you move the
pointer over a hyperlink, the name of the associated object and the link are displayed in a tool tip. On the PDF Preview
tab, when you move the pointer over a hyperlink, only the associated link is displayed in a tool tip. Each link opens the
appropriate program, such as a web browser or an email program.
❖ Place the insertion point within the hyperlink, right-click, and select Open Hyperlink.
As a shortcut, you can use Ctrl+click to quickly open links.
Prepare for translation
To prepare a form design for translation, generate XLIFF identifiers for the translatable text. In Designer, the
identifiers are generated when you select the Create Translation identifiers When Saving option. When selected, the
option generates a unique XLIFF ID for each text string the first time you save the form design. The XLIFF identifiers
are visible in the XML source when you save a form design in the Adobe XML Form (.xdp) format.
When you modify and save the form design, Designer compares the identifier, and string combinations to determine
whether any changes were made since the last time the form design was saved. Changes can include changed text, field
deletion, or field insertion. If the text changed since it last saved, Designer updates the text when you copy an object
that already has an identifier so that a duplicate identifier is not created.
Designer includes two examples of Extensible Stylesheet Language Transformations (XSLT) files. The
extractstrings.xslt file extracts the XLIFF IDs and the mergestrings.xslt file creates a new version of the form design in
the new language. The examples are installed with Designer in the installation directory under \...\FormTranslation.
More Help topics
Translating Forms using XLIFF
To create translation identifiers
1 Select Tools > Document Handling.
2 In the File Options area, select Create Translation Identifiers When Saving.
3 Create and save the form design.
Extracting the translation identifiers and translatable text
You can use the example extractstrings.xslt file as a starting point to extract the XLIFF identifiers and text that must
be translated from the form design.
Pass the form design as the input to the extractstrings.xslt style sheet by using an XSLT processor, such as a free or
commercial version of the Saxon XSLT processor. Optional and required arguments are available. The required
arguments describe how to execute a given XSLT. The optional arguments contain metadata.
For example, to extract the XLIFF identifiers and text from the MyForm.xdp file, enter the following required
arguments at the command prompt to generate the MyForm.s2x file:
java -jar saxon8.jar MyForm.xdp extractstrings.xslt > MyForm.s2x
MyForm.xdp is the name of the form design that you extract the XLIFF identifiers and text from, and MyForm.s2x is
the file that you send to be translated.
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Make sure that you keep a backup of the XLIFF file. Then, if you must edit the form design, you can easily determine
which strings must be translated by comparing the XLIFF backup file with the XLIFF file for the changed form design.
Note: The saxon8.jar file can have a different name, depending on the version of Saxon being used. An example is
saxon9.jar.
extractstrings.xslt optional parameters
You can specify the following optional parameters that are included in the S2X metadata.
Parameter
Description
locale
Locale of the form design
xdpFilename
Name of the form design that you extract the XLIFF identifiers and text from
develContact
Email address of the contact for the form design
collection
Name of the package
domain
Domain name
Each parameter has a default:
<xslt:param
<xslt:param
<xslt:param
<xslt:param
<xslt:param
name="locale" select="'en'" />
name="xdpFilename" select="'mytemplate.xdp'" />
name="develContact" select="'[email protected]'" />
name="collection" select="'package'" />
name="domain" select="'BC'" />
Here is an example:
java -jar saxon8.jar input.xdp extractstrings.xslt xdpFilename=MyForm.xdp locale=en_CA
>
MyForm.s2x
Creating the form design with the translated text
After you receive the translated XLIFF file, enter the following string at the command prompt to create the translated
form design:
java -jar saxon8.jar MyForm.s2x mergestrings.xslt xdpFile=MyForm.xdp
> MyFormTranslated.xdp
MyForm.s2x is the translated XLIFF file, MyForm.xdp is the name of original form design, and
MyFormTranslated.xdp is the translated form design.
The result is a master form design (MyForm.xdp) and a translated form design (MyFormTranslated.xdp) that you can
make available to users.
If you must change the form design, edit the master form design and then repeat the steps above to produce a new
XLIFF file.
We provide the example mergestrings.xslt style sheet, which creates a new version of the form design in the new
language.
More Help topics
“Prepare for translation” on page 97
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Macros
Macros provide an external plug-in interface, to extend the functionality of Designer. For example, you can run a
macro to rename a field and update all associated script references, or to find scripts that consist entirely of comments.
Note: You should only run a macro if you trust the author of the script.
A macro is a JavaScript file (JS). You create JavaScript files in a JavaScript editor and run the scripts in Designer. The
JavaScript in the macro has full access to the template model. In addition to the template DOM, there is an object in
the root namespace called designer. The designer object provides methods that you can use to communicate directly
with Designer. For example, one method allows you to launch a SWF dialog box and exchange strings with it, which
allows you to build a custom user interface.
For more information about available scripting methods, see the Scripting Reference.
To set up macros for use in Designer, you create a subfolder structure for JavaScript files in the Designer installation
folder, and run the JavaScript files from the Macros menu (Tools > Macros).
To set up macros for use in Designer
1 Do one of the following actions:
• For common macros (all languages), in the Designer installation folder, create a subfolder called macros. For
example, <DesignerInstallationFolder>\macros.
• For language specific macros, in the Designer installation folder, create a subfolder for each language (locale),
and then create a macros folder in each locale folder. For example, <DesignerInstallationFolder>\EN\macros.
2 In each macros folder, create one or more subfolders for JavaScript (JS) and macro.xml files.
3 Save JavaScript and macro.xml files to the appropriate subfolders. Place any SWF files used by the macro JavaScript
files in the same subfolder.
4 In Designer, click Tools > Macros. The macros (common and language specific) are listed on the Macros menu.
About macro.xml configuration files
You create an macro.xml configuration file to rename the command that appears on the Macros menu for each
JavaScript file in a subfolder. You add one macro.xml file to each subfolder containing one or more JavaScript files.
Notice the label and script tags in the following example macro.xml file. The label tag encloses the name of the
command (Merge) that appears on the Macros menu. The script tag encloses the name of the associated JavaScript file
(mergenodes.js).
Example macro.xml file:
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<designerMacros>
<!-- one or more macros that are in the same directory can be specified in the same macro.xml
config file -->
<macro>
<!-- used as menu command text -->
<label>Merge</label>
<!-- A macro key can refer to only one script file -->
<script>mergenodes.js</script>
</macro>
</designerMacros>
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Using macro.xml configuration files is optional. When Designer refreshes the list of macros, it searches the macros
subfolders for macro.xml files. If Designer does not locate a macro.xml file in a subfolder, the names of the JavaScript
files appear on the Macros menu.
Organizing the macros subfolder
Create a least one subfolder under the macros folder to contain your JavaScript files. If you save JavaScript files directly
in the macros folder, they do not appear on the Macros menu in Designer.
You can organize macros subfolders different ways. The method you choose, depends on your needs. Consider the
number of JavaScript files you have, the number of macro.xml files to create, and the order of commands on the
Macros menu.
One way to organize the macros subfolders is to save all JavaScript files in one subfolder. This way, you use one
macro.xml file to specify the names of all JavaScript files in the folder, and names of the associated Macros menu
commands. The order of the commands on the Macros menu, is the same as the order of macros listed in the
macro.xml file.
Example macro.xml file containing multiple macros:
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<designerMacros>
<macro>
<label>Get Designer Locale</label>
<!-- Description - Get Designer locale -->
<script>getLocale.js</script>
</macro>
<macro>
<label>Hello World</label>
<!-- Description - Display Hello World -->
<script>helloWorld.js</script>
</macro>
<macro>
<label>Highlight Text</label>
<!-- Description - Highlight text areas -->
<script>HighlightFields.js</script>
</macro>
<macro>
<label>Refactor</label>
<!-- Description - Refactor -->
<script>refactor.js</script>
</macro>
<macro>
<label>Show Flex Sample</label>
<!-- Description - Show Flex Sample -->
<script>showFlexSample.js</script>
</macro>
</designerMacros>
Another way to organize the macros subfolders is to save JavaScript files in separate subfolders. You use a macro.xml
file in each subfolder to specify the name of the JavaScript files, and name the related Macros menu commands. The
order of the commands on the Macros menu, is the same as the order of subfolders and the macros listed in each
macro.xml file.
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Keep in mind that all the subfolders you create for JavaScript files must be a child of the macros parent folder
(macros\MyMacros). Designer does not scan subfolders below the level of the first subfolder.After you add a JavaScript
file to a macros subfolder, the name of the file appears under the Macros command on the Tools menu. If you want to
display a name other than the JavaScript filename, you can create an XML configuration file named macro.xml to
change the name.
Localizing macros
You create a subfolder structure in the Designer installation folder for the JavaScript files associated with macros. The
subfolders structure you create depends on whether you plan to localize macros or not.
If you do not need to localize macros, because they are common to all languages, you create a subfolder named macros
in the Designer installation folder. For example, c:\program files\Adobe\Designer\macros\. You then create one or
more subfolders in the macros subfolder for the JavaScript files you want to run. You can create one subfolder for all
JavaScript files or create a separate subfolder for each JavaScript file. Designer loads the JavaScript files in these
subfolders, regardless of the locale option selected in the Form Locale list (Form Properties dialog box > Defaults
panel).
If you need to localize macros, because they are locale (language) specific, you create a subfolder in the Designer
installation folder for each locale. You then create a macros subfolder in each locale subfolder, and create one or more
subfolders in the locale subfolder for the Javascript files. For example: c:\program files\Adobe\Designer\EN\macros\.
Designer loads the JavaScript files in these folders based on Designer's application language.
Macro Logging
If you are unsure which macros Designer is loading, you can check the macros log file.
Designer creates a log file called MacrosLog.log in the Designer application data folder located here: C:\Documents
and Settings\<username>\Application Data\Adobe\Designer\<Designer version number>.
The MacrosLog.log file lists the macros loaded in Designer.
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Previewing and testing forms
In the Preview PDF tab, you can view and test a form design or template as a PDF form by using Acrobat or Adobe
Reader.
The Preview PDF tab appears only when Acrobat or Adobe Reader is installed. By default, if you have both Acrobat
and Adobe Reader installed, Designer starts Acrobat automatically to preview the form. To use Adobe Reader to
preview the form, you must start it before you click the Preview PDF tab.
If you change the File > Form Properties > Defaults > Target Version setting to a specific version of Acrobat and Adobe
Reader, you must ensure that you have the version of Acrobat installed that matches the target version that is saved;
otherwise, you may get an error or a warning message when you click the Preview PDF tab.
The preview will use the same format as the saved form. You can right-click the PDF Preview tab to see which default
file type option is currently selected. To indicate the format of an unsaved form, you must change the Tools > Options
> Document Handling setting.
If you are designing an interactive or printable form, you can change the File > Form Properties > Preview > Preview
Type setting to set up your Preview PDF correctly.
If you are designing forms for use with Forms, the same form design can be used to render PDF or HTML forms.
Although you can preview the form design on the Preview PDF tab, the HTML form may not appear the same as it
does when the form is rendered by using Forms. If you are creating an HTML form, render the form by using Forms
and preview it in a web browser.
More Help topics
“Addressing warning messages in the Report palette” on page 107
To preview and test forms in the Preview HTML tab
Besides previewing the PDF rendition of forms, you can also preview the format in HTML rendition while designing
the form in Adobe LiveCycle Designer. Preview HTML tab can be used to preview form as it would appear in a
browser. For more information, see Preview your XDP form in HTML.
To preview your forms in HTML, provide configuration details of your LiveCycle server:
1 Go to Tools > Options.
2 In the Options window, select Server Options page and provide following details:
• Server URL: URL of the LiveCycle Server.
• HTTP port number: Port number at which the LiveCycle server is running. The default value is 8080.
• HTML Preview Context: Path of the profile to use for rendering XFA forms. The default value is
lc/content/xfaforms/profiles/default.html. The default profile is used to preview the form in designer
and to use any other custom profile, provide appropriate path of the custom profile.
• Forms Manager Context: Context path at which Forms Manager UI is deployed. The default value is lc/fm.
Note: Ensure that LiveCycle is available at the server URL configured above. The HTML preview connects to the CRX
server to generate a preview.
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To preview and test forms in the Preview PDF tab
Use the Preview PDF tab to preview a form design as it would appear in Acrobat or Adobe Reader. Before previewing
a form design, ensure that you have set the appropriate options in the Form Properties dialog box for previewing the
specific type of form.
You can right-click the Preview PDF tab to see which default preview type option is currently selected.
To display the Acrobat or Adobe Reader toolbars in the Preview PDF tab, press ALT+F8.
Note: To preview a form in the Preview PDF tab, ensure that the Display In Browser option in Acrobat is selected. Ensure
that you have the version of Acrobat or Adobe Reader installed that matches the target version saved; otherwise, you may
get an error or warning message when you click the Preview PDF tab.
1 Choose one of the following ways to display the Preview PDF tab:
• Select View > Preview PDF.
• In the Layout Editor, click the Preview PDF tab.
2 If the form is interactive, test the objects on the form to ensure they are functioning as expected.
3 (Optional) If the form is non-interactive and being merged with data, you may also want to test the form with a
sample data file to ensure that fields are appropriately mapped to the data source.
Note: You must use Acrobat to test the Web Services and Database Connectivity features. These features require a rightsenabled PDF form, but you cannot set usage rights for a PDF form for previewing in Designer.
More Help topics
“Addressing warning messages in the Report palette” on page 107
To set preview options for an interactive form
To preview an interactive form, you need to set the appropriate options in the Form Properties dialog box.
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 Click the Preview tab and, in the Preview Type list, select Interactive Form.
3 (Optional) To test the form you are previewing by using a data source that you created, enter the full path to your
test data file in the Data File box. You can also use the browse button to navigate to the file.
4 (Optional) To test the form you are previewing by using an automatically generated data source, click Generate
Preview Data. You can use the browse button to navigate to the location where you want the file saved. If the form
contains repeating subforms or subform sets, indicate the number of times each subform or subform set will repeat
in the data file.
5 In the Preview Adobe XML Form As list, select either Static PDF Form or Dynamic XML Form.
To set preview options for a non-interactive form
To preview a non-interactive form, you need to set the appropriate options in the Form Properties dialog box.
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 (Optional) To test the form that you are previewing as if it were printed on one side of the paper, click the Preview
tab and, in the Preview Type list, select Print Form (One-sided).
3 (Optional) To test the form that you are previewing as if it were printed on both sides of the paper, click the Preview
tab and, in the Preview Type list, select Print Form (Two-sided).
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Note: When you select Print Form, all objects are non-interactive.
4 (Optional) To test the form that you are previewing by using a data source, enter the full path to your test data file
in the Data File box. You can also use the browse button to navigate to the file.
5 (Optional) To test the form that you are previewing by using an automatically generated data source, click Generate
Preview Data. You can use the browse button to navigate to the location where you want the file saved. If the form
contains repeating subforms or subform sets, indicate the number of times each subform or subform set will repeat
in the data file.
6 In the Preview Adobe XML Form As list, select either Static PDF Form or Dynamic XML Form.
To preview a form using sample data
Designer lets you preview and test your form by using sample XML data. It is recommended that you frequently test
your form with sample data to ensure that the form renders correctly.
If you do not have sample data, Designer can create it, or you can create it yourself. (See “To automatically generate
sample data to preview your form” on page 104 and “To create sample data to preview your form” on page 105.)
Testing your form by using a sample data source ensures that the data and fields are mapped and that repeating
subforms repeat as you expected. You can create a balanced form layout that provides the appropriate space for each
object to display the merged data.
1 Select File > Form Properties.
2 Click the Preview tab and, in the Data File box, type the full path to your test data file. You can also use the browse
button to navigate to the file.
3 Click OK. The next time you preview the form in the Preview PDF tab, the data values from the sample XML file
will appear in the respective objects.
For detailed information about each option in the Preview tab, see “Preview (Form Properties dialog box)” on
page 662.
More Help topics
“Create a data connection to an XML schema” on page 497
To automatically generate sample data to preview your form
You can generate sample data to preview and test your form instead of creating a sample data file. Also, if your form
contains repeating subforms or subform sets, you can specify the number of times the data will be repeated when you
preview the form.
Designer generates sample data that is valid for the corresponding objects in the form, with a few exceptions:
• Sample data is not generated according to any validation scripts that might be specified for an object.
• The minimum and maximum count for a subform will restrict the number of repeating subforms that you specify
for the generated sample data file.
• The default value you select for a 2D barcode is retained in the generated sample data file.
After you generate the sample data file, you can edit the file, if required.
Specify which data file to use when you preview the form. The next time you preview the form in Designer, the sample
data will appear in the respective objects.
1 In Designer, select File > Form Properties > Preview tab.
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2 (Optional) To test the form that you are previewing as an interactive form, in the Preview Type list, select
Interactive Form
3 (Optional) To test the form that you are previewing for single-sided printing, in the Preview Type list, select Print
Form (One-sided).
4 (Optional) To test the form that you are previewing for double-sided printing, in the Preview Type list, select Print
Form (Two-sided).
5 Click Generate Preview Data.
6 In the Generate Preview Data dialog box, type the full path, including a file name, for the test data file. You can also
use the browse button to navigate to the location in the Data File box.
7 In the Repeating Elements list, select the number to the left of a subform and type the number of times it will repeat
in the data file.
8 Click Generate.
To create sample data to preview your form
If you do not want to use a sample data file that Designer automatically creates, you can create a sample data file
manually.
1 Save the form design as a PDF file.
2 Open the PDF file and enter values in the fields you want to test.
3 In Acrobat, select Advanced > Forms > Export Form Data.
4 In the Export Form Data As dialog box, name and save the file as type XML Data Package (*.xdp).
5 In Designer, select File > Form Properties > Preview tab.
6 (Optional) To test the form that you are previewing as an interactive form, in the Preview Type list, select
Interactive Form
7 (Optional) To test the form that you are previewing for single-sided printing, in the Preview Type list, select Print
Form (One-sided).
8 (Optional) To test the form that you are previewing for double-sided printing, in the Preview Type list, select Print
Form (Two-sided).
9 Click the folder button next to the Data File box and browse to the XML file.
10 Select the XML file and click OK.
Considerations for testing form designs with data
When setting up forms to support merged data, analyze the data-merging requirements of the form against the input
data. The form design should be created based on the structure of the input data.
Data binding attempts to match each new form node with a data node. When you use explicit bindings, the targets that
are defined in the form design take precedence over implicit bindings. When you use implicit (normal) bindings, the
following rules apply:
• The relative order of same-named data values or groups is significant.
• The relative order of uniquely named data values or groups is not significant.
• The hierarchy of structure described by data values or groups is significant.
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Review the input data and consider preparing a sample data file, or have Designer automatically generate a sample data
file for testing purposes.
Sample data may be used to determine the behavior of a form and should not be considered a replacement for
thorough testing. To obtain the best results, the form design should be tested with system-generated data. You can
generate the sample data as suggested in the following list to determine whether the layout, formatting, content, and
behavior of a form responds as expected:
• To verify whether data formatting (for example, font type, font size, and paragraph alignment) is correct, generate
data for every field in the form. The data will also let you verify any calculated field values.
• To verify whether field objects are large enough to accommodate all data values, generate data to reach the
maximum number of characters permitted per field.
• To verify the operation of multiple-line and expand-to-fit settings, generate multiple lines of data.
• If your form design contains repeating subforms, you can generate repeating data groups to test the rendering of
those subforms in the sample data file that you create. If you are using an automatically generated sample data file,
you can specify the number of times you want a data group to repeat.
• If your form design contains overflow leaders or trailers, generate the data necessary to test every overflow leader
or trailer and their occurrence settings. You should generate enough repeating data groups to flow over three pages,
which will also let you verify page numbering. Use the sample data (add one repeating data group at a time) to verify
how a repeating subform looks when it flows onto a new page.
• To test the data pattern setting for bound data, ensure that all data values are in the same format generated by the
system, especially if the syntax of the source data does not match Designer defaults.
• Generate enough data to employ the layout of every master page in the rendered form.
Important: Ensure that the form data does not contain hexadecimal values between 0x00 and 0x20, except for carriage
return and horizontal tab. These values are invalid XML characters that Forms does not recognize.
Creating a sample data file
The following guidelines will help you to create a simple test file that contains representative input data:
• The input data file must be a valid XML file. For example, a flat file would have elements of this format:
<root_node>
<first_node>value</first_node>
<second_node>value</second_node>
...
<last_node>value</last_node>
</root_node>
• Compare the flow of the input data to the physical layout of the form. If you are using implicit binding, the names
of the data nodes must match the corresponding containers and fields in the form and be presented in the same
order as the fill order in the form.
• If the input data file has more levels of nesting compared to the items in the Hierarchy palette, data bindings for all
of the nested objects must be set explicitly through the Binding tab in the Object palette.
• In the input data file, look for data that is repeated but not part of every record. This information could possibly be
handled on master pages as boilerplate objects or in subforms that repeat the data for unique records only.
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More Help topics
“Working with Data Sources” on page 494
“About form designs” on page 5
“Form design layouts” on page 5
To test for accessibility
You should test your forms by using a variety of assistive technologies to ensure that the forms are accessible to users.
Download demonstration versions of the screen reader software. As the form author, your familiarity with the form
may make it difficult to determine whether the information read by the screen reader is sufficient and understandable.
If possible, have someone else test your form in this way. To test screen reader results, turn your monitor off and use
only the screen reader to navigate and fill the form.
Check the Internet for demonstration versions of screen magnification software.
Ensure that you can fill the form by using only the keyboard, and keep in mind the following questions:
• Are there any operations that cannot be performed?
• Are any operations awkward or difficult to perform?
• Are keyboard mechanisms well-documented?
• Do all controls and menu items have underlined access keys?
When filling the form, take note of these issues:
• Any parts of the form that become invisible, unrecognizable, or difficult to use
• Areas that continue to appear black on a white background
• Form objects that are improperly sized or truncated
Addressing warning messages in the Report palette
The Report palette displays different warning and error messages relating to aspects of the form design. When a
warning message is generated, these details appear in the Warnings tab in the Report palette:
• The affected object
• A description of the warning
• The type of warning
• The target version that supports the object (if applicable)
• The warning code number
The messages in the Warnings tab are automatically updated as you work in the form design. The messages disappear
as you fix the errors.
Designer generates these types of warning messages:
Target Target warning messages appear when you try to use a feature that is not supported in the Acrobat and Adobe
Reader target version. For information on addressing target warning messages, see “Target version warning messages”
on page 108.
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Marker Marker warning messages appear when a problem occurs with an object. These messages are associated with
warning symbols, such as a yellow triangle or white “X” within a red circle. For information on addressing marker
warning messages, see “Action warning messages” on page 112.
Scripting Scripting error messages occur when issues occur with scripts in the form design. When you click Tools >
Check Script Syntax, scripting error messages appear in the Warning tab in the Report palette. For more information
about scripting error messages, see “Scripting error messages” on page 114.
Target version warning messages
When you use a feature that the selected target version does not support, warning messages appear in the Warnings
tab in the Report palette.
If you require a feature, use one of these solutions:
• Update to a target version that supports the feature.
• Save the form as a static PDF form. Earlier versions of Acrobat and Adobe Reader support some features when the
form is saved as a static PDF form.
• Fix the warning message.
This table indicates the code for each target warning message, the affected file types, the target warning message that
appears in the Description column on the Warning tab of the Report palette, and ways to remove the warning message.
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Code
File type
Description
To remove the warning message
2405
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support
vertical paragraph alignment for field
values.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or click the
Paragraph palette and reset the paragraph vertical alignment to these default
values:
2406
Dynamic XML Form
Legacy (Version 6) Text Formatting
does not support vertical paragraph
alignment for field values.
•
Text Field (single line) - Align Middle
•
Text Field (multiple line) - Align Top
•
Date/Time Field - Align Middle
•
Numeric Field - Align Middle
•
Decimal Field - Align Middle
•
Drop-down List - Align Middle
•
Password Field - Align Middle
•
List Box - Align Top
Select File > Form Properties click the Compatibility tab and update the text
formatting to Version 7, or click the Paragraph palette and reset the paragraph
vertical alignment to these default values:
•
Text Field (single line) - Align Middle
•
Text Field (multiple line) - Align Top
•
Date/Time Field - Align Middle
•
Numeric Field - Align Middle
•
Decimal Field - Align Middle
•
Drop-down List - Align Middle
•
Password Field - Align Middle
•
List Box - Align Top
2407
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
preOpen event.
Increase the target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or move the
script to a supported event, or delete the script.
2500
Static PDF Form
Target version does not support the
check mark shapes for the current file
type.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or click the
Object palette, click the Field tab and select Default from the Check Style list.
Dynamic XML Form
2501
Static PDF Form
Dynamic XML Form
2502
Static PDF Form
Dynamic XML Form
2503
Static PDF Form
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or click the
button highlighting for the current file Object palette, click the Field tab and select Inverted from the Highlighting list.
type.
Target version does not support comb Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or click the
fields for the current file type.
Object palette, click the Field tab, and deselect Comb Of.
Target version does not support the
Limit Length to Visible Area option for
the current file type.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or click the
Object palette, click the Field tab, and deselect Limit Length to Visible Area.
2505
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
Preserve Scripting Changes To Form
When Saved option.
Select File > Form Properties, click the Defaults tab and, under Preserve Scripting
Changes to Form When Saved, select Manually.
2506
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support
locking fields after signing.
Select the Signature Field object, click the Object palette, click the Signature tab
and deselect Lock Fields After Signing.
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Code
File type
Description
To remove the warning message
2507
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
indexChange event.
Move the script to a supported event or deleting the script.
2508
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
signature settings.
Select the Signature Field object, click the Object palette, click the Signature tab
and deselect the previously selected options.
2509
Static PDF Form
Target version does not support the
Visible (Screen Only) option for the
current file type and/or object type.
For Static PDF Form (buttons), increase the target version to Acrobat and Adobe
Reader 7.0.5 or later.
Target version does not support the
Visible (Print Only) option for the
current file type.
Increase the target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later.
Dynamic XML Form
2510
Static PDF Form
Dynamic XML Form
For Dynamic XML Form (all objects except buttons that have right-hand borders)
increase the target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later.
2514
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
Enforce Strict Scoping Rules in
JavaScript option.
Select File > Form Properties, click the Defaults tab and deselect Enforce Strict
Scoping Rules in JavaScript.
2515
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support XML
data signatures.
Increase the target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 8.0 or later, or select the
object, click the Object palette, click the Field tab or the Submit tab, and deselect
Sign Submission.
2516
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
Duplex Mode option.
Select File > Form Properties, click the PDF Print Options tab and deselect Use
These Print Settings For Printing This PDF Form, or select File > Form Properties,
click the PDF Print Options tab, and select Simplex.
2517
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support row
shading in tables. If you change the
target version after adding row
shading, reapply it to correspond to
the new target version.
Increase the target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 8.0 or later.
2518
Static PDF Form
Target version does not support
tooltips.
Increase the target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 8.0 or later, or select the
static image, click the Accessibility palette, and remove the tooltip text.
Select File > Form Properties, click the PDF Print Options tab, select Default in the
Number Of Copies list, or deselect Use These Print Settings For Printing This PDF
Form.
Dynamic XML Form
2519
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
Number of Copies option.
2520
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the No Select File > Form Properties, click the PDF Print Options tab, select Use These
Page Scaling option.
Print Settings For Printing This PDF Form and then select Use Adobe
Acrobat/Reader Setting or deselect Use These Print Settings For Printing This PDF
Form.
2521
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
Select Paper Source by Page Size
option.
Select File > Form Properties, click the PDF Print Options tab, select Default in the
Number Of Copies list, or deselect Use These Print Settings For Printing This PDF
Form.
2600
Static PDF Form
Target version does not support the
Print on Both Sides or Print on Front
Side Only options for the current file
type.
In the Hierarchy palette, click Master Pages, click the Object palette, click the Page
Set tab, and select Page Occurrence from the Printing list.
Target version does not support the
One-sided Printing Only and Twosided Printing Only options.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 8.1 or later.
Dynamic XML Form
2601
Dynamic XML Form
2800
Static PDF Form (captions and Target version does not support font
text objects only)
scaling for the current file type.
Dynamic XML Form
For Static PDF Form (field values) and Dynamic XML Form, increase target version
to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0, or click the Font palette and type 100% in the
Vertical Scale and Horizontal Scale boxes.
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Code
File type
Description
2801
Static PDF Form (captions and Target version does not support
text objects only)
letterspacing for the current file type.
Dynamic XML Form
2802
Static PDF Form (captions and Target version does not support
text objects only)
kerning for the current file type.
Dynamic XML Form
2803
Static PDF Form (captions and Target version does not support text
text objects only)
hyphenation for the current file type.
Dynamic XML Form
To remove the warning message
For Static PDF Form and Dynamic XML Form, increase target version to Acrobat
and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or click the Font palette and type 0 in the Letter
Spacing box.
For Static PDF Form (field values) and Dynamic XML Form, increase target version
to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or click the Font palette and deselect
Kerning.
For Static PDF Form (field values) and Dynamic XML Form, increase target version
to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or select Select File > Form Properties,
click the Formatting tab, and click Remove All Hyphenation.
2804
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support
GB18030 submit data encoding.
For Static PDF Form (button objects) and Dynamic XML Form, increase target
version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, click the Object palette, click the
Submit tab and select another Encoding option from the Data Encoding list.
2805
Static PDF Form
Target version does not support the
Widow and Orphan Control option for
the current file type.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or save the form
as a Static PDF Form, or select Select File > Form Properties, click the Formatting
tab, and deselect Widow and Orphan Control.
Target version does not support the
Allow Page Breaks Within Content
option for the current file type.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or click the
Object palette, click the Subform tab, and deselect Allow Page Breaks Within
Content.
Target version does not support the
Keep With Next option for the current
file type.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or deselect Keep
With Next.
Dynamic XML Form
2806
Static PDF Form
Dynamic XML Form
2807
Static PDF Form
Dynamic XML Form
2808
Static PDF Form (captions and Target version does not support
text objects only)
hyperlinks for the current file type.
Dynamic XML Form
For Static PDF Form (text objects and field values) and Dynamic XML Form,
increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or remove
hyperlinks.
2809
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
preSign event.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or remove the
script event.
2810
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
postSign event.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or remove the
script event.
2811
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
postOpen event.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or remove the
script event.
2812
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
postSubmit event.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or remove the
script event.
2813
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support web
service authentication.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later.
2814
Static PDF Form
Target version does not support this
use of leaders for the current file type.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later.
Dynamic XML Form
2815
Static PDF Form
Dynamic XML Form
Target version requires the Allow Page Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or click the
Breaks Within Content option for the
Object palette, click the Subform tab, and select Allow Page Breaks Within
current file type.
Content.
2816
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
Prevent User from Changing No Page
Scaling option.
Select File > Form Properties, click the PDF Print Options tab, deselect Prevent
User from Changing, or select Use Adobe Acrobat/Reader Setting, or deselect Use
These Print Settings For Printing This PDF Form.
2817
Static PDF Form
Target version does not support the
"%s" action.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later.
Dynamic XML Form
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Code
File type
Description
To remove the warning message
2818
Static PDF Form
Target version does not support the
"%s" action.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.0 or later, or delete the
action, or unmanage the action's script, or undo the last action, or fix the action by
picking another trigger condition.
Dynamic XML Form
3000
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support
Inactive presence.
Select the object, click the Object palette, click the Field tab, and select a
supported presence.
3001
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
Event Propagation option.
Select the object, click the Script Editor, and deselect Enable Event Propagation.
3002
Dynamic XML Form
The current target version does not
support the US Postal Intelligent Mail
Barcode.
Remove the object or increase the target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader
9.1 or later.
3003
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
Show Dialog Message.
Select File > Form Properties, click the Form Validation tab, select Show Dialog
Message from the List of Options, and deselect Configure How Acrobat Displays
Validation Message Boxes.
3004
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
validationState event.
Increase target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 8.0 or later, or move the
script to a supported event, or delete the script.
3005
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
Set Focus option for form validation.
Select File > Form Properties, click the Form Validation tab, select Set Focus from
the list of options, and deselect Set Focus To The First Field That Fails To Validate
3006
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
Color Failed Fields option for form
validation.
Select File > Form Properties, click the Form Validation tab, select Color Failed
Fields from the list of options, and deselect Color Fields That Fail Their Validations
3007
Dynamic XML Form
Target version does not support the
Select File > Form Properties, click the Form Validation tab, select Color
Color Mandatory Fields option for form Mandatory Fields from the list of options, and deselect Color Mandatory Fields
validation.
That Are Not Filled-in.
90000
Static PDF Form
Target version does not support the
%1 attribute or element.
Dynamic XML Form
A general message for problems that other target messages do not cover. It also
appears when you edit the XML source and introduce unsupported functionality
More Help topics
“Report palette menu” on page 631
“Form Validation (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 659
Action warning messages
The Warnings tab in the Report palette lists messages associated with actions.
The following table lists and describes the action warning messages.
Code
Type
Description
40000
Actions
The "action name" action is broken. It references one or more missing objects.
More Help topics
“Building actions in forms” on page 82
“Form Validation (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 659
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Warning marker messages
The Warnings tab in the Report palette lists messages associated with warning markers that appear when a problem
occurs with an object.
The following table lists and describes the warning marker messages.
Code
Type
Description
20000
Miscellaneous
At least two radio buttons have the same value. The group is meant to be mutually exclusive; all values must be unique.
20001
Miscellaneous
You may have to provide a return URL. See the Help documentation for more information about using the submit button.
20002
Miscellaneous
No email address specified. Use the Object palette to specify an email address.
20003
Miscellaneous
Invalid email address. Enter the email address of the form: [email protected]
20004
Miscellaneous
Although this object allows rich text to be entered, its Data Format accepts only plain text. Use the Object palette to make these
properties compatible.
20005
Miscellaneous
Although this object allows only plain text to be entered, its Data Format accepts rich text. Use the Object palette to make these
properties compatible.
20006
Miscellaneous
The list box is set to support multiple selection and its Commit On property is set to 'select' rather than the recommended value
of 'exit'.
20007
Miscellaneous
The field's value area does not fit the maximum length value permitted. Increase the field's value area or decrease its value length
to ensure that all possible values will fit.
20008
Miscellaneous
A border around a barcode field can affect its scanning.
20009
Miscellaneous
Background fill behind a barcode field can affect its scanning.
20010
Miscellaneous
Limit to visible area is ignored on fields that are set to expand to fit.
20011
Miscellaneous
For a screen reader to read a list properly, list items must be contained within a parent List element.
20012
Miscellaneous
No subform is present in the content area or the first subform is too large for the content area.
20013
Miscellaneous
A content area should be in the print-only view and in the screen-only view.
20014
Miscellaneous
A page area should be in the print-only view and in the screen-only view.
20015
Picture Clause
The specified Data pattern "%s" is invalid. Define a valid Data pattern.
20016
Picture Clause
The Data pattern "%s" is incompatible with the object's data format. Define a compatible Data pattern.
20017
Picture Clause
The specified Display pattern "%s" is invalid. Define a valid Display pattern.
20018
Picture Clause
The Display pattern "%s" is incompatible with the object's data format. Define a compatible Display pattern.
20019
Picture Clause
The specified Validation pattern "%s" is invalid. Define a valid Validation pattern.
20020
Picture Clause
The Validation pattern "%s" is incompatible with the object's data format. Define a compatible Validation pattern.
20021
Picture Clause
The specified Edit pattern "%s" is invalid. Define a valid Edit pattern.
20022
Picture Clause
The Edit pattern "%s" is incompatible with the object's data format. Define a compatible Edit pattern.
20029
Data Binding
This field has the same name as another global field with an incompatible type.
20030
Data Binding
Using Use Name data binding when a default data connection is defined may produce undesirable results.
20031
Data Binding
Default binding value '%1' does not correspond to a data connection.
20032
Data Binding
Direct binding references to multiple levels of repeating data may not produce preferred results. Form may require relative
binding references for repeating subform containers.
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Code
Type
Description
20033
Locale
The value may not be presented as expected when using Viewer's System Locale for this field representing currency.
20034
Locale
The spelling in this object, or in any child objects that inherit this locale, will not be checked.
20035
Miscellaneous
This fragment reference has local overrides to one or more properties of the source fragment.
20036
Miscellaneous
Cannot externally reference fragments in forms that are saved as PDF files. Save the form as an XDP file.
20037
Miscellaneous
The signature field cannot be repeatable.
20038
Picture Clause
The number of symbols in the specified Data pattern %s is not equal to the number of maximum allowable characters. Define a
new Data pattern or change the maximum number of characters of the field.
20039
Miscellaneous
The number of symbols in the specified Display pattern %s is not equal to the number of maximum allowable characters. Define
a new Display pattern or change the maximum number of characters of the field.
20040
Picture Clause
The number of symbols in the specified Validation pattern %s is not equal to the number of maximum allowable characters.
Define a new Validation pattern or change the maximum number of characters of the field.
20041
Picture Clause
The number of symbols in the specified Edit pattern %s is not equal to the number of maximum allowable characters. Define a
new Edit pattern or change the maximum number of characters of the field.
20042
Miscellaneous
The minimum number of letters after a hyphen must be less than the minimum number of letters of a hyphenated word.
20043
Miscellaneous
The minimum number of letters before a hyphen must be less than the minimum number of letters of a hyphenated word.
20044
Miscellaneous
The content and caption cannot fit in the space provided. Press the indicator to automatically expand the object.
20045
Data Binding
Data connection ‘%s1' does not match the cached data description. Regenerate the data description using Connection
Properties.
20046
Miscellaneous
Although the object is allowed to break, deselecting the Allow Page Break Within Content option of the parent object restricts
this object from breaking between pages.
20047
Miscellaneous
Subform encoding is deprecated. Use the Collection encoding option or provide a custom script.
20048
Miscellaneous
Form contains two or more signature field objects. At least one signature field object has Lock Fields After Signing selected on
the Signature tab. See the Help documentation for more information about using multiple signature field objects in a form.
20049
Data Binding
Export binding value '%1' does not correspond to a data connection.
20050
Data Binding
Import binding value '%1' does not correspond to a data connection.
20051
Data Binding
The maximum repeat value for this subform is set to a higher value than the data connection allows.
20052
Data Binding
The data node named ‘%1’ cannot be bound to this node type.
20053
Data Binding
The '%1' used to create the data connection has been modified. You may need to update the connection using Connection
Properties.
More Help topics
“Report palette menu” on page 631
“Form Validation (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 659
Scripting error messages
The Warnings tab in the Report palette lists the following types of error messages associated with scripting errors in
the form design:
JavaScript Scripting Errors
The following table lists and describes JavaScript scripting error messages.
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Code
Error type
Error text
Error description
7001
Error
%1
A placeholder for any unexpected or unknown error. %1 can potentially contain any text.
7002
ReferenceError
Error %1 is undefined
An unqualified variable lookup failed.
7003
ReferenceError
Cannot assign value
An assignment attempts to access a constant such as a number, string, or XML.
7004
SyntaxError
Unterminated string
constant
The closing quotation character (")was omitted at the end of a string constant.
Example:
var sName = "Name;
To correct this error, locate the affected line and add the missing quotation character(").
7005
SyntaxError
Unterminated comment
The closing comment characters (*/)were omitted at the end of a comment string.
Example:
/* The old fashioned comment style is still useful var i = 0;
To correct this error, locate the affected line and add the missing closing characters. In this
example, add */ after the word useful.
Note that when using the single-line comment characters (//), there is no need to terminate the
comment string with matching closing characters.
7006
SyntaxError
Bad digit in number
Contains a character that is not a number or a valid separator (a period or a space).
Examples:
123u8
123,8
7007
SyntaxError
Language feature %1 is not Currently, only property getter and setter methods are unsupported, as defined in Mozilla
supported
SpiderMonkey. Getter and setter methods are not part of the JavaScript standard. This error also
occurs when compiling JavaScript without XML support and attempting to use XML.
7008
SyntaxError
Syntax error
7009
SyntaxError
Illegal use of reserved word A keyword was used out of context.
'%1'
Example:
A generic (catch-all) syntax error.
var for = 56;
The word for is a reserved word and cannot be used as a variable name.
To correct this error, change the keyword to a non-reserved word.
7010
SyntaxError
Break or Continue outside
a loop
The keywords break and continue are meant to be used inside a for loop or a while loop. The
keyword break is also valid inside a switch statement. Using these keywords outside these
structures is not permitted.
Examples:
Correct:
for (i = 0; i < 20; i++)
{
if (a == i)
break;
}
Incorrect:
var sName = "Nicole";
break;
var sAnimal = "cat";
To correct this error, remove the line with the break statement.
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Code
Error type
Error text
Error description
7011
SyntaxError
Label not found
JavaScript does not support goto, but it supports labels for continue and break statements.
Example:
outer: for (I = 0; I < 100; i++)
{
inner: while (condition)
{
if (bad)
break outer;
}
}
To correct this error, ensure that any label used in a program is defined and that spelling is
consistent where labels are referred to.
7013
SyntaxError
Too many closing braces
The program contains an unmatched closing brace.
Example:
if {sSoftware == "Designer"}
{
// Heh.
sDesc = "Form Design Software";
}}
To correct this error, remove the extra closing brace.
7014
SyntaxError
No matching closing brace A closing brace is missing somewhere in the program.
found
Example:
The closing brace of the for loop is missing in this program:
if {sSoftware == "Designer"}
{
for {i = 0; i < 7; i++}
{
nCount = nVer + 1;
}
Despite the indentation that indicates the for loop is missing a closing brace, the error line
usually indicates that the if statement is missing a brace. Generally, with a missing brace error,
the outermost statement is reported to be missing the closing brace.
7015
SyntaxError
Try without catch/finally
The try statement cannot be used unless it is paired with the catch/finally statement.
To correct this error, remove the try statement or add a catch/finally statement.
7016
SyntaxError
Catch/finally without try
The catch/finally statement cannot be used unless it is paired with the try statement.
To correct this error, remove the catch/finally statement or add a try statement.
7017
TypeError
Variable expected
A variable name is expected.
Examples:
function f{1} {}
try {} catch {"hi"} {}
var 5;
The characters in bold are where a variable name is expected rather than a constant or a number
7018
TypeError
Variable or value expected, Rarely displayed.
but found %1
The conversion of an object to a primitive value failed.
Example:
o={toString:function{){return
this}};
o+"test";
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Code
Error type
Error text
Error description
7019
TypeError
Bad argument %1
A function argument cannot be converted to a suitable data type. For example, a function is
expecting a number, but a string is passed in instead.
7020
TypeError
Bad argument list
There is a problem with the function's argument list, and the arguments cannot be used.
7021
TypeError
%1 is not an object
An invalid object is being used to perform an operation. An object is needed for an operation, but
the data cannot be converted to an object.
Example:
var obj = null;
obj.toString{};
Calling a method on obj fails because obj is null and not an object.
7022
ReferenceError
%1 does not have a
constructor
Host objects that cannot be created, such as the Application object, have a dummy constructor
function so that the prototype object can be accessed. An example is Application.prototype
where an attempt was made to use this function as a constructor.
7023
ReferenceError
%1 does not have a value
The conversion of an object to a primitive value failed.
Example:
o={toString:function{}{return
this}};
o+"test";
7024
ReferenceError
%1 is not a function
Something is invoked as a function, and it does not exist.
Example:
var f = "No function";
f{};
7025
SyntaxError
Expected: %1
Parser expected a certain symbol but did not locate it. The missing symbol is often a single
character but can be more than one character.
Example:
<xml>{javascript]</xml> // expected: }
The parser was expecting the closing symbol } after the word javascript to match the opening
symbol.
7026
Error
%1 cannot work with this
class
Methods were moved from one class to another. Only the String and Array methods are
generic enough to work with different classes.
Example:
s = new String {'test'};
s.getTime = Date.prototype.getTime;
s.getTime{};
7030
SyntaxError
Illegal 'return' outside a
function body
Using the keyword return outside a function definition is not permitted.
To correct this error, remove the return statement.
7037
SyntaxError
Conversion error
A conversion from one character encoding to another fails. This is not a JavaScript error. It occurs,
for example, when trying to read a malformed Shift-JIS file.
7038
SyntaxError
Partial multibyte
This error occurs during the conversion from one character encoding to another. This is not a
JavaScript error. It occurs, for example, when the last byte of a UTF-8 file is missing when the file is
read.
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Code
Error type
Error text
Error description
7039
SyntaxError
More than one switch
default
The switch statement has a special label, default, which is the code that runs if no other case
in the switch is chosen. Only one default label per switch statement is allowed.
Example:
switch {nVersion}
{
case 1:
// ...
break;
case 2:
// ...
break;
default:
// ...
break;
default:
// ...
break;
};
To correct this error, delete all but one of the default labels.
7040
TypeError
%1 redeclared
A constant cannot be declared more than once. A variable can be declared more than once.
Example:
const a = 5;
const a = 6;
7041
RangeError
%1 is out of range
An argument, index, or value exceeds the allowable numeric range.
Example:
Number {5}.toFixed {111}; // 100 is max
7042
SyntaxError
Catch after unconditional
catch
JavaScript supports multiple catch clauses, but the last catch clause must be unconditional.
Example:
try {}
catch {e if e instanceof String} {}
catch {e if e > 5} {}
catch {e} {}
catch {e if typeof e == "object"} {}
To correct this error, move the illegal conditional catch clause before the unconditional catch
clause, or delete it.
FormCalc Scripting Errors
The following table lists and describes FormCalc scripting error messages.
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Code
Error Type
Error Text
Error Description
7008
SyntaxError
Syntax error near token ‘%1’ on line
%2, column %3.
A generic {catch-all} FormCalc error.
Generally, %1 contains the token (word) nearest to the error. The token may not be
associated with the error, other than proximity to the problem.
Example:
var b = abc{1}
if {b ne 1} then
//comment
The error in this example is that the endif token is missing from the script. The last
correct token is then. Comments do not count as tokens.
To correct this error, add an endif statement to the end of the script.
7100
SyntaxError
Function '%1'on line %2, column %3 is A user-defined function used the same name as a built-in function.
built in.
Line and column numbers provide information to locate where the error appears
on a line.
Example:
func sum{}
do
x = 1
endfunc
7101
SyntaxError
Function '%1'on line %2, column %3 is A script attempted to invoke a function that is not defined.
unknown.
Example:
read{}
More Help topics
“Report palette menu” on page 631
“Form Validation (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 659
Displaying validation errors in Acrobat
Use the form validation options to control how Acrobat displays data validation errors in a PDF form.
The form validation options apply to the entire PDF form and work with other validation features like validation
patterns and scripts. Before you select form validation options, apply a validation pattern or script to each field object
that you want Acrobat to verify. For example, you can configure a numeric field object with a validation pattern that
validates user-entered values to ensure the proper format of the number. If a user enters an invalid number, the field
fails to validate. The validation pattern options define how data must be entered into a field for it to validate. The form
validation options control the appearance and behavior of validation errors in Acrobat.
Designer generates a validation script for each of the validation options, except for Show Dialog Message option. The
Show Dialog Message option does not generate script.
Designer monitors the validation script for any changes. If Designer detects the script is modified, it performs the
following actions:
• Stops monitoring the script and all associated scripts for that action.
• Deselects the associated validation option on the Validation tab in the Form Properties dialog box.
• Adds a message to the log file indicating that the script is no longer monitored and can be edited.
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As long as the validation script is unchanged and managed, Designer removes the script from the form if you deselect
a validation option.
Designer generates different form validation script for static and dynamic forms. As a result, when you save a form as
as an Adobe XML Form (*.xdp), Designer determines which type of script to generate based on the option you select
in the PDF Render Format list (Static PDF Form or Dynamic XML Form) on the Defaults tab in the Form Properties
dialog box.
Note: The script that the form validation options generate overwrites any existing script that changes the appearance of
field objects. The overwrite occurs when the field objects become valid or invalid. It is recommended that you customize
existing scripts to store the current appearance, so that you can revert to that appearance if necessary.
It is recommended that you use the form validation options with dynamic PDF forms. However, if you are working
with a static PDF form, review the recommendations you must keep in mind.
Recommendations for using form validation with static PDF forms
If you use the Form Validation feature in a static PDF form, to color mandatory fields that are not filled or fields that
fail validation, Designer may change the appearance of validated fields.
As a result, when you use the Form Validation feature with a static form that contains objects with borders, it is
recommended that you use only these border options on the Border tab:
• Border Edges: Solid, Lowered-3D, Raised-3D, Dash
• Corners: Rectangle corner
• Background Fill Style: Solid
To configure how Acrobat displays validation error message boxes
You can configure how Acrobat displays validation error message boxes when a user fills or submits a PDF form. For
example, you can choose to show each validation error message in its own box or combine all validation error messages
into a single box. Alternatively, you can show only the first validation error message or no messages.
Note: Form validation options do not apply to field objects that are not configured to validate. )
1 Select File > Form Properties and click Form Validation.
2 Under List of Options, click Show Dialog Message.
3 Select Configure How Acrobat Displays Validation Messages Boxes and perform one of these actions:
• To display each new validation error message after the user closes the current message, select Show Every
Message In Its Own Message Box One After The Other.
• To combine validation errors into a single list, select Combine The Messages Of All The Failed Fields Into One
Message Box.
• To display only the first validation error message, select Show the First Failed Field’s Message And Suppress Any
Other Messages.
• To stop all validation messages, select Don’t Show Any Messages Boxes At All.
4 Click OK.
To color fields that fail validation
You can choose different colors to highlight the borders, the background fill, or both of field objects that fail to validate
in Acrobat.
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Note: Form validation options do not apply to field objects that are not configured to validate. )
1 Select File > Form Properties and click Form Validation.
2 Under List of Options, click Color Failed Fields.
3 Select Color Fields That Fail Their Validations and perform one or both of these actions:
• To select a color to apply to the borders of field objects, click Border Color and select a color from the palette.
• To select a color to apply to the background of fields objects, click Background Color and select a color from the
palette.
4 Click OK.
To color mandatory fields that are not filled
You can choose different colors to highlight the borders, the background fill, or both of mandatory field objects that
the user did not fill in Acrobat.
If a mandatory field is highlighted and another script makes the field optional, highlighting is not removed.
Note: Form validation options do not apply to field objects that are not configured to validate.
1 Select File > Form Properties and click Form Validation.
2 Under List of Options, click Color Mandatory Fields.
3 Select Color Mandatory Fields That Are Not Filled-In and perform one or both of these actions:
• To select a color to apply to the borders of field objects, click Border Color and select a color from the palette.
• To select a color to apply to the background of fields objects, click Background Color and select a color from the
palette.
4 Click OK.
To set the focus to the first field that fails validation
The Set Focus To The First Field That Fails To Validate option sets the focus to the first non-validated field in Acrobat.
The focus is set to the first invalid field in the Hierarchy palette, not the first invalid field in the geographic order. It is
recommended that you order the field objects in the Hierarchy palette to match the order of the field objects in the
form design. Otherwise, the focus could be set on an invalid field at the bottom of the page before one at the top of the
page.
Note: Form validation options do not apply to field objects that are not configured to validate.
1 Select File > Form Properties and click Form Validation.
2 Under List of Options, click Set Focus.
3 Select Set Focus To The First Field That Fails To Validate and then click OK.
More Help topics
“Formatting field values and using patterns” on page 364
“Addressing warning messages in the Report palette” on page 107
“Objects that support scripting and calculations” on page 272
“Defaults (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 656
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“Document Handling (Options dialog box)” on page 672
“To validate user input” on page 368
Chapter 4: Guidelines for forms
When creating forms in Designer, you can save your form designs in several different formats. Form author can save
a form design as a PDF form so that form fillers can easily access the form using Adobe Reader®. When saving a form
design as a PDF form in Designer, you can select between two different types of PDF forms: Adobe Static PDF Form
(*.pdf) and Adobe Dynamic XML Form (*.pdf). Form designs saved as static and dynamic PDF forms can be
interactive or non-interactive.
Alternatively, you can use your forms in Forms Manager as HTML forms. From Forms Manager these forms can be
displayed on Forms Portal and can be consumed on the mobile devices.
More Help topics
“Creating interactive forms that have a flowable layout” on page 243
“Creating non-interactive forms that have a flowable layout” on page 251
Best practices for HTML forms
For the best practices to enable a form template for HTML5 renditions, see Best practices to design a Mobile form. By
following these guidelines, form developers can ensure that the behavior and appearance of Mobile Forms and XFAbased PDF are consistent.
Rendering PDF forms
To understand the difference between static and dynamic PDF forms, it is important to understand what the term
render means. Rendering a form is the process of creating the precise final layout and formatting from the form design.
The form may or may not be merged with data, depending on the form design and data. Rendering can be done by
LiveCycle on the server or by Adobe Reader on the client. A PDF form must be rendered before it can be displayed to
the end user or printed. Therefore, the rendering is the final image.
Characteristics of static PDF forms
Form designs saved as static PDF forms render once on the server and are displayed on the client in the Acrobat or
Adobe Reader target version. They are not rerendered in response to user interaction. The form may have been
designed with a flowable layout; however, when the static PDF form is created, its layout is fixed and the resultant PDF
form will not rerender on the client.
File size In general, forms saved as static PDF forms render to larger file sizes than the equivalent files saved as
dynamic PDF forms.
Rendering location Static PDF forms render once and are displayed on the client in Acrobat or Adobe Reader. They
are not rerendered in response to user interaction. Because rendering is performed on the server, only small changes
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to the final output are possible on the client. For example, the value area may show a different color after the user clicks
a button or exits a field.
Display speed In general, static PDF forms require more time to render on the server than dynamic PDF forms but
are displayed faster in the client software on the end-user’s computer. Static PDF forms require more time on the
server because the server performs the page layout operations, data merging, and final rendering. In the case of
dynamic PDF forms, the server performs only data merging. The client software on the end-user’s computer performs
the page layout operations and final rendering. As a result, the rendering time for dynamic PDF forms relies on the
processing power of the end-user’s computer, especially when the PDF file size is large.
Characteristics of dynamic PDF forms
Forms saved as dynamic PDF forms render on the client in Acrobat or Adobe Reader and, depending on the end-user
interactions, can rerender on the client several times. Changes to the appearance of objects is possible in Acrobat or
Adobe Reader because Acrobat or Adobe Reader have enough information to rerender the final output. For example,
objects can change color, pagination can change, and objects can appear or disappear. If the end user clicks a button
that adds a new row to a table, the form is rerendered in Acrobat or Adobe Reader. Dynamic PDF forms were first
introduced in Adobe Reader, Acrobat Professional and Acrobat Standard 7.0.
File size In general, forms saved as dynamic forms render to smaller file sizes than the equivalent files saved as static
PDF forms.
Rendering location Form designs saved as dynamic PDF forms render on the client in Acrobat or Adobe Reader.
Because rendering is performed on the client, the form can rerender several times based on end-user interactions.
Display speed In the case of dynamic PDF forms, the server performs only data merging. The client software on the
end-user’s computer performs the page layout operations and final rendering. As a result, the rendering time for
dynamic PDF forms relies on the processing power of the end-user’s computer, especially when the PDF file size is
large.
More Help topics
“Choosing the type of PDF form” on page 123
Choosing the type of PDF form
You can create many kinds of forms as either static or dynamic with little difference to the end-user experience.
However, some forms work as designed only if they are created as a static or dynamic PDF forms. In general, the choice
of static over dynamic is determined by the following considerations:
• If the form works as either a static PDF form or a dynamic PDF form, use a dynamic PDF form to reduce serverside processing, which results in a greater number of transactions per second.
• If the form relies on client-side scripts to change the layout (for example, it uses scripts to add or remove rows from
a table or to make text fields grow), use a dynamic PDF form.
• If end users will need to add annotations or comments to the PDF form, use a static PDF form.
• If the form must work with Acrobat installations earlier than version 7.0, use a static PDF form.
Additionally, there are a number of specific issues to consider when choosing to create a static or dynamic PDF form.
These issues are differences in the behavior between the form types that may be critical in making your decision:
• “Applying formatting by using client-side scripts” on page 124
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• “Saving object formatting” on page 125
• “Unavailable commands for dynamic forms in Adobe Reader” on page 126
• “Font behavior” on page 126
• “Objects and properties for static PDF forms” on page 127
• If your form includes digital signatures, there are limitations to the way that you can use dynamic PDF forms with
the Signature service. For more information about these limitations, see LiveCycle Services Reference.
As you design a form, you can see how the form behaves as a static or dynamic PDF form in the Preview PDF tab.
Applying formatting by using client-side scripts
In a static PDF form, only the value area of the field can be updated on the client. Everything else on the form is frozen
or fixed. In a dynamic PDF form, the entire field object can be updated on the client. The examples that follow are
provided to give you an idea of what happens.
Changing the field border color
If you create a client-side script to apply borders to objects, the results differ in static and dynamic PDF forms.
For example, you can write a script on the exit event of a field to turn the border color red:
TextField1.border.edge.color.value="255,0,0"
In a static PDF form, the outline of only the value area turns red after the end user exits the field.
In a dynamic PDF form, the outline of the entire field object turns red after the end user exits the field.
Applying field shading
If you create a client-side script to apply shading to objects, the results differ in static and dynamic PDF forms.
For example, you can write a script on the exit event of a field to turn the shading color in the field to red:
TextField1.fillColor = "255,0,0"
In a static PDF form, only the value area turns red after the end user exits the field.
In a dynamic PDF form, the entire object, including the value area, turns red after the end user exits the field.
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Hiding objects
If you create a client-side script to hide objects, the results differ in static and dynamic PDF forms.
When you are designing a static or dynamic PDF form, you can hide objects on the form by setting the presence
property to either “invisible” or ”hidden”. In both cases, the objects do not appear in the final output; however, when
you set the presence value to “hidden”, objects do not occupy any space in the layout. If the objects are inside flowed
subform objects, the subform itself will shrink in response to the hidden objects.
The difference between static and dynamic PDF forms is that on a static PDF form you cannot change the presence
value of an object by using an interactive scripting event, such as the click event of a button. Static PDF forms cannot
rerender on the client; therefore, scripts executed on interactive events cannot change the visibility of form objects.
Dynamic PDF forms do not have the same limitation because they can rerender on the client.
You can change the visibility of form objects on static PDF forms by using non-interactive events that trigger during
form rendering, such as the initialize event. For example, on a dynamic PDF form, you can write a script on the click
event of a button to hide a text field:
TextField1.presence = "invisible"
Alternatively, you can use this script to completely remove the text field from the layout:
TextField1.presence = "hidden"
In both cases, to achieve the same results on a static PDF form, you use the same scripts but write them on the initialize
event of either the text field or the button.
More Help topics
“Saving object formatting” on page 125
Saving object formatting
Prior to Acrobat 8.0, in a static PDF form, the object’s formatting is saved when the end user saves, closes, and reopens
the form. In a dynamic PDF form, the object’s formatting is not saved.
Important: Although it is possible to save an object’s formatting on a dynamic PDF form by using client-side scripting, it
is not a recommended practice and should be avoided. If saving an object’s formatting is a requirement, you need to use
a static PDF form.
Beginning with Acrobat 8.0, the state of all the objects is saved and can be restored automatically or manually upon
reopening. This is controlled by the restoreState scripting property on the root subform.
Object formatting, as well as the layout of a dynamic PDF form, can change when any of the following form actions
occur:
• The user opens the form
• The user imports new data
• The user adds new data to the form
• A client-side script is run
The following table compares the end-user experience using the examples in the topic “Applying formatting by using
client-side scripts” on page 124 when saving as either a static PDF form or a dynamic PDF form in Adobe Reader.
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Form content
Static PDF form
Dynamic PDF form
A client-side script to change the border color of a field. The outline of the value area remains red when the form The outline of the object does not remain red when
the form is saved, closed, and reopened.
(See “Guidelines for forms” on page 122.)
is saved, closed, and reopened.
A client-side script to apply shading. (See “Guidelines
for forms” on page 122.)
The fillable value area remains red when the form is
saved, closed, and reopened.
The object, including the value area, does not
remain red when the form is saved, closed, and
reopened.
A client-side script to hide objects. (See “Guidelines for
forms” on page 122.)
The value in the text field remains invisible when the
form is saved, closed, and reopened.
The text field does not remain hidden when the form
is saved, closed, and reopened.
Note: If restoreState is set to auto, all of these changes are maintained if the document is saved and then reopened in
Acrobat 8.0.
For more information, see restoreState in the Scripting Reference.
Unavailable commands for dynamic forms in Adobe
Reader
When a PDF form is opened in Adobe Reader, some Adobe Reader commands that are available for static PDF forms
are not available for dynamic PDF forms. The reason is because the final layout of the form can change the position of
objects, which in turn affects the number of form pages.
The following Adobe Reader commands are available for static PDF forms but not for dynamic PDF forms:
• Comment and Markup tools
• Import Comments and Export Comments
• Insert Pages, Extract Pages, Replace Pages, Delete Pages, Crop Pages, and Rotate Pages
More Help topics
“Choosing the type of PDF form” on page 123
“Target version warning messages” on page 108
Font behavior
When you create PDF forms, it is possible to include only those characters of a font that are actually used in the form.
This technique is called font subsetting. You can also embed fonts into the form so that end users have all of the fonts
they need to use the form. In this case, the size of the PDF file is larger.
Note: The manufacturer of the font can specify the level of embedding that is allowed.
Fonts can be subset in static PDF forms
In static PDF forms, fonts can be subset for text and field captions. Subsetting reduces the size of the PDF file. To subset
fonts into the form, the font you select must be set to the Print & Preview Embedding Allowed level.
Note: The fonts used in the fillable area of fields cannot be subset on static PDF forms because the user input can contain
any character from the font.
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Fonts are embedded in dynamic PDF forms
In dynamic PDF forms, fonts are fully embedded or linked. Embedded fonts are never subset. When a form that has
embedded fonts is opened, even if the fonts are already on the system, Adobe Reader uses the embedded fonts. To
embed fonts into the form, the embedding settings in the fonts you select must allow embedding for edit.
More Help topics
“Choosing fonts for performance” on page 574
Objects and properties for static PDF forms
Here is the list of scripting objects that form authors can use to make changes to fields in static PDF forms in Adobe
Reader. For more information about scripting objects, see Scripting Objects.
Object
Description
border
Describes the border surrounding an object
color
Describes a unique color on an object
fill
Applies a color and optional rendered designs to the region enclosed by an object
Here is the list of scripting properties that form authors can change for fields in static PDF forms in Adobe Reader.For
more information about scripting properties, see Scripting Properties.
Property
Description
Syntax
access
Controls user access to the contents of a container
SOMexpression.access = "open | readOnly|protected"
fontColor
The font color value for the text
SOMexpression.fontColor = "[0-255], [0-255], [0-255]"
hAlign
Specifies the horizontal text alignment
SOMexpression.hAlign = "left | center | right"
maxChars
Specifies the maximum number of characters that this text value can
enclose
SOMexpression.maxChars = "0 | integer"
maxLength
Specifies the maximum (inclusive) permitted length of the content or SOMexpression.maxLength = "0 | integer"
-1 to indicate that no maximum length is imposed
multiLine
Specifies whether the text may span multiple lines
SOMexpression.multiLine = "0 | 1"
presence
Specifies the visibility of an object's value
SOMexpression.presence = "visible | invisible|hidden"
textEntry
Determines whether a user can type a value into a drop-down list
SOMexpression.textEntry = "0 | 1"
Chapter 4: Import documents
You can import forms into Designer that were created in another form authoring application or an XForm XML
application, or import spreadsheet data from Microsoft Excel 2002 or later by copying and pasting the content of the
spreadsheet cells into a form. You can also import legacy forms as a starting point for creating new Designer forms.
You can import files from these applications into Designer.
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Import documents
Application
File types
Acrobat
PDF
Adobe Form Designer 5.0 or later
XFT
Adobe Output Designer
IFD
To import Output Designer files (IFD) into Designer, you must install Output Designer 5.5 or later
on the same computer as Designer.
Microsoft Word
DOC, DOT, RTF
Microsoft Excel
XLS, XML, HTML, XLT, TXT
Microsoft InfoPath
XSN
XForms Model
XHTML, XML, HTML, HTM, XFDL
Designer includes a number of options to handle imported files and render the best possible output. Designer
preserves the layout of the imported form as much as possible and converts the elements into Designer objects.
Importing PDF files
PDF files can come from many sources, and each authoring application can define the contents of the PDF file in a
unique manner.
Before importing a PDF file into Designer, you should understand the different options available for fine-tuning the
results of the import process.
Note: PDF files created by using Designer do not go through the import process. They open directly in Designer and should
appear as designed without modifications.
You use the New Form Assistant to import PDF files. Using the New Form Assistant simplifies the process. It guides
you through a number of steps in which you choose the PDF file to import, how you want to work with the imported
PDF content, and how the form is distributed and returned.
When Designer is integrated with Workbench, you can also use Workbench to import PDF files. In Workbench, select
File > New > Form and then follow the onscreen instructions. On the Getting Started panel of the New Form Assistant,
select the Import A PDF Document option.
If you are using the stand-alone version of Designer, you can also use the Import Options dialog box to import a PDF
file. The Import Options dialog box is not available when you use Designer with Workbench. Using the Import
Options dialog box gives you more control over the way Designer imports the contents of the PDF file when creating
an interactive form with a flowable layout. For example, you can select custom options that control how Designer
processes the text, paragraphs, and images in the document. Use one of these methods to display the Import Options
dialog box:
• Click the Do Not Use the Assistant link in the New Form Assistant to open the Assistant Options dialog box. Select
the option that best suits your needs.
• Select Tools > Options to open the Options dialog box, select Wizards and Tips and, under Form Assistance,
deselect Show When Importing Documents. (See “Wizards and Tips (Options dialog box)” on page 676.).
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Before you import a PDF, consider the following scenarios:
• If you have a PDF document that was created in Acrobat or an application other than Designer, and you want to
import the contents as background artwork and maintain the original layout and appearance of the document,
select Create an Interactive Form with Fixed Pages. You can edit any interactive objects and place additional library
objects on top of the artwork.
• If you want to edit and change the content of the PDF document in Designer, select Create an Interactive Form with
a Flowable Layout. Word-wrapping and line breaks may not be preserved.
If you are not satisfied with the initial conversion, you can experiment with different combinations of options to
achieve the best results.
Note: When importing a PDF file that has security permissions set, Designer prompts you to enter the correct password
to prevent unauthorized access.
To import a PDF file by using the New Form Assistant in the stand-alone version of Designer
1 Select File > New.
2 In the Getting Started panel of the New Form Assistant, select Import a PDF Document and click Next.
3 In the Setup: Import a PDF panel, browse to and select the PDF file you want to import, click Open, and then click Next.
4 In the Document Setup: Import Options panel, select the import option you want to use:
• To import the PDF file as background artwork, select Create an Interactive Form with Fixed Pages. When you
import a PDF file as background artwork, Designer preserves the appearance of the original document and
retains existing interactive fields.
• To import the PDF file so that you can edit it in Designer, select Create an Interactive Form With a Flowable
Layout.
5 Click Next.
6 [Optional] In the Form Return Setup: Adding Buttons panel, select how the form is distributed and how the form
data is returned.
7 Click Finish.
To import a PDF file without the New Form Assistant in the stand-alone version of Designer
1 Select File > Open.
2 Navigate to the PDF file that you want to import, select the file, and click Open. The Import Options dialog box
appears. However, if you have not disabled the New Form Assistant by deselecting the Show When Importing
Documents option in the Options dialog box (Wizards and Tips panel), the New Form Assistant appears. If
necessary, click Do Not Use Assistant to open the Import Options dialog box.
3 In the Import Options dialog box, select the option that best suits how you want to work with the imported PDF
content:
• To preserve the layout and appearance of the PDF content, select Create an Interactive Form with Fixed Pages.
• To edit the content of the PDF document in Designer, select Create an Interactive Form with a Flowable Layout,
and then select custom options for importing the PDF, as required.
4 Click OK. If you selected the Display A Summary Report option, a dialog box lists any conversion issues, such as
unavailable fonts and unsupported objects, before the form opens.
Note: The Temporary folder is your temporary directory that is configured by Windows (which is typically
\Documents and Settings\[username]\Local Settings\Temp). The log file is named the same as the PDF file with a .log
file name extension. If a file with that name already exists in the Temporary Folder, it is overwritten.
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To use File > New to import a PDF file with Designer and Workbench
When you use File > New to import a PDF file, you can specify a name for the form. The form will be saved in the
Applications view in Workbench.
1 Select File > New. The New Form dialog box opens in Workbench.
2 Follow the onscreen instructions until the New Form Assistant > Getting Started panel opens in Designer.
3 Select the Import A PDF Document option, and then click Next.
4 In the Document Setup: Import a PDF panel, browse to and select the PDF file you want to import, click Open, and
then click Next.
5 In the Document Setup: Import Options panel, select the import option you want to use:
• To import the PDF file as background artwork, select Create an Interactive Form with Fixed Pages. When you
import a PDF file as background artwork, Designer preserves the appearance of the original document and
retains existing interactive fields.
• To import the PDF file so that you can edit it in Designer, select Create an Interactive Form With a Flowable
Layout.
Note: By default, images are embedded in medium quality JPEG format. If an image extraction problem occurs, a
message appears in the Conversion Summary and the image is embed in BMP format.
6 Click Next.
7 Click Finish.
To use File > Open to import a PDF file with Designer and Workbench
When you use File > Open to import a PDF file, you specify the LiveCycle application where you want to save the form.
1 Select File > Open.
2 Navigate to the PDF file to import, select the file, and click Open.
3 In the Document Setup: Import Options panel, select the import option you want to use:
• To import the PDF file as background artwork, select Create an Interactive Form with Fixed Pages. When you
import a PDF file as background artwork, Designer preserves the appearance of the original document and
retains existing interactive fields.
• To import the PDF file so that you can edit it in Designer, select Create an Interactive Form With a Flowable
Layout.
Note: By default, images are embedded in medium quality JPEG format. If an image extraction problem occurs, a
message appears in the Conversion Summary and the image is embed in BMP format.
4 Click Finish.
5 Select File > Save As.
6 Navigate to the Workbench folder on your local system:
• If you are using Windows XP, the Workbench folder is located in \Documents and Settings\<user name>.
• If you are using Windows Vista, the Workbench folder is located in \Desktop\<user name>.
7 Select the application folder where you want to save the form.
8 Type a name for the form, and then click Save.
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More Help topics
“Saving forms” on page 33
“Import Options dialog box” on page 664
“Wizards and Tips (Options dialog box)” on page 676
Reviewing the results of a PDF file import
The form design that results from an imported PDF file depends on the different combinations of options that you
selected during the import process. If you are not satisfied with the initial conversion, you might want to experiment
with different combinations of options to achieve the best results, or you can edit the objects in the form design by
using the Object Editor.
The Object Editor appears when you select an object, and it provides quick access to commands that are commonly
used when editing objects.
Initially, object boundaries appear in the form design so that you can see how the PDF file elements, especially text,
have been grouped into objects. This can make the form design look busy and difficult to read. Using the Object
Boundaries command in the View menu, you can hide the object boundaries while you examine the form design. You
will find the object boundaries useful if you need to make changes to objects in the form design. For example, you use
the object boundaries as a guide when you resize or move objects without borders. Also, if a body of text is divided over
two or more objects in the form design, the object boundaries will show it. You can easily merge these objects into one
text object by using the Merge Selected Text Objects command in the Layout menu.
Title and instruction text may be divided into multiple text objects and field objects. You can create a caption for a field object
that does not have a caption by merging it with a text object using the Merge as Caption command in the Layout menu.
You might also find the locking commands in the Edit menu useful. Locking objects prevents you from selecting and
editing them in the Layout Editor. For example, you can lock text so that you must double-click the required text or
caption to edit it. This makes it somewhat difficult to modify the text. You can also lock static objects such as text, lines,
images, and shapes, and you can lock field objects.
More Help topics
“Importing PDF files” on page 128
“How Designer converts PDF objects” on page 131
“About reducing PDF conversion problems” on page 133
“Adding a new mapping to the font-mapping table in Designer” on page 135
“Character-mapping table in ConvertPDF_CharMap.txt” on page 136
How Designer converts PDF objects
The conversion of PDF contents into XDP format is highly dependent on the source of the PDF file itself. The PDF
specification allows for a wide variety of styling and structural layout, some of which lends itself to good migration.
Often, PDF is used as a final form layout; that is, the display of the contents is the only thing that matters, not the
contents themselves.
In many situations, Distiller® or PDFMaker actually generates the PDF file, but they both can only render what is
provided to them in the order that it is provided.
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This table identifies key elements in a PDF file and indicates how Designer treats them when they are imported.
Item
Converted
Actions (from an Acrobat
form)
Designer only converts the following actions that may be associated with a form created All remaining actions
in Acrobat:
Calculations
Not converted
•
Import form data
•
Launch a URL
•
Reset a form (full and partial field list)
•
Show/hide a field
•
Submit a form for complete field list
Average
Maximum
Minimum
Sum
Range
Comments/ Annotations
Document
Not converted
Document-level JavaScript script is converted to event scripts that are commented out.
You must verify and update the scripts to match the Designer model.
Tab order
Pages and names
Events other than JavaScript scripts
Security options
Document metadata, including PDF version, title, author, subject, keywords, creator,
producer, creation date, modification date
Accessibility information of Tagged PDFs is preserved.
Fields
Date, Text, Numeric, Check Box, Radio Buttons and groups, Button, Combo box, Signature All fonts used in a PDF file must exist on your
(only identified), Drop-down List, and List Box field types
system or font substitution rules must be
defined in the font-mapping table.
Default text
Designer uses a cross (x) to indicate when a
Dimensions
check box is selected. If a check box in the PDF
file uses a different character, the character is
Events
converted to a cross that may not be perfectly
Font name, size, bold, italic
aligned inside the fillable area.
JavaScript script is converted to event scripts that are commented out. You must verify
and update the scripts to match the Designer model.
Name
Picture formatting
Position, orientation, alignment, and visibility
Printable
Read Only, Required, Maximum Characters, and Multiline attributes
RGB and grey color definitions for background color, border color, and color. Other color
specifications are mapped to RGB values.
Tool tip is preserved
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Item
Converted
Not converted
Images
All 1-bit, 4-bit, 8-bit, and 24-bit
Vector based
Dimensions
6-bit
Position
32-bit
Some TIFF formats
Lines
Color (both edge and fill)
Dimensions
Position
Width
Some dotted and dashed styles
Style
Rectangles
Color (both edge and fill)
Style
Dimensions
Position
Width
Some dotted and dashed line styles
Rounded-corner rectangles are converted when they are detected. The conversion
depends on how the PDF file was generated.
Scripts
Document, page, and field-level JavaScripts scripts are converted to event scripts that are
commented out. You must verify and update the scripts to match the Designer model.
Text
Content
All fonts used in a PDF file must exist on your
system or font substitution rules must be
defined in the font-mapping table.
Dimensions
Font name, size, bold, italic
Mixed formatting (rich text)
Position
Symbol-based characters are not always
displayed correctly. You can define charactermapping rules in the character-mapping
table.
RGB and grey color definitions for background color, border color, and color. Other color Designer does not support font kerning. When
specifications are mapped to RGB values.
PDF-based kerning is detected, the font size is
decreased so that the text occupies the same
horizontal space.
About reducing PDF conversion problems
Some PDF files may be difficult to import into Designer. Conversion problems can depend both on the application
used to produce the PDF file and on choices made when the source document was authored. For example, these
original sources of PDF files have proven difficult to import into Designer:
• Digipath files, which are converted to one large image that cannot be edited
• Microsoft Word, when the document has not been specifically designed as a form
You can reduce possible conversion problems by being aware of these issues:
• Fonts are substituted if a font used on the form is not installed when you import the form. If a font is substituted,
text will not appear exactly as in the original form.
• If you are using Acrobat to create PDF files, do not build the form by using drawing annotations only.
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• When an image in a PDF form contains a large number of lines, such as a vector-based image, Designer needs a
significant amount of time to process the lines during an import operation. For faster processing, remove the image
from the source file that is used to create the PDF. If required, you can reinsert the image after you save the form
design in Designer. If the source file is not available, deleting the image from the form in Designer will improve
performance of the form.
• If you are having conversion problems and you have access to the source files for the original form, try re-creating
the PDF by using Distiller. If the original PDF was not created correctly, re-creating it may resolve the issue.
Importing tagged PDF files
When importing a tagged PDF (an accessible PDF), the accessibility information of the page contents is preserved. In
addition, organizing the form by adding or changing subforms may cause the accessibility information to change.
To ensure that the form still performs in a manner acceptable to your users, test the form thoroughly. Pay close
attention to the following areas and adjust them if they are not behaving as expected:
• Tool tips
• Custom screen reader text
• Screen reader reading order
More Help topics
“About accessible forms” on page 543
“Importing PDF files” on page 128
Matching unavailable fonts
During import, Designer attempts to match fonts in the PDF file with fonts that are available on your computer. If the
file contains an unavailable font, Designer displays the Missing Fonts dialog box showing the missing font and a
suggested replacement. You can accept the replacement font or change it. This font substitution is not permanent.
Designer must map the unavailable fonts every time the form opens.
After importing the PDF, the Warnings tab of the Report palette lists all unavailable fonts and explains how they were
converted. If the font-mapping table includes the unavailable font, the Warnings tab states that the font was mapped
to the new font. If the unavailable font is not in the font-mapping table, Designer attempts to select an appropriate
substitution. The Warnings tab then states that the unavailable font was changed to the new font. In this case, you may
want to permanently substitute the font or add a new mapping to the font table.
To make the font substitution permanent
1 Import the PDF. See “Importing PDF files” on page 128.
2 If the Missing Fonts dialog box appears, specify the desired substitute fonts.
3 To apply permanent font substitution immediately, select Permanently Replace Unavailable Fonts and click OK.
4 To apply permanent font substitution at later time in the session before closing the form design, select Tools >
Missing Fonts and select Permanently Replace Unavailable Fonts.
5 Save the form design.
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Adding a new mapping to the font-mapping table in
Designer
Designer uses the font-mapping table stored in the Designer.xci file to speed up the substitution of an unavailable font
with one of the fonts on your computer. It contains several default entries for font mapping.
The Designer.xci file is located in the installation directory. However, as soon as Designer starts, the XCI file is copied
to the user directory.
You can modify the default entries font-mapping table in the Designer.xci file.
Syntax
<equate from='input_font_*_*' to='Designer_font_*_*' force="0"/>
Parameters
input_font The name of the font used in the input PDF file.
Designer_font The name of the font that is installed on your computer.
Asterisk (*) Wildcard character. For example, the string *Cour* refers to all font names that contain the Cour string.
Question mark (?) A single-character wildcard.
_*_* Bold and italic attributes. Valid values after the first underscore are: *, normal, and bold. Valid values after
the second underscore are *, normal, and italic.
force="0" Instructs Designer to search for the font on the system and use font mapping only if the font is unavailable.
force="1" Instructs Designer to map the font whether it is installed or not.
Example
The following line instructs Designer to map Courier font to Courier New when Courier is not available:
<equate from='Courier_*_*' to='Courier New_*_*' force="0"/>
More Help topics
“Importing PDF files” on page 128
“How Designer converts PDF objects” on page 131
“Font-mapping table in ConvertPDF_FontMap.txt” on page 135
“Character-mapping table in ConvertPDF_CharMap.txt” on page 136
Font-mapping table in ConvertPDF_FontMap.txt
You can set up a font mapping table in the ConvertPDF_FontMap.txt file.
If you add a font-mapping rule to this file, all occurrences of the substituted font are changed to the new font when
you import a PDF, regardless of the font-mapping table in the Designer.xci file and regardless of whether the
substituted font is available on your computer.
The ConvertPDF_FontMap.txt file is located in the installation directory and is empty by default.
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Syntax
input_font=Designer_font
input_font The name of the font used in the input PDF file.
Designer_font The name of the font that is installed on your computer.
Asterisk (*) Wildcard character. For example, the string *Cour* refers to all font names that contain the string Cour.
Adding wildcard characters before and after the input_font name accounts for any slight variations in the name of the
font in the form.
Question mark (?) Single-character wildcard.
Example
*Arial*=Arial
*Helv*=Arial
*Cour*=Courier New
*=Times New Roman
Processing occurs in the same order as in the file. The last line in the example converts all remaining fonts to Times
New Roman.
More Help topics
“Importing PDF files” on page 128
“How Designer converts PDF objects” on page 131
“Adding a new mapping to the font-mapping table in Designer” on page 135
“Character-mapping table in ConvertPDF_CharMap.txt” on page 136
Character-mapping table in ConvertPDF_CharMap.txt
PDF files may contain characters that are mapped differently in Designer. To deal with this issue, you can use
character-mapping rules in the character-mapping table in the ConvertPDF_CharMap.txt file.
Designer relies on the character-mapping table to display input PDF symbols correctly in its native character set. The
table contains several default entries.
If any of the lines in the ConvertPDF_CharMap.txt file do not reflect your setup, you can remove them. You can add
additional lines if required.
The ConvertPDF_CharMap.txt file is located in the installation directory.
Syntax
input_char,input_font=Designer_char,Designer_font
input_char The input PDF symbol decimal value.
input_font The specific font name in the PDF that the character must belong to. An asterisk (*) indicates any font.
Designer_char The UTF-8 decimal value of the same character.
Designer_font The appropriate font that contains the character. An asterisk (*) indicates to leave the original font
name as is.
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Example
The following line converts a PDF double quotation mark (“) in any font to the UTF-8 equivalent in the same font:
0144,*=0039,*
More Help topics
“Importing PDF files” on page 128
“How Designer converts PDF objects” on page 131
“Adding a new mapping to the font-mapping table in Designer” on page 135
“Font-mapping table in ConvertPDF_FontMap.txt” on page 135
Importing PDF documents as artwork
If you have a PDF document that was created in Acrobat or some other application, which you would like to use as the
basis for creating a new PDF form in Designer, you can use the Create an Interactive Form with Fixed Pages option in
the New Form Assistant to import the content of a PDF document like this as the background artwork for a new form.
If the PDF document was created in Acrobat and contains form fields, Designer converts those fields to the
corresponding library objects. After you import a PDF as artwork, you can place additional library objects on top of
the artwork to augment the new form design.
If you want to change the background artwork at any point, you can use the Replace Artwork command in the Edit
menu to import a substitute PDF document.
Keep in mind the following factors when importing a PDF document as artwork:
• You can only import PDF documents as artwork if the document was created in Acrobat or some other application
capable of generating PDF documents. If the PDF document was created using Designer, you cannot import the
contents as artwork; you can only import the contents as editable form objects.
• After you import a PDF document as artwork, you must save the resulting form as an Adobe Static PDF Form. You
cannot save the form as an Adobe Dynamic XML Form or Adobe XML Form. The default file type for new forms
that contain PDF artwork is Adobe Static PDF Form (*.pdf).
• You can import unstructured or structured PDF documents that contain tags and have a defined tabbing and
reading order for keyboard access and screen readers. For more information, see “About importing structured PDF
documents as artwork” on page 139.
• The following library objects are unavailable in the Standard and Custom groups when importing a PDF document
as artwork: circle, content area, image, line, rectangle, subform, table, text, masked field, masked field - partial, page
n of m, sheet n of m, signature - print and sign, and survey question.
• Buttons that are labeled with icon images in the imported PDF document are not supported.
• If you open a PDF document that contains background art in an earlier version of Designer than the version used
to create the document, the image data in the document may not be displayed correctly.
• Document, page, and field-level JavaScript script (in the PDF document imported as artwork) is converted into
event scripts that are commented out. You must verify and update the scripts to match the Designer model. You
can no longer edit this script in Acrobat.
After importing a PDF document as artwork, you can work with the resulting document the same as with any static
PDF form.
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To import a PDF file as artwork in the stand-alone version of Designer
1 Select File > New.
2 In the Getting Started panel of the New Form Assistant, select Import a PDF Document and click Next.
3 In the Setup: Import a PDF panel, browse to and select the PDF file you want to import, click Open, and then click Next.
4 In the Document Setup: Import Options panel, select Create an Interactive Form with Fixed Pages. When you
import a PDF file as background artwork, Designer preserves the appearance of the original document and retains
existing interactive fields.
5 Click Next.
6 [Optional] In the Form Return Setup: Adding Buttons panel, select how the form is distributed and how the form
data is returned.
7 Click Finish.
To use File > New to import a PDF file as artwork with Designer and Workbench
When you use File > New to import a PDF file, you can specify a name for the form. The form will be saved in the
Applications view in Workbench.
1 Select File > New. The New Form dialog box opens in Workbench.
2 Follow the onscreen instructions until the New Form Assistant > Getting Started panel opens in Designer.
3 Select the Import A PDF Document option, and then click Next.
4 In the Document Setup: Import a PDF panel, browse to and select the PDF file you want to import, click Open, and
then click Next.
5 In the Document Setup: Import Options panel, select Create an Interactive Form with Fixed Pages. When you
import a PDF file as background artwork, Designer preserves the appearance of the original document and retains
existing interactive fields.
6 Click Next.
7 Click Finish.
To use File > Open to import a PDF file as artwork with Designer and Workbench
When you use File > Open to import a PDF file, you specify the LiveCycle application where you want to save the form.
1 Select File > Open.
2 Navigate to the PDF file to import, select the file, and click Open.
3 In the Document Setup: Import Options panel, select Create an Interactive Form with Fixed Pages. When you
import a PDF file as background artwork, Designer preserves the appearance of the original document and retains
existing interactive fields.
4 Click Finish.
5 Select File > Save As.
6 Navigate to the Workbench folder on your local system:
• If you are using Windows XP, the Workbench folder is located in \Documents and Settings\<user name>.
• If you are using Windows Vista, the Workbench folder is located in \Desktop\<user name>.
7 Select the application folder where you want to save the form.
8 Type a name for the form, and then click Save.
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To replace PDF artwork
You can replace the background artwork in a PDF form by using the Replace Artwork command in the Edit menu.
Designer replaces the current background artwork with the new background artwork, while preserving any field
objects that were placed on top of the previous background artwork. Any Acrobat form fields in the replacement PDF
artwork are ignored and removed.
Keep in mind that replacing the PDF artwork affects the PDF structure. For more information, see “About importing
structured PDF documents as artwork” on page 139.
Important: You cannot undo replacing artwork. As a result, it is recommended that you save your PDF form before
replacing the artwork.
1 Select Edit > Replace Artwork.
2 Select File > Save and save the form in one of the file formats in the Save As Type list.
More Help topics
“Saving forms for Acrobat and Adobe Reader” on page 36
“Import documents” on page 127
About importing structured PDF documents as artwork
You can import structured PDF documents as artwork, which contains tags and structural information to provide a
defined tabbing and reading order for assistive technologies such as keyboard access and screen readers.
The PDF Structure palette in Designer provides a view of the hierarchical structure of a tagged PDF and displays three
types of structural tags:
<content> Content tags apply to the content within the document. Content tags are similar to HTML tags and are
displayed as <P>, <H1>, <Sect>, <Figure>, and so on. The content of the document is displayed below these tags.
Content tags are provided for reference only and cannot be modified in Designer.
<form> Form tags act as containers for field tags. All structure for library objects is contained under the form tags.
<field> Field tags correspond to the actual objects in the document. Field tags can only exist under form tags. Each
field tag can be linked to a single object. When a field tag is linked to an object, the tag displays the name of the object
along with an icon indicating the object type in the document. When a field tag is unlinked from any object, the tag
displays the words unlinked field.
When you import a structured PDF document as artwork, Designer maintains the structure and automatically
associates any tagged Acrobat form fields that are converted to library objects with the correct form tags in the
document structure. However, you may need to manually add field tags under the correct form tags for any untagged
fields that remain in the form. You can also place additional library objects on top of PDF artwork and add field tags
to the document structure for each object.
Using the PDF Structure palette, you can see which objects are associated with the structure tags in the form. When
you click a content tag in the PDF Structure palette, the corresponding object in the form is highlighted in the Design
View tab. For example, if you click a paragraph content tag <P> displayed in the PDF Structure palette, the
corresponding content, usually text, is highlighted in the form.
After you import a structured PDF document as artwork, you can use the commands on the PDF Structure palette
menu (and context menu) to add field tags to and remove them from the document structure, navigate the structure,
move fields up and down in the structure, and show the content tags within the structure.
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Note: Keep in mind that you can only edit the structure for fields in Designer. If you want to edit the structure tags and
content structure in a form, you must do so in Acrobat.
Replacing PDF artwork affects document structure
Keep in mind that when you replace the background artwork in a structured PDF document, the current structure is
replaced with the structure in the new background artwork. All content tags for the old artwork are replaced with the
content tags for the new artwork. The form and field tags remain and are merged with the new content tags. Any
content in the field objects is preserved and merged with the new content structure. You may need to move some of
the form and field tags if the merged tags are not in the intended locations.
Note that any form fields that were added to the replacement PDF artwork in Acrobat are not converted to the
corresponding editable library objects in Designer.
If the replacement PDF artwork is not structured, the structure of the current PDF artwork is removed and the
resulting PDF form no longer has structure.
To add a field tag to the document structure
You can select a field object in a form and then add a field tag under a selected form tag in the document structure.
You can add one field tag under each form tag.
You can also create a field tag by dragging a field in the form onto a structure tag in the PDF Structure palette.
1 In the Design View tab, select the field in the form to add to the document structure.
2 In the PDF Structure palette, right-click the form tag under which to add the field tag and select Add Field to
Structure.
To remove a field tag from the document structure
❖ In the PDF Structure palette, right-click the field tag to delete and select Remove Field from Structure.
To move a field tag up or down in the document structure
❖ In the PDF Structure palette, right-click field tag to move and select Move Field Up or Move Field Down as needed.
To find untagged fields in the document structure
❖ Right-click in the PDF Structure palette and select Find Untagged Fields.
To show the context tags in the document structure
❖ Right-click in the PDF Structure palette and select Show Content tags.
More Help topics
“Import documents” on page 127
“PDF Structure palette menu” on page 628
Importing Word files
You can import a Microsoft Word XP or Microsoft Word 2003 file into Designer. The Word file can be a document
(DOC), a template (DOT), or a rich text format (RTF) file.
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Word objects, including paragraphs, tables, images, line art, form fields, headers, and footers, are converted into
Designer XML objects, and all rich text formatting is preserved.
Note: If the Word file contains contiguous underlined tab characters (where underscore is used as the tab character),
Designer attempts to convert the information into a text field.
Designer displays the file import options each time you import a Word file.
1 Select File > Open.
2 From the Files Of Type list, select Microsoft Word Document (DOC, DOT, RTF).
3 Navigate to the file that you want to open, select the file, and click Open.
4 In the File Import Options dialog box, type a password if it is needed to open or unprotect the file.
5 To substitute any missing fonts and suppress all font substitution error messages, select Ignore Missing Fonts.
6 To convert and embed any images into the form design, select Convert Images.
7 Select a logging option from the Generate Log File list.
8 Click OK.
Note: Because Designer accesses the Windows clipboard to convert data, the clipboard cannot be accessed by other
applications while Designer is importing a Word file.
How Designer converts Word objects and settings
When Designer converts a Word file, it preserves the layout. However, you may need to do some manual repositioning
of objects afterward to make the form look as good as possible.
This table identifies the key objects in a Word file and indicates how Designer treats them when they are imported.
Item
Converted
Not Converted
File properties
Built-in and custom properties are converted to form properties.
Paragraphs
Content (for example, text), including rich text formatting
Hyperlinks
Font effects such as underline, strikethrough, superscript, and
subscript
Color underline is converted to black underline.
Borders and shading applied to paragraphs
All Caps font effect
Font color of list numbers if it is different from the text color
Shading for Empty paragraphs
Borders applied to text
Tables
Tables are converted to subforms that position content, and table Some border styles are not supported.
cells are converted to child subforms.
Shapes
Text boxes
Arrowheads are converted to straight lines.
Images
Drawn objects are converted to images.
Lines, rectangles, and circles are rasterized.
Line slope
Auto shapes
Drawing Shape Rotation other than multiples of 90 are not
supported.
OLE objects
Blank lines in frames
Frames
ActiveX® controls are converted to images.
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Item
Converted
Not Converted
Inline shapes
Images and OLE objects are treated like characters and are
positioned as if they were a character in a line of text.
ActiveX control functionality
ActiveX controls are converted to images.
Form Fields
Checkbox fields are converted to check boxes. The default state is Formatting of Textinput values
carried over.
Web Tools objects
Drop-down fields are converted to drop-down lists. All list items
are carried over.
Text input fields are converted to text fields and the default value
is retained.
HelpText and StatusText contents are converted to tooltips.
Headers and Footers
If all headers and footers are the same, they are created on the
master page and are positioned according to the Word
document’s header and footer layout settings.
Embedded field codes such as date and time
If any headers and footers are different, they are created on
individual pages.
Page Setup settings
The Margins settings are used to specify the layout of the default
subform for the page.
Gutter settings
Multiple pages are converted to single individual pages.
The Paper Size and Orientation settings determine the basic page
layout properties.
Scripts
Any scripting associated with a form field is converted into
comments in the Designer XML source code.
Page borders
If specified, this attribute is converted to a border on the master
page.
Line numbers
Not converted
Comments
Not converted
Web page attributes
Not converted
About reducing Word conversion problems
Microsoft Word XP or Microsoft Word 2003 must be installed on the same computer as Designer.
If you are importing a Word XP file that is configured to be sent as an email message, ensure you have installed Word
XP Service Pack 1. Otherwise, Word XP will crash after the import process has completed.
To obtain the best results, the input file should contain no more than ten pages.
Copying spreadsheet data from Microsoft Excel
You can copy spreadsheet data from Microsoft Excel 2002 or later and paste the cells into a form in Designer. Copying
and pasting data from an earlier version of Excel may produce unexpected results.
Designer creates a table object in the form with the same dimensions, number of cells, and data content as the selection
in the spreadsheet. Designer also preserves some of the original formatting of the spreadsheet cells, including the text,
fonts, colors, background colors, alignment, and borders. If the selected cells in the spreadsheet contain column
headers, Designer maintains the column header formatting in a header row at the top of the table.
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Keep in mind that Designer does not maintain any calculations, scripts, images, and embedded objects, such as graphs
that are in the Excel spreadsheet.
1 In Excel, copy the spreadsheet cells you want, and keep Excel open.
2 In Designer, select Edit > Paste.
3 Select Paste Cells As a Table and click OK.
More Help topics
“Creating a form from the content of a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet” on page 143
“Spreadsheet Paste Options dialog box” on page 694
Creating a form from the content of a Microsoft Excel
spreadsheet
This feature is available only in the stand-alone version of Designer.
You can use a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet as the basis to create a new PDF form, which you can distribute to recipients
by email to collect the same type of data as in the spreadsheet.
Using the New Form Assistant, you can create a PDF form with interactive text fields based on the column headers in
the Excel spreadsheet. The New Form Assistant creates one text field object for each column in the spreadsheet. Text
field objects are positioned in the form from left to right and wrapped onto additional lines if needed. The caption and
binding name of each text field object corresponds to the column header text in the spreadsheet.
If you include an email submit button object in the form, you can distribute the form to recipients to fill and return.
When you select the Distribute Form command from the File menu, the form closes in Designer and the Acrobat
Distribute wizard appears to guide you through the distribution process. As you receive the filled forms from the
recipients, you can organize the collected data into data sets in Acrobat. After you receive multiple sets of form data,
you can reorganize the form data into a spreadsheet.
Keep in mind that Designer does not maintain any calculations, scripts, images, and embedded objects such as graphs
that are in the spreadsheet document.
1 In Excel, open the spreadsheet you want to use to create a new PDF form.
2 In Designer, select File > New.
3 Select Based on a Spreadsheet, and click Next.
4 Follow the on-screen instructions in the New Form Assistant. You must leave Excel running to complete the
process in the New Form Assistant.
More Help topics
“Copying spreadsheet data from Microsoft Excel” on page 142
“Spreadsheet Paste Options dialog box” on page 694
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Importing InfoPath files
You can import Microsoft InfoPath files (XSN) into Designer. During the conversion process, Designer extracts these
components from the input file and uses them to create Designer XML elements:
• An XML file describing the contents of the package
• An XML file describing the InfoPath form
• XSL files describing each view
• A schema file for the InfoPath form
• A script file, which is saved as comments in the Designer XML source code
Designer displays the file import options each time you import an InfoPath file.
1 Select File > Open.
2 From the Files Of Type list, select InfoPath (XSN).
3 Navigate to the file that you want to open, select the file, and click Open.
4 Do one of the following actions:
• If you want to be prompted for a view, select the Prompt To Select View During Conversion option. If the
InfoPath file has only one view, a prompt will not display even if you select this option.
• If you know the name of the view that you want to import, type the name of the view in the View box. To convert
the default view, leave the box blank.
5 Do one of the following actions:
• Select the Import Print Settings option to import headers and footers, page orientation, and page margins of the
InfoPath form.
• If you know the page size of the InfoPath form, select one from the list or select Default.
• If you know the page orientation of the InfoPath form, select one from the list.
Note: If you select the Import Print Settings option, the page size and orientation are taken from the InfoPath form
and you do not have to select the page size and orientation.
6 (Optional) Select an option from the Generate A Log File list.
7 (Optional) To convert and embed any images into the form design, select Embed Images In XDP.
8 Click OK.
Note: Designer uses Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.0 or later to transfer data while importing an InfoPath file. If you
do not have Internet Explorer installed, you cannot import an InfoPath file into Designer.
How Designer converts Microsoft InfoPath objects
Designer preserves the layout when converting a Microsoft InfoPath file. However, you may need to do some manual
repositioning of objects afterward to make the form look as good as possible.
The table identifies the key objects in an InfoPath form and indicates how Designer treats them when they are
imported.
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Item
Converted
Not Converted
Controls
Text boxes, including rich text boxes, are converted to text Validation rules
fields.
Scrolling
Drop-down list boxes are converted to drop-down list
Images embedded in rich text boxes
boxes. Values are included only if the control is filled
manually.
A group of option buttons may not be converted to a
List boxes are converted to list boxes.
single radio button group.
Submit actions for buttons are not handled
Date picker controls are converted to Date/Time fields
unless the data type for the date picker in InfoPath is set to Padding properties of check boxes and radio buttons
“Text (String)”. In this case, it is converted to a Text field.
Attachments
Check boxes are converted to check boxes.
Custom controls
Option buttons are converted to radio buttons.
Buttons are converted to buttons.
Expression boxes
Lists
Not converted
Numbered lists are converted to text.
Bullet symbols
For bulleted lists, the text only is converted to text.
Pictures
Pictures are converted to images.
Schema
If the InfoPath form has been designed based on a schema,
the schema is imported and binding is done automatically
in Designer.
Scripts
Ink pictures
Not converted
Scrolling regions
Scrolling regions are converted to subforms.
Sections
Sections are converted to subforms.
Include/exclude properties
Repeating sections are converted to repeating subforms in Instructional text
a form. Add and delete buttons are provided to add or
Only one instance of any optional or repeating sections is
delete the instance of the section when filling the form.
converted
Tables
Text
Tables are converted to tables.
Some border styles are not supported.
Repeating tables are converted to repeating tables in a
form. Add and delete buttons are provided to add or
delete the instance of the section when filling the form.
Only the visible rows in a repeating table are converted.
Text is converted to text. Any highlight color is converted
to background color.
Hyperlinks
Rows that have been merged vertically are converted to
subforms in a positioned layout.
Differences between Designer and InfoPath objects
Designer and InfoPath do not support the same features and object properties. The most obvious differences include
these:
• Images cannot be placed in Designer text fields.
• Designer does not support editable sequential numbered or bulleted lists.
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Importing Adobe Output Designer Form files
To import Output Designer files (IFD) into Designer, you must install Output Designer 5.5 or later on the same
computer as Designer.
Designer displays the File Import Options dialog box each time you import an Adobe Output Designer Form file.
1 Select File > Open.
2 In the Files Of Type list, select Adobe Output Designer Form (IFD).
3 Select the file to open, and click Open.
4 In the File Import Options dialog box, select options as needed:
• To generate a temporary log file, in the Generate a Trace Log of the Conversion Process list select one of the
following:
• \TEMP\ConvertIFD.log Creates a log file in your systems's temporary folder that records information about
the conversion process.
• \TEMP\inputfile.log Generates a log file in your system's temporary folder using the same name as the input
file. Generates a log file for each imported file.
• To use the Output Designer configuration file to generate PDF form file, select Use Output Designer PDF
Configuration. Uses an Output Designer configuration file (pdf.ics) and a compiled version of the configuration
file (pdf.icf) to generate a PDF form file.
• To synchronize field objects with matching names to use global data binding, select sync Like Named Fields As
Global. Applies a global value to all field objects in the form with the same name.
• To remove all un-named subforms from the hierarchy, select Import Fields Only.
5 Click OK.
More Help topics
“Adobe Output Designer form (File Import Options dialog box)” on page 653
“Import documents” on page 127
Importing XForms Model files
You can import XForms Model files into Designer. Each time you import an XForms Model file, the File Import
Options dialog box appears.
1 Select File > Open.
2 In the Files Of Type list, select XForms Model.
3 Navigate to the file to open, select the file, and click Open.
4 (Optional) To embed a schema within the output XDP file if a schema is set for the XForms document, select
Embed Schemas Inline.
5 (Optional) In the Set Working Directory box, type the path to the folder where you want Designer to check for
relative file path locations, such as instance data XML files or XML schema files, which might be included in the
XForms document. If you do not specify this folder, the default working directory will be the same location as the
XForm that is being imported. This directory is not where the log files or temporary instance data files are created.
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6 In the Generate log file list, select one of the following options:
• If you do not want to generate a log file to capture conversion output messages, select Do Not Log.
• To generate a log file in the Temp folder located in Documents and Settings\[username]\Local Settings\Temp
(Windows XP) or Users\[username]\AppData\Local\Temp (Windows Vista), select \TEMP\ConvertXF.log.
Each log file created is prefixed with ConvertXF and appended with a unique number (for example,
ConvertXF38512.log).
7 Click OK.
Note: Designer forms do not support an equivalent of the xforms-valid event. Any scripting associated with the
xforms-valid event is not imported.
More Help topics
“XForms Model (File Import Options dialog box)” on page 655
“Import documents” on page 127
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Chapter 5: Using tables
About tables
A table is made up of rows and columns of cells that you can fill with form fields or merge with data. This example
shows what the various parts of a table are called.
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A. Header Row B. Row C. Footer Row D. Column E. Cell F. Section
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Types of tables
You can create two types of tables in Designer form designs:
• Tables that have a fixed number of rows and columns. For example, this table is a simple four-column, four-row
table with a header and footer row.
• Tables in which the number of columns are fixed, but the number of rows will change depending on how much
information is in the data source.
A. This is how the table looks in the Layout Editor B. This is how the table looks in the Preview PDF tab when merged with data from a data
source
Or, interactive tables can grow or shrink when a user clicks a button to add or delete a row.
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A. Buttons that add a row or delete a row B. When the user clicks the Add Row button twice, Designer adds two rows.
Ways to create tables
Here are some of the common methods for creating tables.
• Create an empty table that has a fixed number of rows and columns. See “To create a simple table” on page 152.
• Create an empty table that has a fixed number of rows and columns. See “To create a simple table” on page 152.
• Create a table whose number of rows changes to accommodate the amount of data that displays. See “To create a
table from a data source” on page 192.
• Create an empty table in which the number of rows changes to accommodate the amount of data. See “To create a
table using the Table Assistant” on page 152.
• Create a table from existing objects. See “To create a table from existing objects” on page 154.
• Create a table nested within a table. See “To create a table within a table” on page 155.
• Import a table from another application. See “To import a table from Microsoft Word” on page 157.
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To create a simple table
You can create a simple table with a range of columns and rows with or without header or footer rows. For example,
here is a four-column, four-row table with a header and footer row.
1 In the Object Library palette, click the Standard category and select the Table object
.
2 Click where you want the table to appear.
Note: If you selected Don’t Show This Again in the Insert Table dialog box, when you select the Table object in the
Object Library palette, Designer automatically inserts a table with the same number of columns and rows that you
inserted the last time you used the Insert Table dialog box.
3 In the Insert Table dialog box, enter the number of columns and rows.
You can enter a maximum of 20 columns and 50 rows. You can add more columns and rows after the table is
created by using the Insert commands in the Table menu.
4 (Optional) To add a header row, select Include Header Row In Table.
5 (Optional) To add a footer row, select Include Footer Row In Table.
6 Click OK.
More Help topics
“To repeat a header or footer row on subsequent pages” on page 213
To create a table using the Table Assistant
The Table Assistant simplifies and streamlines the process of creating a table by letting you easily define some of the
basic elements in a table before you place the table on a form. For example, the Table Assistant dialog box provides
options for adding body rows and columns, adding header and footer rows, adding sections, and applying shading to
rows.
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You can use the Table Assistant to create tables that have a fixed number of rows and columns, or tables that have a
fixed number of columns but the number of rows changes depending on how much information is in the data source.
As you select options, you can see how the table will look in the Preview area of the Table Assistant. After you create
a table using the Table Assistant, you can modify it using the commands on the Table menu and the various options
in the Layout, Border, Object, and Accessibility palettes.
By default, the Insert Table dialog box appears when you select Insert > Standard > Table or when you drag the Table
object onto the Layout Editor. However, if you previously selected the Don’t Show This Again option in the Insert
Table dialog box, you can restore the default behavior by selecting Tools > Options > Wizards and Tips and selecting the
Show When Creating Tables option.
1 Select Table > Insert Table, and select Create Table Using Assistant.
2 In the Table Assistant, specify the body layout, and then click Next:
• To add a specific number of rows and columns, select Body Has Fixed Dimensions, and then select values in the
Number of Columns and Number of Rows lists.
• For a table in which the number of body rows in the table matches the number of rows in the data, select Body
Rows Vary Depending on Data, and then select a value from the Number of Columns list.
3 Specify whether you want to include a header row, and then click Next:
• To have no header row, select No Header Row.
• To add a header row, select Has Header Row, and then select Repeat Header Row on Each Page, if needed. The
Repeat Header Row on Each Page option is available only when you select the Body Rows Vary Depending on
Data option in the Body Layout page.
4 Specify whether you want to include a footer row, and then click Next:
• To have no footer row, select No Footer Row.
• To add a footer row, select Has Footer Row, and then select Repeat Footer Row on Each Page, if needed. The
Repeat Footer Row on Each Page option is available only when you select the Body Rows Vary Depending on
Data option in the Body Layout page.
5 Specify the sections to include, and then click Next:
• To include body rows with no sections, select Has Body Rows and No Sections.
• To include body rows grouped into sections, select Has Sections of Body Rows and do the following tasks:
• Use the Add, Delete, Up, and Down buttons above the Sections list to add, remove, and order sections as needed.
• To rename a section shown in the Sections list, double-click the section and rename it in the Table Section dialog box.
• To apply options to a section listed in the Sections list, select the section and, under Section Options, select
options as needed. Note that when you select Section Is Optional, the minimum occurrence for the section is set
to 0. This means that if no data exists for the section, the section will not be shown.
6 Specify the row shading and then click Finish:
• Select Alternating Row Colors.
• In the First list, select the number of initial rows to shade, and then select a color.
• In the Next list, select the number of subsequent rows to shade, and then select a color.
More Help topics
“To repeat a header or footer row on subsequent pages” on page 213
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To create a table from existing objects
If you have an existing form that includes field objects formatted as a table, you can easily convert them to a table. For
example, the Bill of Lading template that comes with Designer includes fields formatted like a table.
1 Open a form that contains fields formatted like a table.
For example, start a new form based on the Bill of Lading template. Select File > New and select Based On A
Template. Click Next and then select the Bill of Lading template. Click Next and finish filling in the New Form
Assistant.
2 Drag the objects that you want to convert to a table.
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For example, select the header row and body rows but stop above the Terms of Delivery and Insurance section.
3 Select Table > Convert to Table.
Note: You can convert any group of fields to a table. For example, in this same template, you can convert the fields
under Shipped To and Shipper to a table.
To create a table within a table
You can create a table within a table that is independent from the main table. For example, the nested table can have
a different number of columns and rows than the main table. There is no limit to the number of levels that you can
nest tables.
If you want a table to automatically flow to the next page, you must ensure the following conditions:
• The table must be in a subform that is set to Flowed in the Subform tab of the Object palette.
• The Allow Page Breaks Within Content option is selected in the Table tab.
• The table is not in a group.
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Table within a table
1 Create a table. See “To create a simple table” on page 152.
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2 In the Object Library palette, click the Standard category and drag the Table object into a cell in the main table.
Note: If you selected Don’t Show This Again in the Insert Table dialog box, when you select the Table object from the
Object Library palette, Designer automatically inserts a table with the same number of columns and rows that you
inserted the last time you used the Insert Table dialog box.
3 In the Insert Table dialog box, enter the number of columns and rows.
You can enter a maximum of 20 columns and 50 rows. You can add more columns and rows after the table is
created by using the Insert commands on the Table menu.
4 (Optional) To add a header row, select Include Header Row In Table.
5 (Optional) To add a footer row, select the Include Footer Row In Table.
6 Click OK.
Note: If you have an existing table, you can select the table and drag it to the cell where you want it to appear.
To import a table from Microsoft Word
You can import a table from Microsoft Word into Designer.
1 In Designer, select File > Open.
2 In the Files of Type list, select Microsoft Word Document.
3 Select the Microsoft Word document that contains the table and click Open.
Designer displays the New Form Assistant and Import A Microsoft Word Document is already selected.
4 Click Next and finish answering the questions when prompted in the New Form Assistant.
5 In the File Import Options dialog box, provide the required information and click OK.
Designer imports the contents of the document, including the table.
More Help topics
“To change a cell to another object type” on page 217
To create a table using subforms
You can create a table using subforms. Subforms can contain a variety of objects including buttons, text fields, and
other subforms. The flow direction of the subform indicates how the contained objects will be arranged. Typically, you
will create tables by using the Table object in the Object Library palette. If you need to create a complicated table where
the columns do not line up, you can use subforms.
1 Start the table:
• In the Object Library palette, click the Standard category and drag a Subform object onto the form.
• Resize the subform to match the required width of the table.
• Expand the height of the subform so that you can add one or more child subforms.
• Type a name for the subform in the Name box in the Binding tab of the Object palette. For example, type
TableParent.
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• In the Accessibility palette, select Table from the Subform Role list.
2 Create a table header:
• Drag another Subform object into the TableParent subform.
• Set the width of the header subform to match the width of its parent subform and set the height of the subform
to match the required height of the header row.
• Type a name for the subform in the Name box in the Binding tab of the Object palette. For example, type
TableHeader.
• In the Accessibility palette, select Header from the Subform Role list.
3 Add text for the column headers:
• Drag a Text object into the TableHeader subform.
• Double-click the text in the Text object and type a name for the column.
• Repeat as many times as required to add additional headers to the table.
4 Create a body row that will act as the repeating row in the table:
• Drag another Subform object into the TableParent subform.
• Set the width of the body row subform to match the width of its parent subform and set the height of the body
row subform to match the required height of the body row.
• Type a name for the subform in the Name box in the Binding tab of the Object palette. For example, type
TableBodyRow.
• Add the same number of fields to go under the headers that you added in step 3 to display the data values in the
table. Set the size of the fields.
• In the Layout palette, select None from the Caption list.
• In the Accessibility palette, select Body Row from the Subform Role list.
5 Select the TableParent subform, click the Subform tab of the Object palette, and select Flowed from the Type list.
6 In the Object palette, click the Binding tab and select Repeat Subform For Each Data Item.
7 (Optional) Consider enhancing the table as follows:
• Add borders and shading for table elements by using the Border palette.
• Specify overflow leaders and trailers for the rows of the table.
To create a table containing variable-width cells
1 Create two or more tables. Each table should have one body row. The first table should have a header row, and the
other tables should have only body rows.
2 Arrange the tables one below the other.
3 Wrap all these tables in a parent subform.
4 Adjust the width of each cell as required.
5 Set the parent subform to Flowed.
More Help topics
“About subforms” on page 225
“About overflow leaders and trailers” on page 236
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“Make complex tables accessible” on page 554
“Border properties in the Border palette” on page 385
“Accessibility properties in the Accessibility palette” on page 387
To create a nested table using subforms
After you create a table using subforms, you can insert a table into a table cell. For example, you can show two
independent tables side by side (in separate cells) or nest tabular material.
Before you insert a table in to a cell, you must wrap the cell in a subform.
1 Start the nested table:
• Select the cell (in the table that was created using subforms) where the nested subform will go.
• Select Insert > Wrap In Subform.
• Type a name for the subform in the Name box in the Binding tab of the Object palette. For example, type
Wrapper.
2 Create the nested table.
• Right-click the cell again and select Wrap In Subform, or drag the Subform object from the Object Library
palette to the cell.
• Type a name for the subform in the Name box in the Binding tab of the Object palette. For example, type
NestedTable.
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• In the Accessibility palette, select Table from the Subform Role list.
3 Right-click the cell (TextField1 in the example) and select Delete.
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4 Create a header row for the nested table:
• Drag another Subform object into the NestedTable subform.
• Set the width and height of the header row.
• Type a name for the subform in the Name box in the Binding tab of the Object palette. For example, type
NestedRow1.
• In the Accessibility palette, select Table Header from the Subform Role list.
Note: A subform that is inserted into a parent subform that is set to Flowed may not appear in the correct position in
the Hierarchy palette.
5 Add text for the column headers:
• In the Object Library palette, click the Standard category and drag two Text objects into NestedRow1.
• Select one of the text objects and type a name for the text object. For example, type Description.
• Select the second text object and type a name for the text object. For example, type Cost.
• Select the two Text objects in NestedRow1 and select Layout > Group.
6 Create a body row for the nested table:
• Drag another Subform object into the NestedTable subform.
• Set the width and height of the body row.
• Type a name for the subform in the Name box in the Binding tab of the Object palette. For example, type
NestedRow2.
• In the Accessibility palette, select Body Row from the Subform Role list.
• In the Object Library palette, click the Standard category and drag three field objects into NestedRow2 (such as
Text Fields).
7 Set the parts of the table to Flowed:
• Select the NestedTable subform and, click the Subform tab of the Object palette, and select Flowed from the
Type list.
• Select the subform that contains the NestedTable subform called (untitled Subform) (page 1), click the Subform
tab of the Object palette, and select Flowed from the Type list.
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The Hierarchy palette could look like this illustration.
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The form could look like this in the Preview PDF tab.
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More Help topics
“About subforms” on page 225
“About overflow leaders and trailers” on page 236
“Border properties in the Border palette” on page 385
“Accessibility properties in the Accessibility palette” on page 387
To create a table that grows using the Button object
You can create a table that adds a row when a user clicks an Add Row button. You can also include a Delete Row
button. You must create the table, add the buttons, and then set the properties that will make the table grow.
A. Buttons that add a row or delete a row B. When the user clicks the Add Row button twice, Designer adds two rows.
To create a table that grows using the Button object
1 Select Table > Insert Table.
2 In the Insert Table dialog box, select Create Table Using Assistant and click OK.
3 In the Body Layout panel of the Table Assistant, select Body Rows Vary Depending On Data.
This creates a table that adds or removes rows, depending on the data sent to it.
4 Enter the number of columns and click Next.
5 (Optional) Select Has Header Row and click Next.
6 (Optional) Select Has Footer Row and click Next.
7 (Optional) Select Has Body Rows And No Sections and click Next.
8 (Optional) Select Alternate Row Colors and click Finish.
9 Save the form as an Adobe Dynamic XML Form (*pdf).
Now, you must add the buttons that will be used to add and delete rows.
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To add the buttons
1 Select the first cell of the body row and, in the Object palette, click the Cell tab and select Subform from the Type list.
This cell needs to be a subform so that it can contain two buttons.
You can also drag the Subform object from the Object Library palette into a cell in the table.
2 In the Object Library palette, click the Standard category and drag the Button object into a cell in the body row. For
example, place it in the first cell of the body row.
3 In the Object palette, click the Field tab and type Add Row in the Caption box.
4 Repeat steps 2 and 3 to create a Delete Row button.
5 Select the Add Row button and, in the Script Editor, select Click from the Show list.
6 In the Script Editor, select JavaScript from the Language list.
7 Type the following script:
Table.Row1.instanceManager.addInstance(1);
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To modify the script for your own form, you must understand how the script relates to the hierarchy. For example,
in the hierarchy for the current form, both buttons are inside the same subform; therefore, you do not need to
specify any objects beyond the Table level.
8 Select the Delete Row button and, in the Script Editor, select Click from the Show list.
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9 In the Script Editor, select JavaScript from the Language list.
10 Type the following script:
Table.Row1.instanceManager.removeInstance(1);
To reuse these buttons in another form, you can add them to the Custom category (or your own category) of the
Object Library palette. Note that you may have to edit the script for the button if you use it in a different form.
11 View the form in the Preview PDF tab.
For example, this is what you would see if you modified the Part table from the Purchase Order template.
Selecting, copying, moving, and navigating
To select a table, row, column, cell, or section
You can select rows, columns, cells, sections, or the entire table in different ways:
• Click in the table and use the Select commands in the Table menu.
• Drag the mouse pointer to select different parts of the table.
• Select objects in the Hierarchy palette.
You can also use one of the following methods.
To select the entire table
❖ Click in the area on the upper left of the table, or click and drag to select the entire table.
To select the cells in a row
❖ Click in the area to the left of the row until you see the following arrow.
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To select a row
❖ Click in the area to the left of the row until you see the following arrow.
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To select the cells in a column
❖ Click above the column.
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To select a cell
❖ Click the lower-right edge of the cell.
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Note: After a cell is selected, you can select more cells in the table by using the arrow keys to move within the table.
Press Shift and then press the arrow key to select adjacent cells.
To select multiple rows, columns, cells, or sections
❖ Drag the mouse pointer across the rows, columns, cells, or sections.
To select multiple items that are not adjacent, click the first row, column, cell, or section you want, press Ctrl, and
then click the next rows, columns, cells, or sections you want.
To select adjacent cells, click the first cell you want, press Shift, and then use the arrow keys to select more cells in
the table.
Note: The rows, columns, cells, or sections must be in the same table. A nested table is considered a separate table.
To select a section
❖ Click the right bracket that indicates a section.
To copy a table, row, column, cell, or section
1 Select the table, row, column, cell, or section you want to copy.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• Press Ctrl and drag the copy to a new location.
• Select Edit > Copy, click the where to place the object, and then select Edit > Paste.
• Select Edit > Duplicate. This command does not work for single cells or cells in rows.
To make multiple copies that are positioned and aligned, use the Copy Multiple command in the Edit menu. This
command does not work for single cells or cells in rows.
To move a table
1 Select the table.
2 Click in the upper part or left side of the table to find the move cursor
and drag it to the new location.
To go to a specific row
If the table is long, you can go to a specific row in a table, including a header, body, or footer row.
1 Select part of the table and select Table > Go to Row.
2 Select Header Row, Body Row, or Footer Row.
You can also go to a specific header or footer row within sections.
3 Type the row number to go to and click OK.
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Inserting and deleting
To insert a row, column, or section
1 Select part of the table.
2 Select Table > Insert and select an option.
Note: When you insert a section, Designer adds a header row for the section by default.
To delete a table, row, column, or section
To delete a table
1 Select the table. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 Select Table > Delete and click Table.
If the table is not a nested table, you can select Table > Delete to delete the table.
To delete a row, column, or section
1 Select the rows, columns, or sections. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 Select Table > Delete and click Row, Column, or Section.
Formatting a table
To add a table title
1 In the Object Library palette, click the Standard category and drag the Text object
above the table.
2 Double-click the default text and type the title.
3 Set the font properties.
You can also merge the cells in the first row of the table and type the title in the combined cell.
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Adding space
To add space around a table
You can add blank space around the edges of a table by using margins.
1 Select the table. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 In the Layout palette, set the margins for Left, Right, Top, and Bottom.
To add space around cells
You can add space around cells by using margins.
1 Select the cell. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 In the Layout palette, set the margins for Left, Right, Top, and Bottom.
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To add space around rows
You can add space around rows by using margins. For example, in the following table, margins are set to 0.25 inch
around the row.
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1 Select the row. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 In the Layout palette, set the margins for Left, Right, Top, and Bottom.
Applying borders and shading to a table
Borders and shading can add interest and emphasis to a table. You can add borders to a table or an individual row,
column, or cell. You can use shading to fill in the background of a table.
You can add a striped or alternating shading pattern to the rows. You can select the number of rows or columns to
include in a stripe pattern and apply your color choices to the pattern.
To apply and remove borders and shading
1 Select the table. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 To apply a border and shading, do one of the following actions:
• To place borders only on particular sides, in the Border palette, select Edit Individually from the Edges list. Now
you can set the border for each side.
• To place the same border on all sides, select Edit Together from the Edges list.
3 Select an option from the list of line types and select a color from the color picker.
4 To apply shading, select a style from the Style list and select a color from the color picker.
5 To remove a border or shading do the following action:
• In the Border palette, select Edit Together from the Edges list.
• Select None from the list of line types.
6 To apply a striped or alternating shading to rows
• In the Object palette, click the Row Shading tab and select Apply Alternating Row Shading.
• Select the shading color for the first row or first set of rows.
• Select the shading color for the next row or next set of rows.
Note: If you use the Border palette to set shading for a cell, it overrides the row shading set for the table.
7 To remove the striped or alternating shading from rows
• In the Object palette, click the Row Shading tab and deselect Apply Alternating Row Shading.
To remove the border from around the entire table
❖ Select the table and, in the Border palette, select None from the list of line types.
To distribute rows and columns evenly
You can make multiple rows or columns the same size. All rows adjust to the height of the tallest selected row. All
columns adjust to equal distances based on the width of the table. The table does not grow.
1 Select the rows or columns you want to make the same size. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on
page 167.
2 Select Table > Distribute Rows Evenly or Distribute Columns Evenly.
Note: If you used the Merge Cells command, the original columns still exist but are hidden (so that you can split the
cells again if you want). To make the columns the same size after you have merged cells, delete the hidden columns
first by using the Table > Delete > Column command.
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To format the corners of a table or cells
You can format a table or specific cells in a table to have rounded or notched corners.
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1 Select the table or the cells. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 In the Border palette, select one of the options for Corners.
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3 In the Radius box, type a number. For example, the previous example uses .1 inch.
To show captions in rows
By default, captions for fields are not shown when a field is in a cell. For example, the following objects have captions,
but they are hidden when the field is in a cell.
• Check Box
• Date/Time Field
• Decimal Field
• Signature Field
• Drop-down List
• Image Field
• List Box
• Numeric Field
• Password Field
• Text Field
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You may want to show the caption in some tables. For example, in the following form, a table is used to present the
information. Each row below the header row is one cell.
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1 Select the cell. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 In the Layout palette, select a position for the caption from the Position list.
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To create a table style for the custom library
You can create your own table style to provide a consistent look to borders, shading, alignment, and fonts in tables.
For example, you can format a table that looks like this one and save it in the custom library so that you can reuse it in
another form.
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1 Create a table.
2 Set the borders, shading, cell types, cell alignments, and fonts.
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3 Ensure that the Custom category of the Object Library palette is open.
4 Select the table and drag it into the Custom category of the Object Library palette.
5 In the Add Library Object dialog box, type the name of the table style and click OK.
You can type a description and select which tab group in the library that you want the object to appear in.
To create a calendar using a table
You can create a calendar by using a table.
1 Select View > Master Pages.
2 In the Object palette, click the Master Page tab and select Landscape.
3 Click the Design View tab.
4 In the Object Library palette, select Table > Insert Table.
5 In the Insert Table dialog box, type 7 for columns and 6 for rows.
6 Select Include Header Row In Table and click OK.
7 Move the table to the top of the page.
8 Resize the columns so that the table fits the width of the page.
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9 Select Table > Distribute Columns Evenly.
10 Select the last row of the table. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
11 In the Layout palette, type 1.1in in the Height box.
12 Select the table. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
13 Select Table > Distribute Rows Evenly.
14 Select the first row of the table. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
15 Select Table > Merge Cells.
16 Type the month and set the font properties.
17 In the second row, type the days of the week and set the font properties.
18 In the remaining cells, type the numbers for the days of the week and set the font properties.
Aligning, resizing, and arranging tables
To align a table with other objects
1 Select the table. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 Ctrl+click to select the other object that you want to align.
3 Select one of the following options.
• To align the left edges of the objects, select Layout > Align > Left.
• To align the right edges of the objects, select Layout > Align > Right.
• To align the top edges of the objects, select Layout > Align > Top.
• To align the bottom edges of the objects, select Layout > Align > Bottom.
• To align the vertical centers of the objects, select Layout > Align > Vertical Center.
• To align the horizontal centers of the objects, select Layout > Align > Horizontal Center.
To align the contents of a cell
You can change the horizontal and vertical alignment of the contents of a cell.
1 Select the cell. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 In the Paragraph palette, select one of the following alignment options.
• To left-align the contents of the cell, select Align Left.
• To center-align the contents of the cell, select Align Center.
• To right-align the contents of the cell, select Align Right.
• To justify the contents of the cell, select Justify.
Note: Full justification is applied to all of the lines except the last line in a multiple-line cell (single line paragraphs
cannot be justified).
• To align to the top of the cell, select Align Top.
• To align to the middle of the cell, select Align Middle.
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• To align to the bottom of the cell, select Align Bottom.
To make another object the same size as a table
You can make the size of an object the same size as a table in your form. For example, you can make a rectangle the
same width as a table so that you can insert a dividing element or a border around a section of the form. Other objects
can become the same size as the table, but a table cannot become the same size as other objects.
1 Select the object you want to make the same size as the table.
2 Ctrl+click or Shift+click to select the table. You must select the table last.
3 Select Layout > Make Same Size and select Width, Height, or Both.
The object that you selected last is used to set the size of both objects.
To resize an entire table
You can resize an entire table. You can only resize on the bottom or right edge of the table. To resize the table outside
of the content area, select the last column or last row and change its width or height in the Layout palette.
1 Select the table. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 Place the pointer on the edge of the table until a double-headed arrow appears.
3 Drag the table boundary until the table is the size you want.
To resize rows and columns
You can resize rows and columns. You can only resize on the bottom, left, or right edge of the rows and columns. To
resize the last column outside of content area, change the width in the Layout palette.
1 Place the pointer on the row or column borders until a double-headed arrow appears.
2 Drag the boundary until the row or column is the size you want.
To center a table
1 Select the table. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 Select Layout > Center in Page and select either Horizontally or Vertically.
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To arrange a table with other objects
You can control how objects overlap by putting them in front of or in back of other objects. For example, you can put
a watermark image behind a table.
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1 Select the table. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
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2 Choose one of these options:
• To bring the table forward, select Layout > Bring Forward.
• To bring the table to the front, select Layout > Bring To Front.
• To send the table backward, select Layout > Send Backward.
• To send the table to the back, select Layout > Send To Back.
Working with data in tables
To create a table from a data source
Some data from a data source could be shown in a table. When you connect to a data source, the Data View palette
identifies any items that could be tables. Designer also shows which items will become rows in the table if it finds a
repeating data group.
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After you connect to a data source, you can drag items from the Data View palette onto the form design to quickly
create fields that are bound to the data source. If you drag a table item from the Data View palette onto the form design,
Designer creates a table and, when you select a data file, you see a table like this one at run time. The repeating data
group in the data file has four records.
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1 Ensure you are connected to a data source. See “Connecting to a data source” on page 497.
For example, if you or your administrator installed the samples that come with Designer, locate and open the
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following schema: Purchase Order.xsd in the Data Connections dialog box.
2 In the Data View palette, locate a node that could be a table. For example, locate the following item node.
Item node represents the table
3 Select the node and drag it onto your form design. For example, this is what you should see after dragging the item
node onto your form.
The Data View palette shows that the node is bound to an object.
4 To select a data file, select File > Form Properties and click the Preview tab.
For example, if you or your administrator installed the samples that come with , locate and open the Purchase
Order.xml data file.
5 View the form in the Preview PDF tab.
Designer automatically creates a table that dynamically grows, depending on the amount of data in the data source.
To set the rows in a table to adjust to accommodate data
If you have already created a table that has a fixed number of columns and rows, you can convert it to one that
dynamically grows based on the amount of data from a data source. Converting the table involves setting the subform
that contains the table to Flowed and setting the body row or rows to repeat.
1 Create a table. See “To create a simple table” on page 152.
2 Select the rows below the first row.
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In a table whose number of columns are fixed, but its number of rows will change depending on how much
information is in the data source, only one row is needed. Therefore, you must delete all the rows except the first
row in the table. You can keep the footer row.
3 Select Table > Delete > Row.
4 Save the form as Adobe Dynamic XML Form (*.pdf).
5 In the Hierarchy palette, select the subform that contains the table.
6 In the Object palette, click the Subform tab and select Flowed from the Content list.
7 In the Hierarchy palette, select the body row (for example, Row1).
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8 In the Object palette, click the Binding tab and select the Repeat Row For Each Data Item option.
9 Connect to a data source. See “Connecting to a data source” on page 497.
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You must connect to a data source, such as an XML schema, to show data in the table.
10 Select a data file. See “To preview a form using sample data” on page 104.
You must select a data file to view and test the form with the data.
11 View the form in the Preview PDF tab.
To create a table that groups data
You can display data in a grouped fashion inside a table. Grouping organizes and arranges data into relationships, such
as Country or Region. You can nest groups to easily identify relationships and see trends. It also helps present
summaries, such as totals and counts.
For example, if you supply products, such as monitors, desk lamps, and telephones, you may want to see which country
and region is selling the most product. You can create this table, which contains a nested table inside a nested table
inside the main table:
• Country is the table header for the main table.
• Region is the table header for the first nested table.
• Product and Profit makes up the table header for the nested table inside the first nested table.
For example, the sample XML file you connect to could have the following syntax:
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<form1>
<Sales>
<SalesData>
<country>United States</country>
<CountryData>
<RegionRow>
<region>Western</region>
<RegionData>
<Item>
<product>Monitor</product>
<profit>10</profit>
</Item>
<Item>
<product>Desk Lamp</product>
<profit>20</profit>
</Item>
</RegionData>
</RegionRow>
<RegionRow>
<region>Central</region>
<RegionData>
<Item>
<product>Monitor</product>
<profit>30</profit>
</Item>
<Item>
<product>Desk Lamp</product>
<profit>25</profit>
</Item>
<Item>
<product>Telephone</product>
<profit>28</profit>
</Item>
</RegionData>
</RegionRow>
<RegionRow>
<region>Atlantic</region>
<RegionData>
<Item>
<product>Monitor</product>
<profit>31</profit>
</Item>
<Item>
<product>Desk Lamp</product>
<profit>17</profit>
</Item>
<Item>
<product>Telephone</product>
<profit>22</profit>
</Item>
</RegionData>
</RegionRow>
</CountryData>
</SalesData>
</Sales>
</form1>
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Before you perform this task, you must ensure that the following settings are in effect:
• Ensure that you are connected to a data source. See “Connecting to a data source” on page 497.
• To test the form with sample data, ensure that you are pointing to a data file. See “To preview a form using sample
data” on page 104.
To create the main table
1 Select File > Save As, type a name for the file, and select Adobe Dynamic XML Form (*.pdf). Click OK.
2 Select Table > Insert Table.
3 In the Insert Table dialog box, enter the number of columns and rows. For example, enter 2 for the number of
columns, 1 for the number of rows.
You can enter a maximum of 20 columns and 50 rows. You can add more columns and rows after the table is
created by using the Insert commands in the Table menu.
4 (Optional) To include a header row, select Include Header Row In Table.
5 (Optional) To include a footer row, select Include Footer Row In Table.
6 Click OK.
7 Rename the header row. For example, name the first header Country and delete the header text for the second
column.
8 Resize the table.
To create the first nested table
1 Drag the Table object from the Object Library palette to a cell in the table.
2 Rename the header row text. For example, name the first header Region and delete the header text for the second
column.
To create the last nested table inside the first nested table
1 Drag the Table object from the Object Library palette to a cell in the table to create another nested table. For
example, drag it to the second cell of the body row in the first nested table.
2 In the Insert Table dialog box, enter the number of columns and rows.
3 (Optional) To include a header row, select Include Header Row In Table.
4 (Optional) To include a footer row, select Include Footer Row In Table.
5 Click OK.
6 Rename the header row. For example, change the first header to Product and the second header to Profit.
The form should now look like one.
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To show data in the cells
1 In the Data View palette, drag a node to the cell under the first heading. For example, drag the country node to the
cell under the Country heading.
2 Repeat for the remaining cells.
For example, drag the region node to the cell under the Region heading. Drag the product node to the cell under
the Product heading. Drag the profit node to the cell under the Profit heading.
3 In the Hierarchy palette, select each Row1 and, in the Binding tab of the Object palette, select Repeat Row For Each
Data Item.
4 Match the table, row, and field names to those in the sample XML file.
For example, select Table1 in the Hierarchy palette. Then, in the Object palette, click the Binding tab and type
$record.Sales in the Data Binding (Open, Save, Submit) box.
For example, set the default binding as indicated in this table.
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Select in the Hierarchy palette
Set Data Binding to the corresponding string
Row1
SalesData
country
country
Table2
CountryData
Row1
RegionRow[*]
region
region
Table3
RegionData
Row1
Item[*]
product
product
profit
profit
5 Select the subform that the main table is in and, in the Subform tab of the Object palette, select Flowed from the
Content list.
6 Format the table. For example, add borders and shading.
7 View the form in the Preview PDF tab.
To make a table optional
Making a table optional is useful when you do not want to display information contained in a table or when no data is
available to display in the table.
1 Connect to a data source. See “Connecting to a data source” on page 497.
You must connect to a data source, such as an XML schema, to be able to show data in the table.
2 Select a data file. See “To preview a form using sample data” on page 104.
You must select a data file to view and test the form with the data.
3 Ensure that the table is in a subform that is set to Flowed.
4 Select the table in which the number of rows change depending on how much information is in the data source. See
“To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
If you select a table that has a fixed number of rows and columns and make it optional, the header row is repeated for
each data item. To change this table to one in which the number of rows will change according to the data, deselect
Repeat Row For Each Data Item for the header row but select Repeat Row For Each Data Item for the body row.
5 In the Object palette, click the Binding tab and select Repeat Table For Each Data Item.
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6 Deselect Min Count.
7 View the form in the Preview PDF tab.
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If you have not connected to a data source, the table should not appear. If you have bound the cells in a table to a
data source and there is data for the bound cells, the table should appear.
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To perform calculations in a table
You can use the sum function in FormCalc to total the values in a column. You must add the calculation to the footer
row of the table.
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1 Select the cell in the footer row where you want the calculation. For example, select the cell that corresponds to the
total for Q1.
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2 In the Script Editor, select Calculate from the Show list.
3 In the Language list, select FormCalc.
4 In the Run At list, select Client.
5 In the Script Source field, insert your FormCalc calculation. For example, to calculate the total for the Q1 data, type
the following expression:
sum (Table.Row[*].Q1[*])
6 Repeat for the totals for Q2 and Q3.
7 To calculate the totals for the country, type the following expression:
sum(Q1 + Q2 + Q3)
8 Repeat for the remaining row totals.
9 For the grand total, type the following expression:
sum(TotalQ1 + TotalQ2 + TotalQ3)
To show the data as 10K, in the Object palette, click the Cell tab, click Patterns, and type z9'K' in the Pattern box.
In the Value tab, select Calculated - Read Only from the Type list.
Working with pagination in tables
To set up a table to span multiple pages
To enable tables to automatically flow to the next page, you must ensure the following conditions:
• The table must be in a subform that is set to Flowed in the Subform tab of the Object palette.
• The Allow Page Breaks Within Content option is selected in the Table tab.
• The table is not in a group.
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Now you can make adjustments to the table to ensure that the information is displayed the way you want when the
table spans multiple pages. You can include a Table continued tag at the top of the next page if the table spans more
than one page.
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If you want the header row to repeat on the next page, see “To repeat a header or footer row on subsequent pages” on
page 213.
To set up a master page that includes the Table continued tag
1 Create a table that grows based on the amount of data from a data source. See “To set the rows in a table to adjust
to accommodate data” on page 195.
2 Select the header row.
3 In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab and select Include Header Row In Subsequent Pages.
4 Select View > Master Pages to display the Master Pages tab if it is not already displayed.
5 Click the Master Pages tab and select Insert > New Master Page.
6 Resize the content area so that it is smaller on the new master page.
7 In the Object Library palette, click the Standard category and drag the Text object
8 Double-click the default text and type Table continued ...
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9 Select the text and, in the Font palette, set the text to Bold and Italic.
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10 In the Hierarchy palette, rename the (untitled Content Area) on Page 2 to Page2ContentArea.
To set the pagination for the table
1 In the Design View tab of the Layout Editor, select the table. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on
page 167.
2 In the Object palette, click the Table tab, and ensure that Allow Page Breaks Within Content is selected.
Note: Although the Allow Page Breaks Within Content option is selected by default for tables, it is deselected for table
rows. You must select this option for the table rows to allow page breaks within the table.
3 In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab and, next to the Overflow list, click the arrow and select Go To
Content Area > Page2ContentArea.
To connect to a data source
1 Ensure that you are connected to a data source. See “Connecting to a data source” on page 497.
For example, if you or your administrator installed the samples that come with Designer, locate and open the
following schema: Purchase Order.xsd in the Data Connections dialog box.
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2 In the Data View palette, locate the partNum node.
3 Drag the node into the first cell under the Part No header.
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4 Repeat steps 2 and 3 for description, quantity, and unitPrice.
To select a data file
1 Select File > Form Properties and click the Preview tab. Browse to the location of the data file you want to use.
Note: You will need to select a data file that contains enough data to fill a table that spans more than one page.
2 View the form in the Preview PDF tab.
To repeat a header or footer row on subsequent pages
1 Click and drag to select the table header or footer.
2 In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab, and do one of the following actions:
• Select Include Header Row In Subsequent Pages.
• Select Include Footer Row In Subsequent Pages.
Note: The table must be inserted into a subform that is already set to Flowed.
More Help topics
“Edit Conditional Breaks dialog box” on page 646
“Table properties in the Pagination tab” on page 469
“Section properties in the Pagination tab” on page 482
Working with header and footer rows in tables
To change a row to a header, body, or footer row
After you insert a table, you can change a row to another type. For example, you can change a body row to a header
row to set up a table inside a table. Also, you can change a body row to a footer row to show summaries in the last row
that you want to appear on each page in the form.
1 Select a row. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 In the Object palette, click the Row tab and select an item from the Type list.
To control table, header row, body row, footer row, and section breaks using
conditional statements
Designer provides the capability to create customized conditional breaks for table objects as well as for header rows,
body rows, footer rows, and sections. Instead of paginating these objects in response to data overflow, conditional
breaks allow you to manually control how these objects break on a form based on a series of checks called conditional
statements.
Through conditional statements, you can verify data for a field within a table, header row, body row, footer row, or
section against previous instances of that field. The table, header row, body row, footer row, or section can then be
broken in response to a change in the data supplied to the field.
For example, on a telephone bill, you could break a table object in response to changes in the field that stores the date
of each billing entry. The telephone bill could then be visually broken down by date, making it easier for a user to read.
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In addition to specifying a breaking condition, you can also specify leader and trailer subforms, and indicate where to
place the next instance of the repeating subform on the form.
Before you perform this task, you must ensure that the table is in a subform that is set to Flowed.
1 Select a table, header row, body row, footer row, or section. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on
page 167.
2 In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab.
3 Click the Edit button and then click the Add button
to insert a new conditional break list item.
4 Select a scripting language from the Language list. The conditional break condition statement is created by using
the scripting language you select.
5 In the Run At list, select where you want the conditional break to execute.
6 Click Insert Sample Expression
and select the form design object within the table, header row, body row, footer
row, or section to use as the comparison field for the conditional break. Alternatively, you can enter your own
conditional statement in the field. To correctly evaluate as a conditional break, however, any user-defined
conditional statements must evaluate to either true or false.
7 Select when you would like the table, header row, body row, footer row, or section to break by selecting either Before
or After. Selecting Before inserts a break immediately before the current instance of the table, header row, body row,
footer row, or section is inserted into the form, and selecting After inserts the break immediately after.
8 In the To field, select where you want to place the remaining occurrences of the table, header row, body row, footer
row, or section.
9 In the Trailer and Leader lists, select trailer and leader subforms to use for the current conditional break, if any.
10 Repeat steps 2 to 9 for each conditional break you want to include for the selected object, and click OK when you
have finished adding entries to the list.
After you create all of your conditional break entries, you should review the order in which they appear in the Edit
Conditional Breaks dialog box. Designer processes the conditional breaks specified in this dialog box in sequential
order from top to bottom. Each conditional break for which the conditional statement evaluates to true is executed.
Use the Up
and Down
buttons to move individual conditional break list entries into the order you want.
More Help topics
“Header and footer row properties in the Pagination tab” on page 475
“Body row properties in the Binding tab” on page 481
Working with cells and cell contents
To clear a cell
You cannot delete a cell. However, you can clear the contents of the cell. This action changes the cell type to a Text
object that is empty.
1 Select the cell. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 Select Edit > Clear Contents.
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To merge and split cells
You can combine two or more adjacent cells in the same row into a single cell. For example, you can merge several cells
horizontally to create a table heading that spans several columns. You can only merge cells that are in the same row.
You cannot merge the data from two cells into one cell. You can only merge text. For example, if the header row is
merged, the text is merged because these two cells are Text objects. However, if the body row is merged, and the cells
are bound to items in the data source, only the left most cell is retained.
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A. Before merging cells B. After merging cells, the header row text is merged, but the data for the body row only retains data from the left-most
cell
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It is a good idea to merge cells at the end of the process of designing a table because adding new columns or removing
columns does not work the same if there is a merged cell in the table.
To merge cells into one cell
1 Select the cells you want to merge. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 Select Table > Merge Cells.
If the cells contain Text objects, Designer combines the text. If the cells contain other objects, the objects are deleted.
To make the columns the same size by using the Distribute Columns Evenly command after you have merged cells,
delete the hidden columns first by using the Table > Delete > Column command.
To split a merged cell
1 Select a merged cell. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 Select Table > Split Cell Horizontally.
The split cells will be converted to an empty Text object or, if the original cells were subforms, they will be converted
to empty subforms. For example, if the merged cell was a numeric field, all the split cells will be numeric fields.
Note: You can use these two buttons in the Cell tab of the Object palette: Merge Cells
, Split Cells Horizontally
To orient text vertically in cells
You can change the orientation in table cells so that the information is displayed vertically instead of horizontally.
Only cells can be rotated (not rows, columns, sections, or entire tables).
1 Select the cell. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 In the Layout palette, select one of the rotation buttons.
3 Click the orientation you want. For example, the vertical text in the previous example is rotated 90°.
4 In the Paragraph palette, select the align option that works best for the cell. For example, the vertical text in the
previous example is aligned right and aligned to the top.
Note: If you rotate a field that users fill in, users will have to enter their data at the angle of rotation.
To change a cell to another object type
By default, all cells are set to text objects. Text objects present read-only text that users cannot edit. You can use text
objects to do these tasks:
• Label an area in the form, such as headers in the table
• Provide instructions for filling the form
• Enhance the form
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You can change the cell to any other type of object, such as a numeric field or text field. In this way, you could use a
table to lay out an entire form.
A cell can also be a button that submits data, executes a web service operation or database query, or emails data to
someone.
A cell can even be a subform. A subform acts as a container for other objects, including fields, boilerplate objects, and
other subforms. Subforms also help to position objects relative to each other and provide structure. If a cell is a
subform, the cell can hold more than one object. For example, it can have two buttons.
When a cell becomes an object other than a Text object, it behaves differently in a cell than if it were in the form design
on its own. For example, a Text Field object in a cell has the caption set to None.
Here are ways to change a cell to another object type; however, the results are different, depending on what is already
in the cell and what you change it to:
• Use the Type list in the Cell tab of the Object palette.
• Drag an object from the Object Library palette into a cell.
Depending on what you select from the Type list or Object Library palette and what is in the cell, the new object
replaces the existing object. If you change a cell to a subform, objects that existed in the cell already are wrapped in the
subform. For example, if a text field already existed in the cell and you choose Subform from the Type list, the Text
Field is wrapped in the subform. If a text field already existed in the cell and you choose Numeric Field from the Type
list, the Numeric Field replaces the Text Field.
• Drag an existing object in the form design that is outside of the table into a cell. This method preserves the look of
the object. For example, if you drag a formatted phone number field into a cell, the caption is retained along with
the size of the field.
If you click and drag a Subform object that is outside of the table into a cell, it replaces the contents of the cell.
Note: If you change a cell to a text field, you can select the Allow Multiple Lines option in the Cell tab of the Object
palette to show more than one line of text.
To change a cell to another object type by using the Type list in the Cell tab of the Object palette
1 Select the cell. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 In the Object palette, click the Cell tab and select another object type from the Type list.
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To change a cell to another object type by dragging an object from the Object Library palette
❖ Drag the object from the Object Library palette into the cell where you want it to appear.
To change a cell to another object type by dragging an object from the form design
❖ In the form design, drag the existing object that is outside of the table into the cell where you want it to appear.
Working with table sections
A table section is a grouping of rows that remains a unit. Using sections lets you organize your table. A section can
have its own header and footer so that you can show detailed information grouped by common values. Each section
appears in a predictable order in the form. By default, Designer inserts a header row for each section.
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After you create a table, you can group the rows into sections. You can also apply row shading to each section so that
each section has different colors. For example, here is a table that is grouped into four sections.
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You can also make a table section optional when you do not want to display information contained in a section. For
example, here is a table where section 1 and 3 are hidden.
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To insert a table section
1 Select a cell or a row. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 Select Table > Insert and then select Section Above or Section Below.
Designer inserts one header row and one body row for the section.
To group rows into a section
1 Select the rows that you want to group. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 Select Table > Group as Section.
Designer shows a bracket on the right side of the table to indicate a section.
To ungroup a section into rows
❖ Select the section and select Table > Ungroup Section.
To make a table section optional
1 Select the section. See “To select a table, row, column, cell, or section” on page 167.
2 In the Object palette, click the Binding tab and deselect Repeat Section For Each Data Item.
To show a table section that has been hidden, select the section, select Repeat Section For Each Data Item, select
Min Count, and type 1 in the box.
Creating choice sections in tables
A choice section is a section within a table that can be configured to customize the display of specific rows from within
the section.
This customization is applied to individual rows within the section by using conditional statements. For example, you
can configure a choice section to display instances of a specific row using different text colors, depending on the value
of a specific field within that row.
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You can also add header, body, and footer rows to a choice section, and remove header, body, and footer rows from a
choice subform set by choosing one of these options:
• Using the Edit Data Nominated Subforms dialog box
• Manually editing the contents by dragging subform objects into or out of the choice section by using the Hierarchy
palette
To create a choice section from an existing section
1 Select a table section and in the Object palette.
2 Click the Section tab and select One Subform from Alternatives from the Type list.
To create a choice section from a row
❖ Select a row within the table and select Table > Group as Choice Section.
To add a header, body, or footer row to a choice section
1 Select a choice section.
2 In the Object palette, click the Section tab and ensure that Select One Subform from Alternatives is selected from
the Type list.
3 Click the Edit Alternatives button.
4 Click the Add button
to insert a new Alternative Subforms list item. You can also drag rows into the choice
subform set by using the Hierarchy palette.
Adding a new row adds a duplicate of the currently selected row. If no row is selected, a new unnamed row is added
to the choice section.
5 Use the Up
and Down
buttons to move the new row entry to the location you want. Ordering entries in the
Alternative Subforms list is important because entries are processed sequentially at run time, and the first entry
with an expression that evaluates to true appears on the form.
Important: This procedure outlines the process for adding new rows to an existing choice section. When you add rows
in this way, Designer first creates a new row object and then adds the row to the table and the choice section. If you
want to add existing table rows to a choice section, drag row objects into the choice section from the Hierarchy palette.
To remove a header, body, or footer row from a choice section
1 Select a choice section.
2 In the Object palette, click the Section tab and click Edit Alternatives.
3 Select an entry from the Alternative Subforms list and click Delete
.
Important: Removing a row by using the Edit Data Nominated Subforms dialog box completely removes the row
object from your form design. If you want to preserve the row but remove it from the choice section, you must manually
drag the row out of the choice section by using the Hierarchy palette.
More Help topics
“Edit Data Nominated Subforms dialog box” on page 648
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Creating data bindings and conditional statements for
choice table sections
After you create a choice section, you can create data bindings with or without conditional statements for the various
rows within the section. Using conditional statements provides greater control over when rows within the choice
section are displayed on your form than specifying only a data binding.
For each row listed in the Alternative Subforms list in the Edit Data Nominate Subforms dialog box, you can specify a
data node from the data connection. If you specify a conditional statement, you can enter an expression that will
evaluate to either true or false at run time. Only the first entry in the Alternative Subforms list with a conditional
statement that evaluates to true will appear on your form.
To create data bindings and conditional statements for choice table sections
1 Select a subform set object.
2 In the Object palette, click the Section tab and ensure that Select One Subform from Alternatives is selected from
the Type list.
3 Click Edit Alternatives.
4 Choose how you want to specify a row data binding from within the choice section by performing one of the
following actions:
• Click Choose Subform Whose Name Matches Data Element or Attribute to bind data nodes to rows by name.
In this case, the names of the associated data nodes must match the names of the rows on your form design.
• Click Choose Subform Using Expression to bind rows from your form design to data nodes from the data
connection by manually specifying a binding.
5 In the Data Connection list, select the data source you want to bind data from.
6 Click Add
to insert a new row into your table, or select an existing list item. Adding a new row adds a duplicate
of the currently selected row. If no row is selected, a new unnamed row is added to the choice section.
7 Insert a new subform into the choice subform set, or select an existing list item. Adding a new subform adds a
duplicate of the currently selected subform. If no subform is selected, a new unnamed subform is added to the
choice subform set.
8 In the Name field, enter a name for a new row object, if necessary. If you are binding the row by data element or
attribute name, ensure that the name in the field matches exactly with the name of the associated data node.
If you selected the Choose Subform Whose Name Matches Data Element or Attribute in step 4, you can go directly
to step 12. Otherwise, continue with step 9.
9 Click the arrow to the right of the Binding field and select a data node from the pop-up menu. Designer
automatically populates the Binding field with a scripting reference to the data node you select. Alternatively, you
can manually type a reference into the field.
10 Select a scripting language from the Language list.
11 In the Expression field, enter your scripting to perform the actions or processing you want for the specified row and
data node.
12 Repeat steps 6 to 10 for any additional rows within the choice section, and then click OK.
More Help topics
“Edit Data Nominated Subforms dialog box” on page 648
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Chapter 6: Using subforms
About subforms
A subform is a section in the form design that provides anchoring, layout, and geometry management for objects. The
objects in a subform can be arranged in rows, columns, or some other kind of balanced arrangement.
More than one subform can be used in a form design. Subforms can be placed inside other subforms. This relationship
is displayed in the Hierarchy palette.
Subforms are used to organize a form into different sections. They can also be used to create a form that contains
sections that automatically expand and shrink to accommodate the data. If you set a subform to grow, the layout of the
form changes in response to the amount of data that is merged when the form is rendered. When the data is merged,
subforms ensure that objects and their data are positioned consistently relative to each other. Subforms can be used to
match the data hierarchy in XML data.
If you are designing a form that has a fixed layout, it is unlikely that you will need to work with more than one subform
because the default subform positions the objects automatically.
You can manipulate the properties of a subform in the Subform and Binding tabs of the Object palette. You can define
these properties:
• Give a meaningful name to the subform (recommended)
• Enable the subform to span page breaks or force it to be rendered on the next page when the data is merged
• Specify whether to place the subform after the previous subform, in the specified content area, or on a page that is
formatted according to the specified master page
• Specify whether to place the subform in the same content area as the previous or next subform
• Specify the flow order of merged data after the subform is placed.
• Define the subform as visible, invisible, or hidden
• Specify a locale for the subform
• Specify whether the subform will repeat its objects each time a unique data item is provided for one of its objects
• If required, create an overflow leader or trailer for a subform that is capable of repeating the rendering of its objects
• Specify a binding method for controlling how the subform’s objects are mapped to data
All forms contain a root (parent) subform. In the Hierarchy palette, the root subform (form1) is displayed as the toplevel node with the default page subform (untitled Subform) appearing as a child node below the root subform.
Designer automatically adds to every page a default subform that covers the whole page, and corresponds in size and
position to the default content area on the master page. Any subforms that you subsequently add to the pages are
nested in and appear below the default page subform in the Hierarchy palette.
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A. Root (parent) subform B. Default subform C. New subform
In the Hierarchy palette, each subform is represented by a node, and the objects wrapped in a subform are displayed
under the subform node. The children of the subform do not inherit changes made on the subform level; the properties
of each object must be defined individually.
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A. Renamed subform B. Objects in the subform
If you look at the Purchase Order sample, the root subform, form1, is shown as the top-level node with the default page
subform, purchaseOrder, appearing below as a child of the root subform. The other subforms used to wrap objects on
the page (header, detailHeader, detail, and total) are nested under the page subform. In the Hierarchy palette, each
subform is represented by a node, and the objects wrapped in a subform are displayed under each node.
More Help topics
“Using subforms” on page 225
“To add a subform” on page 229
“To wrap and unwrap objects in a subform” on page 230
“Subform properties in the Subform tab” on page 461
“Subform properties in the Pagination tab” on page 462
“Subform properties in the Binding tab” on page 464
Subforms that position content
Objects in the subform are positioned according to their individual X and Y coordinates. When the form is rendered,
the subforms are placed in an order determined by their positions in the Hierarchy palette.
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All subforms except the root subform (form1) are set to position content by default. When a subform is set to position
content, the subform can still expand to fit any amount of merged data, but none of the objects within the subform can
move from their anchor points. As a result, if a subform is configured to position content, you must frequently test
your form design to make sure that any objects within the subform that you expect to expand in response to data
merging do not interfere with other objects in the form design. Remember that any objects you configure to expand,
such as text field objects, can possibly overlap other objects when the form is rendered. To avoid this design concern,
you can set the subform to flow and expand to fit the content. (See “Subforms that flow content” on page 228.)
Designer automatically sets the default page subform to position content to make it easier to create forms that have a
fixed layout and are interactive forms. For more information, see “About subforms” on page 225.
However, when designing a form whose layout will adjust to accommodate data, you will need to reset the default page
subform to flow content after you complete the form design. It is a good idea to do this last so that the subform remains
visible and the objects you place within the subform remain in the intended position on the page.
You use the Position Content option in the Type list in the Subform tab to position content in a subform. When you
select the Position Content option, the X and Y coordinates of each object within the subform are maintained. The
objects are placed at their X and Y coordinates relative to the position of the subform.
When designing nested subforms to emulate tables, the header subform has to be "positioned" content. Otherwise, the
field elements are not positioned properly on subsequent pages.
Subforms that flow content
Objects in the subform are positioned during the data-merging process so that no objects are rendered on top of each
other. Subforms that flow content are placed in ascending order. You can use subforms that flow content when you
need the form to automatically expand to fit the contents.
The root subform (form1) is set to flow content by default. The root subform always flows content according to the
flow direction option that you apply to the associated default content area. Because the root subform is set to flow
content, all subforms nested under the root subform automatically flow, as needed, from one form page (content area)
to the next when data is merged. When the form is rendered, the subforms under the root subform are placed in
descending order according to their position in the object hierarchy.
You can set any other subform to flow content as well. Each subform that is set to flow content can hold varying
amounts of data, whereas the objects within the subform move together during the data-merging process so that none
of the objects interfere with each other.
You use the Flow Content option in the Type list in the Subform tab to flow content in a subform. When you select
the Flow Content option, the objects are positioned based on the Flow Direction option you select. Notice that the Flow
Direction list and the Allow Page Break option are enabled after you select Flow Content in the Type list.
Note: When you resize a subform that flows content, the subform is automatically converted to a subform that has a fixed
layout, which prevents page breaks.
More Help topics
“Using subforms” on page 225
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Creating and configuring subforms
More Help topics
“To specify a subform to span multiple pages” on page 235
“Subform properties in the Binding tab” on page 464
“To define custom data-binding properties for a subform” on page 233
“Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362
“Subform properties in the Subform tab” on page 461
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
“Border properties in the Border palette” on page 385
To add a subform
You can add a subform from the menu or the Library palette.
To add a subform from the menu
❖ With the page of the form displayed, select Insert > Standard > Subform.
To add a subform from the Library palette
❖ Do one of the following actions:
• In the Library palette, click the Standard tab, and then select the Subform object and draw the object on the page
of the form.
• In the Standard tab of the Library palette, drag a Subform object onto the page of the form.
• In the Library palette, click the Standard tab, and then double-click the Subform object.
To name a subform
To name or rename a subform, you must first select the subform.
To name or rename a subform using the Hierarchy palette
1 In the Hierarchy palette, right-click the subform and select Rename Object.
2 Type the new name and press Enter.
To name or rename a subform using the Binding tab of the Object palette
1 Select the subform.
2 In the Binding tab, type a new name for the subform in the Name box and press Enter. Designer maintains the
occurrence number automatically.
To make a subform visible, invisible, or hidden
1 Select the subform.
2 In the Object palette, click the Subform tab.
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3 In the Presence list, select the option that suits your needs:
• To make the object visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupy space in the form layout, select
Visible.
• To make the object visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupy space in the form layout, select
Visible (Screen Only).
• To make the object not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupy space in the form layout, select
Visible (Print Only).
• To make the object not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupy space in the form layout,
select Invisible.
• To make the object not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and not occupy any space in the form
layout, select Hidden (Exclude From Layout). The Hidden (Exclude from Layout) option works as described
only when you apply this option to a subform that is placed within a parent subform that is set to Flowed.
To specify a locale (language and country or region) for a subform
1 Select the subform.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 In the Locale list, select one of these options or one of the provided alternatives for the subform’s localization
setting:
• To use the default locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box, select Default Locale.
• To use the system locale of the user’s computer, select Viewer’s System Locale.
Note: At design time and run time, formatted values in the field are displayed in the locale-sensitive format.
To wrap and unwrap objects in a subform
Objects are wrapped in a subform when they are contained by the subform.
To add objects to an existing subform
❖ Select the objects to include in the subform, and then select Insert > Wrap in Subform.
To unwrap the objects in a subform
❖ Select the subform that contains the objects to unwrap, and then select Insert > Unwrap Subform.
To specify how a subform manages content
By default, all subforms except the root subform are defined to position content. The root subform always flows
content according to the Flow Direction setting of its associated content area. Because the root subform flows content,
all subforms nested under the root subform can flow from one form page or content area into the next automatically
if required when data is merged.
In contrast, when a subform positions content, the area bounded by the subform may expand to accommodate any
amount of merged data, but none of the objects in the subform can move from their anchor points. Therefore, if a
subform contains objects that merge with variable sizes of data, you must verify that those objects do not expand to
the extent that they overrun the area occupied by another object. Any objects that expand in response to data merging,
such as a text field, have the potential to be rendered on top of other objects.
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To avoid this design problem, you can make the subform flow content. A subform that flows content places objects
correctly during the data-merging process so that none of its objects are rendered on top of each other.
The default subform for the page positions content to support the creation of interactive forms and forms that have a
fixed layout. If you are authoring a form that contains subforms that adjust to accommodate data, you need to work
with subforms that position content as well as those that flow content. Different techniques are available for working
with subforms in this type of form design. The approach you take depends on your experience with creating form
designs whose layout adjusts to accommodate data. For more information, see “Creating interactive forms that have a
flowable layout” on page 243.
To specify how a subform positions content
❖ In the Object palette, click the Subform tab and, in the Content list, select one of these options:
• Positioned
• Flowed
To specify a flow direction for the objects in a subform that flows content
❖ In the Object palette, click the Subform tab and, in the Flow Direction list, select one of these options (objects are
always placed starting at the top of the subform):
• Top to Bottom
• Western Text
• Right to Left
Note: The Flow Direction option is only available when Flowed is selected in the Content list.
To change a subform that positions content into a subform that flows content
1 Select the subform in which you want content to flow.
2 In the Object palette, click the Subform tab and, in the Content list, select Flowed.
3 In the Flow Direction list, select one of these options (objects are always placed starting at the top of the subform):
• Top to Bottom
• Western Text
• Right to Left
More Help topics
“Subform properties in the Subform tab” on page 461
“To position subforms” on page 231
“To specify how to merge data between subforms” on page 232
To position subforms
To specify where to position a subform
❖ In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab, and then click the arrow to the right of the Place box and select one
of these presentation options:
• Following Previous
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• In Content Area > [name_of _content_area]
• Top of Next Content Area
• Top of Content Area > [name_of _content_area]
• On Page > [name_of _page]
• Top of Next Page
• Top of Page > [name_of _page]
• On Odd Page
• Top of Next Odd Page
• On Even Page
• Top of Next Even Page
To keep the subform within the same content area or page as the previous or next subform
❖ In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab, and then select Keep W/ Previous or Keep W/ Next.
More Help topics
“Subform properties in the Subform tab” on page 461
“To specify how a subform manages content” on page 230
“To specify how to merge data between subforms” on page 232
To specify how to merge data between subforms
❖ In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab, and then click the arrow to the right of the After box and select one
of these options:
• Continue Filling Parent
• Go to Next Content Area
• Go To Content Area > [name _of_content_area]
• Go To Next Page
• Go To Page > [name_of_page]
• Go to Next Odd Page
• Go to Next Even Page
More Help topics
“Subform properties in the Subform tab” on page 461
“To specify how a subform manages content” on page 230
“To position subforms” on page 231
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To define custom data-binding properties for a subform
Using the Binding options, you can build a form that captures data for enterprise infrastructures or use an external
data source to populate a form at run time. Set data-binding properties in the Binding tab of the Object palette.
Subforms themselves do not capture or display data, but the objects in a subform can. The binding settings of a
subform have a direct influence on how nested objects are mapped to data.
A subform can be bound to a data group, and the subform’s objects can be bound to data values within that data group.
By default, the bindings of the objects in a subform are relative to the subform’s binding.
1 Select the subform.
2 Enable the form to connect to the data source when the form is opened.
3 Bind the subform and its objects to their corresponding data nodes. For information about how to bind objects to
a data source, see “Binding fields to a data source” on page 504.
More Help topics
“Using subforms” on page 225
“Subform properties in the Binding tab” on page 464
“To name a subform” on page 229
“To create a repeating subform” on page 235
Using subform sets
A subform set is a grouping of two or more repeating or multipage subforms.
Use a subform set to control the order in which the subforms are rendered within the set, based on the order that the
subforms appear within the set.
For example, in the sample Purchase Order form, you can see how the detailHeader and detail subforms are grouped
into a subform set. The subform set keeps the two subforms together so that both subforms for each data item are
rendered, or neither subform is rendered if no data exists for the detail subform.
By grouping subforms into a subform set, you ensure that subforms will not rendered within the set unless data exists
to render the subform.
You can control the order in which subforms are rendered within a set by selecting one of these options from the Type
list of the Subform Set tab in the Object palette:
• Use All Subforms in Order
All of the subforms in the subform set will appear in the final document and in the order they appear in the
Hierarchy palette.
• Select One Subform From Alternatives
One subform from the set appears in the final document. For more information, see “Using choice subform sets”
on page 239.
When choosing how to render subforms, consider the following facts:
• If you set a subform to a minimum count of zero, the subform is not rendered if no data exists for that subform.
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• If you set a subform to a minimum count value less than the number of actual occurrences in the data, the
remaining data values will not be displayed. Conversely, if you set a subform to a maximum count value greater
than the number of actual occurrences in the data, the specified number of subforms are rendered, which means
that some objects in the subform will render without data and appear blank.
• You can, if you want, nest subform sets within other subform sets to any number of levels. However, you cannot
place individual objects such as lines, circles, or text field objects inside a subform set.
To insert a subform set
A subform set is a grouping of two or more subforms that you want to keep together. You can use subform sets to
combine subforms and control the order in which they are rendered.
Before you create a subform set, it is a good practice to consider the order in which you want the form to be rendered
so that you can select the correct option from the Type list in the Subform tab.
1 Right-click in the Hierarchy palette and select Insert Subform Set. An untitled subform set is added to the Hierarchy
palette.
2 In the Hierarchy palette, drag the subforms you want into the subform set.
3 With the subform set selected in the Hierarchy palette, in the Object palette, click the Subform Set tab and, in the
Type list select the option you want.
4 Click the Binding tab. Optionally, you can type a name for the subform set in the Name box.
5 If you want the subform set to repeat according to the data provided, select Repeat Subform For Each Data Item,
and then specify a minimum and maximum count, if necessary.
6 Preview the form design to test the subform set.
More Help topics
“Subform set properties in the Subform Set tab” on page 465
“Subform set properties in the Pagination tab” on page 465
“Subform set properties in the Binding tab” on page 467
Creating repeating and multipage subforms
You can place a subform anywhere on a page; however, when a large amount of data is merged with the form, the
subform may expand beyond the bottom edge of the rendered page. To deal with this issue, you can either select the
Allow Page Breaks Within Content option to cause the server to break the subform in the middle or deselect this option
to force the entire subform to the top of the next rendered page. Forcing a subform to the next page ensures that any
nested subforms are displayed together on the same page. If you do not select the Allow Page Breaks Within Content
option, you will probably want to create an overflow leader and overflow trailer subform. (See “About overflow leaders
and trailers” on page 236.)
When data is merged, the server positions the content of a subform within the confines of content areas only. In cases
where a large amount of data needs to be merged with any of the objects in a subform, a subform may span multiple
form pages. When a form page is filled, the server automatically renders another identical page and continues to place
the subform on the new page unless you explicitly direct the flow to a different content area or master page. When
more than one content area or master page exists in the same form, you can specify whether a subform will be placed
in a particular content area or positioned according to the specified master page.
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To create a repeating subform
1 In the Hierarchy palette, select the parent subform of the subform you want to repeat. (See “About subforms” on
page 225.)
2 In the Object palette, click the Subform tab, and in the Content list, select Flowed.
3 Select the subform to repeat.
4 In the Object palette, click the Subform tab and, in the Content list, select either Positioned or Flowed.
5 Click the Binding tab and select Repeat Subform For Each Data Item.
6 To specify the minimum number of repetitions, select Min Count and type a number in the associated box. If this
option is set to 0 and no data is provided for the objects in the subform at data-merge time, the subform is not placed
when the form is rendered.
7 To specify the maximum number of subform repetitions, select Max and type a number in the associated box. If
you do not specify a value in the Max box, the number of subform repetitions will be unlimited.
8 To specify a set number of subform repetitions, regardless of the quantity of data, select Initial Count and type a
number in the associated box. If you select this option and either no data is available or fewer data entries exist than
the specified Initial Count value, empty instances of the subform are still placed on the form.
Note: The value in the Initial Count box must be between the Min Count and Max values. If the Min Count value is
not specified or is 0, the Initial Count value defaults to 0.
To specify a subform to span multiple pages
Subforms can be placed anywhere in a form design. However, when a large amount of data is merged, the subform
may expand beyond the bottom edge of the rendered page.
To deal with this issue, you can either enable a page break in the middle of the subform or force the entire subform to
be rendered starting at the top of the next rendered page. Forcing a subform to the next page ensures that any nested
subforms are displayed together on the same page.
When data is merged, the content of a subform is placed within the confines of content areas only. In cases where a
relatively large amount of data needs to be merged with any of the objects in a subform, a subform may span multiple
form pages.
When a form page is filled, an additional identical page is rendered automatically. The subform continues to be placed
on the new page unless you explicitly direct the flow to a different content area or master page. When more than one
content area or master page exists in the same form, you can specify whether a subform will be placed in a particular
content area or positioned according to the specified master page.
To enable a subform to span multiple pages
❖ In the Object palette, click the Subform tab and select Allow Page Breaks Within Content.
When this option is deselected, the objects in the subform are kept together on the same page.
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About overflow leaders and trailers
Because the length of a form that has a flexible layout varies depending on the amount of data merged with the form,
forms that have a flexible layout are often longer than one page. Using overflow leader and overflow trailer subforms
is an effective way to start and finish subforms that repeat over multiple pages. You can use any subform that is
configured to position content as an overflow leader or trailer. For example, in the Purchase Order sample form, the
detail subform is configured to position content and repeat for every data item. When the form is merged with data, if
the first page has insufficient space to display all occurrences of the detail subform, a new page is added and the data
continues to flow into the next content area.
When data flows this way across multiple pages, you may want to carry forward onto each new page certain text such
as “Continued from previous page” or specific formatting elements such as a column header row that includes the
descriptive labels for each column of data. Using column header rows on each subsequent page makes the resulting
form much easier for users to follow. To do this, you can create an overflow leader subform that will act as the column
header row for each additional page. In the Purchase Order sample form, for example, the detailHeader subform is
selected as the overflow leader. As a result, a copy of the detailHeader subform is rendered at the top of every new page
before the first occurrence of the detail subform.
Similarly, you may want to include information following the last occurrence of the repeating subform, at the bottom
of all pages except the last page. For example, you may want to include text such as “Continued on next page” at the
bottom of these intervening pages. To do this, you can create an overflow trailer subform for the repeating subform in
the same way that you created an overflow leader subform.
When a subform overflows to the new page, the server performs these operations:
• Places the overflow trailer on the current page
• Places the overflow leader on the next page
• Flows the expanding subform and the remainder of its repeating objects onto the new page
An overflow leader is a special type of positioned subform that appears at the top of the next page whenever a page
overflow occurs.
Overflow leaders are similar to the heading row in a standard table. The heading row appears at the top of the table
and contains a descriptive label for each of the columns in the table. You can format the table so that when it expands
beyond one page, the heading row is repeated at the top of the new page. This makes the information in the table easier
to understand as the reader moves from page to page.
An overflow leader subform behaves in a similar way. When you specify that a specific subform will be the overflow
leader for a subform that repeats, the overflow leader subform will appear once before the repeating subform at the top
of the current page and each subsequent page thereafter.
The repeating subform is added as many times as necessary when merged with data. When there is no more room on
the first page, a new page is added and the data continues to flow into the next page until all the data is consumed. The
overflow leader subform will appear once at the top of each page.
You can see an example of how an overflow leader subform is used in the sample form design whose layout adjusts to
accommodate data that is included with Designer. The sample, Purchase Order.xdp, is in the Samples folder where
Designer is installed on your system. In that example, the subform named detailHeader acts as the overflow leader for
the repeating subform named detail.
Bookend leaders are subforms that appear before a repeating subform. If you define a subform sibling just above a
repeating subform and then specify it as an overflow leader, you have defined it as a bookend leader and as an overflow
leader.
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An overflow trailer appears at the bottom of the next page whenever a page overflow occurs. Use an overflow trailer
to include information that appears only once, after all the data is positioned.
Bookend trailers are subforms that appear just below a repeating subform. If you define a subform just below a
repeating subform and then specify it as an overflow trailer, you have defined it as a bookend trailer and as an overflow
trailer.
To create and assign overflow leaders and trailers
An overflow leader or overflow trailer is a positioned subform that can be assigned to any repeating subform. Typically,
you create the subform that will become overflow leader or trailer first. Then you assign them to a repeating subform
and give them overflow properties.
If the overflow leader is also treated as a bookend leader, it is placed in the Hierarchy palette just above the subform.
Also, if the overflow trailer is also treated as a bookend trailer, it is placed in the Hierarchy palette just below the
subform.
To create an overflow leader or overflow trailer subform
1 Create a form design with all the necessary subforms.
2 On your form design, locate the subform that you want to use as an overflow leader or an overflow trailer, select
the subform, and do these tasks:
• Look at the Subform tab in the Object palette. Ensure that the Content list displays Positioned. In the Object
palette, click the Subform tab and make sure that Positioned is selected in the Content list.
• Look at the Binding Tab in the Object palette. In the Object palette, click Binding tab and select Repeat Subform
For Each Data Item to have the leaders and trailers appear for more than one overflow. Bookend leader and
trailers are not counted against this number.
To apply an overflow leader or overflow trailer to a subform
1 Select the subform or subforms that you want to repeat.
2 In the Object palette, click the Binding tab and select Repeat Subform For Each Data Item to set the subform to
repeat.
3 In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab and, in the Overflow box, specify either a content area or page where
the form should place the overflow subforms.”]
4 If you want to specify an overflow leader, in the Overflow Leader list, select the subform that you want to use as the
overflow leader subform for the current repeating subform. Alternatively, select New from the Overflow Leader list
to create and assign a new overflow leader subform.
5 If you want to specify an overflow trailer, in the Overflow Trailer list, select the subform that you want to use as the
overflow trailer subform for the current repeating subform. Alternatively, select New from the Overflow Trailer list
to create and assign a new overflow trailer subform.
Note: You do not need to have both an overflow leader and an overflow trailer. Whether you have one, both, or none
is determined entirely by the requirements of your form.
More Help topics
“Working with forms that have a flowable layout” on page 240
“Use overflow leader and overflow trailer subforms” on page 245
“Using subforms” on page 225
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“Subform properties in the Subform tab” on page 461
“Subform properties in the Pagination tab” on page 462
“Subform properties in the Binding tab” on page 464
To control subform and subform set breaks by using
conditional statements
Designer provides the capability to create customized conditional breaks for repeating subform objects. As opposed to
paginating in response to data overflow, conditional breaks allow you to manually control how a subform breaks in a
form based on a series of checks called conditional statements.
Through the conditional statements, you can verify data for a field within a repeating subform against previous
instances of that field. The repeating subform can then be broken in response to a change in the data supplied to the
field.
For example, on a telephone bill, you could break a repeating subform in response to changes in the field that stores
the date of each billing entry. The telephone bill could then be visually broken down by date, making it easier for a user
to read.
In addition to specifying a breaking condition, you can also specify a leading or trailing subform and indicate where
to place the next instance of the repeating subform in the form.
1 Select a subform or subform set.
2 In the Object palette, click the Pagination tab.
3 Click Edit and then click Add
to insert a new conditional break list item.
4 Select a scripting language from the Language list. The conditional break condition statement is created using the
scripting language you select.
5 In the Run At list, select where you want the conditional break to execute.
6 Click Insert Sample Expression
and select the form design object within the subform to use as the comparison
field for the conditional break. Alternatively, you can enter your own conditional statement in the field. To correctly
evaluate as a conditional break, however, any user-defined conditional statements must evaluate to either true or
false. Conditional statements that evaluate to true are executed.
7 Use one of these options to specify when you want the subform object to break:
• Select Before to insert a break immediately before the current instance of the subform is inserted into the form.
• Select After to insert a break immediately after the current instance of the subform is inserted into the form.
8 In the To field, select where you want to place the remaining occurrences of the broken subform.
9 In the Trailer and Leader lists, select trailer and leader subforms to use for the current conditional break, if any.
10 Repeat steps 2 to 8 for each conditional break that you want to include for the selected subform.
11 Click OK when you have finished adding entries to the list.
After you create all of your conditional break entries, you should review the order in which they appear in the Edit
Conditional Breaks dialog box. Designer processes the conditional breaks specified in the Edit Conditional Breaks
dialog box in sequential order from top to bottom. Each conditional break for which the conditional statement
evaluates to true is executed.
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Use the Up
and Down
buttons to move individual conditional break list entries into the preferred order.
More Help topics
“Edit Conditional Breaks dialog box” on page 646
“Subform properties in the Pagination tab” on page 462
Using choice subform sets
A choice subform set is a variation of the subform set object that allows you to customize the display of specific
subforms from within the set through the use of conditional statements. As with subforms sets, choice subform sets
are bound to data from a data connection. However, using choice subform sets provides a greater level of control over
which subforms within the set are displayed at run time. For example, you can configure a choice subform set to
display instances of a repeating subform by using different text colors, depending on the value of a specific field within
that repeating subform.
To create choice subform sets
You can create a choice subform set from either an existing subform set or from an existing subform object.
To create a choice subform set from an existing subform set
1 Select a subform set object.
2 In the Object palette, click the Subform Set tab and select the Select One Subform from Alternatives option from
the Type list.
To create a choice subform set from a subform object
❖ Select a subform object and select Insert > Wrap in Choice Subform Set.
To add and remove subforms in choice subform sets
You can add subform objects to a choice subform set or remove subform objects from a choice subform set in using
either of these methods:
• Using the Edit Data Nominated Subforms dialog box
• Manually editing the contents by dragging subform objects into or out of the choice subform set by using the
Hierarchy palette.
Important: Removing a subform from the Alternative Subforms list by using the Edit Data Nominated Subforms
dialog box completely removes the subform object from your form design. If you want to preserve the subform object
but remove it from the choice subform set, you must manually drag the subform object out of the choice subform set
by using the Hierarchy palette.
To add a subform to a choice subform set
1 Select a subform set object.
2 In the Object palette, click the Subform Set tab and click Edit Alternatives.
3 Click the Add button
to insert a new Alternative Subforms list item. You can also drag and drop subform objects
into the choice subform set by using the Hierarchy palette.
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Adding a new subform adds a duplicate of the currently selected subform. If no subform is selected, a new unnamed
subform is added to the choice subform set.
4 Use the Up
and Down
buttons to move the new subform entry to the preferred location. Ordering entries
in the Alternative Subforms list is important because entries are processed sequentially at run time, and the first
entry with an expression that evaluates to true appears in the form.
To remove a subform from a choice subform set
1 Select a subform set object.
2 In the Object palette, click the Subform Set tab and click Edit Alternatives.
3 Select an entry from the Alternative Subforms list and click the Delete button
.
More Help topics
“Using subform sets” on page 233
Working with forms that have a flowable layout
A form that has a flowable layout contains subforms and other elements that adjust to accommodate the amount of
data available to fill the form. The form can be interactive, which means that users can fill the form, or non-interactive,
where a server-based process merges data into the form. (See “Form design layouts” on page 5.)
Master pages, content areas, and subforms are the elements that control how Designer places objects in the form and
adjusts to display varying amounts of data.
Differences at design time and run time
In a flowable layout, keep in mind that what you see at design time is not what users see when the form is rendered.
For example, a form design may contain one item row to enter data in. However, when the form is rendered on the
client, the form may contain several item rows and users may be able to insert additional item rows. The number of
rows that appear at design time depends on whether you wrapped the objects in the item row in a subform that uses
the Min Count or Max options. Setting up the subform Min Count or Max options controls the number of rows that
are initially available for users to fill and the number of additional rows that users can later add.
Because a form that has a flowable layout adjusts automatically to accommodate data, you do not have to set the size
of objects or the number of item lines that the form requires. For example, by selecting options such as Allow Multiple
Lines, Allow Page Breaks Within Content, and Expand To Fit, you can design flowable interactive forms that adjust to
an undetermined amount of data.
For an example of the differences between the design and run-time views of non-interactive forms, see “How noninteractive forms that have a flowable layout work” on page 251.
More Help topics
“Building actions in forms” on page 82
“Controlling the placement of objects in forms that have a flowable layout” on page 241
“Creating form designs that have a flowable layout” on page 242
“Creating non-interactive forms that have a flowable layout” on page 251
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“Design tips for forms that have flowable layout” on page 255
“Guidelines for forms” on page 122
Controlling the placement of objects in forms that have a flowable layout
You can use either of two ways to control how Designer places objects in a form:
Content areas On the master pages, content areas control the areas and flow direction in which Designer places
objects on the pages. Every master page has a default content area.
Subforms Subforms control how Designer places objects in the form. By wrapping objects into subforms, you can use
the options in the Subform and Binding tabs in the Object palette to regulate how many times objects are rendered and
their placement on the page.
Content areas in a flowable layout
All master pages contain a default content area, which is displayed on the associated pages. The content area outlines
the area in which you can place objects on the pages, much like the margins in a text document. You cannot place
objects on the pages outside the area represented by the content area.
Every form must have at least one content area.
The content area does not delineate or limit the area in which you can position objects on the master pages. In fact,
you can place boilerplate objects anywhere on the master pages, inside or outside the content area. If you place objects
outside the content area to contain header and footer text, the date and time, or page numbering, test the form to
ensure that the objects appear as intended. You want to make sure that objects on the pages do not overlap and hide
the objects on the master pages when the form is rendered.
With forms that have sections that adjust to accommodate data, remember that the layout of the form is ultimately
data-driven. If the form is being rendered through Forms or Output, the pages are added until all the available data is
merged. As new pages are added, data flows from page to page within the area defined by the content area on the
master pages.
If you want the same layout for each page in your form, the default content area is all you need. However, if the layout
is more involved, you can add additional content areas to the default master page. Keep in mind that if you want
different flow direction, page orientations, or two-sided pages, you can insert additional master pages and configure
the other master pages and content areas to suit your design.
Remember that you cannot work with content areas on the pages.
Subforms in a flowable layout
Planning subforms is an important part of creating a form with a flowable layout. In a form that contains flowable
sections, subforms contain the objects within each section of the form. They maintain the form layout as it adjusts in
length according to the amount of data merged into it. Subforms also ensure that the objects move as a unit and are
placed consistently relative to each other. When you wrap objects in subforms, you ensure that regardless of the
amount of data merged with the form, the format of each section remains consistent, and the layout of the entire form
is predictable from one rendering to the next.
You can nest subforms to any depth. By nesting them, you can make the form design match the XML data file that is
merged with it. For example, if the XML data file includes two levels, you can create the subform hierarchy by matching
the subform names with the tag names in the XML data file so that Designer can map the data without transforming
the data file.
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A form that has a flowable layout, such as the Purchase Order sample, typically includes various subforms nested
together, with one or more objects in each subform. For example, you can see how the various objects in the Purchase
Order sample are wrapped in the subforms named header, detailHeader, detail, and total. Notice how you can align
text and text field objects into rows and columns and wrap them in a subform. Using subforms to wrap groups of
objects such as the various text field objects in the detail subform not only lets you maintain the layout of the objects,
but also lets you control how often the subform is repeated.
You can configure each subform so that when the form is rendered, only the subforms that contain the objects that are
necessary for representing the data content are placed. For example, you may want to produce different purchase
orders for each customer. In one purchase order form, the detail subform is placed 12 times to indicate the items
purchased. In another purchase order form, the same subform is placed 50 times, spanning multiple pages.
The sample Purchase Order form illustrates how you can use subforms to achieve this configuration. Open the form
in Designer and look at the Hierarchy palette to examine the structure of the subform. Look at the Object palette to see
how the subforms are configured. Pay particular attention to the purchaseOrder, detailHeader, and detail subforms
and how they are configured. Keep in mind that the parent subform, which is purchaseOrder, controls the flow of
content in the form and expands to fit the available data. The detailHeader subform is configured with a minimum
count of 1, which means that when the form is rendered, this subform appears only once. However, the detail subform
is configured to repeat with each data item and therefore, when the form is rendered, appears as many times as there
are occurrences of the data.
You can also use a subform to draw a border around a group of subforms. For example, you can create one or more
dynamic subforms, nest those subforms within a wrapper subform, and then specify a border for the wrapper subform.
When the form is rendered, a border is drawn around all the internal subforms.
Creating form designs that have a flowable layout
There are two basic approaches to creating a form design containing subforms that adjust to accommodate data:
• Starting the form design with a fixed layout
• Creating the form design in a flowable layout
Both methods produce the same results. However, you may find that one suits your design style more than the other.
As you become more familiar with creating form designs that have a flowable layout, you can adopt a style that works
best for you.
Start with a fixed layout
If you are familiar with creating forms that have a fixed layout, you may find that starting your design with a fixed
layout is most comfortable and familiar. You can plan the layout of the form, including the necessary objects and
information that you want users to see. Using a fixed layout, build the form design by using as many master pages and
design pages as are required. When the object layout and formatting are completed, set the appropriate properties to
those areas of the form design that flow content.
In addition, this approach provides the easiest and most straightforward way of converting an existing form that has
a fixed layout to a form design that has a flexible layout.
The following steps provide a general idea of the design process for creating a form design starting with a fixed layout,
assuming that the planning stage is completed.
1 Create the required master pages.
2 On the page, create the form content. If you are converting a form that has a fixed layout, simply begin by wrapping
the objects on the form into subforms. If you are starting with a blank form, do the following tasks:
• Add objects to the form and enclose them in the appropriate subforms.
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• Apply the necessary formatting to the objects.
• Finalize the layout of the objects within their subforms, and subforms on the page.
• Add scripting if necessary.
3 Implement the dynamic concepts:
• Unwrap the default subforms on each of the pages. The subforms become children of the root subform, form1,
which has flowed content. From this point on, you are designing in a flowable layout. Notice that the subforms
are positioned one below the other because the flow direction is top to bottom.
• Apply the necessary formatting to the subforms, such as subform binding type and borders.
• Define the flow. Set the occurrence values, page breaks, leader and trailer subforms, define which subforms to
keep together, associate subforms to master pages, and set margins.
4 Test the form by using sample data.
Note: The sample forms included with Designer follow this procedure. For usability reasons, the subforms that contain
the actual content are wrapped inside a subform that has its binding type set to none. By configuring the subforms in
this way, you can quickly understand the overall structure of a form when you see it in Hierarchy View for the first time.
Tips for starting with a fixed layout
When you are creating form designs by starting with a fixed layout, keep in mind the following points:
• Set the form’ content to flowed only when you are satisfied with the layout. When the form content is set to flowed,
you can revert to a positioned content, but you may experience problems with the form layout. For example, if you
choose to wrap the subforms inside a single positioned container, the subforms are positioned exactly where they
were on their pages and may overlap. To avoid the overlapping, wrap the subforms by using page grouping.
• The default minimum and maximum count for subforms is 1. Adjust these values for forms with a flowable layout.
• Wrapping objects inside a subform discards any extra space defined beyond the objects. Add left and right margins
to realign the subform horizontally. You can resize the subform, but doing so repositions the objects because they
are positioned relatively to the parent.
More Help topics
“Controlling the placement of objects in forms that have a flowable layout” on page 241
“Using content areas” on page 294
“Guidelines for forms” on page 122
“Using subforms” on page 225
“Subform properties in the Subform tab” on page 461
Creating interactive forms that have a flowable layout
Using Designer, you can create interactive PDF or HTML forms for data capture that have a flowable layout. This type
of form combines both flowable elements and interactive form functionality so that users can enter data directly into
expandable fields, add or remove sections, and return the form data electronically. For example, you can create an
interactive form where users can add or remove item rows and can choose to add their comments to the form. (See
“Form design layouts” on page 5.)
To fill interactive PDF forms that have a flowable layout, end users need Acrobat 7.0.5 or Adobe Reader 7.0.5 or later.
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To fill interactive HTML forms that have a flowable layout, end users require a client application such as a web
browser. (See “Creating HTML forms” on page 587.)
Note: Users cannot use Acrobat commenting features when filling interactive forms that have a flowable layout.
Keep in mind that you can also use the Action Builder dialog box on the Tools menu to build common interactive
capabilities in forms that have a flowable layout, without writing scripts. (See “Build an action” on page 84.)
When creating interactive forms that have a flowable layout, many form authors prefer to start with an interactive form
design that has a fixed layout. By starting in this manner, you can see the form in its final state. The form design
provides the final layout including all the elements that users need.
After completing the form design in fixed layout, you can then begin to divide it into its essential parts, identify the
subforms, and specify how they will flow the data being entered into the form.
Adding dynamic capabilities to an interactive form typically involves the following techniques:
• “Position the header and footer on the master page” on page 244
• “Wrap form objects in subforms and setting occurrence values” on page 245
• “Modify margins to accommodate subforms” on page 245
• “Use overflow leader and overflow trailer subforms” on page 245
• “Create subforms with flowable elements” on page 246
• “Create a button to add and remove a section” on page 246
• “Create add and delete buttons” on page 247
In addition, you must understand how to add and remove subforms so that the form can respond to the amount of
data a user enters. (See “Add and remove subform instances using scripting” on page 248 and “Add and remove tables
and table rows by using scripting” on page 250.)
More Help topics
“Guidelines for forms” on page 122
“Working with forms that have a flowable layout” on page 240
“About forms” on page 4
“Creating HTML forms” on page 587
Position the header and footer on the master page
In an interactive form that has a fixed layout, header and footer text is positioned on the page. When you add subforms
that are set to flow content in the form, you typically want header and footer text on the master page.
Because the length of an interactive form containing subforms that are set to flow content can expand depending on
the amount of data the form contains, additional pages may be added to the form as the end user enters more data. By
placing the header and footer on the master page, you ensure that they appear on each page instead of only on the first
page.
More Help topics
“Plan the form design” on page 25
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Wrap form objects in subforms and setting occurrence values
When designing an interactive form that has a fixed layout, must provide a sufficient number of item lines for users to
fill. However, if you wrap the item lines in subforms that are set to flow content, users can add item lines as they need
them.
Because of the dynamic capabilities of subforms, you can include one or two item lines in the form along with Add and
Delete buttons. By wrapping the objects in a subform, you can determine when, where, and how many times particular
subforms are repeated by using the options on the Subform and Binding tabs of the Object palette.
Wrapping groups of form objects in subforms is an important part of creating a form with dynamic functionality.
Subforms contain and control the objects arranged within sections of the form to maintain the form’s layout as it
adjusts in length according to the amount of incoming data. Subforms preserve the x and y coordinates of each object
to ensure that the objects move as a unit and are placed together.
When you wrap groups of objects in subforms, you ensure that, regardless of the amount of data contained in the form,
the format of each section and the layout of the entire form remains consistent and predictable.
Remember that end users must see at least one item row to enter data when they open the form. That means that you
must set the Min Count option for the subform to at least 1. Depending on the form, initially displaying two or more
rows in the PDF form can give the form a more balanced appearance, as well as result in a more intuitive and functional
end-user experience.
Subforms also provide the dynamic capabilities that let users add or remove rows and sections in the form. For
example, you can include various buttons that users can use to add and remove item rows or to submit comments.
Plan how you want to wrap objects in subforms to create sections in your form design. Then test the form design to
ensure that the subforms move and repeat as you intended and do not break across pages in ways not intended.
More Help topics
“Using subforms” on page 225
“Guidelines for forms” on page 122
“Creating and configuring subforms” on page 229
“Create a button to add and remove a section” on page 246
Modify margins to accommodate subforms
When applying dynamic functionality to an interactive form that has a fixed layout, a certain amount of reformatting
is typically needed. Using the options in the Layout palette, you can set the size and position, margins, and captions of
objects. For example, you may need to set margins around subform objects to regulate the alignment of and the spacing
(white space) between the sections in the form.
More Help topics
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
Use overflow leader and overflow trailer subforms
Because the length of an interactive form containing subforms that are set to flow content can vary depending on the
amount of data displayed in the form, the form often has more than one page. As a result, you may want certain
subforms (sections) in the form to continue on subsequent pages.
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Using overflow leader and overflow trailer subforms, you can designate different subforms to precede and follow
repeating or expanding subforms that are likely to carry over to additional pages. Overflow leaders and trailers are
special types of subforms that you can use in form designs that have a flowable layout. After you specify a subform as
an overflow leader subform in the Binding tab of the Object palette, the subform appears at the top of each new page.
For example, you can use the heading row at the top of a table as an overflow leader subform. Placing the heading row
at the top of a table ensures that it is repeated at the top of each new page, making the information in the table rows
easier to read and follow from page to page.
Similarly, you can assign an overflow trailer subform to follow the last occurrence on a page of a repeating or
expanding subform that could possibly span multiple pages.
More Help topics
“Using subforms” on page 225
“Creating and configuring subforms” on page 229
Create subforms with flowable elements
Depending on the purpose of your form design, you may want to add an adjustable section to the form where users
can type information such as special requests or comments. With Designer, you can apply different options to text
fields and subforms that enable the size of sections in the form to adjust to the amount of data that the user enters.
For example, your interactive form may contain a Comments section that users can display or hide by clicking a
button. You would create the section by using a text field placed inside a subform with these options selected to enable
dynamic data entry:
Text field Allow Multiple Lines and Plain Text Only (Field tab), User Entered - Optional (Value tab), Height - Expand
to fit (Layout palette)
Enables users to enter as much text as they want in the Comments section and ensures that the text field automatically
expands in height to display the data available.
Subform Allow Page Breaks Within Content (Subform tab), Max (count) with a value of 1 (Binding tab), Auto-fit
(Layout palette)
Allows the comments subform to carry over to succeeding pages when necessary and to appear only once in the form
and ensures that the subform automatically enlarges to display the data available.
More Help topics
“Using subforms” on page 225
“Creating and configuring subforms” on page 229
“Create a button to add and remove a section” on page 246
Create a button to add and remove a section
In interactive form designs, it is common practice to have one or more sections in the form that are not displayed until
the user selects the option to include it. With Designer, you can add a button along with a script that dynamically adds
or removes a particular section (subform) from the form when the user clicks a button.
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For example, in the sample interactive Purchase Order, the user can click the Add Comments button to display the
Comments section (comments subform). The button has one of two alternating captions, Add Comments or Clear
Comments, depending on the current state of the subform. Each time the user clicks the button, the script checks
whether the comments subform is displayed and then updates the button caption accordingly.
The button triggers a script that uses instanceManager, the XML Form Object Model object that manages the instance
creation, removal, and movement of form objects. When the end user deletes the Comment subform, the instanceManager
object removes the subform from both the Form data document object model (DOM) and the Data DOM.
Note that instanceManager uses four methods: addInstance, removeInstance, moveInstance, and
setInstances. The naming convention of an instanceManager is the subform name prefixed with an underscore
(_subformname). The syntax for instanceManager is_subformname.methodname().
In the sample interactive Purchase Order form, the form author typed the following JavaScript script in the Script
Editor by using the setInstances method to add and remove the comments subform and change the button’s
caption. Notice that the comments.count == 0 property returns the number of subform instances instantiated.
// Invoke the Instance Manager to add and remove the comments subform.
if (_comments.count == 0) {// The count property specifies the current number
// of instances instantiated.
_comments.setInstances(1);
// Add the comments subform.
this.resolveNode("caption.value.#text").value = "Clear Comments";
Change the button's caption.
}
else {
_comments.setInstances(0);
// Remove the comments subform.
this.resolveNode("caption.value.#text").value = "Add Comments";
Change the button's caption.
}
//
//
You can also use the ActionBuilder dialog box on the Tools menu to build common interactive capabilities in forms
that have a flowable layout, without writing scripts.
More Help topics
“Building actions in forms” on page 82
Create add and delete buttons
Adding buttons to an interactive form provides end users with a way to initiate an action, such as adding and deleting
instances of subforms that define sections such as item lines in an order form.
You can also add a tool tip to the delete button to display the words “Delete Item” when the user positions the pointer
over the button. Using separate delete buttons is a good way to allow users to remove specific rows from the form.
For example, the sample interactive Purchase Order has an Add Item button and a delete button labeled “X” for each
detail subform. When the user clicks the Add Item button, a script adds an item line. Alternatively, when the user clicks
one of the delete buttons, a script deletes the associated item line.
You can also use the Action Builder dialog box on the Tools menu to build common interactive capabilities in forms
that have a flowable layout, without writing scripts. See “Building actions in forms” on page 82.
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Add Item button
The following JavaScript script in the click event of the Add Item button lets users add an item line to the sample
interactive Purchase Order form. The script also recalculates the form so that the Total field includes the new line in
the calculation.
Because users only add item lines by using the Add Item button, the script does not need to verify the minimum count
(occurrence) value.
// Invoke the Instance Manager to add one instance of the detail subform.
_detail.addInstance(1);
//Invoke the recalculate method to include the field values from the added subform in
calculations.
xfa.form.recalculate(1);
Delete button
The following JavaScript script in the click event of the Delete button lets users use the Delete button to delete an
instance of the detail subform from the sample interactive Purchase Order form. The script also recalculates the form
so that the Total field no longer includes the deleted line in the calculation.
// Invoke the Instance Manager to remove the current instance of the detail subform.
_detail.removeInstance(this.parent.index);
// Invoke the recalculate method to update the form calculations.
xfa.form.recalculate(1);
Because the initial minimum occurrence value for the detail subform is 2, the script needs to reduce the minimum
occurrence value to allow the person filling the form to delete the two item lines that appear automatically when the
form is rendered. This script is added to the initialize event of the detail subform.
// Reset the minimum occurrence value of the detail subform.
this.occur.min = "0";
Because the form allows users to delete all instances of the detail subform, the script for the calculate event of the
Total field (numTotal) must verify that at least one instance of the numAmount field in the detail subform exists.
Otherwise, an error appears because the calculation cannot find any occurrences of the numAmount field. This script is
added to the Calculate event of the numTotal field.
// Verify at least one instance of the numAmount field exists.
if (exists(detail[0].numAmount) == 1) then
Sum(detail[*].numAmount)
endif
Add and remove subform instances using scripting
You can add or remove subform instances by adding calculations or scripts to objects on your form. It is important to
name the subforms when adding and removing subforms instances though scripting. Scripting against existing
subforms is error prone when the subforms are accessed through a relative position instead of unique names.
Before you begin, perform the following tasks:
• If it is not already visible, display the Script Editor by selecting Windows > Script Editor. Expand the Script Editor
so that it is displayed in multiline view.
• Ensure that the subform that you want to add instances to is contained within a flowed subform.
You can also use the Action Builder dialog box on the Tools menu to build common interactive capabilities in
forms that have a flowable layout, without writing scripts. See “Building actions in forms” on page 82.
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More Help topics
“Building actions in forms” on page 82
“Add and remove tables and table rows by using scripting” on page 250
“Subform properties in the Binding tab” on page 464
Using the methods of the instance manager to control subforms
addInstance
removeInstance
To add a subform instance to a form
1 Select the object on your form design that you want to add the script to and select an event from the Show list in
the Script Editor. For example, choose the click event of a button or other interactive form object.
2 Type one of the following scripts in the Script Editor, where Subform1 is the name of the subform to add instances
to, and the value true indicates that the new subform instance should be merged with the form data:
FormCalc
Subform1.instanceManager.addInstance(true) // Default instance manager syntax
xfa.form.recalculate(true) // Invoke the recalculate method to include the field values from
the added subform in the form calculations.
or
_Subform1.addInstance(true) // Short form of the instance manager syntax
xfa.form.recalculate(true) // Invoke the recalculate method to include the field values from
the added subform in the form calculations.
JavaScript
Subform1.instanceManager.addInstance(true); // Default instance manager syntax
xfa.form.recalculate(true) // Invoke the recalculate method to include the field values from
the added subform in the form calculations.
or
_Subform1.addInstance(true); // Short form of the instance manager syntax
xfa.form.recalculate(true) // Invoke the recalculate method to include the field values from
the added subform in the form calculations.
To remove a subform instance from a form
1 Select the object on your form design to add the script to, and select an event from the Show list in the Script Editor.
2 Type one of the following scripts in the Script Editor, where Subform1 is the name of the subform to remove an
instance from and integer is the zero-based index number of the instance to remove:
FormCalc
Subform1.instanceManager.removeInstance(integer) // Default instance manager syntax
or
_Subform1.removeInstance(integer) // Short form of the instance manager syntax
JavaScript
Subform1.instanceManager.removeInstance(integer); // Default instance manager syntax
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or
_Subform1.removeInstance(integer); // Short form of the instance manager syntax
Add and remove tables and table rows by using scripting
You can add or remove tables, body rows, header rows, and footer rows by adding instance manager scripting
expressions to objects on your form by using the Script Editor.
Before you begin, make sure that you perform the following tasks:
• If it is not already visible, display the Script Editor by selecting Windows > Script Editor. Expand the Script Editor
so that it is displayed in multiline view.
• Ensure that the table to add instances to is contained within a flowed subform so that you can add new instances of
either the table or the rows within the table.
To add a table or table row instance to a form
1 Select the object on your form design to add the script to, and select an event from the Show list in the Script Editor.
2 Type one of the following scripts in the Script Editor, where Table1 and Row1 are the names of the table and table
row to add instances to:
FormCalc
Table1.instanceManager.addInstance(true) // Default instance manager syntax
Table1.Row1.instanceManager.addInstance(true) // Default instance manager syntax
xfa.form.recalculate(true) // Invoke the recalculate method to include the field values from
the added table or row in the form calculations.
or
Table1.addInstance(true) // Short form of the instance manager syntax
Table1._Row1.addInstance(true) // Short form of the instance manager syntax
xfa.form.recalculate(true) // Invoke the recalculate method to include the field values from
the added table or row in the form calculations.
JavaScript
Table1.instanceManager.addInstance(true); // Default instance manager syntax
Table1.Row1.instanceManager.addInstance(true); // Default instance manager syntax
xfa.form.recalculate(true); // Invoke the recalculate method to include the field values from
the added table or row in the form calculations.
or
Table1.addInstance(true); // Short form of the instance manager syntax
Table1._Row1.addInstance(true); // Short form of the instance manager syntax
xfa.form.recalculate(true); // Invoke the recalculate method to include the field values from
the added table or row in the form calculations.
To remove a table or table row instance from your form
1 Select the object on your form design to add the script to, and select an event from the Show list in the Script Editor.
2 Type one of the following scripts in the Script Editor, where Table1 and Row1 are the names of the table and table
row to remove instances from and integer is the zero-based index number of the instance to remove:
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FormCalc
Table1.instanceManager.removeInstance(true) // Default instance manager syntax
Table1.Row1.instanceManager.removeInstance(true) // Default instance manager syntax
or
Table1.removeInstance(true) // Short form of the instance manager syntax
Table1._Row1.removeInstance(true) // Short form of the instance manager syntax
JavaScript
Table1.instanceManager.removeInstance(true); // Default instance manager syntax
Table1.Row1.instanceManager.removeInstance(true); // Default instance manager syntax
or
Table1.removeInstance(true); // Short form of the instance manager syntax
Table1._Row1.removeInstance(true); // Short form of the instance manager syntax
More Help topics
“Table properties in the Binding tab” on page 471
“Body row properties in the Binding tab” on page 481
“Header row properties in the Binding tab” on page 476
addInstance
removeInstance
“Add and remove subform instances using scripting” on page 248
Creating non-interactive forms that have a flowable layout
When you need a form to present varying amounts of data, typically from a data source, non-interactive forms that are
designed to flow content are useful. Just as with interactive forms that are designed to capture varying amounts of usersupplied data, the layout of this type of form adjusts automatically to the amount of data being merged with the form
design by a server-based process. You do not need to predetermine the number of sections or pages for the form as
you must do with a form that has a fixed layout.
Typically, non-interactive forms are printed and/or stored electronically. For example, you can create a noninteractive form design that has a flowable layout for use with Output. Output can then merge the form design with
XML form data and output the form to a network printer, a disk file, and an email recipient as a file attachment. You
can output these forms as PDF (including PDF/A documents), PostScript, Printer Control Language (PCL), and Zebra
Programming Language (ZPL) formats.
More Help topics
“Using subforms” on page 225
“Design tips for forms that have flowable layout” on page 255
How non-interactive forms that have a flowable layout work
In a form design that has a fixed layout, you typically use only one subform (the default subform on the page), which
Designer sets to position content by default. When Designer positions the content in a subform, none of the objects
within the subform move from their anchored positions, regardless of the characteristics and quantity of data.
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However, if you want sections of the form to expand to accommodate data, you generally use multiple subforms: the
default subform on the page, which you set to flow content, along with additional subforms that you can set to repeat
for each data item, expand to fit, or both. When you reset a subform to flow content, the objects within the subform,
including other subforms, move to accommodate the data merged into the repeating and expanding subforms.
With Designer, you can bind the objects in the form to the data elements in a data file, and you can configure the text
field and subform objects in the form to appear, repeat, or expand, depending on the characteristics and quantity of
data merged with the object. Because the objects in the form are bound to the source data, the layout of the form is
data-driven.
When authoring a form design that contains sections that expand and shrink to accommodate data, it is important to
understand which subforms appear once in the form, such as an address block, and the subforms that repeat according
to the amount of data, such as a detail line. For those subforms that repeat, include only one instance of the subform
and its components in the form design. Consequently, what you see at design time is not what users see when the form
is rendered.
For example, the following illustrations of the non-interactive Purchase Order sample show the form design before it
is merged with data and the resulting form that is presented to a user after the form design is merged with data. Notice
how the detail line (detail subform) repeats four times to accommodate the list of parts (available data).
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Form that has a flowable layout without merged data
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Form that has a flowable layout with merged data
Design tips for forms that have flowable layout
The complexity of a form significantly influences the amount of time it takes Adobe Reader to render or reender the
document. You can measure the complexity in several ways, but a main factor is the number of visible form objects.
Even a complex form design with many objects, subforms, and pages can perform well if a limited part of its complexity
is visible at once. It can perform well because the objects that have a presence set to hidden are ignored, and no time
is spent to position and render them.
Keep in mind the following points when creating forms with a flowable layout:
General
• Reduce the overall complexity the form design:
• Use field captions instead of static text objects.
• Remove captions form a field when not required.
• Specify borders instead of drawing lines.
• Specify a subform margin instead of using objects to add spacing between subforms.
• Remove duplicate objects, scripts, or constructs that you can replace with fragments, script objects, and global
fields.
• Use either explicit or implicit breaks:
• With implicit pagination, the master pages are instantiated in the order they are listed in the hierarchy, based
on their minimum and maximum occurrences.
• Explicit breaks are allowed and often required for complex forms, but are not necessary to create complex forms.
• Start with the layout, ant then add the dynamic behaviors and scripting.
• Use fixed layout when possible; for example, when a container such as a subform has one child.
• Use fixed size objects when possible.
• Resize the content area to leave enough space on the page for other objects that you do not want overlaid (for
example, a page number, title, logo, and so on). Watermarks are meant to be overlapped content.
• For a column layout, consider using multiple content areas or tables. To flow content from one column to the other,
use content areas. To align the content of each column side by side, use a table. Create the table without a header
and footer row.
Subforms
• Avoid placing flowed subforms inside a positioned subform. Doing so causes problems with page breaks,
overlapping objects, and repeating subforms.
• If a subform contains objects that merge with data of varying sizes, verify that the objects do not expand and
overrun the area that another object occupies. Expandable objects, such as text fields, may render on top of other
objects. Set the subform to flow and expand to fit the content.
• When you create a subform, resize it so that its width is the same as the width of the content area. Resize the
subform before you place objects in it. This way, you avoid having to reposition the subform's children after you
resize the subform.
• Always set up overflow leader and trailer subforms to Positioned content and deselect the Allow Page Breaks
option. Otherwise, the rendered form may contain errors such as duplicate headers or overlapping fields.
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• Specify an overflow leader and trailer subform for subforms that break between pages.
• To quickly resize a subform to fit around its children, select the Autofit option in the Layout palette and then disable it.
• It is good practice to rename nameless subforms with unique names. Naming subforms makes scripting easier and
helps you locate objects in the Hierarchical view. A nameless subform does not participate in the data merge. To
achieve the same result with a named subform, set its binding type to None.
Note: If you create a large interactive PDF form with no structure, end users may experience slow performance when
tabbing between fields. This problem is averted if you save the form without tagging. However, if you need your form
to be accessible. However, to make your form accessible, save it as tagged PDF. To work around this situation, wrap
sections of the form in unnamed subforms. This task adds the required structure to the form.
• You can have several content areas on a master page. The content areas are filled with content in the order they are
listed in the Hierarchy view regardless of their position on the page.
• If you are creating a compliant form, use Acrobat to compare the documents. Select Compare Documents from the
Acrobat Advanced menu.
• Setting the margins of a subform may generate unexpected results. Most subforms have positioned content and
therefore a fixed height. Adding margins offsets the subform content and can cause the objects below it to overlap.
• To wrap the content of a subform exactly, without using the Expand To Fit option, resize the subform by using the
properties in the Layout palette. The sample forms that are included with Designer use both methods.
Accessibility
• Accessibility tags are generated from left to right and then from top to bottom. Accessibility problems can occur in
subforms that position content when the objects are not positioned precisely.
Scripting
• When scripting, avoid placing code in the initialize event of objects on the master page. In earlier versions of Adobe
Reader, the initialize events for objects on master pages are executed more often than necessary. This extra script
execution affects the performance of the form. If possible, use a different event, such as the calculate event.
Data binding
• If you have a data connection, bind objects to the data connection or set the binding type to None. Also, use relative
binding referencess. Do not have reoccurring data that is not bound to reoccurring subforms. It is best to bind fields
to a data element and bind subforms to a data group. Data groups and subforms can repeat.
• By default, the subform binding type is set to Use Name. When working with a schema, it is preferable that you set
the default binding type to No Data Binding. You can set the default data binding in Tools > Options > Data
Binding.
• Set the data binding to No Data Binding for objects you do not want exported in the data. Set the binding type of
subforms that contain no fields to No Data Binding. For example, an overflow leader or trailer subform usually has
no fields. Setting the binding type to No Data Binding prevents it from participating in the merge. Excluding the
overflow leader or trailer from the merge can improve performance.
More Help topics
“Creating form designs that have a flowable layout” on page 242
Common mistakes
• Not specifying preview data.
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• Forgetting that the data entered in the Preview PDF tab is not the form data. When you save the form as a PDF form
and open it in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, the data is not displayed.
• Previewing the form as a static Static PDF Form instead of a Dynamic XML Form.
• Forgetting to allow content to break between pages.
• Placing a flowed subform inside a positioned subform.
• Do not know how to set a subform to repeat. The repeat option is disabled when the parent container uses
positioned layout.
• Resizing or moving the contents of containers with flowed contents.
• Unnecessary nesting of subforms, especially subforms that have one child container.
• Removing subform instances from Document Object Model (DOM) instead of hiding the subform.
• Not using the Report palette or the JavaScript Debugger in Acrobat (Ctrl+J) to view scripting errors.
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Chapter 7: Using fragments
About fragments
A fragment is a reusable part of a form. For example, a fragment can include an address block or legal text.
A fragment is managed in the Fragment Library and is stored as a separate XDP file that can be inserted into multiple
form designs. In the stand-alone version of Designer, fragments are stored in the file system and in the Fragment
Library. In Designer with Workbench, fragments are stored in the Fragment Library and in the LiveCycle repository.
Using fragments simplifies and speeds up the creation and maintenance of large numbers of forms. When creating a
form, you insert a reference to the required fragment and the fragment appears in the form. The fragment reference
contains a subform that points to the physical XDP file.
All fragments share common characteristics:
• You create all fragments the same way.
• You can create a fragment in the current file or in a separate file, and you can create multiple fragments in the same
file.
When you create a fragment in a separate file, a file is generated to store the fragment in the file system or in the
LiveCycle repository.
• Other form authors can use the fragments in their form designs.
• You edit the fragment source files in Designer.
Fragments and subforms
To create a fragment, you can either select an existing subform or select one or more objects. Subforms also include
tables, table rows, header rows, and footer rows. If you select objects that are not in a subform, the objects are wrapped
in a subform when the fragment is created.
You can also use a choice subform set that contains multiple fragment references. A choice subform set is a variation
of the subform set object that allows you to customize the display of specific subforms from within the set by using
conditional statements. You use conditional statements to determine which subform from within the set appears in
the delivered form.
For example, each subform in a set can include information for a particular state, and the subform that is displayed
can be determined based on the state where the form is filed.
Script fragments
A script fragment contains reusable JavaScript functions or values that are stored separately from a particular object,
such as a date parser or a web service invocation. These fragments include a single script object that appears as a child
of variables in the Hierarchy palette. Fragments cannot be created from scripts that are properties of other objects, such
as event scripts like validate, calculate, or initialize.
For more information, see Using Script Fragments.
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More Help topics
“Fragment Library palette menu” on page 634
“Binding fragments to a data source” on page 263
“Using choice subform sets” on page 239
When to use fragments
Create fragments when you identify form content or a script that you intend to use in multiple forms. Fragments allow
you to quickly create or change common elements that you want to share with multiple form authors. A company logo
is a good example of content that you use in multiple forms. Changes to the logo are simplified because you make a
single change in one place, which is the fragment file.
A script fragment is also useful where a function defines a standard way of formatting or doing some type of
calculation.
Content reuse
You can use fragments to reuse content in multiple form designs. When you must use some of the same content in
multiple forms, using a fragment is faster and simpler than copying or re-creating the content. Using fragments also
ensures that the frequently used parts of a form design have consistent content and appearance in all the referencing
forms.
Global updates
You can use fragments to make global changes to multiple forms only once, in one file. You can change the content,
script objects, data bindings, layout, or styles in a fragment, and all XDP forms that reference the fragment reflect the
changes. To update a fragment in a PDF form, resave the form in Designer.
For example, a common element across many forms can be an address block that includes a drop-down list object for
the country. If you update the values for the drop-down list object, you must open many forms to make the changes.
If you include the address block in a fragment, you open only one fragment file to make the changes.
Shared form creation
You can use fragments to share the creation of forms among several resources. Form developers with expertise in
scripting or other advanced features of Designer can develop and share fragments that take advantage of scripting and
dynamic properties. Form designers can use those fragments to lay out form designs and to ensure that all parts of a
form have a consistent appearance and functionality across multiple forms designed by multiple people.
Security
If you have Designer and Workbench, you can use the LiveCycle repository to limit access to a fragment and to store
and share fragments.
More Help topics
“Inserting fragment references” on page 264
“Editing and embedding fragments” on page 265
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Naming and organizing and fragments
An easy way to organize fragments is to create folders that represent categories of forms and store the fragments in a
common folder under each category. The common folders under each category of forms hold fragments common to
those forms. It is also good practice to create a common folder outside the categories of forms to hold fragments that
are common across all forms (for example, fragments such as a company logo or address in the common folder).
Example of folder structure that includes fragments
Make sure that you use a unique name for each fragment and that you add information about the purpose of the
fragment in the Description box.
When stored in the LiveCycle repository, the only way to view the fragment information is to open the fragment and
view the information. Properly naming the fragment can make it easier for form authors to find the fragment they want
to use.
You can maximize content reuse across teams by creating a fragments catalog and distributing it to form authors. For
example, create a form design that displays all the fragments that are available in the fragment library in logical order.
The fragments catalog provides a central location to view all fragments and obtain information about them.
Fragment references
Designer provides visual cues that identify fragment references in the Layout Editor and the Hierarchy palette. These
visual cues provide information about how fragments behave.
Fragment references in the Layout Editor
Object boundaries appear around fragments and fragment references. You can set the color of the object boundary
borders in the Drawing Aids palette.
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A fragment icon appears in the upper-left corner of a fragment reference and uses the color of the object boundary
borders. The objects within a fragment reference have gray borders to indicate that you cannot edit them from the
fragment reference.
Clicking anywhere within a fragment reference selects it, and dragging anywhere on a fragment reference moves it.
You cannot select any of the objects in a fragment reference. For example, if the fragment reference contains a table,
you cannot select a row or column. To select objects in a fragment reference, open the fragment source file for editing.
Fragment references in the Hierarchy palette
The objects in a fragment reference are dimmed in the Hierarchy palette because you cannot select or edit them from
the fragment reference.
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A. Fragment reference icon on a subform B. The objects in a fragment are dimmed
You can move a fragment reference and its contents as a single entity within the Hierarchy palette in the same way that
you move other form objects. However, you cannot drag objects into a fragment reference.
More Help topics
“Drawing Aids palette” on page 16
“To use the drawing aids” on page 19
“Layout Editor” on page 10
“Hierarchy palette” on page 12
“Editing and embedding fragments” on page 265
How fragment references are resolved
Fragment references are resolved when you open a form design in Designer, preview it, or save it as a PDF file. With
Workbench, you can also save a form design as a PDF file in Forms or Output.
When you update a fragment, all form designs that reference the fragment are refreshed with the changes when you
open the form design in Designer. All form designs that are open in Designer are also updated.
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Fragment references in PDF forms are resolved when you open or save the form design in Designer. If you update a
referenced fragment after you save the PDF form, the old fragment is still visible when you view the PDF form in
Acrobat. To update the PDF form with the changed fragment, resave the PDF form in Designer.
More Help topics
“Creating and inserting fragments” on page 263
“Inserting fragment references” on page 264
Binding fragments to a data source
When you create a form design that includes fragment references, you cannot bind individual objects in the fragment.
Instead, either bind the fragment reference to the data or create bindings in the fragment source file. When you create
bindings in the fragment source file, set the binding of the fragment in the host form to No Data Binding so that it does
not interfere in the data binding set in the fragment source file.
More Help topics
“About fragments” on page 258
“Binding fields to a data source” on page 504
Creating and inserting fragments
You can create a fragment in a separate XDP file or in the current form design. When you create the fragment in a
separate file, you can replace the selected objects with a reference to the fragment file. If you do not replace the selection
with a fragment reference, the fragment is created, but the selection remains unchanged and is not connected to the
new fragment. Leaving the selection unchanged saves steps when you need to create multiple, similar fragments.
Creating the fragment in the current file is useful when you want to define multiple fragments in one file. Creating
multiple fragments in one file can make it easier to update multiple fragments, particularly when the fragments are
similar.
Note: You cannot create a fragment in a form created by importing a PDF file as artwork. For more information, see
“Importing PDF documents as artwork” on page 137.
Fragments are identified by the fragment name. When you create the fragment in a separate file, you can also specify
the location and the file name. The fragment name does not have to match the file name.
The fragment name appears in the Fragment Library when you click OK in the Create Fragment dialog box. When you
create a fragment in the current form design and save it as an XDP file, the fragment name appears in the Fragment
Library when you save the file.
When you create a fragment, you can either select an existing subform or select one or more objects. If you select
objects that are not in a subform, the objects are wrapped in a subform when the fragment is created.
Note: After you create a fragment by selecting existing objects, update script references in the fragment to reflect that the
objects are wrapped in a new subform.
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You can use the menu to create a fragment, or you can drag the selected objects into the Fragment Library. When you
create a fragment by dragging the selection into the Fragment Library, the option for creating the fragment in the
current file is unavailable.
Save fragment source files as XDP files. If you save a fragment source file as a PDF file, the fragments cannot be
referenced in other forms.
When you create a fragment in a LiveCycle application and check it in, it is saved in the repository and appears in the
Applications view in Workbench.
Create script fragments from script objects instead of subforms, and create them from the Hierarchy palette.
For more information about creating and inserting script fragments, see Using Script Fragments.
Create a fragment
1 Select the objects to include in the fragment. You can select a fragment or multiple objects.
2 Select Edit > Fragments > Create Fragment.
3 (Optional) In the Description box, type a description of the fragment.
4 Select a method for creating the fragment:
• To define the fragment in a separate XDP file that is stored in the Fragment Library, select Create Fragment In
Fragment Library.
• In the stand-alone version of Designer, select the Fragment Library where you want to save the fragment file.
• In Designer with Workbench, from the Fragment Libary list, select a LiveCycle application folder where you
want to save the fragment file. You cannot select the root application folder.
• (Optional) To use a different file name, in the File Name box, type the file name for the fragment.
• To reference the new fragment in the current form design, select Replace Selection With Reference To New
Form Fragment, and then click OK.
Inserting fragment references
You can use fragments to reuse content in multiple forms. When creating a form design, insert a reference to an
existing fragment and the fragment appears in the form design.
After you insert a fragment reference, you can reposition it in the form design.
If you are using Designer with Workbench, you can insert a reference to a fragment that is outside the root application
folder or is not in a Workbench application. However, you must copy the fragment and the files it references into the
current application. The files are copied into the same folder as the current form, and the references to the files are
updated.
Note: You cannot insert a fragment in a form that was created by importing a PDF file as artwork. (See “Importing PDF
documents as artwork” on page 137.)
To preview the fragments in the Fragment Library palette, select Show Preview Pane from the palette menu.
To insert a fragment from the Fragment Library palette
❖ Do one of the following actions:
• Drag the fragment onto the form design.
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Note: You cannot drag a fragment from the Fragment Library palette onto a subform that is a child of a
SubformSet. The cursor changes and Designer displays a warning icon (a circle with a diagonal line) to indicate
that this operation is illegal.
• Double-click the fragment.
To insert a fragment from the Insert menu
1 Select Insert > Fragment.
2 Navigate to the file that contains the fragment.
3 Select the file.
4 If the file contains more than one fragment, select the fragment.
5 Click OK. The fragment appears in the center of the visible page.
More Help topics
“Fragment Library palette menu” on page 634
“To select objects” on page 339
“Create Fragment dialog box” on page 642
“Insert Fragment dialog box” on page 666
Editing and embedding fragments
You can edit a fragment by selecting the fragment in the Fragment Library palette or by selecting the fragment
reference in any form.
When you select the edit option, the fragment source file opens in Designer and the fragment is selected.
Note: You can also open and edit a fragment source file the same way you edit any other XDP file.
You can rename the fragment or modify the form objects in the fragment. When you save the fragment source file,
your changes are immediately reflected in all open forms that reference the fragment. You do not need to reload the
forms to see the changes.
Note: Renaming the fragment subform in the Hierarchy palette in the referenced XDP file breaks all references to that
fragment. You can change the fragment metadata name in the Fragment Information dialog box or in the Object palette.
When you edit a fragment, all forms that reference the fragment reflect the changes when you save the form in
Designer. If you update a referenced fragment after you save a PDF form, the old fragment is still visible when you view
the PDF form in Acrobat. To update the fragment that is visible in the PDF form, resave the PDF form in Designer
To edit a fragment from the Fragment Library palette
1 Open the fragment library and select the fragment.
2 In the fragment library panel menu, select Edit Fragment. The fragment source file opens.
3 Edit the file as required.
4 Save the fragment source file.
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To edit a fragment from a fragment reference
1 Do one of the following actions:
• Double-click the fragment reference.
• Select Edit > Fragments > Edit Fragment.
The fragment source file opens.
2 Edit the file as required.
3 Save the fragment source file.
To view fragment information
You can view the fragment information that was added when the fragment was created. The fragment information
includes the fragment name, a description, and the location of the fragment source file.
The same information is displayed for fragments and fragment references. When you select a fragment, you can view
or edit the information, but when you select a fragment reference, you can only view the information.
1 View the fragment information:
• To view the fragment information for a fragment reference, select the fragment reference.
• To view the fragment information for a fragment, open the fragment for editing.
2 Select Edit > Fragments > Fragment Info.
To convert a fragment reference to an embedded object
When you convert a fragment reference, it becomes an embedded copy of the fragment, and the fragment metadata is
removed. The embedded object does not retain any relationship to the fragment source file. The fragment source file
is unchanged and you can still reference it in your forms.
Converting a fragment reference is useful when you no longer need to reference the fragment but do not want to
remove the objects from a form design. For example, you can convert a fragment reference if you want to create a new
fragment based on an existing fragment.
If the referenced fragment contains one or more fragment references, you can either embed only the selected fragment
reference or embed the selected fragment and the nested fragment references.
1 Select the fragment reference to embed.
2 Select Edit > Fragments > Convert To Embedded Object.
More Help topics
“About fragments” on page 258
“Fragment references” on page 260
Fixing overrides and broken fragment references
You create overrides on a fragment reference when you edit its properties in the referencing form design. These
changes affect only the fragment reference in the current form and do not affect the fragment source file or any other
references.
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You can create fragment reference overrides on properties in the Object, Layout, Border, and Accessibility palettes of
the fragment subform. In the Script Editor, you can create overrides for scripts that are defined in the fragment
reference subform. The properties you can edit include the tab order, binding, scripts, X and Y positions, and subform
properties such as presence and locale.
You cannot create overrides on the properties of any objects in the fragment reference, including nested objects such
as subform sets or tables. For example, if a fragment reference includes a table, you cannot edit the row shading because
row shading is a property of the cells in a table.
To remove fragment reference overrides
You can remove the overrides from fragment reference properties by using the Clear Fragment Property Overrides
option in the Object, Border, Layout, and Accessibility palette menus. This option removes all overrides, on all the
palettes, from the selected fragment reference, except overrides on the X and Y properties when the fragment is in a
subform that positions content.
When overrides exist, an information marker appears on the fragment reference and an entry appears in the Warnings
tab in the Report palette.
1 Select the fragment reference that has overrides.
2 In the palette menu of the Object, Border, Layout, or Accessibility palette, select Clear Fragment Property
Overrides.
To resolve broken fragment references
A fragment reference can be broken when Designer cannot find either the fragment or the fragment source file because
it was renamed, deleted, or moved.
When you open a form that has a broken fragment reference, the fragment reference is replaced with this broken
fragment icon.
The broken fragment icon also appears on broken fragment references in the Hierarchy palette.
1 In the Object palette, click Open Fragment Source File.
2 Select the file that contains the fragment and click Open.
3 In the Fragment Name box, select the name of the fragment.
More Help topics
“About fragments” on page 258
“Fragment references” on page 260
“About palettes” on page 12
“Properties in the Object palette” on page 392
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Fragments tips
When working with fragments, keep in mind the following points:
• Because fragments are used for content reuse, keep them generic enough so that they do not quickly become
unusable in some forms when changes are made to it.
• When changing a fragment, verify whether you must also change the following items:
• Digital signatures that sign a collection that includes the fragment file.
• Update the schema for the fragment or host form to accommodate the changes.
• The form design layout of the host form to ensure that the changes did not cause errors. More work may be
required to complete the change to the host forms. If you are not using the LiveCycle server to generate the PDF
files on demand, manually open each form design and resave it as a PDF file in order for the fragment changes
to appear. If the PDF files are generated by using the LiveCycle server, the fragment references in the host form
design are resolved before the form is rendered so that no additional effort is required.
• When placing fragments on a master page, leave consistent space between the page border and the fragments to
maintain consistent margins.
• When creating the fragments, such as the body of a letter, consider the spacing you want between each paragraph.
Then make the spacing part of the static text object that contains the paragraph or part of the fragment subform
itself (where the fragment subform has a greater height than the static object it contains). When the paragraph
fragments are flowed into the body pages, they are consistently spaced. The easiest way to add spacing is to use the
Paragraph palette and define the spacing on the static text object.
• When creating paragraph fragments that contain floating fields, always ensure that they are wide enough to allow
for arbitrary data width. For example, make the salutation of a letter as wide as the page so that it can accommodate
long names.
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Chapter 8: Working with Objects
About Objects
Objects are the building blocks of every form. Each object provides some piece of functionality to your form, such as
a place to enter text or a button to use to email the form. As you create your form, you select objects and add them to
the body or master page of the form design. You will find all the available objects in the Object Library palette.
The objects in the Object Library palette are grouped into category. The Standard and Barcode categories contain the
core objects. In addition, a number of predefined custom objects are available in the Custom category.
Categories of objects
The majority of the objects fall into two categories:
Boilerplate or static objects Static objects do not capture or display data. Instead, they present fixed text or graphic
information. These objects include circles, lines, rectangles, images, and text. Static objects can be used in all types of
forms.
Field objects Field objects both capture and display data. These objects include barcodes, buttons, check boxes,
date/time fields, drop-down lists, image fields, list boxes, password and signature fields, radio buttons, and text fields.
Some field objects, such as text fields, can be used in all types of forms, whether the form is interactive, to be filled by
a user, or to be filled by merging with a data source. Others, such as drop-down lists, are intended specifically for
interactive forms.
The following objects are available in the Standard and Barcodes categories of the Object Library palette.
Object
Description
Category
Use
For more information
Barcode
A barcode identification symbol.
Static
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using barcodes” on page 273
Button
A button for issuing commands or client
requests.
Field
Designed for interactive
forms.
“Using buttons” on page 276
Check Box
An object that has an enabled (on) or
disabled (off) state.
Field
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using check boxes” on
page 290
Circle
A circle, ellipse, or arc.
Static
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using circles, lines, and
rectangles” on page 292
Content Area
A container that serves as the top-level
Static
object in an object hierarchy and defines the
area in a form in which objects may be
placed.
Every master page defines at “Using content areas” on
page 294
least one content area.
Date/Time Field
A field that accepts and displays date/time
data and supports pattern recognition.
Field
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using date/time fields” on
page 297
Decimal Field
A field that accepts and displays decimal
data and supports pattern recognition.
Field
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using decimal and numeric
fields” on page 299
Signature Field
A control that users can use to attach an
electronic signature to the form.
Field
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using signature fields” on
page 324
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Working with Objects
Object
Description
Category
Use
For more information
Drop-down List
A list of multiple options from which one
option can be selected. Only one option
appears at a time.
Field
Designed for interactive
forms.
“Using drop-down lists and list
boxes” on page 303
Email Submit
Button
A button that form users can use to return
form data to a specified email address.
Field
Designed for interactive
forms.
“Email submit buttons” on
page 277
Flash Field
An object that displays flash content such as Field
an instructional video..
Designed for interactive
forms.
“Using flash fields” on page 308
HTTP Submit
Button
A button that form users can click to return
form data by HTTP post to a specified URL.
Field
Designed for interactive
forms.
“HTTP submit buttons” on
page 278
Image
An object that displays an image such as a
logo or icon.
Static
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using image fields” on
page 310
Image Field
A placeholder for loading an image
dynamically when the form is rendered.
Field
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using image fields” on
page 310
Lines
A solid, dashed, or dotted line.
Static
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using circles, lines, and
rectangles” on page 292
List Box
A list of multiple options from which one
option can be selected. More than one
option appears at a time.
Field
Designed for interactive
forms.
“Using drop-down lists and list
boxes” on page 303
Numeric Field
A field that accepts and displays numeric
data and supports pattern recognition.
Field
Designed for any type of
form.
“About numeric fields” on
page 301
Paper Forms
Barcode
A 2D barcode that encodes user-entered
Field
data in an interactive form. To use the paper
forms barcode, your organization must have
the Reader Extensions implemented.
Designed for interactive
forms.
“Using drop-down lists and list
boxes” on page 303
Password Field
A field that accepts and masks the display of Field
alphanumeric passwords.
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using password fields” on
page 320
Print Button
A button that is configured for form users to
print the form.
Field
Designed for interactive
forms.
“Print buttons” on page 279
Radio Button
An object that represents a single choice in a Field
group of mutually exclusive choices.
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using radio buttons” on
page 321
Rectangle
A rectangle with regular, notched, or
rounded corners.
Static
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using circles, lines, and
rectangles” on page 292
Reset Button
A button that form users can click to reset the Field
contents of the form’s fields to their default
values.
Designed for interactive
forms.
“Reset buttons” on page 279
Subform
A container that controls the positioning of
objects. Each page is a subform and may
contain additional subforms.
Designed for any type of
form.
“About subforms” on page 225
Table
A container made up of rows and columns of Can be a static
cells that you can fill with form fields or
object or field
merge with data.
object
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using tables” on page 148
Text
Read-only text.
Static
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using text” on page 325
Text Field
A field that accepts and displays textual data Field
and supports pattern recognition.
Designed for any type of
form.
“Using text fields” on page 330
Static
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More Help topics
“Using custom objects” on page 334
“To create a custom object” on page 336
To change an object type
There are several ways you can change the object type:
• Delete the object on your form design and then drag the required object from the Object Library palette
• Use the Type list in the Field tab of the Object palette (for field objects such as text fields, numeric fields, and
buttons)
• Use the list in the Object Editor (for field objects such as text fields, numeric fields, and buttons)
• Use the Type list in the Draw tab of the Object palette (for static objects such as circles, lines, and text)
To change an object type using the Type list in the Object palette tabs
1 Select the object you want to change.
2 In the Object palette, click either the Field tab or the Draw tab and then select another object type from the Type list.
To change an object type using the Type list in the Object Editor
1 Select the object you want to change. If the Object Editor does not appear around the object, select View > Object
Editor.
2 Select another object type from the Type list.
To name and rename objects
When you drag an object from the Object Library palette onto your form design, its default name is the name of the
object followed by a number that represents the number of copies of the same object in the form design. For example,
if you have two list box objects on your form design, the default names are ListBox1 and ListBox2. This naming is called
the occurrence number.
While creating the form design, you can see the name of the object in the following places:
• Hierarchy palette
• Binding tab of the Object palette
• Object Editor
• A pop-up tool tip on the form design when you position the pointer over the object
You can name or rename an object by using the Hierarchy palette, the Binding tab of the Object palette, or the Object
Editor.
Note: If you plan to create calculations or scripts to enhance your form, avoid using the names of scripting properties,
methods, and objects when naming your form objects. Using similar names can result in calculations and scripts not
executing properly.
To name or rename an object by using the Hierarchy palette
1 In the Hierarchy palette, right-click the object and select Rename Object.
2 Type the new name and press Enter.
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To name or rename an object by using the Binding tab of the Object palette
1 Select the object.
2 In the Object palette, click the Binding tab.
3 In the Name box, type a new name for the object and press Enter.
To name or rename an object by using the Object Editor
1 Select the object. If the Object Editor does not appear, select View > Object Editor.
2 In the Name box, type a new name for the object and press Enter.
To set the border style
• To set the border style for an object, in the Object palette, click the Field tab and select a border style for the box
from the Appearance list.
• To define a custom look for an object, select Custom from the Appearance list.
• To define a border for the whole object, use the Border palette.
More Help topics
“Border properties in the Border palette” on page 385
To specify a locale (language and country or region) for an object
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 In the Locale list, select one of these options or one of the provided alternatives for the object’s localization setting:
• To use the default locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box, select Default Locale.
• To use the system locale of the user’s computer, select Viewer’s System Locale.
Note: At design time and run time, formatted values in the field are displayed in the locale-sensitive format.
More Help topics
“Locales” on page 370
Objects that support scripting and calculations
Objects that accept data can be associated with FormCalc or JavaScript expressions. For example, you can use scripts
to calculate a value or validate user-entered data. In most cases, the validity of data is controlled through the attributes
of the object. In the case of objects that require complex input (edit) patterns, the validity is controlled through pattern
settings in the Value tab of the Object palette.
Some objects can be used to initiate client requests. For example, you can set up a button to query a data source at run
time. In this case, you must also write a script to return the requested data value to a specific field in the form.
You can write scripts to execute commands, functions, or calculations when any of an object's events occur at run time.
An event will initiate at run time when the user performs the action that the event specifies. You can call any of an
object's supported methods and examine or set properties by defining a script.
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Some objects, such as circles and content areas, do not support events. The objects that support scripting and
calculations or that initiate events include barcodes, buttons, check boxes, date/time fields, drop-down lists, flash
fields, image fields, list boxes, numeric fields, password fields, radio buttons, signature fields, subforms, and text fields.
The supported events are object-specific and vary from one object to the next.
More Help topics
“Using objects in interactive forms” on page 273
Using objects in interactive forms
Designer includes several standard and custom objects that provide data entry and access capabilities, and support
calculations and scripts to initiate actions and handle data capture and manipulation. You can use any of these objects
on a form, as well as objects such as text fields and drawing objects.
In addition, you can create custom objects whose properties and characteristics you plan to use often in your forms.
You create custom objects by defining properties and adding required functionality such as scripts or calculations to
standard Designer objects. You save custom objects in the Object Library palette, either in the Custom category or in
a category you create yourself.
When choosing objects, you should understand what functions and capabilities the objects provide. There are several
things to consider when selecting objects:
• Determine the type of information you need to include in your forms and familiarize yourself with the
characteristics of the objects.
• Be aware that fields have varying length and appearance requirements and options, as well as data entry restrictions
and requirements.
• Analyze the types of data that you want to display and capture, and determine which objects support those types of
data.
• Certain objects allow you to add calculations and write scripts to initiate actions on the field. Determine what types
of scripts you can use with particular objects.
More Help topics
“About Objects” on page 269
“To create a custom object” on page 336
Using objects
Using barcodes
Businesses use barcodes extensively, particularly for inventory control. Barcodes can be used to identify forms, but
they are often printed on adhesive paper to create labels for inventory purposes.
Designer supports two types of barcodes:
Hardware barcodes Only use when the form is being printed directly to the printer from the server. Because a printer
is required to print them, Designer uses a placeholder to represent hardware barcodes in the form.
Software barcodes Can be drawn by Designer and are visible in Acrobat and Adobe Reader. They can be printed on
any general-purpose printer.
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Some types of barcodes can hold arbitrary binary data. Others are limited to a particular set of characters or codes. It
is the responsibility of the form author to ensure that the data is appropriate for the barcode, for example, by imposing
a validation on the field.
More Help topics
“Supported barcode formats” on page 395
“Valid barcode text characters” on page 396
“Dynamically populate a validation pattern message” on page 530
“Dynamically populate a validation script message” on page 532
“Barcode properties in the Field tab” on page 392
“Barcode properties in the Value tab” on page 392
“Barcode properties in the Binding tab” on page 394
Barcode formats
Designer provides a variety of barcode formats that you can work with. The supported barcode formats are listed in
the Barcodes category of the Object Library palette. If you use a barcode that requires a specific type of printer,
Designer represents the barcode as a shaded rectangle in the form.
Note: Interactive barcodes that can accept user input are only supported for PDF forms that are filled in Acrobat 7.0.5 or
Adobe Reader 7.0.5 or later.
Designer also supports the two-dimensional paper forms barcode. For more information, see “About paper forms
barcodes” on page 313.
Barcode position and appearance
The function of a barcode is to be read by a specialized piece of hardware called a barcode reader. Since the barcode is
intended to be read by a machine, its appearance is usually strictly constrained. For example, for a particular type of
barcode, the bars may have to be a particular height and distance apart. In addition it is common for a barcode to
require a minimum amount of white space around it (the quiet zone) and a particular range of distances from a
designated edge of the page.
Designer does nothing to express or enforce positioning or quiet zone requirements. It is up to the form creator to
ensure that these requirements are met.
Barcode properties
After you add a barcode to the form design, you can manipulate the object’s properties in the Field, Value, and Binding
tabs of the Object palette. You can define these properties:
• Text position
• Length of the data
• Any additional properties supported by the barcode (for example, optional checksum capabilities, and text
positioning and embedding)
• Presence of the barcode as visible, invisible, or hidden
• Binding method for storing and retrieving bound data
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To define barcode field properties
To define the properties of a barcode, you must first select the barcode and set basic characteristics in the Field tab of
the Object palette. The number and type of barcode properties vary from one barcode to another.
1 Select the barcode.
2 In the Object palette, click the Value tab and then type the barcode text in the Default box.
3 Click the Field tab and, in the Location box, select the placement of the text.
The PDF 417 format does not support text positioning, and the EAN8, EAN13, and UPC-A formats support the
Below Embedded option only.
4 In the Value column, do one or more of the following actions:
• In the Data Length box, type the length of the data. If you are defining an MSI barcode, the data length must be
a value between 1 and 14. The MSI, UPC-E, UPC EAN2, UPC EAN5, US Postal Zip-5, US Postal DPBC, and US
Postal Standard barcode formats have fixed data lengths that cannot be changed.
• If a Checksum box is displayed, enable or disable the checksum.To enable the default checksum, select Auto.To
disable the checksum, select None. If you are defining an MSI barcode, select one of the available checksum
methods.
• If an End Char or Start Char box is displayed, type the end character, start character, or both. If you are defining
a Codabar barcode, the valid end and start characters are A, B, C, D, a, b, c, d, *, N, T, E, n, t, and e. If you are
defining a Code 49 barcode, the valid start characters are A, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5.
• If a Wide/Narrow Ratio box is displayed, type a wide-narrow-ratio value. For Codabar, Code 2 of 5 (Industrial,
Interleaved, and Matrix), and Code 3 of 9, the wide-narrow-ratio value must be a value from 2.2 to 3.0. For Code
11, Logmars, MSI, and Plessey barcodes, the value must be a value from 2.0 to 3.0.
To set the default value for the barcode
❖ In the Object palette, click the Value tab and then type a default value in the Default box.
To control how a barcode obtains data
To define the properties of a barcode, you must first select the barcode. Set properties that control how the barcode
obtains data in the Value tab of the Object palette.
You can dynamically populate a validation pattern or script message with a value from a data source. This allows you
to ensure users enter the correct value in the field.
1 In the Object palette, click the Value tab and then select one of these options from the Type list:
• To allow users to choose to enter data or not, select User Entered - Optional.
• To prompt users to enter data and make the field recommended, select User Entered - Recommended and type
a custom message in the Empty Message box.
• To prompt users to enter data and make the field required, select User Entered - Required and type a custom
message in the Empty Message box.
• To make the field read only and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - Read Only. Users cannot edit the calculated value.
• To make the field editable and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - User Can Override. Users can edit the value if the calculation script has been written to accept
the input. If a user does edit the calculated value, the custom message you specify in the Override Message box
appears.
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• To make the field read only and display a data value that is merged or calculated and displayed at run time, select
Read Only. Users cannot edit the value.
2 If the value is recommended or required, type a prompt in the Empty Message box.
3 If the value will be calculated, attach the calculation script to the object by using the Script Editor.
4 (Optional) If a calculated value can be overridden, type a message into the Override Message box.
To define custom data-binding properties for a barcode
Binding options enable you to build a form that captures data for enterprise infrastructures and/or use an external data
source to populate a form at run time. Set data-binding properties in the Binding tab of the Object palette.
1 Select the barcode.
2 Enable the form to connect to the data source when the form is opened.
3 Bind the barcode to its corresponding data node. For information about how to bind objects to a data source, see
“Binding fields to a data source” on page 504.
Encoding non-printing characters in barcode data
You can encode hidden, non-printing characters between the data in Code 128 barcodes. For example, you can encode
the characters that represent the prefix and the delimiter as part of the Code 128 barcode standard. The application
that reads the barcode then decodes the meaning of these characters.
Some characters are reserved for use as non-printing characters in Code 128 barcodes. To encode these characters in
a barcode, use the following mechanism in Designer.
Code 128 non-printing characters
Use these values in Designer
FNC1
[F1]
FNC2
[F2]
FNC3
[F3]
SHIFT
[SH]
Change to Subset A
[CA]
Change to Subset B
[CB]
Change to Subset C
[CC]
Start in Subset A
[SA]
Start in Subset B
[SB]
Start in Subset C
[SC]
For example, to encode FNC1 in a Code 128 barcode, insert [F1] as follows: 00[F1]12345[F1]67890.
Using buttons
If you want users to initiate actions such as submitting data, executing a web service operation, or executing a database
query, you can add a button to the form. With the help of Designer’s built-in support for client-server communications
and scripting, forms can support these kinds of actions through buttons:
• Execute a calculation
• Process and manipulate data through a script
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• Submit data (including optional attachments) to a server
• Sign submitted form content
• Encrypt submitted form content
• Open a connection to a host
• Submit client requests to a server
• Invoke a web service operation
• Query a data source
The actions associated with the button are initiated when the user clicks the button.
After you add a button object to the form design, you can edit the caption text and manipulate the object’s properties
in the Field, Submit, and Execute tabs of the Object palette. You can define these properties:
• Change the caption for the button
• Set a border style for the button
• Specify the highlight style for the button
• Define the button as visible, invisible, or hidden
• Specify a locale for the button
• Specify run-time behavior
Designer also includes four additional buttons that are preconfigured to provide specific functions. They include an
email submit button, an HTTP submit button, a print button, and a reset button.
More Help topics
“Using digital signatures” on page 561
“Using XML encryption” on page 559
“Button properties in the Field tab” on page 398
“HTTP submit button properties in the Field tab” on page 427
“Email submit button properties in the Field tab” on page 422
“Processing options for a button” on page 280
“Working around web browser limitations” on page 592
Email submit buttons
The email submit button is a standard button that has certain properties already set and a specialized Object palette.
This object makes it easier for you to create buttons that users can click to return their form data by email. Because
Adobe Reader does not save changes to PDF files, including form data, it is a good idea to include an email submit
button on forms that users may fill in Adobe Reader.
The email submit button operates like a standard button object with these settings:
• Control Type set to Submit
• Submit Format set to XML Data
• Submit To URL set to use the mailto: protocol, such as mailto:[email protected]
• Encoding set to UTF-8
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If you use the New Form Assistant to create a form and select one of the Submit return methods, an email submit
button will be included on the form automatically.
After you add a button to the form design, you can edit the caption text, and you can manipulate the object’s properties
in the Field tab of the Object palette. You can define these properties:
• Change the caption for the button
• Set a border style for the button
• Specify the highlight style for the button
• Set the To address and the Subject of the email message
• Sign submitted form content
• Encrypt submitted form content
• Define the button as visible, invisible, or hidden
• Specify a locale for the button
You can also change the button name in the Hierarchy palette and set a style for the caption in the Font and Paragraph
palettes.
To configure the email submit button
You can specify the e-mail address that the form data will be sent to and the subject line of the email that will be sent.
1 Add an email submit button to the form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 In the Email Address box, type the e-mail address you want to send the submission to.
4 (Optional) In the Email Subject box, type a subject line for the e-mail.
5 (Optional) To apply a data signature to the submitted data, select Sign Submission and then click Settings to
configure optional signature settings.
6 (Optional) To apply XML encryption to the form content, select Encrypt Submission and then click Settings to
configure optional encryption settings.
HTTP submit buttons
The HTTP submit button is a standard button that has certain properties already set and a specialized Object palette.
This object makes it easier for you to create buttons that users can click to return their form data by HTTP post.
The HTTP submit button operates like a standard button object with these settings:
• Control Type set to Submit
• Submit Format set to URL-Encoded Data
• Submit To URL set to use the http: protocol
If your data needs to be returned through the secure https: protocol, you can also use the standard button object.
After you add a button to the form design, you can edit the caption text, and you can manipulate the object’s properties
in the Field tab of the Object palette. You can define these properties:
• Change the caption for the button
• Set a border style for the button
• Select the highlight style for the button
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• Specify the URL that the data will be sent to
• Sign submitted form content
• Encrypt submitted form content
• Define the button as visible, invisible, or hidden
• Specify a locale for the button
You can also change the button name in the Hierarchy palette and set a style for the caption in the Font and Paragraph
palettes.
To configure the HTTP submit button
1 Add an HTTP submit button to the form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab and type the URL protocol in the URL box.
To
Use this URL protocol
Example
Submit the package to an ftp site
ftp
ftp://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/GPL
Submit the package to a web server
http
http://myserver/cgi-bin/
Submit the package to a secure web server
https
https://myserver/cgi-bin/
Submit the package to an email address
mailto
mailto:[email protected]
Note: When submitting data to a URL, it is recommended that you specify an absolute target. Relative targets are
interpreted relative to the user environment, which can vary from one user to the next at run time.
3 (Optional) To apply a data signature to the submitted data, select Sign Submission and then click Settings to
configure optional signature settings.
4 (Optional) To apply XML encryption to the form content, select Encrypt Submission and then click Settings to
configure optional encryption settings.
Print buttons
The print button opens a Print dialog box so that the user can print the form. A Print button is a standard button object
that has the Control Type set to Regular and a script included in the button’s click event that prints the form when
the button is clicked.
In the stand-alone version of Designer, if you use the New Form Assistant to create a form and select one of the Print
return methods, a print button will be included on the form automatically.
Reset buttons
A reset button resets all fields on the form to their default values. The Reset button object is a standard button object
that has the Control Type set to Regular and a script included in the button’s click event that resets the field values
when the button is clicked.
To insert a standard button that runs a calculation or script
1 Add the button to a form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 Select an event from the Show box. For example, if you want the button to perform a calculation, select Click.
4 In the Script Editor, select a language from the Language list.
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5 Type the calculation or script in the Script Editor.
Processing options for a button
In the Execute tab in the Object palette, you can select a data connection for the button and specify whether the
associated processing will be carried out on the client computer, the server, or both. The data connection must provide
access to a web-service interface or OLEDB database server that will either return data to the form at run time or
perform an action elsewhere.
After you specify the data source (see “Working with Data Sources” on page 494), you can specify the operation or
query to run. When the button is clicked at run time, processing is completed as defined through the operation or
query.
Returned data can be merged with the form so that only data associated with existing objects is overwritten without
refreshing the structure of the form. Alternatively, you can choose to update the structure of the form based on the
returned XML data. In this case, the structure of the form is updated, and the returned data is merged after processing
is completed.
To define processing options for a button, you must first select the button. The processing options are set in the
Execute tab of the Object palette. To view the Execute tab, the Execute option must be selected in the Control Type
area in the Field tab.
More Help topics
“Button properties in the Execute tab” on page 404
“Previewing and testing forms” on page 102
“Working with Data Sources” on page 494
“To create a bound field or subform” on page 505
To execute a web service operation or database query using a button
Using an Execute button type, you can execute a process request to a web service. A web service processes operations
that you send to it to define input and output information in your form.
You add a connection to the web service and then create or bind fields to the request and response messages. The
bound fields can generate input data to send to the service or receive data from the service. Multiple fields can be used
to create the request message, and the response message can populate multiple fields. To process the operation, you
can use an Execute button or write a script. For example, you can use a web service to look up an interest rate, a
currency exchange rate, or a stock quote.
1 Add a button to the form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 In the Control Type area, select Execute. A web-service operation or database query will be executed according to
the settings in the Execute tab.
4 Click the Execute tab and select New Data Connection from the Connection list.
5 Select WSDL File and click Next.
6 In the WSDL File box, type the URL to the WSDL document, or click Browse
to locate and select the document
on your computer’s hard disk. If the WSDL document is stored on a secure server, either the Authentication
Required dialog box or the Select a Digital ID dialog box is displayed.
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7 Perform one of the following actions:
• In the Authentication dialog box, type the correct user name and password, and click OK.
• In the Select A Digital ID dialog box, select the correct digital ID to use as a client certificate, and click OK.
8 Select the operation to call, and click Next.
The window on the right displays details for the selected operation. If the selected operation is not SOAP-encoded
or is not doc-literal, a warning appears in this window and you cannot continue.
9 (Optional) To set up client authentication, perform one of the following actions:
• To define HTTP or HTTPS authentication, select Requires HTTP/HTTPS Authentication, and then optionally
select the credentials to accept for verification.
• To define SOAP message authentication, select Requires Message Level Authentication, and then optionally
select Accepts User Name and Password.
10 Click Finish.
11 In the Run At list, specify where the processing will take place:
• To process the request on the client computer, select Client.
• To process the request on the server, select Server.
• To process the request on the client computer and server, select Client And Server.
12 To update the structure of the form and merge returned data after processing is completed, select Re-merge Form
Data. You must use the Re-merge Form Data option if the response data is going to populate dynamic data (such
as a repeating subform) that is bound to WSDL data, which may occur a variable number of times in the response.
Dynamic data requires a full remerge to generate the correct number of repeating subforms. If the WDSL response
data is bound to a fixed number of fields, the response data will populate the existing fields, such that you do not
need to re-merge the form data.
To attach a database script to a button
You can use scripting to perform more complex data manipulation on an enterprise system. In this example, you can
see how to add some simple script to button fields to do basic database operations, including moving to the first,
previous, next, and last records, adding new records, updating existing records, and deleting records.
Note: This example is based on a particular database and configuration that is not included in the Designer samples.The
example is intended as a reference for creating your own databaselookup scripts.
1 In the Object Library palette, click the Standard category and drag eight button objects onto the form design. When
you add a button object, the default control type is Regular. Accept the default setting.
2 Name the buttons as follows: First, Previous, Next, Last, AddNew, Update, Delete, and Cancel.
3 Select the first button, in this case the one named First.
4 In the Script Editor, select click from the Show list, select JavaScript from the Language list, and select Client from
the Run At list.
5 In the Script Editor, add the following JavaScript script:
xfa.sourceSet.DataConnection.first();
6 Repeat step 5 for each of the remaining buttons, using the following scripts:
• Previous:
xfa.sourceSet.DataConnection.previous();
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• Next:
• Last:
xfa.sourceSet.DataConnection.next();
xfa.sourceSet.DataConnection.last();
• AddNew:
• Update:
xfa.sourceSet.DataConnection.addNew();
xfa.sourceSet.DataConnection.update();
• Delete:
xfa.sourceSet.DataConnection.delete();
• Cancel:
xfa.sourceSet.DataConnection.cancel();
7 Save the form design.
8 Test the form using the Preview PDF tab. If such a form were being filled in Adobe Reader, you would have to set
usage rights for the form by using Reader Extensions in order for Adobe Reader to access the database.
9 Click the different buttons to display the data associated with each record. The example shows that the Last button
causes the ID, part number, description, and unit price for the last record to appear in the applicable fields.
Using a button to populate fields from a database
You can use a database to provide the data for fields in your form, including text and numeric fields.
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In this example, the Retrieve Record button and the list box are bound to the database (named DataConnection)
shown in the Data View palette at the left. The button also has a FormCalc script attached to it to retrieve information
based on the part number selected in the List Box field. The retrieved records appear in the ID, PART_NO,
UNITPRICE, and DESCRIPTION fields.
1 Connect to the database.
2 In the Data View palette, drag the UNIT_PRICE, DESCRIPTION, PART_NO, and ID elements under
DataConnection onto the form design. Each node dragged onto the form design creates a bound field.
3 In the Object palette, click the Standard tab and drag a button object onto the form design.
4 Enter a new name for the button. The example uses RETRIEVE RECORD.
5 Select the button and, in the Script Editor, select click from the Show list, select FormCalc from the Language list,
and select Client from the Run At list.
6 Enter a FormCalc script similar to the following example. The script retrieves the data in the specified records and
prints it in the corresponding fields when the user clicks the button.
//Change the commandType from TABLE to TEXT. TEXT
//is the equivalent of SQL Property
$sourceSet.DataConnection.#command.query.commandType = "text"
//Set the Select Node. Select in this case will be
//whatever SQL Property you want
$sourceSet.DataConnection.#command.query.select.nodes.item(0).value = Concat("Select*from
OfficeSupplies Where ID = ", DataListBox1.rawValue,"")
//Reopen the Data connection
$sourceSet.DataConnection.open()
7 Save the form design as a PDF file.
8 Test the form using the Preview PDF tab to verify that the script works as expected.
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Submitting data using a button
You can add a button to a form so form fillers can submit the information or data they enter into the various fields in
the form. The Object Library provides three button objects you use to submit form data, the Button, Email Submit
Button, and HTTP Submit Button objects.
To define the properties of a button for submitting data, you select the button object in the Layout Editor and select
options on either the Submit or Field tab in the Object palette. With the Button object, you first select the Submit option
in the Control Type area on the Field tab, to display the options for submitting data on the Submit tab. With the Email
Submit Button and the HTTP Submit Button objects, the options for submitting data are located on the Field tab.
Each submit button provides options for different purposes. For example, if you want to submit data to a URL, use the
Button or the HTTP Submit Button objects. However, if you want to submit the data as an XML Data Package (XDP)
including attachments like annotations, PDF documents, or signatures, use the Button object.
Use the Button object to submit form data to a URL in XML Data Package (XDP), PDF, XML Data (XML), or URLencoded data format. The Button object is the only button that provides the options to include attachments like
annotations, templates, and PDFs. You can also use the Button object to submit form data by email using the mailto
protocol.
Use the Email Submit Button object to submit form data to an e-mail address in XDP or PDF format.
Use the HTTP Button object to submit form data to a URL in URL-encoded data format.
All three buttons provide options for signing and encrypting submitted data.
More Help topics
“Using digital signatures” on page 561
“Using XML encryption” on page 559
“Button properties in the Submit tab” on page 403
“Email submit button properties in the Field tab” on page 422
“HTTP submit button properties in the Field tab” on page 427
To add a button that submits an XML Data Package (XDP) to a URL
1 Add a Button object to the form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 In the Control Type area, select Submit. Data will be submitted according to the settings in the Submit tab.
4 Click the Submit tab, and in the Submit to URL box, type the URL protocol.
To
Use this URL protocol
Example
Submit the package to an ftp site
ftp
ftp://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/GPL
Submit the package to a web server
http
http://myserver/cgi-bin/
Submit the package to a secure web server
https
https://myserver/cgi-bin/
Note: When submitting data to a URL, it is recommended that you specify an absolute target. Relative targets are
interpreted relative to the user environment, which can vary from one user to the next at run time.
5 In the Submit As list, select XML Data Package (XDP).
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These formats initiate server-side processing. The XML Data Package (XDP) option submits the form data and
optionally includes other information, such as the form design, annotations, and signatures, that is needed for
Forms to subsequently render the form at run time. Attachments may be included with XDP files only.
6 (Optional) To apply a signature to the submitted data, select Sign Submission and then click Settings to select
optional signature settings.
7 (Optional) To apply XML encryption to the form content, select Encrypt Submission and then click Settings to
select optional encryption settings.
8 In the Include area, select the types of attachments to include:
• To include review comments, tool tips, and any other special tags needed to capture screen reader text, select
Annotations.
• To include a PDF version of the form (including signatures) when it is submitted as an attachment, select PDF
(Includes Signatures). Otherwise, a reference to an embedded PDF file is included.
• To include a copy of the form design, select Template.
• To include one or more <xdp> elements in the XDP source file, select Other. The specified elements must be
separated by commas and white space is optional; for example: xci, xslt, sourceset.
9 In the Data Encoding list, select one of the data encoding schemes:
• UTF-8
• UTF-16
• Shift_JIS
• Big5
• GBK
• KSC_5601
To add a button that submits an embedded PDF to a URL
1 Add a Button object to the form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 In the Control Type area, select Submit. Data will be submitted according to the settings in the Submit tab.
4 Click the Submit tab and type the URL protocol in the Submit to URL box.
To
Use this URL protocol
Example
Submit the package to an ftp site
ftp
ftp://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/GPL
Submit the package to a web server
http
http://myserver/cgi-bin/
Submit the package to a secure web server
https
https://myserver/cgi-bin/
Submit the package to an email address
mailto
mailto:[email protected]
Note: When submitting data to a URL, it is recommended that you specify an absolute target. Relative targets are
interpreted relative to the user environment, which can vary from one user to the next at run time.
5 In the Submit As list, select PDF.
This format submits a package containing an embedded PDF file.
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Choose this format if the form contains a signature field, or if a copy of the form together with its data needs to be
saved by Forms or submitted to another type of target server. Do not choose this option if the form initiates serverside processing, and if Forms will be used to render HTML or dynamic forms at run time. Keep in mind that if you
want to submit data in PDF format, ensure that the Save usage right is applied to the form using Reader Extensions.
No data can be submitted if the Save useage right is not applied to the form.
6 (Optional) To apply a signature to the submitted data, select Sign Submission in the Field tab and then click Settings
to select optional signature settings.
7 (Optional) To apply XML encryption to the form content, select Encrypt Submission and then click Settings to
select optional encryption settings.
To add an email submit button that submits an embedded PDF to an email address
1 Add an Email Submit Button object the form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 In the Email Address box, type the email address you want to submit the PDF to.
4 (Optional) In the Email Subject box, type a subject line for the email message.
5 In the Submit As list, select PDF.
This format submits a package containing an embedded PDF file.
Choose this format if the form contains a signature field, or if a copy of the form together with its data needs to be
saved by Forms or submitted to another type of target server. Do not choose this option if the form initiates serverside processing, and if Forms will be used to render HTML or dynamic forms at run time. Keep in mind that if you
want to submit data in PDF format, ensure that the Save usage right is applied to the form using Reader Extensions.
No data can be submitted if the Save useage right is not applied to the form.
6 (Optional) To apply a signature to the submitted data, select Sign Submission in the Field tab and then click Settings
to select optional signature settings.
7 (Optional) To apply XML encryption to the form content, select Encrypt Submission and then click Settings to
select optional encryption settings.
To add a button that submits XML data to a URL
1 Add a Button object to the form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 In the Control Type area, select Submit. Data will be submitted according to the settings in the Submit tab.
4 Click the Submit tab and type the URL protocol in the Submit to URL box.
To
Use this URL protocol
Example
Submit the package to an ftp site
ftp
ftp://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/GPL
Submit the package to a web server
http
http://myserver/cgi-bin/
Submit the package to a secure web server
https
https://myserver/cgi-bin/
Submit the package to an email address
mailto
mailto:[email protected]
Note: When submitting data to a URL, we recommend that you specify an absolute target. Relative targets are
interpreted relative to the user environment, which can vary from one user to the next at run time.
5 In the Submit As list, select XML Data (XML).
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This format submits an XML data stream, which allows for the hierarchical representation of data and can be
parsed by any generic XML parser. Choose this format if the server that communicates with the run-time user
application program must receive an XML data steam.
6 (Optional) To apply a signature to the submitted data, select Sign Submission in the Field tab and then click Settings
to select optional signature settings.
7 (Optional) To apply XML encryption to form content, select Encrypt Submission and then click Settings to select
optional encryption settings.
8 In the Encoding list, select one of the data encoding schemes:
• UTF-8
• UTF-16
• Shift_JIS
• Big5
• GBK
• KSC_5601
To add an email submit button that submits XML data to an email address
1 Add an Email Submit Button object to the form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 In the Email Address box, type the email address you want to submit the PDF to.
4 (Optional) In the Email Subject box, type a subject line for the email message.
5 In the Submit As list, select XML Data (XML).
This format submits an XML data stream, which allows for the hierarchical representation of data and can be
parsed by any generic XML parser. Choose this format if the server that communicates with the run-time user
application program must receive an XML data steam.
6 (Optional) To apply a data signature to the submitted data, select Sign Submission in the Field tab and then click
Settings to select optional signature settings.
7 (Optional) To apply XML encryption to form content, select Encrypt Submission and then click Settings to select
optional encryption settings.
To add a button that submits XML data to an e-mail address
1 Add a Button object to the form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 In the Control Type area, select Submit. Data will be submitted according to the settings in the Submit tab.
4 Click the Submit tab and, in the Submit to URL box, type the mailto protocol as shown in the following example:
mailto:[email protected]
5 In the Submit As list, select XML Data (XML).
This format sends an XML data stream, which allows for the hierarchical representation of data and can be parsed
by any generic XML parser. Choose this format if the server that communicates with the run-time user application
program must receive an XML data steam.
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6 (Optional) To apply a data signature to the submitted data, select Sign Submission in the Field tab and then click
Settings to configure optional signature settings.
7 (Optional) To apply XML encryption to form content, select Encrypt Submission and then click Settings to
configure optional encryption settings.
8 In the Encoding list, select one of the data encoding schemes:
• UTF-8
• UTF-16
• Shift_JIS
• Big5
• GBK
• KSC_5601
To add a button that submits a text stream using the POST method
1 Add a Button object to the form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 In the Control Type area, select Submit. Data will be submitted according to the settings in the Submit tab.
4 Click the Submit tab and type the URL protocol in the Submit to URL box.
To
Use this URL protocol
Example
Submit the package to an ftp site
ftp
ftp://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/GPL
Submit the package to a web server
http
http://myserver/cgi-bin/
Submit the package to a secure web server
https
https://myserver/cgi-bin/
Submit the package to an email address
mailto
mailto:[email protected]
Note: When submitting data to a URL, it is recommended that you specify an absolute target. Relative targets are
interpreted relative to the user environment, which can vary from one user to the next at run time.
5 In the Submit As list, select URL-Encoded Data (HTTP Post).
This format submits a text stream to the specified Uniform Resource Locator (URL) by using the POST method. The
text stream can be parsed by an FTP server, a mail server, a web server, or a CGI script that processes HTML forms.
To use this method, users must open the form in Adobe Reader 6.0 or later or a web browser unless the URL
specifies the mailto protocol.
6 In the Encoding list, select one of the data encoding schemes:
• UTF-8
• UTF-16
• Shift_JIS
• Big5
• GBK
• KSC_5601
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To add an email submit button that submits encrypted form content to an e-email
1 Add an Email Submit Button object to the form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 In the Email Address box, type the e-mail address you want to send the submission to.
4 (Optional) In the Email Subject box, type a subject line for the e-mail.
5 In the Submit As list, select PDF or XML Data (XML).
6 Select Encrypt Submission, and click Settings.
7 In the Encrypt Data And Submit Settings dialog box, select options as needed. See “Encrypt Data and Submit
Settings dialog box” on page 650.
To add a button that submits encrypted and encoded form content to an e-mail address
1 Add a Button object to the form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 In the Control Type area, select Submit. Data is submitted according to the settings in the Submit tab.
4 Click the Submit tab and, in the Submit to URL box, type the mailto protocol as shown in the following example:
mailto:[email protected]
5 In the Submit As list, select either PDF or XML Data (XML).
6 Select Encrypt Submission, and click Settings.
7 In the Encrypt Data And Submit Settings dialog box, select options as needed. See “Encrypt Data and Submit
Settings dialog box” on page 650.
8 In the Encoding list, select one of the data encoding schemes:
• UTF-8
• UTF-16
• Shift_JIS
• Big5
• GBK
• KSC_5601
To add an HTTP button that submits encrypted form content to a URL
1 Add an HTTP Submit Button object to the form design. See “To add objects to a form design” on page 337.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 In the URL box, type the URL that the form data will be posted to.
4 Select Encrypt Submission, and click Settings.
5 In the Encrypt Data And Submit Settings dialog box, select options as needed. See “Encrypt Data and Submit
Settings dialog box” on page 650.
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Using check boxes
If you want to provide users with individual choices that are either turned on or off, add check boxes to the form. The
user can toggle the state of a check box. When the check box is selected, its state is on. When the check box is deselected,
its state is off. Check boxes can be turned on and off in any combination and may be used to set the properties of a
selection.
After you add a check box to the form design, you can edit the caption text and manipulate the object’s properties in
the Field, Value, and Binding tabs of the Object palette. You can define these properties:
• Change the caption for the check box. See “Formatting captions” on page 360.
• Set a border style for the box. See “To set the border style” on page 272.
• Define the object as visible, invisible, or hidden. See “Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362.
• Specify a locale for the check box. See “To specify a locale (language and country or region) for an object” on
page 272.
• Specify the size for the check box.
• Specify the check style.
• Specify the states for the check box.
• Select the default state of the check box.
• Specify values for the on, off, and neutral states of the check box.
• Specify a binding method for storing and retrieving bound data.
Check boxes support scripting and calculations. If a user is to supply data, you can define whether the input is
recommended or required, and you can set up messages to prompt users appropriately. All user input may be validated
through scripting.
You can bind check box objects to data elements in a source data file to derive the On and Off values from the source
file when the form is rendered
To specify the size for the check box
1 To set the size for a check box, in the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 In the Size box, type a different value (in points) and press Enter.
Depending on the size you enter, you may have to resize the check box.
To specify the check style
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 Select an option in the Check Style list:
• To set the check style to the default, which is an X, select Default.
• To set the check style to a check mark, select Check.
• To set the check style to a circle, select Circle.
• To set the check style to a cross, select Cross.
• To set the check style to a diamond, select Diamond.
• To set the check style to a square, select Square.
• To set the check style to a star, select Star.
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To specify the states for the check box
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 Under States, select an option:
• To specify that the check box will have On (selected) and Off (clear) states, select On/Off.
• To specify that the check box will have On (selected), Off (clear), and Neutral (not selected or clear) states, select
On/Off/Neutral.
Values for each state must be defined in the Binding tab of the Object palette.
To define the behavior of the check box
1 In the Object palette, click the Value tab and select one of these options:
• To allow users to choose whether to enter data, select User Entered - Optional.
• To make the field read only and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - Read Only. Users will not be able to edit the calculated value.
• To make the field editable and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - User Can Override. Users can edit the value if the calculation script has been written to accept
the input. If a user does edit the calculated value, the custom message you specify in the Override Message box
appears.
• To make the field read only and display a data value that is merged or calculated and displayed at run time, select
Read Only. Users will not be able to edit the value.
2 If the value will be calculated, attach the calculation script to the object by using the Script Editor.
3 (Optional) If a calculated value can be overridden, type a message in the Override Message box.
You can dynamically populate a validation pattern or script message with a value from a data source. This allows
you to ensure that users enter the correct value in the field.
To specify the default state of the check box
1 In the Object palette, click the Value tab.
2 Select a state from the Default list:
• To set the default state to On, select On. The check box is selected initially.
• To set the default state to Off, select Off. The check box is deselected initially.
• To set the default state to Neutral, select Neutral. The box is filled with grey initially.
Note: The Default list is available only when the Type option is set to User Entered or Read Only. The Neutral option
is available from the Default list only when the States area in the Field tab is set to On/Off/Neutral.
To change the values assigned to check box states
By default, check boxes use numbers to represent values in the form data. The default values are “1” for On, “0” for
Off, and “2” for Neutral. You can change these values to match existing values in a data source or to provide more
meaningful terms related to the purpose of the check box in the data file.
1 In the Object palette, click the Binding tab.
2 In the On Value box, specify the value of the check box’s On state in the data source
3 In the Off Value box, specify the value of the check box’s Off state in the data source.
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4 If On/Off/Neutral was selected in the Field tab, in the Neutral Value box, specify the value of the check box’s Neutral
state in the data source.
To define custom data-binding properties for a check box
Binding options enable you to build a form that captures data for enterprise infrastructures and/or use an external data
source to populate a form at run time. Set data-binding properties in the Binding tab of the Object palette.
1 Select the check box.
2 Enable the form to connect to the data source when the form is opened.
3 Bind the check box to its corresponding data node.
For information about how to bind objects to a data source, see “Binding fields to a data source” on page 504.
More Help topics
“Check box properties in the Field tab” on page 405
“Check box properties in the Value tab” on page 406
“Check box properties in the Binding tab” on page 407
“Dynamically populate a validation pattern message” on page 530
“Dynamically populate a validation script message” on page 532
Using circles, lines, and rectangles
The drawing objects in the Object Library palette provide you with a way to enhance forms graphically.
• Using the Circle object, you can draw circular, elliptical, or arc shapes anywhere on the page.
• Using the Line object, you can draw solid, dashed, or dotted lines anywhere on the page.
• Using the Rectangle object, you can draw rectangles that have 90° or rounded corners. Use rectangles to graphically
frame an area of the form or provide a rectangular area as a background for other objects.
After you add a drawing object to the form design, you can manipulate the object’s properties in the Draw tab of the
Object palette. You can define these properties:
• Change the line style.
• Change the thickness of the line.
• Select a line color.
• Specify the shape of the circle.
• Specify the start and end points of an arc.
• Fill the circle or rectangle with color or a pattern.
• Change the slope of the line.
• Change the corners of the rectangle.
• Make the object visible, invisible, or hidden.
• Define the object as visible, invisible, or hidden. See “Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362.
To change the line style
1 Select the circle, line, or rectangle.
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2 In the Object palette, select a style from the Line Style list.
You may have to zoom in or increase the thickness of the line to see the style.
To change the thickness of the line
1 Select the circle, line, or rectangle.
2 In the Object palette, in the box to the right of the Line Style, type a new thickness.
If you type a number that makes the line very thick (for example, 1 in), then the line will be difficult to select. Use
the Hierarchy palette to select the line.
To select a line color
1 Select the circle, line, or rectangle.
2 In the Object palette, click the color selector button and select a color.
To specify the shape of the circle
1 Select the circle.
2 In the Object palette, select the shape of the object from the Appearance list.
• To draw an elliptical shape, select Ellipse.
• To draw a circular shape, select Circle.
• To draw an arc, select Arc.
To specify the start and end points of an arc
1 Select the arc.
2 In the Object palette, type the start and end points of the arc (in degrees) into the Start and Sweep boxes respectively.
To fill the circle or rectangle with color or a pattern
1 Select the circle or rectangle.
2 In the Object palette, select an option from the Fill list.
3 Using the adjacent color selector buttons, select appropriate fill colors.
To change the slope of the line
You can change the slope of the line. This is useful if you have drawn a line that is crooked. You can use this option to
straighten the line.
1 Select the line.
2 In the Object palette, click one of the Appearance buttons
To change the corners of the rectangle
1 Select the rectangle.
2 In the Object palette, click one of the Corners buttons.
3 In the Radius box, define the corner radius.
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More Help topics
“Rectangle properties in the Draw tab” on page 457
“Circle properties in the Draw tab” on page 408
“Line properties in the Draw tab” on page 432
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
Using content areas
Content areas provide anchoring and layout management for all the objects in a form, including subforms.
It is usually unnecessary to modify the properties of a content area. However, if you are designing a form that contains
subforms that are set to flow content, becoming familiar with the properties of content areas will help you to
understand the behavior of subforms. For information about the properties of content areas, see “Content area
properties in the Content Area tab” on page 409.
Content areas cannot be selected or manipulated through the Design View tab of the Layout Editor. If required, you
can select, cut, copy, paste, move, delete, or resize content areas through the Master Pages tab of the Layout Editor. A
rectangle on the master page delimits the area bounded by a content area.
This rectangle delimits the content area
New forms have a default content area. If required (for example, when designing a form that contains subforms set to
flow content), you can add additional content areas to the form. All content areas are displayed in the Hierarchy
palette.
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Default content area
Data flow between content areas
When more than one content area has been defined, objects flow from one content area to the next when the form is
rendered. You can select a flow direction for the objects and their data. The flow direction controls when an object
receives the focus relative to the other objects in the form during a tabbing sequence. It also determines when an object
receives merged data relative to the other objects in the form. Specifying the flow direction of one content area
automatically sets the flow direction of all other content areas in the form.
When the form is rendered, if an object that merges data expands so much that it will no longer fit in one content area,
the object spills into the next and subsequent content areas. Similarly, when you are designing a form, you cannot add
more objects to a content area than will fit within the area bounded by the content area. As soon as the content area
has been filled, the remaining objects overflow into the next available content area. If another content area is not
available to catch the overflow, the data will not be rendered properly.
To select a content area
You can select a content area using the Hierarchy palette or the Master Pages tab of the Layout Editor.
❖ Select a content area by doing one of the following actions:
• In the Layout Editor, click the Master Pages tab. Click the blue rectangle that delimits the content area.
• In the Hierarchy palette, click the content area.
To rename a content area
• To rename a content area using the Hierarchy palette, right-click the object and select Rename Object. Type the
new name and press Enter.
• To rename a content area using the Object palette, select the content area. In the Object palette, type a new name
for the content area in the Name box and press Enter. Designer maintains the occurrence number automatically.
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To define the tabbing and data-fill order for the subforms within the content area
❖ In the Object palette, select one of these options from the Flow Direction list:
• To set the default tabbing order and data-fill order starting from the top of the page and moving to the bottom
of the page, select Top To Bottom.
• To set the default tabbing order and data-fill order starting from the top of the page and moving to the right until
the last object on the right edge of the page has been reached, select Western Text. When the right edge of the
page has been reached, continue the tabbing order and flow direction at the next object down on the left side of
the page.
• To set the default tabbing order and data-fill order starting from the right of the page and moving to the left of
the page, select Right to Left.
Copying, moving, and resizing content areas
You can cut, copy, paste, delete, resize, or reposition content areas through the Master Pages tab of the Layout Editor.
You can only cut or delete content areas that you have added to a master page. A form must have at least one content
area. The default content area cannot be deleted.
To cut, copy, paste, or delete a content area
❖ In the Layout Editor, click the Master Pages tab. Right-click the content area and select the appropriate menu
command.
To resize a content area
❖ Resize the content area in the Master Pages tab of the Layout editor using one of these methods:
• Click the border of the content area and drag any of the resizing handles to resize the object.
• Select the content area, and then in the Layout palette, adjust the size settings.
To move a content area
1 In the Master Pages tab of the Layout editor, select the content area.
2 Move the content area using one of these methods:
• Drag the content area to a new location.
• Edit the x and y coordinates in the Layout palette.
• Use an arrow key to move the content area slightly in one direction.
Adding content areas
You can add a content area using the Insert menu or the Object Library palette. Content areas can be added to master
pages only.
To add a content area using the menu
❖ With the master page of the form displayed, select Insert > Standard > Content Area.
To add a content area using the Object Library palette
❖ Do one of the following actions:
• In the Object Library palette, click the Standard category. Click the Content Area object and draw the object on
the master page of the form.
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• From the Standard category of the Object Library palette, drag a Content Area object onto the master page of
the form.
• In the Object Library palette, click the Standard category. Double-click the Content Area object.
More Help topics
“To name and rename objects” on page 271
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
“Master page properties in the Master Page tab” on page 389
Using date/time fields
If you want to provide the ability to record the date, the time, or both in a form, add a date/time field to the form. The
value in a date/time field can be formatted and displayed according to predefined patterns and according to the locale
specified for the field.
For example, you can add a date/time field to your form design so that the user can enter the date or select it from a
calendar window.
After you add a date/time field to the form design, you can edit the caption text and manipulate the object’s properties
in the Field, Value, and Binding tabs of the Object palette. You can define these properties:
• Change the caption for the field. See “Formatting captions” on page 360.
• Set a border style for the field. See “To set the border style” on page 272.
• Define the field as visible, invisible, or hidden. See “Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362.
• Specify a locale for the field. See “To specify a locale (language and country or region) for an object” on page 272.
• Specify the comb format for the field. See “Using text fields” on page 330.
• Specify that Designer use the horizontal length of the text field to determine the maximum number of characters
and numbers to allow.
• Define the display pattern.
• Define the edit pattern (which is the format in which the date is entered).
• Specify an initial default value to display.
• Define a run-time property (for example, insert the date and time on which the form is rendered).
• Define the validation pattern.
• Choose whether to display the date, the time, or both.
• Specify a data-binding pattern.
• Specify a binding method for storing and retrieving bound data.
Date/time fields support scripting and calculations. If a user is to supply data, you can define whether the input is
recommended or required, and you can set up messages to prompt users appropriately. All user input may be validated
through scripting.
More Help topics
“Date/time field properties in the Field tab” on page 410
“Formatting field values and using patterns” on page 364
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“Date/time field” on page 410
“Date/time field properties in the Value tab” on page 412
“Date/time field properties in the Binding tab” on page 414
“To specify a default value” on page 366
“Dynamically populate a validation pattern message” on page 530
“Dynamically populate a validation script message” on page 532
To add current date fields
You can use a date/time field to automatically show the current date by using the Runtime Property option in the Value
tab of the Object palette.
Note: When using a current date field, the date updates to reflect the system’s current date each time a user opens the
form.
1 In the Object Library palette, click the Standard category and drag a Date/Time Field object onto the form design.
2 In the Object palette, click the Value tab and select Calculated - Read Only from the Type list.
3 Select the Runtime Property option.
4 View the form in the Preview PDF tab.
To define the behavior of date/time fields
1 In the Object palette, click the Value tab. Select one of these options:
• To allow users to choose whether to enter data, select User Entered - Optional.
• To prompt users to enter data and make the field recommended, select User Entered - Recommended and type
a custom message in the Empty Message box.
• To prompt users to enter data and make the field required, select User Entered - Required and type a custom
message in the Empty Message box.
• To make the field read only and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - Read Only. Users cannot edit the calculated value.
• To make the field editable and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - User Can Override. Users can edit the value if the calculation script has been written to accept
the input. If a user does edit the calculated value, the custom message you specify in the Override Message box
appears.
• To make the field read only and display a data value that is merged or calculated and displayed at run time, select
Read Only. Users cannot edit the value.
2 If the value is recommended or required, type a prompt in the Empty Message box.
3 If the value will be calculated, attach the calculation script to the object by using the Script Editor.
4 (Optional) If a calculated value can be overridden, type a message into the Override Message box.
You can dynamically populate a validation pattern or script message with a value from a data source. This allows
you to ensure that users enter the correct value in the field.
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To define custom data-binding properties for date/time fields
Binding options enable you to build a form that captures data for enterprise infrastructures and/or use an external data
source to populate a form at run time. Set data-binding properties in the Binding tab of the Object palette.
1 Select the date/time field.
2 Enable the form to connect to the data source when the form is opened.
3 Bind the field to its corresponding data node. For information about how to bind objects to a data source, see
“Binding fields to a data source” on page 504.
To specify the data to display in date/time fields
You can choose to display the date, the time, or both.
1 In the Object palette, click the Binding tab.
2 From the Data Format list, specify what to display in the field:
• Date Specifies the object as a date.
• Time Specifies the object as a time.
• Date and Time Specifies the object as a date and time.
To define the pattern for displaying date/time fields
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 Click Patterns > Display.
3 In the Select Type list, select the pattern used to display data in the date/time field.
Note: To display all date, time, and date/time formats in the Select Type list, you must first select Date and Time in
the Data Format list of the Binding tab in the Object palette.
To specify the comb format for date/time fields
Use the comb format when you want to separate numbers added to date/time fields by border lines.
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 Select Comb of Characters to includes border lines that separate each number within the date/time field.
3 Enter how many numbers will be separated by border lines within date/time text field.
To limit the numbers in date/time fields
You can limit how many numbers can be entered in date/time field by specifying that Designer use the horizontal
length of the date/time field to determine how many numbers to allow.
❖ In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Limit Length to Visible Area.
Using decimal and numeric fields
Decimal fields are very similar to numeric fields. The following table describes the differences between decimal and
numeric fields.
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Field
Description
Decimal field
Displays numbers in decimal format.
You can set the maximum number of leading and trailing digits.
You can set a display pattern to restrict the formatted value with the leading and trailing digits.
You cannot specify a data format for a decimal field; it is always stored as decimal.
By default, the formatted value includes two digits following the radix character.
Numeric fields
Displays numbers in float or integer format.
You cannot set the maximum number of leading and trailing digits.
You can set a data pattern and data format (either float or integer).
The formatted value includes only two digits following the radix character.
Use the decimal field in the following cases:
• If you want to set the number of leading or trailing digits
• If you want the precision of decimal or integer data to be shown exactly as it is entered (by ensuring the Limit
Trailing Digits option is deselected) without any truncating
For example, a field called Qty is located within a repeating subform. In the first instance of the subform, the Qty field
may have the value 3, and in the second instance of the subform, the Qty field may have the value 3.123:
• If the Limit Trailing Digits option is set to a maximum of 2, the first number is stored as 3 (because trailing 0s are
removed) and the second number is stored as 3.12 (because the number is truncated).
• If the Limit Trailing Digits option is deselected, both numbers are stored exactly as they are entered (the first
number is stored as 3 and the second number is stored as 3.123).
To learn more about the options for decimal fields, see the section on numeric fields because many of the options are
identical.
Note: To use the decimal field object in an interactive form, you must have Adobe Reader 6.0.3 or later.
More Help topics
“Numeric field properties in the Field tab” on page 437
“Decimal Field properties in the Field tab” on page 416
“Numeric patterns” on page 441
“Formatting captions” on page 360
“Formatting field values and using patterns” on page 364
“Numeric field properties in the Value tab” on page 438
“Numeric field properties in the Binding tab” on page 440
“To specify a default value” on page 366
“Dynamically populate a validation pattern message” on page 530
“Dynamically populate a validation script message” on page 532
“To specify a data pattern” on page 369
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About numeric fields
If you want to support the collection or display of float or integer data, including currency, add a numeric field to the
form. The value in a numeric field can be formatted and displayed according to predefined patterns and according to
the locale specified for the field.
After you add a numeric field to the form design, you can edit the caption text and manipulate the object’s properties
in the Field, Value, and Binding tabs of the Object palette. You can define these properties:
• Change the caption for the field. See “Formatting captions” on page 360.
• Set a border style for the field. See “To set the border style” on page 272.
• Define the field as visible, invisible, or hidden. See “Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362.
• Specify a locale for the field. See “To specify a locale (language and country or region) for an object” on page 272.
• Specify the comb format for the field. See “Using text fields” on page 330.
• Specify that Designer use the horizontal length of the text field to determine how many numbers to allow.
• Define the display pattern.
• Define the edit pattern.
• Specify an initial value to display.
• Define a run-time property (for example, insert the number of a rendered page).
• Define the validation pattern.
• Choose whether the field will support floating point or integer values.
• Specify a data-binding pattern.
• Specify a binding method for storing and retrieving bound data.
Numeric fields support scripting and calculations. If a user is to supply data, you can define whether the input is
recommended or required, and you can set up messages to prompt users appropriately. All user input may be validated
through scripting.
Note: Numeric fields have a maximum user-entered or calculated value of 2,147,483,647. This number is the largest
number that can fit into a 32-bit signed integer on a computer.
To define a radix (decimal point) alignment for numeric values
1 In the Paragraph palette menu, select Edit Value.
2 Click Radix Alignment
.
3 In the adjacent box, type the amount of space to create between the radix point and the right edge of the fillable area.
4 Press Enter.
Important: Acrobat 6.0.2 and Adobe Reader 6.0.2 do not support the radix alignment setting. If you intend to save
the design as an Acrobat 6.0.2-compatible PDF form, do not use radix alignment. If you do, users cannot edit the
values.
To define the behavior of decimal or numeric fields
1 In the Object palette, click the Value tab and select one of these options from the Type list:
• To allow users to choose whether to enter data, select User Entered - Optional.
• To prompt users to enter data and make the field recommended, select User Entered - Recommended and type
a custom message in the Empty Message box.
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• To prompt users to enter data and make the field required, select User Entered - Required and type a custom
message in the Empty Message box.
• To make the field read only and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - Read Only. Users cannot edit the calculated value.
• To make the field editable and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - User Can Override. Users can edit the value if the calculation script has been written to accept
the input. If a user does edit the calculated value, the custom message you specify in the Override Message box
appears.
• To make the field read only and display a data value that is merged or calculated and displayed at run time, select
Read Only. Users cannot edit the value.
2 If the value is recommended or required, type a prompt in the Empty Message box.
3 If the value will be calculated, attach the calculation script to the object by using the Script Editor.
4 (Optional) If a calculated value can be overridden, type a message in the Override Message box.
To define custom data-binding properties for decimal or numeric fields
Binding options enable you to build a form that captures data for enterprise infrastructures and/or use an external data
source to populate a form at run time. Set data-binding properties in the Binding tab of the Object palette.
1 Select the field.
2 Enable the form to connect to the data source when the form is opened.
3 Bind the field to its corresponding data node. For information about how to bind objects to a data source, see
“Binding fields to a data source” on page 504.
To specify the data format for numeric fields
Numeric fields can save data in Float or Integer format. The default is Float.
By default, numeric data in a Decimal Field will only save a maximum of two digits after the decimal. Data beyond the
second decimal place will be rounded.
1 In the Object palette, click the Binding tab.
2 Select the appropriate format from the Data Format list:
• To specify the number format as a three-part representation of a number that contains a radix character, select
Float.
• To specify the number as any sequence of the digits 0 through 9, possibly preceded by a minus sign, select
Integer.
To limit the numbers entered in decimal and numeric fields
You can limit how many numbers may be entered in decimal and numeric fields by specifying that Designer use the
horizontal length of the decimal or numeric field to determine how many numbers to allow.
❖ In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Limit Length to Visible Area.
To perform a calculation with decimal fields by using JavaScript
You can perform calculations with decimal fields by using FormCalc. However, if the Limit Trailing Digits option is
deselected, and you want to use JavaScript to perform a calculation with decimal fields, you must use a script. To
maintain a high degree of precision, Designer stores the value of decimal fields as a string. The script indicates to the
decimal field that it is a number.
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For example, you have three decimal fields in your form design. The first is named a, the second b, and the third Total.
You want to perform a calculation that adds a and b.
1 If the Script Editor is not already displayed, select Window > Script Editor.
2 (Optional) Drag the Script Editor palette bar until the palette is larger.
3 Select the decimal field that you want to use in a calculation.
4 Select Calculate from the Show list, JavaScript from the Language list, and Client from the Run At list.
5 In the Script Source field, type the following script:
Total.rawValue = Number(a.rawValue) + Number (b.rawValue)
• Total is the name of the decimal field that you want to use in a calculation.
•
a is the first decimal field.
•
b is the second decimal field.
6 View the form in the Preview PDF tab.
To specify the comb format for decimal and numeric fields
Use the comb format when you want to separate characters and numbers added to decimal and numeric fields by
border lines.
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 Select Comb of Characters to includes border lines that separate each number within the decimal or numeric field.
3 Enter how many numbers will be separated by border lines within the decimal or numeric field.
Using drop-down lists and list boxes
Drop-down lists and list boxes provide users with a way to select a single choice from a list. The choices are represented
by text. You define the list of default options.
Drop-down list
List box
Only one choice is visible until the user opens the list.
Any number of options can be visible at once. When the display area of the list box is too small to display al
of the items in the list, a vertical scroll bar is displayed.
Accepts custom user entries.
Does not accept custom user entries.
Unlike check boxes and radio buttons, drop-down lists and list boxes support variable sizes of data and variable sets
of choices. Clicking the drop-down arrow button displays the full set of choices, and clicking a choice in the list selects
a single item. When the layout of the form prohibits the use of check boxes or radio buttons, consider using a list box
to present options.
After you add a drop-down list or list box to the form design, you can edit the caption text and manipulate the object’s
properties in the Field, Value, and Binding tabs of the Object palette. You can define these properties:
• Change the caption for the list. See “Formatting captions” on page 360.
• Set a border style for the list. See “To set the border style” on page 272.
• Define the list as visible, invisible, or hidden. See “Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362.
• Specify a locale for the list. See “To specify a locale (language and country or region) for an object” on page 272.
• Add initial choices to the list and provide a default selection.
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• Sort the choices in ascending or descending order.
• Enable or disable user input (drop-down lists only).
• Specify a locale for the list.
• Specify custom data values for each list item.
• Specify a binding method for storing and retrieving bound data.
You can dynamically populate a drop-down list or list box with values from a data source.
More Help topics
“Working with Data Sources” on page 494
“Dynamically populate a drop-down list or list box” on page 524
“Drop-down list properties in the Field tab” on page 418
“Drop-down list properties in the Value tab” on page 419
“Drop-down list properties in the Binding tab” on page 421
“List box properties in the Field tab” on page 432
“List box properties in the Value tab” on page 434
“List box properties in the Binding tab” on page 436
“Dynamically populate a validation pattern message” on page 530
“Dynamically populate a validation script message” on page 532
To specify the list of options for a drop-down list or list box
You can add a list of options to a drop-down list or list box by using either of these two ways:
• By copying the data from Microsoft Excel or a text editor
• Individually by using the Add Item button
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The data that you are copying must be in tab-delimited format. You can copy and paste text or a text and value pair.
If you choose to paste text, you place the text in a single column. If you want to paste a text and value pair, place the
text in one column and the value in a second column. Here are examples of text and value pairs in Excel and
Notepad. Always place the list items in the first column.
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You can dynamically populate a drop-down list with values from a data source.
To add items from Excel or text editor
1 Select the drop-down list or list box.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• In Excel, copy the spreadsheet cells that contain the text (or text and value pair) you want in the drop-down list
or list box.
• In a text editor, copy the text (or text and value pair) you want in the drop-down list or list box.
3 In the Object palette, click the Field tab, and then click Paste
.
4 You can do any of the following actions:
• To reorder an item in the list, select the item and click Move Up
or Move Down
• To delete an item in the list, select the item and click Delete Item
.
• To sort the list in ascending order, select Sort Ascending
.
.
• To sort the list in descending order, select Sort Descending
.
• For a drop-down list only, to enable users to specify an item that does not appear in the list, select the Allow
Custom Text Entry option.
To add items individually
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab, and do one of the following actions:
• Double-click below the Text column heading in the List Items box.
• Click Add Item
.
2 Type the text corresponding to the first option and press Enter.
3 Type the text corresponding to the next option and press Enter.
4 Repeat step 3 for each option that you want to add to the list.
5 You can do any of the following actions:
• To reorder an item in the list, select the item and click Move Up
or Move Down
• To delete an item in the list, select the item and click Delete Item
.
• To sort the list in ascending order, select Sort Ascending
.
.
• To sort the list in descending order, select Sort Descending
.
• For a drop-down list only, to enable users to specify an item that does not appear in the list, select the Allow
Custom Text Entry option.
To define the behavior of a drop-down list or list box
1 In the Object palette, in the Value tab. From the Type list, select one of these options:
• To allow users to choose to enter data or not, select User Entered - Optional.
• To prompt users to enter data and make the field recommended, select User Entered - Recommended and type
a custom message in the Empty Message box.
• To prompt users to enter data and make the field required, select User Entered - Required and type a custom
message in the Empty Message box.
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• To make the field read only and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - Read Only. Users will not be able to edit the calculated value.
• To make the field editable and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - User Can Override. Users can edit the value if the calculation script has been written to accept
the input. If a user does edit the calculated value, the custom message you specify in the Override Message box
appears.
• To make the field read only and display a data value that is merged or calculated and displayed at run time, select
Read Only. Users will not be able to edit the value.
2 If the value is recommended or required, type a prompt into the Empty Message box.
3 If the value will be calculated, attach the calculation script to the object using the Script Editor.
4 (Optional) If a calculated value can be overridden, type a message into the Override Message box.
To display a default selection in the drop-down list or list box
You can set a default selection for the drop-down list or list box. You must first specify the list of options for a list.
1 In the Object palette, click the Value tab.
2 Select the default option from the Default list.
Note: The Default list is not available when the Type option is set to Calculated - Read Only or Calculated - User Can
Override.
The options in the Default list correspond to the list items in the Field tab of the Object palette.
To define custom data-binding properties for a drop-down list or list box
Binding options enable you to build a form that captures data for enterprise infrastructures or use an external data
source to populate a form at run time. Set data-binding properties in the Binding tab of the Object palette.
1 Select the drop-down list or list box.
2 Enable the form to connect to the data source when the form is opened.
3 Bind the list to its corresponding data node. For information about how to bind objects to a data source, see
“Binding fields to a data source” on page 504.
To specify list item values for a drop-down list or list box
Each item in a list is associated with a data value that represents the list item. By default, the values match the text for
the list item. You can change these values, for example, to match existing values in a data source.
When you choose to specify item values for the first time, the values will change to integer values starting with “1” for
the first item. If you deselect the Specify Item Values option, the values will revert to match the list item text.
You can dynamically populate a list box with values from a data source.
1 Select the drop-down list or list box object.
2 In the Object palette, click the Binding tab.
3 Select Specify Item Values.
4 Double-click the first value that you want to change.
5 Type the new value.
6 Press Enter to change the next value or double-click any other value to change it.
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Using flash fields
Use the Flash Field object in interactive forms to deliver rich media content like embedded videos and data graphically
displayed in charts.
Note: Flash Field objects are supported in Acrobat and Adobe Reader 10.0 or later. Remember to select this target version
option on the Defaults panel in the Form Properties dialog box.
When you add a Flash Field object to a form, you specify the URL of the SWF file. You can also specify the location of
an image file to use as a poster image. The poster image file is rendered any time the flash field is not in use or
deactivated.
If you plan on using the form offline, you can embed flash data and poster image files in the form so that all
components of the form are available. Keep in mind that embedding multiple SWF files and image files can
significantly increase the size of the PDF file. To know more about the differences between embedding versus
referencing objects, see this article.
You can display rich media content in a floating window, as well as add Flash assets like video, sound, image, text,
XML, and SWC files. You can embed or reference Flash assets, or have a combination of both. You can also bind Flash
Fields to a content provider such as an XML schema or a WSDL file.
In addition, you can configure various aspects of how rich media content is presented in a form. For example, in the
Object palette you can define these properties:
• Change the caption for the field. See “Formatting captions” on page 360.
• Set a border style for the field. See “To set the border style” on page 272.
• Define the field as visible, invisible, or hidden. See “Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362.
• Specify a locale for the field. See “To specify a locale (language and country or region) for an object” on page 272.
• Position and position the field. See “Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385.“Layout properties in the
Layout palette” on page 385
To specify the URL of a SWF file
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• If you know the location of the SWF file, in the URL box, type the URL to the file and press Enter.
• To browse to the location of the SWF file, click the Browse button to the right of the URL box, navigate to and
select the SWF file, and click Open.
To embed flash data in the form
❖ In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Embed Flash Data.
Note: If you are using the paper forms barcode object, do not select the Embed Flash Data option unless you have
assigned a collection to the barcode, which does not include Flash Field objects. The embedded flash data is larger than
the paper forms barcode object can hold.
To specify the location of a poster image
You can use BMP, JPG, GIF, PNG, or TIFF files as a poster image.
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
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2 Do one of the following actions:
• If you know the location of the poster image file, in the Poster box, type the URL to the file and press Enter.
• To browse for the location of the image file, click the Browse button to the right of the Poster box, navigate to
the image file, and click Open.
To embed a poster image
❖ In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Embed Poster Image.
Note: If you are using the paper forms barcode object, do not select the Embed Poster Image option unless you have
assigned a collection to the barcode, which does not include Flash Field objects. The size of the embedded poster image
file is larger than the paper forms barcode object can hold.
To display rich media content in a floating window
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Display Flash Content In Floating Window.
2 To configure the size and position of the floating window, in the Property list, enter values as needed. Values are
measured in points. (see “Flash field properties in the Field tab” on page 424)
To add an additional asset
1 Click Edit.
2 Click Add (+).
3 In the Browse for Additional Asset dialog box, select the file you want to add, and click Open.
4 (Optional) To embed the file, select Embed Asset.
5 Click OK.
To unembed or delete an additional asset
1 Click Edit.
2 In the Additional Assets dialog box, do one of the following actions:
• To unembed an asset, select the asset in the list and deselect Embed Asset.
• To delete an asset, select the asset in the list and click Delete (+).
3 Click OK.
To define custom data-binding properties for a flash field
1 Select the flash field.
2 Enable the form to connect to the data source when the form is opened.
3 Bind the check box to its corresponding data node. For information about how to bind objects to a data source. (see
“Binding fields to a data source” on page 504.)
More Help topics
“Flash field properties in the Field tab” on page 424
“Flash field properties in the Binding tab” on page 426
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Using image fields
Designer has two types of image objects.
• Image objects let you add a read-only image that users cannot edit on the form. This object is useful for enhancing
the look of the form. For more information about this type of image object, see “Using images” on page 312.
• Image field objects let you add an image that can be changed in an interactive form.
Image fields can be bound to an external data source or they can be scripted. Image fields support the merging of
external image data through binding. When the data source contains a value for an image field, the image is rendered
in the form. With this capability, images can be selected and loaded dynamically. For example, a form can enable users
to choose catalog items and, through scripting, a picture of each item could be displayed as a result. If the form contains
an empty image field, the path to the image identifies which image to display in the form.
Note: Interactive images in image field objects can be updated when the form is opened in Acrobat and Adobe Reader
7.0.5 and later. Interactive images become read-only and cannot be updated when the form is opened in Acrobat 6.0.2
and Adobe Reader 6.0.2. However, through scripting in an interactive PDF or HTML form created by Forms, a user could
request the same form again merged with a different image.
Image field objects support these file formats:
Windows Bitmap (BMP) Designer supports BMP images.
Joint Photographic Experts Group variations (JPG) Designer supports JPG images that include digital camera
Exchangeable Image File (EXIF) data.
Graphics Interchange Format (GIF) Although Designer supports GIF images, animated GIF files are not supported.
Designer also supports transparency within GIF files to allow for overlaying images on forms.
Portable Network Graphics (PNG) Designer supports one transparency color within PNG files to allow for overlaying
images on forms.
Tagged Image File (TIF) Designer supports Monochrome (1 color component 1-bit depth), Greyscale (1 color
component 8-bit depth), RGB (3 color components 8-bit depth), and Palette (1 color component 1,2,4,8-bit depths)
TIF images.
An initial (default) image to insert at run time can be specified by either a file name or a Uniform Resource Locator
(URL). Initially, the image is linked, which means that it is stored separately from the form and displayed when the
form is opened. Alternatively, the image data can be embedded in the form when the form is created.
Important: Linking to an image is not a secure way to protect sensitive business data. If the image data is considered
sensitive, you should embed it in the form. Also, you can use a secure HTTPS connection in conjunction with a URL.
However, HTTPS protects the transmission of the image data only while the data is being transmitted; it does not protect
access to the image (that is, no authentication is performed).
After you add an image field to the form design, you can manipulate the object’s properties in the Object palette. You
can choose to define these properties:
• Change the caption for the field. See “Formatting captions” on page 360.
• Set a border style for the field. See “To set the border style” on page 272.
• Define the image as visible, invisible, or hidden. See “Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362.
• Specify a locale for the field. See “To specify a locale (language and country or region) for an object” on page 272.
• Embed the image in the form.
• Scale the image to size.
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• Instead of or in addition to specifying a path to an initial (default) image file, specify a binding method for storing
and retrieving bound image data.
Keep in mind that if the image file or a link to the image file is in the data file, the image only appears when the form
is rendered and is not visible when you are designing the form. Also, if you plan on using the form offline, select the
Embed Image Data option in the Field tab in the Object palette so that all components of the form are available.
More Help topics
“Working around web browser limitations” on page 592
“Image field properties in the Field tab” on page 428
“Image field properties in the Binding tab” on page 430
“Image field properties in the Field tab” on page 428
To specify an initial (default) image to link
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab
2 Do one of the following actions:
• If you know the location of the image file, in the URL box, type the URL to the image file and press Enter.
• To browse for the location of the image file, click the Browse button
to the right of the URL box, navigate to
the image file that you want to insert and click Open.
Note: To use relative path names for retrieving linked images when the form is opened, the image files must be stored
in a folder that is accessible to users. If Forms is available, the path must be relative to Forms.
To embed image data in the form when the form is created
❖ In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Embed Image Data.
When you embed the image in the form, a copy of the image information is stored in the form. If the image field
will be used to load images dynamically when the form is rendered, do not select the Embed Image Data option. To
know more about the differences between embedding versus linking images, see this article.
Note: If you are using the paper forms barcode object, you should not select the Embed Image Data option unless you
have assigned a collection, that does not include image fields, to the barcode. The embedded image data is larger than
the paper forms barcode object can hold.
To size an image
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 In the Sizing list, select one of these options to determine what happens when the image is loaded:
• To resize the image in the object, ensure that the aspect ratio of the image is preserved, and select Scale Image
Proportionally.
• To resize the image to match the dimensions of the object, select Scale Image to Fit Rectangle. The aspect ratio
of the image is not preserved.
• To preserve the actual size of the image, select Use Original Size. The image is not resized.
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To define custom data-binding properties for an image field
You can use binding options to build a form that captures data for enterprise infrastructures and/or use an external
data source to populate a form at run time.
1 Select the image field.
2 Enable the form to connect to the data source when the form is opened.
3 Bind the field to its corresponding data node. For information about how to bind objects to a data source, see
““Binding fields to a data source” on page 504.
Using images
If you want to enhance the way that a form looks, consider adding images to the form. You use image objects to contain
images such as logos, icons, graphics, and photographs. An image object provides a graphic element that users cannot
edit. Image objects support these file formats:
Windows Bitmap (BMP) Encapsulated PostScript (EPS) Joint Photographic Experts Group variations (JPG) Designer
supports JPG images that include digital camera Exchangeable Image File (EXIF) data.
Graphics Interchange Format (GIF) Although Designer supports GIF images, animated GIF files are not supported.
Designer also supports transparency within GIF files to allow for overlaying images on forms.
Portable Network Graphics (PNG) Designer supports one transparency color within PNG files to allow for overlaying
images on forms.
Tagged Image File (TIF) Designer supports Monochrome (1 color component 1-bit depth), Greyscale (1 color
component 8-bit depth), RGB (3 color components 8-bit depth), and Palette (1 color component 1,2,4,8-bit depths)
TIF images.
The image to insert can be specified by either a file name or a Uniform Resource Locator (URL). By default, the image
is linked, which means that it is stored separately from the form and displayed whenever the form is opened. You can
also embed the image in the form.
Important: Linking to an image is not a secure way to protect sensitive business data. If the image is considered sensitive,
you should embed it in the form. Also, you can use a secure HTTPS connection in conjunction with a URL. However,
HTTPS protects the transmission of the image data only while the data is being transmitted; it does not protect access to
the image (that is, no authentication is performed).
After you add an image object to the form design, you can manipulate the object’s properties in the Object palette. You
can choose whether to define these properties:
• Embed the image in the form.
• Scale the image to size.
• Define the image as visible, invisible, or hidden. See “Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362.
More Help topics
“Image properties in the Draw tab” on page 430
“Working around web browser limitations” on page 592
To specify the image to link
❖ In the Object palette, use one of these methods:
• If you know the location of the image file, in the URL box, type the URL to the image file and press Enter.
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• To browse for the location of the image file, click the Browse button
to the right of the URL box, navigate to
the image file that you want to insert and click Open.
Note: To use relative path names for retrieving linked images when the form is opened, the image files must be stored
in a folder that is accessible to users. If Forms is available, the path must be relative to Forms.
To embed an image into a form
❖ In the Object palette, select Embed Image Data.
Note: When you embed an image in the form, a copy of the image information is stored in the form.
To size the image
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 In the Sizing list, select one of these options to determine what happens when the image is loaded:
• To resize the image in the object, ensure that the aspect ratio of the image is preserved and select Scale Image
Proportionally.
• To resize the image to match the dimensions of the object, select Scale Image to Fit Rectangle. The aspect ratio
of the image is not preserved.
• To preserve the actual size of the image, select Use Original Size. The image is not resized.
About paper forms barcodes
A paper forms barcode electronically captures user-supplied data in an interactive PDF form. When an end user fills
the form using Adobe Reader or Acrobat, the barcode is updated automatically to encode the user-supplied data. The
user can then return the filled form by printing it and returning it by fax, mail, or hand. Upon receipt, the user-supplied
data can be decoded using a scanning device.
To use the paper forms barcode object, your organization must have implemented Reader Extensions.
The Barcoded Forms solution provides a workflow where users completes the form using Adobe Reader and the data
is automatically encoded into the barcode. After the form is printed and the paper copy returned to you, you can
extract the form data by using a common barcode scanner. The result is 100% data accuracy, eliminating the need for
rekeying data.
Using the paper forms barcode in a form eliminates the need for manual data entry or OCR-based forms processing.
Data captured from fill-and-print paper forms can be reinserted into the electronic workflow quickly and accurately,
with no loss of data caused by scanning or manual rekeying mistakes. Furthermore, you can retain a digital copy of the
transaction, complete with ink signatures.
For example, a company has a PDF form that can be filled electronically. However, the form requires the user’s
signature; therefore, the completed form must be printed, signed, and returned by fax or mail. By including a paper
forms barcode on the form, the data entered electronically is encoded into the barcode. When the printed form is
returned, a barcode reader can read all of the captured data into a structured data file. Only the signature needs to be
verified.
Note: The paper forms barcode object cannot be used on a form saved as an Acrobat 6.0-compatible PDF form. Users
filling a form that contains a paper forms barcode require Acrobat 7.0 or later, or Adobe Reader 7.0 or later for PDF 417
barcodes, and Acrobat 7.0.5 or later, or Adobe Reader 7.0.5 or later for QR Code and DataMatrix barcodes in order for
the barcode to encode the captured data.
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More Help topics
“To add objects to a form design” on page 337
“To control how a paper forms barcode encodes data” on page 315
“Paper forms barcode properties in the Field tab” on page 445
“Paper forms barcode properties in the Value tab” on page 447
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
“Border properties in the Border palette” on page 385
“Accessibility properties in the Accessibility palette” on page 387
How the paper forms barcode works
The paper forms barcode object is a two-dimensional (2D) barcode that is encoded with an industry standard PDF417,
QR Code (Version 2), or DataMatrix (the ECC200 model) symbology. It includes an intelligent calculation script that
encodes the data captured in a form’s fields.
You select the form fields to be encoded by the paper forms barcode. However, because the barcodes have limited
storage capacity, it is important that you select only required fields.
After you add a paper forms barcode to the form design, you specify its properties so that it behaves in the manner
appropriate for your requirements. Using the Object palette, you can define these properties and others for the paper
forms barcode:
• Barcode label
• Symbology encoded in the barcode
• Scanning method used to decode the paper forms barcode
• Error correction level, and the module width and height of the barcode (when you choose a custom scanning
method)
• Object’s visibility on the form
• Data compression options
• Form data to include in the barcode
• Data format that the paper forms barcode uses to encode data and the fields to be included
When you distribute your finished form, users fill the form, print it, and return it. After received, the user-supplied
data is decoded by using a scanning device.
Consider the following points when designing forms that include the Paper Forms barcode object:
• The Paper Forms Barcode object encodes data that users type in a fillable PDF form. The use of paper forms
barcodes for paper forms processing requires Reader Extensions.
• Users must use Acrobat or Adobe Reader 7.0.5 or later to fill a form using QR Code or Data Matrix Paper Forms
Barcode. Therefore, form authors must not save the form as either Acrobat 7.0.5 Compatible or Acrobat 6.0.2
Compatible.
• Users must use Acrobat or Adobe Reader 7.0.5 or later to fill a form that includes the PDF417 Paper Forms Barcode.
Note: To make use of the paper forms barcode, your organization must have implemented Reader Extensions.
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Using paper forms barcodes
To specify a unique caption for the paper forms barcode
1 On the form design, select the paper forms barcode.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab, deselect Generate Label Automatically, and type a caption in the Label box.
To generate a caption for the paper forms barcode
1 On the form design, select the paper forms barcode.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Generate Label Automatically.
To specify the symbology for the paper forms barcode
1 On the form design, select the paper forms barcode.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select one of the following options from the Symbology list:
• PDF417
• QR Code
• Data Matrix
Note: End users filling a form that contains a QR Code or DataMatrix barcode require Acrobat 7.0.5 or later, or Adobe
Reader 7.0.5 or later. Decoding of QR Code and DataMatrix barcodes is supported by Adobe® LiveCycle® Barcoded
Forms 7.0 but is not supported by Adobe® LiveCycle® Barcoded Forms 7.0 Standalone (ST).
To specify the paper forms barcode scanning method
1 On the form design, select the paper forms barcode.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select one of the following options from the Scanning Method list:
• Hand-held Scanner
• Fax Server
• Document Scanner
• Custom
3 If you select Custom, you can also specify custom decoding settings.
To specify custom decoding settings for a paper forms barcode
1 On the form design, select the paper forms barcode.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Custom from the Scanning Method list.
3 To change the decoding properties, select the value from the Value list beside the property.
Note: If you are planning to decode the barcode by using a handheld barcode scanner, avoid creating barcodes wider
than four inches. Taller and narrower barcodes generally work better with handheld scanners.
To control how a paper forms barcode encodes data
When using a paper forms barcode object in a form design, you must specify the format that the barcode will use when
encoding the data, as well as which data will be encoded. You can specify the following types of data formats:
• XML
• Delimited
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Both options provide a script for the paper forms barcode object that instructs it to use a particular data type when
encoding the data.
You can provide your own script for encoding the data. For more information, see “To create a custom script for
encoding data for a paper forms barcode” on page 316.
To define how the paper forms barcode object obtains data, use the options in the Value tab of the Object palette. You
can also specify whether the data is compressed before encoding.
To automatically generate a script to encode barcode data
1 On the form design, select the paper forms barcode.
2 In the Object palette, click the Value tab and select Automatic Scripting.
3 In the Format list, select one of these options:
• XML
• Delimited.
4 (Optional) Select Include Field Names and Include Label.
5 In the Apply To list, select one of these options:
• Entire Form Data
• Collection Data. Select the collection from the Collection menu.
To compress the data before encoding
1 On the form design, select the paper forms barcode.
2 In the Object palette, click the Value tab and select Compress Data Before Encoding.
To create a custom script for encoding data for a paper forms barcode
In situations when you need to follow government or other specifications for encoding data, you may find that the
preset data encoding options do not meet your requirements. Using the Custom option, you can provide your own
script for encoding the data. The script could be quite simple, as in this example:
this.rawValue=NumericField1.rawValue
Alternatively, you could create a more complex script that determines which fields to encode based on certain
conditions.
1 On the form design, select the paper forms barcode object.
2 In the Object palette, click the Value tab and deselect Automatic Scripting.
3 In the Script Editor, you can modify the sample custom script or write your own script.
For example, the following sample code illustrates the JavaScript script required to retrieve a form’s field values, format
a string representing a Comma Separated Value (CSV) instance containing the form fields, and update a paper forms
barcode for an interactive PDF form. The form contains fields named accountNum, formerFirstName,
formerMiddleInitial, formerLastName, newFirstName, newMiddleInitial, and newLastName.
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// This function ensures that the barcode will update
// when a change is made to any field on the form.
function depends(node)
{
for (var i = 0; i < node.nodes.length; ++i)
{
var child = node.nodes.item(i);
if (child.isContainer)
depends(child);
}
}
// Return a field surrounded by quotes and followed with a separator
function fmtField(fieldName, separator)
{
var str = "\"" + fieldName.rawValue + "\"" + separator;
return str;
}
// Force all fields in the form to be updated in the dataset
depends(xfa.form);
// Generate the CSV string that will be encoded in the barcode
var comma = ",";
var newLine = "\n";
var s = fmtField(accountNum, comma);
s += fmtField(formerFirstName, comma)
s += fmtField(formerMiddleInitial, comma);
s += fmtField(formerLastName, comma);
s += fmtField(newFirstName, comma)
s += fmtField(newMiddleInitial, comma);
s += fmtField(newLastName, newLine);
// Assign the string to the barcode for encoding
this.rawValue = s;
To use legacy encoding format
By default, Designer uses a new encoding format that uses the XFA JavaScript function xfa.record.saveXML() to
produce XML encoded data. However, you can still use the legacy encoding format that uses the old function
xfa.datasets.saveXML(). For example, you may be processing forms with barcode data by using an application that
can only parse the old XML format.
The legacy encoding format is used in paper forms barcode XML scripts in Designer 7.0 to 8.0. When you open a form
that contains the legacy encoding format, the Use Legacy Format option is selected automatically.
1 On the form design, select the paper forms barcode object.
2 In the Object palette, click the Value tab.
3 In the Format list, select XML and then select Use Legacy Format.
To specify a delimiter
You can choose the delimiter character that is used to separate field data, such as field names, field values, and barcode
labels.
With all delimiters other than Carriage Return, the first line starts with the optional barcode label heading, followed
by the form object names, and ends with a delimiter and a new line character. The second line starts with the barcode
label, which is a globally unique identifier (GUID) by default, followed by the form object data, and ends with a
delimiter and a new line character.
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With the Carriage Return delimiter, field names, barcode labels, and field values are listed over multiple lines, with
field names and barcode labels listed first, each on a separate line, followed by either a carriage return, a new line
character, and then with the field values, each of which are on a separate line.
If a field name or value in the form is empty, the barcode encoding script will insert a delimiter and encode the next field
name or value. The barcode data will not contain a space, or any special marking, as the placeholder for the empty text.
Note: With all types of delimiters, you can control whether field names and barcode labels are included in the barcode
content by selecting the Include Field Names and Include Label options in the Value tab of the Object palette.
To avoid incorrect decoding results when you choose the delimited format for a paper forms barcode, make sure that
the delimiter you select is not a part of your form's textual contents. That is, do not choose a delimiter that may be a
part of the paper forms barcode field value. For instance, if you choose tab, comma, or space as the delimiter, the
contents of the form fields you are encoding cannot contain any tab, comma, or space characters because it will confuse
the decoder.
You can always choose a different character as the delimiter if the form contents change and the character that was
originally chosen to be the delimiter becomes a part of the contents.
Note: It is recommended that you do not select the Carriage Return option as a delimiter, because the carriage return
character is already used in the paper forms barcode values as a delimiter to separate the header and value rows.
1 On the form design, select the paper forms barcode object.
2 In the Object palette, click the Value tab.
3 In the Format list, select Delimited and, in the Delimiter list, select the type of delimiter you want.
To specify character encoding
You can select the character encoding of the value that is encoded into a barcode.
1 On the form design, select the paper forms barcode object.
2 In the Object palette, click the Value tab.
3 In the Character Encoding list, select the option that suits your needs.
Design tips for using a paper forms barcode
Creating an effective paper forms barcode means designing a barcode so that information is encoded into it in a useful
way that can be easily decoded into understandable information. Here are some things to keep in mind when designing
a usable, decodable barcode.
Barcode design tip
Details
Design a barcode that is appropriate Think about how the users will submit the form to you or your processing organization. Make sure the barcode is designed to
for its intended use.
survive the printing, mailing in, faxing, and scanning processes.
Use collections
Use Collections in paper forms barcodes instead of applying the barcode to the entire form. Collections ensure that you include
the relevant fields in the barcode.
Note: If you add a List Box object with the Allow Multiple Selection option selected on the Field tab to a paper
forms barcode collection, you must also select the Enforce Strict Scoping Rules in JavaScript option on the
Defaults tab in the Form Properties dialog. Otherwise, any values that a form filler selects in the List Box
object may not encode properly in the paper forms barcode.
The Paper forms barcode collection
name must be different from the
object collection name.
Make sure that the paper forms barcode name is different from the object name. Otherwise, the paper forms barcode will not
update at the run time.
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Barcode design tip
Details
Paper forms barcodes in subforms
with default names may cause
unexpected results.
When you include a paper forms barcodes in multiple unnamed subforms, you may get unexpected results. Rename the subforms
instead of using the default name.
Consider the placement of the
barcode on the form design.
You can place a paper forms barcode anywhere on the form design. Always place the barcode where it can be seen and scanned
easily. Keep barcodes at least a half-inch from the edge of the paper to ensure that they are included when the form is printed.
Size a barcode for the amount of
data to be captured.
There is a limit to the amount of data that can be encoded into a paper forms barcode. The size of the barcode also affects the
amount of data that it can encode. If the barcode is too small to hold the user-supplied data, a red marker appears on the upperright corner of the barcode, with a message informing you that the data set to be encoded is too large for the barcode to contain.
You should perform one of these steps:
•
Resize the barcode, making it bigger to accommodate more data.
•
Reduce the data set by changing the default data size for some form objects, such as text fields. For example, the default limit
length of each text field is 255. However, if a text field will only contain a first name, last name, or even a full name, the limit
could be reduced to 20 or 50 characters, potentially solving the barcode size issue.
•
Using extended characters and both uppercase and lowercase letters increases the size of the data. Write a script to restrict data
to alphanumeric characters and uppercase letters.
•
If field names are included in the data, use shorter object names.
•
Use form object collections.
Delimiter must not be part of textual When you choose the delimited format for a paper forms barcode, make sure that the delimiter is not a part of your form's textual
contents. For instance, if you choose Tab as the delimiter, the contents of the form fields you are encoding cannot contain tabs
content.
because it will confuse the decoder. To avoid this confusion and to ensure that the encoder will work correctly, if the character
originally chosen to be the delimiter becomes a part of the contents, you can choose a different character (such as a pipe or a
comma) as the delimiter instead.
Do not embed data for image fields. Paper forms barcodes cannot hold enough data to embed data for images. If you have an image field object on the form, either
do not select the Embed Image Data option for the image field object or exclude the object from the barcode data. If the image
field is included in the barcode data, the barcode displays a warning that the data length cannot be calculated.
Do not rotate Paper Forms
barcodes.
Rotating a paper forms barcode will cause it to become clipped when the form is filled in Acrobat and Adobe Reader versions less
than 8.0.
Test the form before distributing it.
It is critical that you test your completed form in Adobe Reader as well as in Acrobat. Most users of these types of forms will only
have Adobe Reader installed.
Determine what version of Adobe
Reader users will utilize to fill the
form and ensure the correct right is
applied to form.
When a form that contains one or more Paper Forms Barcode objects is opened in Adobe Reader 8.1 or later, the Paper Forms
Barcode objects appear greyed-out when a user begins to fill the form, unless the 2DBarcode right has been applied to the form
using Reader Extensions.
Ensure that users fill the form
electronically
Make it clear to your users that they must fill the form electronically. If they print the form and then fill it, the paper forms barcode
cannot encode any of the user-supplied data.
Test the maximum capacity of the
paper forms barcode
You must test your forms in both Adobe Reader and in Acrobat to ensure that the capacity of each barcode is large enough to
capture all of the required data. This can be done by filling each field with realistic entries of maximum length and ensuring that
the barcode does not turn gray. You need to use Adobe Reader to test documents that have Reader Extensions barcode usage
rights applied to them.
More Help topics
“About paper forms barcodes” on page 313
“To specify a unique caption for the paper forms barcode” on page 315
“Using form object collections” on page 333
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Using password fields
If you want to control access to a form through a password, add a password field to the form. When a user types in the
password field, the characters are masked by a character that you select. If required, you can define a specific input
pattern that the user must match to gain access to the form.
After you add a password field to the form design, you can edit the caption text and manipulate the object’s properties
in the Field, Value, and Binding tabs of the Object palette. You can define these properties:
• Change the caption for the field. See “Formatting captions” on page 360.
• Set a border style for the field. See “To set the border style” on page 272.
• Define the field as visible, invisible, or hidden. See “Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362.
• Specify a locale for the list. See “To specify a locale (language and country or region) for an object” on page 272.
• Specify that Designer use the horizontal length of the text field to determine how many characters to allow in the
password field.
• Select the password display character.
• Define the edit pattern.
• Define the validation pattern.
• Specify a data-binding pattern.
• Specify a binding method for storing and retrieving bound data.
A password field can be present without forcing users to supply a password. You can define whether the password is
optional, recommended, or required, and you can set up messages to prompt users appropriately. All user input can
be validated through scripting.
More Help topics
“Formatting captions” on page 360
“Formatting field values and using patterns” on page 364
“Password patterns” on page 452
“Password field properties in the Field tab” on page 449
“Password field properties in the Value tab” on page 451
“Password field properties in the Binding tab” on page 452
“Dynamically populate a validation pattern message” on page 530
“Dynamically populate a validation script message” on page 532
To specify the password display character
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 In the Password Display Character box, type the character that will be used to hide the password value when it is
displayed at run time.
To define the behavior of the field
1 In the Object palette, click the Value tab and select one of these options from the Type list:
• To allow users to choose whether to enter data, select User Entered - Optional.
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• To prompt users to enter data and make the field recommended, select User Entered - Recommended and type
a custom message in the Empty Message box.
• To prompt users to enter data and make the field required, select User Entered - Required and type a custom
message in the Empty Message box.
2 If the value is recommended or required, type a prompt in the Empty Message box.
To define custom data-binding properties for a password field
Binding options enable you to build a form that captures data for enterprise infrastructures and/or use an external data
source to populate a form at run time. Set data-binding properties in the Binding tab of the Object palette.
1 Select the password field.
2 Enable the form to connect to the data source when the form is opened.
3 Bind the field to its corresponding data node. For information about how to bind objects to a data source, see
“Binding fields to a data source” on page 504.
To limit the characters entered in password fields
You can limit the number of characters entered in password fields by specifying that Designer use the horizontal length
of the decimal or numeric field to determine how many characters to allow.
❖ In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Limit Length to Visible Area.
Using radio buttons
Radio buttons provide a way to present users with a number of mutually exclusive choices. Users can toggle the state
of any radio button in a group between on and off. When the radio button is selected, its state is On and its value is
registered. When the radio button is cleared, its state is Off and its value is not registered. Only one radio button object
in a group can be in the On state.
You can make a radio button look like a check box by setting its appearance characteristics in the Field tab of the
Object palette. Before doing so, however, consider the expectations of users with respect to the behavior of check boxes.
Do they expect check boxes to provide multiple choices? If so, you should maintain the standard and not apply radio
button functionality to check box images.
After you add a radio button to the form design, you can edit the caption text and manipulate the object’s properties
in the Field, Value, and Binding tabs of the Object palette. You can define these properties:
• Change the caption for the radio button. See “Formatting captions” on page 360.
• Set a border style for the radio button. See “To set the border style” on page 272.
• Define the radio button as visible, invisible, or hidden. See “Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on
page 362.
• Specify a locale for the radio button. See “To specify a locale (language and country or region) for an object” on
page 272.
• Assign a value to each radio button’s On state in the exclusion group.
• Specify the style for the radio button.
• Specify the default selection for the group.
• Specify a binding method for storing and retrieving bound data.
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Radio buttons support scripting and calculations. If a user is to supply data, you can define whether the input is
recommended or required, and you can set up messages to prompt users appropriately. User input may be validated
through scripting.
An exclusion group is a group of radio buttons. Only one radio button in the exclusion group can be selected at a time.
You can work with an exclusion group as one object. Some options on the Object palette apply to all of the radio
buttons in the same exclusion group. You can move radio buttons between exclusion groups and create new exclusion
groups. If you have several radio buttons that are part of the same exclusion group, you can easily break some of the
objects out into another exclusion group.
When you add a new radio button to the form, if the last object you added to the same subform was also a radio button,
the new button will be part of the same exclusion group. If the last object you added was not a radio button, the radio
button will create a new exclusion group.
Exclusion groups automatically resize to fit all of the radio buttons within the group. If you drag a radio button to an
empty area of the page, the exclusion group will expand to contain the radio button. If you manually resize the
exclusion group, all of the contained radio buttons will be resized accordingly.
More Help topics
“Formatting captions” on page 360
“Make radio buttons accessible” on page 551
“Radio button properties in the Field tab” on page 453
“Radio button properties in the Value tab” on page 455
“Radio button properties in the Binding tab” on page 457
“Working with Data Sources” on page 494
To set the size for a radio button
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 In the Size box, type a different value (in points) and press Enter.
Depending on the size you enter, you may have to resize the radio button.
To specify the radio button style
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 Select an option in the Button Style list:
• To set the check style to the default, which is a filled circle, select Default.
• To set the button style to a check mark, select Check.
• To set the button style to a circle, select Circle.
• To set the button style to a cross, select Cross.
• To set the button style to a diamond, select Diamond.
• To set the button style to a square, select Square.
• To set the button style to a start, select Star.
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To assign On values to radio buttons
Each radio button in an exclusion group is associated with an On value that represents the selected radio button in the
form data. You can change these values, for example, to match existing values in a data source.
When you specify On values, the default values are integer values starting with “1” for the first radio button in the
exclusion group that was added to the form. If you deselect the Specify Item Values option, the On values will match
the radio button caption text.
1 Select the exclusion group or one of the radio buttons within the group.
2 In the Object palette, click the Binding tab and select Specify Item Values.
3 Double-click the first On value that you want to change.
4 Type the new On value.
5 Press Enter to change the next On value or double-click any other On value to change it.
To define custom data-binding properties for radio buttons
Binding options enable you to build a form that captures data for enterprise infrastructures and/or use an external data
source to populate a form at run time. Set data-binding properties for radio buttons in the Binding tab of the Object
palette.
1 Select the group.
2 Enable the form to connect to the data source when the form is opened.
3 Bind the exclusion group to its corresponding data node. For information about how to bind objects to a data
source, see “Binding fields to a data source” on page 504.
To create a new exclusion group
1 Select the radio buttons that you want to make part of a separate exclusion group in the Layout Editor or the
Hierarchy palette.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• Right-click one of the selected objects in the Layout Editor and select Wrap In New Radio Button Group.
• Right-click one of the selected objects in the Hierarchy palette and select Wrap In New Radio Button Group.
Note: After you add a group of radio buttons, add a different object to the page. (For example, add a text object.) Now,
any new radio buttons you add to the form design start a new exclusion group.
To move a radio button to a different exclusion group
1 Select the radio button that you want to move to a different exclusion group in the Layout Editor or the Hierarchy
palette.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To move the radio button on the form, drag the object in the Layout Editor to a position within the borders of
another exclusion group.
• To change exclusion groups without moving the button on the page, drag the radio button to another exclusion
group in the Hierarchy palette.
To move an exclusion group
1 Click the border of the exclusion group to select it.
2 Drag the group to a new position on the page. All of the radio buttons in the group will move together.
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To merge exclusion groups
1 Click the border of the exclusion groups to select them.
2 Select Layout > Merge Radio Button Groups.
To define the behavior of the exclusion group
1 In the Object palette, click the Value tab and, in the Type list, select one of these options:
• To allow users to choose whether to enter data, select User Entered - Optional.
• To prompt users to enter data and make the field recommended, select User Entered - Recommended and type
a custom message in the Empty Message box.
• To prompt users to enter data and make the field required, select User Entered - Required and type a custom
message in the Empty Message box.
• To make the field read only and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - Read Only. Users cannot edit the calculated value.
• To make the field editable and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - User Can Override. Users can edit the value if the calculation script has been written to accept
the input. If a user does edit the calculated value, the custom message you specify in the Override Message box
appears.
• To make the field read only and display a data value that is merged or calculated and displayed at run time, select
Read Only. Users cannot edit the value.
2 If the value is recommended or required, type a prompt in the Empty Message box.
3 If the value will be calculated, attach the calculation script to the object by using the Script Editor.
4 (Optional) If a calculated value can be overridden, type a message in the Override Message box.
To specify the default selection for the exclusion group
1 In the Object palette, click the Value tab.
2 In the Default list, select the value that identifies the radio button that you want to set to the On state.
Note: The Default list is available only when the Type option is set to User Entered or Read Only. The value of a radio
button’s On state can be changed in the Binding tab.
Using signature fields
If you want to authenticate the identity of a user and the document's content, add a signature field to the form. A digital
signature stores information about the signing party and the state of the document when it is signed. Adobe signatures
support the Public Key Cryptography Standard (PKCS) #7, using the RSA MD5, RSA SHA-1, or DSA SHA-1 hash
algorithm.
You can specify whether a signature covers an entire form or a collection of objects in a form. If you want the signature
to apply to a collection of objects, the signing party must use Acrobat or Adobe Reader version 8.0 or later.
If the signature covers a collection of objects, the fields are locked and cannot be modified after the document is signed.
The lock is inherited. For example, when a subform is locked, all the objects in the subform inherit the lock.
To sign the form, the user clicks the signature field. For more information about signing PDF forms in Acrobat, see
Acrobat Help.
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The signature field does not generate a digital signature directly. It invokes a third-party signature handler through
scripting, and the signature handler provides the required digital signature functionality. Users cannot sign forms
without an appropriate signature handler.
If required, you can change the signature field name in the Hierarchy palette after you add the object to the form
design.
After you add a signature field to the form design, you can define the signature properties in the Signature tab of the
Object palette. You can define whether the signature covers the entire form or a collection of field objects and specify
default signature properties.
You can edit the caption text and manipulate the object’s properties in the Field tab of the Object palette. You can
define these properties:
• Change the caption for the field. See “Formatting captions” on page 360.
• Set a border style for the field. See “To set the border style” on page 272.
• Define the field as visible, invisible, or hidden. See “Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362.
• Specify a locale for the field. See “To specify a locale (language and country or region) for an object” on page 272
More Help topics
“Formatting captions” on page 360
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
“Border properties in the Border palette” on page 385
“Drop-down list” on page 418
“Using digital signatures” on page 561
Using text
Text objects present read-only text that users cannot edit. You can use text objects to do these tasks:
• Label an area in the form
• Provide instructions for filling out the form
• Include a header and footer
After you add a text object to the form design, you can define these properties:
• Define the text as visible, invisible, or hidden. See “Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362.
• Specify a locale for the text. “To specify a locale (language and country or region) for an object” on page 272.
• Type and style the text.
• Allow page breaks within the content of the field.
• Keep a text object with the next object in the document when a page break is introduced.
• Apply font properties to all of the text or selected portions of the text.
In addition, you can insert placeholders, such as floating text fields, and the values of run-time properties, such as page
count, current page, and current date/time, into text objects.
The text object has the Make Fixed-Sized Text Objects Auto-fit While Editing option (Tools > Options > Workspace)
selected by default. Therefore, the object automatically resizes at design time to accommodate the text you enter and
the property settings you change, such as margins, borders, and font type and size.
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To type characters into a text object
You can type characters into the object after you add the object to the form.
By default, the Make Fixed-Size Text Objects Auto-Fit While Editing option on the Workspace panel of the Tools >
Options dialog is selected. This option allows the width and height of text objects to expand as you type characters. To
expand only either the width or height of a text object, deselect Make Fixed-Size Text Objects Auto-Fit While Editing
and then select the appropriate Expand To Fit option on the Layout palette.
1 Select Edit and ensure that the Lock Text and Lock Static Objects commands are not selected.
2 Double-click the text object and type the characters you want to add.
To insert a floating text field into a text object
You can embed a floating text field in a text object. Floating text fields support the merging of different text values
within text objects. For example, you could embed a floating text field to generate a customer name in the salutation
of a form letter.
A floating text field does not have a caption and can be edited as if it were a single character of text. The properties of
the floating text field must be defined separately in addition to the properties of the text object.
Note: When merging floating fields with data, keep in mind that floating fields cannot span pages.
1 In the text object, place the cursor where you want the floating text field to be merged.
2 Select Insert > Floating Field.
3 Select the floating text field and edit its properties.
To insert the value of a run-time property into a text object
You can insert the values of run-time properties into a text object. When the form is viewed, the actual value is inserted
automatically.
The inserted value can have a different font, font size, and font style than the text object.
1 In the text object, place the cursor where you want the value of the run-time property to be merged.
2 Select Insert > [run-time property value].
• To insert the current page number of the finished form, select Current Page Number.
• To insert the total number of pages making up the finished, select Number of Pages.
• To insert the current date/time, select Current Date/Time.
• To insert the value of the locale setting for the application processing the form, select Viewer Locale.
• To insert the name of the application processing the form, select Viewer Name.
• To insert the version number of the application processing the form, select Viewer Version.
3 Select the run-time property value and edit its properties.
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To merge text objects
When you import a PDF file into Designer, depending on the import options you choose, title and instruction text may
be broken up into multiple text objects. This import behavior makes the text difficult to edit because individual words
or individual letters may be broken into separate text objects. If you need to edit the text, you can merge text objects
together to make the text easier to update.
1 Select the text objects that you want to merge.
If you also select an object of a different type, it will not be included in the merged object.
2 Select Layout > Merge Selected Text Objects.
All selected text objects combine into a single object.
To create a caption by merging a text object and a field object
You can create a caption for a field object that does not have a caption by merging it with a text object.
For example, if you have a text object above a text field whose caption is set to none, you can merge the two objects to
create one field. The text from the text object becomes the caption for the text field.
Before Merging: A. Text object B. Text field
After Merging: Text object
Before you perform this task, you must ensure the following settings are in effect:
• Ensure you have one text object.
• Ensure you have one field object whose caption is set to none in the Layout palette or the caption is empty.
The field object can be one of the following objects:
• Check Box
• Date/Time Field
• Decimal Field
• Signature Field
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• Drop-down List
• Image Field
• List Box
• Numeric Field
• Password Field
• Radio Button
• Text Field
You can merge only one text object to one field object.
1 Select the text object that you want to become the caption for the field object.
2 Ctrl+click or Shift+click to select the field object that you want to merge with the text object.
The field object must have its caption set to none in the Layout palette or the caption must be empty.
3 Select Layout > Merge as Caption.
The new object’s caption becomes the text from the text object. The new object's size and position matches the total
boundaries of the merged objects.
You may have to edit the font of the caption and the value after you merge the objects.
To insert language-specific numbers in text or captions
Most regions of the world use a numbering system that is often called Roman or European (1, 2, 3, ...). However, the
numbering system in Arabic is different; it is derived from Hindi or Indic numbers.
Although Arabic letters are written from right-to-left, numbers in Arabic are written from left-to-right. This
numbering system is often called Arabic-Indic.
You can insert language-specific numbers in text or captions if your locale, such as Arabic (Egypt), supports it. The
following locales support this feature:
• Arabic (all except Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia)
• Thai (Thailand Traditional)
The options described in this Help topic are available only if support for the appropriate language is enabled through
Microsoft Office Language Settings.
1 Select the text.
2 Right-click and ensure the language-specific Use Digits command is selected.
If this menu item is not there, ensure the locale set for this object supports this feature.
3 Type the numbers.
This example is of a caption that shows three types of language-specific numbers.
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A. Arabic (Egypt) B. English (USA) C. Thai (Thailand Traditional)
To allow page breaks within a text object
The Allow Page Break Within Content option is enabled for a text object if the parent subform allows page breaks. This
option is deselected by default.
Here are a few things to consider when allowing page breaks within a text object:
• The Allow Page Break Within Content option is enabled for a text object only when the parent object allows page
breaks.
• Page breaks are not supported in rotated text objects.
• The Allow Page Breaks Within Content option is disabled for floating fields. Instead, select the Allow Page Break
Within Content option for the text object referencing the floating field.
• A page break is not allowed when an object that can accept a page break is positioned beside an object that cannot.
• When the Make Fixed-Size Text Objects Auto-Fit While Editing option (in Tools > Options > Workspace) or the
Expand to Fit options (in the Layout palette) are deselected, the boilerplate text does not expand at design time,
which means that page breaks are prevented.
To allow page breaks within a text object
❖ In the Object palette, click the Draw tab and select Allow Page Breaks Within Content.
To keep a text object with the next object in the form
The Keep with Next option is enabled for a text field if the parent object allows page breaks and is a flowed container.
The Keep With Next option is disabled for floating fields. Instead, select the Keep With Next option for the text object
referencing the floating field.
❖ In the Object palette, click the Draw tab and select Keep With Next.
More Help topics
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
“Border properties in the Border palette” on page 385
“Font properties in the Font palette” on page 386
“Paragraph properties in the Paragraph palette” on page 386
“Text properties in the Draw tab” on page 486
“To make objects expand to fit” on page 346
“Using date/time fields” on page 297
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“Using text fields” on page 330
“Formatting captions” on page 360
Using text fields
If you want to provide users with a way to enter textual data, add text fields to the form. Text fields enable users to type,
select, edit, cut, copy, paste, and delete any of the text inside the field.
Text fields can accept one or more lines of wrapping text and support enhanced formatting capabilities. For example,
text fields can display blocks of text in different typefaces and colors. Text can be stored and retrieved as plain text or
XHTML. If required, the data in a text field can be formatted and displayed according to predefined patterns.
After you add a text field to the form design, you can edit the caption text and manipulate the object’s properties in the
Field, Value, and Binding tabs of the Object palette. You can define these properties:
• Change the caption for the field. (See “Formatting captions” on page 360.)
• Set a border style for the field. (See “To set the border style” on page 272.)
• Define the field as visible, invisible, or hidden. (See “Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden” on page 362.)
• Specify a locale for the field. (See “To specify a locale (language and country or region) for an object” on page 272.)
• Specify the comb format for the field.
• Enable or disable multiple lines of text.
• Enable or disable the field to be filled with rich-formatted text.
• Limit the number of characters in the field.
• Allow page breaks within the content of the field.
• Keep a text field object with the next object in the document when a page break is introduced.
• Define the display pattern.
• Define the edit pattern.
• Specify an initial value to display.
• Define a run-time property (for example, insert the page number).
• Define the validation pattern.
• Choose whether the field will support plain text or XHTML.
• Specify a data-binding pattern.
• Specify a binding method for storing and retrieving bound data.
Text fields support scripting and calculations. If a user is to supply data, you can define whether the input is
recommended or required, and you can set up messages to prompt users appropriately. All user input may be validated
through scripting.
More Help topics
“Formatting captions” on page 360
“To lock objects” on page 341
“Formatting field values and using patterns” on page 364
“Text field patterns” on page 491
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“Text field properties in the Field tab” on page 487
“Text field properties in the Value tab” on page 489
“Text field properties in the Binding tab” on page 491
“To specify a default value” on page 366
“Dynamically populate a validation pattern message” on page 530
“Dynamically populate a validation script message” on page 532
To allow multiple lines of text in text fields
❖ In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Allow Multiple Lines.
To limit the number of characters in text fields
You can limit the number of characters in text fields in one of two ways:
• You can specify the maximum number of characters allowed.
• You can specify that Designer use the horizontal length of the text field to determine how many characters to allow.
To specify the number of characters in text fields
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 Select the Limit Length and, in the Max Chars box, type the maximum number of characters that users will be
permitted to enter into the text field.
To limit the number of characters to the width of text fields
❖ In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Limit Length to Visible Area.
Allowing page breaks within a text field
The Allow Page Break Within Content option is enabled by default for a text field if the parent subform allows page
breaks.
Here are a few things to consider when allowing page breaks within a text field:
• The Allow Page Break Within Content option is available only if the parent object allows page breaks.
• The caption text of a text field object will not break between pages when Top or Bottom is selected for the position
for the caption in the Field tab of the Object palette.
• Page breaks are not supported in rotated text field objects.
• A page break is not allowed when an object that can accept a page break is positioned beside an object that cannot.
To allow page breaks within a text field
❖ In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Allow Page Breaks Within Content.
To keep a text field with the next object in the form
The Keep with Next option is enabled for a text field if the parent object allows page breaks and is a flowed container.
The Keep With Next option is disabled for floating fields. Instead, select the Keep With Next option of the text field
object referencing the floating field.
❖ In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Keep With Next.
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To enable the field to be filled with rich-formatted text
By default, a text field is set to display and capture plain text. In this case, if the data value associated with the text field
includes text formatting information, the formatting is ignored and the data value is displayed as plain text. You can
set it so that any rich-text formatting of the data is preserved.
❖ In the Object palette, click the Field tab and select Rich Text from the Field Format list.
To define the behavior of the field
1 In the Object palette, click the Value tab and, in the Type list, select one of these options:
• To allow users to choose whether to enter data, select User Entered - Optional.
• To prompt users to enter data and make the field recommended, select User Entered - Recommended and type
a custom message in the Empty Message box.
• To prompt users to enter data and make the field required, select User Entered - Required and type a custom
message in the Empty Message box.
• To make the field read only and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - Read Only. Users cannot edit the calculated value.
• To make the field editable and display a data value that is calculated and displayed through an attached script,
select Calculated - User Can Override. Users can edit the value if the calculation script has been written to accept
the input. If a user does edit the calculated value, the custom message you specify in the Override Message box
appears.
• To make the field read only and display a data value that is merged or calculated and displayed at run time, select
Read Only. Users cannot edit the value.
2 If the value is recommended or required, type a prompt in the Empty Message box.
3 If the value will be calculated, attach the calculation script to the object by using the Script Editor.
4 (Optional) If a calculated value can be overridden, type a message in the Override Message box.
To define custom data-binding properties for text fields
Binding options enable you to build a form that captures data for enterprise infrastructures and/or use an external data
source to populate a form at run time. Set data-binding properties in the Binding tab of the Object palette.
1 Select the text field.
2 Enable the form to connect to the data source when the form is opened.
3 Bind the field to its corresponding data node. For information about how to bind objects to a data source, see
“Binding fields to a data source” on page 504.
To specify the data format for text fields
Text fields can save data in plain text only or with XHTML text formatting information included as part of the value.
The default is plain text. If you change the data format to XHTML, the Rich Text option in the Field Format list in the
Field tab of the Object palette is automatically selected.
1 Select the text field object.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 Select the appropriate format from the Field Format list.
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To specify the comb format for text fields
Use the comb format when you want to separate characters and numbers added to text fields by border lines.
1 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
2 Select Comb of Characters to includes border lines that separate each character within the text field.
3 Enter the number of characters that will be separated by border lines within the text field.
Using form object collections
You can select only the required objects to be covered by a signature field or encoded in a paper forms barcode, and
save them as a collection.
A collection applies to either signature fields or to paper forms barcodes, but not to both, because the objects are
represented differently. The collections that are available for signature fields appear in the Signature tab in the Object
palette. The collections that are available for paper forms barcodes appear in the Value tab in the Object palette.
More Help topics
“Using digital signatures” on page 561
“About paper forms barcodes” on page 313
“To add a signature field” on page 562
“Signature field properties in the Signature tab” on page 460
“Design tips for using a paper forms barcode” on page 318
“Paper forms barcode properties in the Value tab” on page 447
“Collection Editor dialog box” on page 641
“Collection List dialog box” on page 641
“Signature field properties in the Field tab” on page 459
To create a form object collection
You can create a collection for signature fields or for paper forms barcodes. You can create one or many collections
and select the one you want to use for a particular signature field or paper forms barcode.
Note: If you add a List Box object with the Allow Multiple Selection option selected on the Field tab to a paper forms
barcode collection, you must also select the Enforce Strict Scoping Rules in JavaScript option on the Defaults tab in the
Form Properties dialog. Otherwise, any values that a form filler selects in the List Box object may not encode properly in
the paper forms barcode.
1 Select File > Form Object Collections.
2 Click New and type a name for the collection in the box.
3 Click Modify and select the appropriate option from the Collection Type List. The list displays the available objects
for the selected collection type.
4 Select the objects to include in the collection. To hide unsupported objects for the type of collection, select Hide
Unsupported Nodes.
5 Click OK.
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To copy a form object collection
1 Select File > Form Object Collections.
2 Select a collection from the list and click Duplicate.
3 Double-click the collection and type a name.
4 To specify the position of the collection, click Move Up or Move Down.
To rename a form object collection
1 Select File > Form Object Collections.
2 Double-click the collection in the list and type the new name.
To modify a form object collection
1 Choose one of these methods:
• Select File > Form Object Collections and go to step 3.
• Select a signature field or paper forms barcode object on the page.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To modify a collection for a paper forms barcode, in the Object palette, click the Value tab.
• To modify a collection for a signature field, in the Object palette, click the Signature tab.
3 In the Collection list, select New/Manage Collection.
4 Select the collection that you want to modify and click Modify.
5 Select the appropriate option from the Collection Type List.
6 Select the objects to remove or include in the collection. To hide unsupported objects for the type of collection,
select Hide Unsupported Nodes.
7 Click OK.
8 To specify the position of the collection, click Move Up or Move Down.
To delete a form object collection
1 Select File > Form Object Collections.
2 Select a collection from the list, click Delete, and then click Yes.
Using custom objects
In addition to the objects in the Standard category of the Object Library palette, Designer includes some predefined
custom objects, which are configured to provide functionality that form authors frequently need in a form solution.
These custom objects have properties and scripts that you can adjust to suit your requirements.
The following predefined custom objects are located in the Custom category of the Object Library palette.
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Object
Description
Address Block
Accepts and displays addresses in United States Postal Service format. The Address Block is a group of text fields that
lets users enter their name, address, city, state, zip code, and country.
Designed for any type of form.
Process Fields
A block of objects designed for Process Management forms. It includes a submit button, an action drop-down list,
and other hidden fields used to transport data needed by Process Management to route the form data correctly.
Countries
Displays a drop-down list populated with country names. You can add, move, and delete any country from the list
Designed for interactive forms.
Current Date
A date/time field with a script that displays the current date according to the viewer’s system locale.
Designed for any type of form.
Data Drop-down List
A drop-down list with a script that populates the list from an OLEDB data source.
Designed for interactive forms.
Data List Box
A list box with a script that populates the list from an OLEDB data source.
Designed for interactive forms.
Email Address
A text field that captures and validates an email address.
Designed for interactive forms.
Form Bridge
A hidden object that enables communication to the PDF outside of Acrobat.
Name
A group of text objects that accepts and displays name information. End users can enter their last name, first name
and initial.
For any type of form.
Page n of m
A text field with a script that displays the current page and total page count of the form at run time.
Example: Page 1 of 30
For any type of form.
Page Navigation
A group of buttons with scripts to navigate to first, last, previous, and next pages.
Designed for interactive forms.
Phone Number - UK
A text field that formats input as a United Kingdom (UK) telephone number.
Designed for interactive forms.
Phone Number - North America
A text field that formats input as a North American telephone number.
Designed for interactive forms.
Sheet n of m
Displays a text object that indicates the value of the current piece of paper (sheet) within the range of sheets
required for a form.
Example: Sheet 1 of 5
For any type of form.
Signature - Print and Sign
Displays a space on a printed form where a user can provide a signature.
Designed for print forms.
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Object
Description
Survey Question
A text object for a survey question and a group of radio buttons for selecting the answer.
Designed for interactive forms.
U.S. Social Security Number
A text field that lets a user enter a United States social security number.
Designed for interactive forms.
U.S. States
Displays a drop-down list populated with U.S. state names. You can add, move, and delete any state from the list.
Designed for interactive forms.
Most of the custom objects are ready-to-use, requiring only minor changes such as changing the captions, formatting
numbers, or changing the font type to meet your requirements. Simply drag the custom objects onto the form design
and make the changes. When you place a custom object on the form design, notice that it also appears in the Hierarchy
palette. For custom objects that consist of several standard objects formatted in a particular manner and grouped
together, such as the address block custom object, you will see the individual text field objects (Name, Address, City,
State, Zip Code, Country) in the Hierarchy palette.
Two of the custom objects, the data drop-down list and the data list box, consist of a single object that has a custom
script associated with it. That script enables you to populate two columns with data from an OLEDB data connection.
When you place the object on the form design, you can see the script in the Script Editor. The script includes comments
that explain which modifications are needed to make the script compatible with your particular run-time
environment. For more information, see “Dynamically populate a drop-down list or list box from an OLEDB data
connection” on page 528.
The Process Fields object is a special object that is designed strictly for use with Adobe® LiveCycle® Process
Management 11.
More Help topics
“To add objects to a form design” on page 337
“Object Library palette” on page 15
“Managing library palettes” on page 21
“Objects that support scripting and calculations” on page 272
“Objects that support scripting and calculations” on page 272
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
“Border properties in the Border palette” on page 385
“Font properties in the Font palette” on page 386
“Paragraph properties in the Paragraph palette” on page 386
To create a custom object
To create a custom object
Designer enables you to create your own custom objects that you can save and reuse. Creating a custom object involves
adding one or more objects from the Standard tab to the form design and then defining the properties of the objects
to suit your requirements.
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You can save the object in the Custom category of the Object Library palette, or you can create your own category in
the Object Library palette and save the object there. Creating your own Object Library categories is a good way to
organize the custom objects that you create and keep them separate from the predefined custom objects provided with
Designer. For information about creating your own categories, see “To add a category to the Object Library palette”
on page 21.
1 In the Object Library palette, drag the object that you want to customize onto the form design.
2 Define the properties of the object.
3 In the Object Library palette, click the Custom category.
4 Drag your object to the Custom category in the Object Library palette.
5 In the Add Library Object dialog box, type a name and description for the custom object, and click OK.
Note: Multiple objects can be saved as a single custom object. When you drag multiple objects to the Custom tab together,
a single object is created in the Custom tab.
Adding, copying, and deleting objects
To add objects to a form design
You can add objects to a form design in several ways. After you add an object, you can define the object’s properties.
To add an object using the Insert menu
❖ Do one of the following actions:
• Select Insert > Standard > [object].
• Select Insert > Barcodes > [object].
• Select Insert > Custom > [object].
To add an object from the Object Library palette
❖ Do one of the following actions:
• Drag the object onto the form design.
• Double-click the object.
• Click the object and drag in the form design to draw the object.
To add several objects of the same type
❖ Do one of the following actions:
• In the Object Library palette, click the object and then select View > Keep Drawing. You can use the Keep
Drawing command for any object. To disable this feature, select View > Keep Drawing again or press Escape.
• Click the Draw Fields button in the Tools toolbar and then select the object from the drop-down list. The Draw
Fields button is only available for those objects in the drop-down list. To disable this feature, click the Select Tool
or the Hand Tool button in the Tools toolbar.
When these commands are selected, you can insert as many copies of an object as you require without selecting the
object from the Object Library palette each time.
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To cut, copy, and paste objects
You can cut, copy, and paste objects by using the menu or keyboard shortcuts.
Duplicating an object is the equivalent of copying and pasting an object. By default, the duplicate is placed just below
and to the right of the original. If you drag the duplicate to a new position and then duplicate it, the next duplicate and
any subsequent duplicates are placed the same distance and direction away from the last duplicate. You can make as
many duplicates as will fit in the active content area.
To cut or copy and paste an object
1 Select one or more objects.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To cut an object, select Edit > Cut.
• To copy an object, select Edit > Copy.
3 Select Edit > Paste.
If the pointer is on a page, the object is pasted beneath the pointer. Otherwise, the object is pasted in the upper left
corner of the active content area.
To copy a group of objects
1 In the Hierarchy palette, select the group node.
2 Select Edit > Copy.
To make multiple copies of one or more objects
1 In the form design or in the Hierarchy palette, select one or more objects.
2 Select Edit > Copy Multiple.
3 Type a number in the Number Of Copies box. You can make as many copies as will fit in the active content area.
4 Select options for Vertical Placement and Horizontal Placement.
5 To increase the amount of vertical space between the copied and original objects, in the Vertical Spacing area, select
Offset By and type the distance in the adjacent box.
6 To increase the amount of horizontal space between the copied and original objects, in the Horizontal Spacing area,
select Offset By and type the distance in the adjacent box.
7 Click OK. The copies are added to the page and all of the objects, both original and copied, are selected.
To duplicate objects
1 Select one or more objects.
2 Select Edit > Duplicate.
To duplicate an object by dragging it
1 Drag the object to the spot where you want to place the duplicate.
2 Press Ctrl and release the mouse button.
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To delete objects
You can delete any selected object.
1 Select one or more objects.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• Select Edit > Delete.
• Press Delete.
Selecting, grouping, and moving objects
More Help topics
“Keys for selecting text” on page 608
“Keys for manipulating objects” on page 612
“Using subforms” on page 225
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
To select objects
You can select an object by using familiar mouse and keyboard methods:
• To select a single object, click the Select Tool
button in the toolbar and click the object.
• To select multiple objects, Ctrl+click each of the objects you want to select or lasso (drag the pointer over) the
objects you want to select.
• To select all objects, select Edit > Select All.
• To select all static objects, select Edit > Select All Static Objects.
• To select all fields, select Edit > Select All Fields.
To select objects using the Hierarchy palette
The Hierarchy palette assists with the selection and manipulation of objects.
When you select an object in the Hierarchy palette, the object is selected in the form simultaneously. However, when
you make a selection in the Hierarchy palette, all keystrokes (for example, F2 or Shift+click) are directed to the
Hierarchy palette until you work in the form again.
• To display the Hierarchy palette, select Window > Hierarchy.
• To select a single object in the Hierarchy palette, click the object.
• To select multiple adjacent objects in the Hierarchy palette, click the first object and then Shift+click the last object.
• To select multiple non-adjacent objects in the Hierarchy palette, Ctrl+click each of the objects.
• To select a group of objects in the Hierarchy palette, click the group node.
Note: If you select an item in the Hierarchy palette and click the Design View tab, the object is selected on the form design,
and you can also use the keyboard to manipulate the selected object.
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To group and ungroup objects
You can group and ungroup objects by using the Layout menu, the Hierarchy palette, or the Layout toolbar:
• To group objects, in the form design or Hierarchy palette, select the objects you want to group and then either select
Layout > Group or click Group
.
• To ungroup objects, in the form design or Hierarchy palette, select the group of objects you want to ungroup and
then either select Layout > Ungroup or click Ungroup
.
• To add a new object to a group by using the mouse, in the form design, drag the object to the group.
• To add a new object to a group by using the Hierarchy palette, drag the object to an existing group node.
To move objects
You can move objects by dragging them with the mouse, using the arrow keys on the keyboard, or entering precise
values in the Layout palette.
To move or duplicate objects by pasting
1 Select one or more objects.
2 Select Edit > Cut to move the selection or Edit > Copy to duplicate the selection.
3 (Optional) To paste an object into another file, open the file.
4 Select Edit > Paste to paste the object into the active window.
To move an object by dragging it
1 Select one or more objects.
2 Drag the object to a new location.
To move an object by using the arrow keys
1 Select one or more objects.
2 Press the arrow key for the direction in which you want to move the object. The default distance is 1 point (1/72 of
an inch, or .3528 millimeter).
3 To move the object 10 points at once, press Shift+arrow.
To move objects by using x and y coordinates in the Layout palette
1 Select one or more objects.
2 In the Layout palette, enter new values in either the X or the Y box, or both.
To stack objects
Designer stacks successively drawn objects, beginning with the first object drawn. How objects are stacked determines
how they appear when they overlap. You can change the stacking order of objects in your form design at any time by
using the arrange commands in the Layout menu.
1 Select the object.
2 Use one of these methods:
• To bring the object forward, select Layout > Bring Forward, or click Bring Forward
.
• To bring the object to the front, select Layout > Bring To Front, or click Bring To Front
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• To send an object backward, select Layout > Send Backward, or click Send Backward
• To send an object to the back, select Layout > Send To Back, or click Send To Back
.
.
To lock objects
Locking the objects in a form design prevents you from selecting, moving, and editing the objects in the Layout Editor.
You can lock the following parts of your form design:
Text Includes text in a text object or text in the captions of objects. When you select Lock Text, you must double-click
the appropriate text or caption to edit it. This makes it not as easy to modify the text. If Lock Text is not enabled, you
click in the caption or text object to start editing the text. Using Lock Text is particularly useful if you want to select
and move objects but not make any changes to the text. You can single-click the object to select it, but you must doubleclick the caption or text to make changes.
Static objects Includes text, circles, lines, and rectangles.
Field objects Includes buttons, check boxes, date/time fields, decimal fields, signature fields, drop-down lists, image
fields, list boxes, numeric fields, paper forms barcodes, password fields, radio buttons, and text fields.
After locking static objects and field objects, you must unlock them to add new static objects and field objects.
The lock commands are useful in situations when you have finished formatting specific objects in the form design and
want to continue working with other types of objects. For example, your form includes a large number of text field
objects, as well as text objects that provide instructions about filling the form. You have positioned and formatted all
the text objects and need to apply a different font to the text field objects. You can easily do this by locking the text
objects and then using Edit > Select All Fields to select all the text field objects at once and then change the font.
• To lock text, select Edit > Lock Text. To unlock text, select Edit > Lock Text.
• To lock static objects, select Edit > Lock Static Objects. To unlock static objects, select Edit > Lock Static Objects.
• To lock fields, select Edit > Lock Fields. To unlock fields, select Edit > Lock Fields.
To manipulate objects in a form design by selecting them in the Hierarchy
palette
If you have multiple overlaid objects in a form design, you can use the Hierarchy palette to select and manipulate an
object. This may be easier than selecting the object directly on the form design.
1 In the Hierarchy palette, click the object you want to manipulate. The object will be selected in the Hierarchy palette
and on the form design.
2 Click the Design View tab.
3 Use the keyboard to manipulate the object on the form design. For example, to nudge an object 2 points, press the
arrow key twice for the direction you want to move the object. The object on the form design will move in the
required direction.
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Aligning and sizing objects
To align objects to each other
When you align objects to each other, the last object you select determines the point of alignment. For example, if you
Shift+click several objects to left align them, the objects are aligned to the left edge of the object that you selected last.
In a group of selected objects, the last object selected has solid resizing handles.
More Help topics
“To align objects to a grid” on page 342
“To center objects on the page” on page 343
“To distribute objects” on page 343
“Keys for manipulating objects” on page 612
To align the edges of objects
1 Select the objects that you want to align.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To align the left edges of the objects, select Layout > Align > Left or click Align Left
.
• To align the right edges of the objects, select Layout > Align > Right or click Align Right
• To align the tops of objects, select Layout > Align > Top or click Align Top
.
.
• To align the bottoms of objects, select Layout > Align > Bottom or click Align Bottom
.
To align the vertical centers of objects
1 Select the objects that you want to align.
2 Select Layout > Align > Vertical Center or click Align Vertical Center
.
To align the horizontal centers of objects
1 Select the objects that you want to align.
2 Select Layout > Align > Horizontal Center or click Align Horizontal Center
.
To align objects in subforms that flow content
You can align objects, except table rows and table cells, in subforms that flow content.
1 Select the objects that you want to align.
2 In the Layout palette, select one of the one of the alignment buttons under Content Alignment in a Flowed
Container.
To align objects to a grid
You can align objects to the closest grid increment. The grid settings can be adjusted in the Drawing Aids palette.
1 Select the objects that you want to align.
2 Select Layout > Align > To Grid.
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More Help topics
“Using Snap to Grid” on page 347
“Keys for manipulating objects” on page 612
“Drawing Aids palette” on page 16
To center objects on the page
You can position an object in the horizontal or vertical center of the page. The center is based on the defined page size.
1 Select the objects that you want to center.
2 Select Layout > Center In Page > Horizontally, or Layout > Center In Page > Vertically.
More Help topics
“To align objects to a grid” on page 342
“To align objects to each other” on page 342
“To distribute objects” on page 343
To rotate objects
You can rotate an object around its anchor point in a 90°, 180°, or 270° increment. The anchor point is defined by the
X and Y coordinates of an object and provides a starting place for rotating the object.
1 Select the object.
2 In the Layout palette, select the position of the anchor point relative to the perimeter of the object from the Anchor
list.
3 Click one of the rotation buttons
.
More Help topics
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
To distribute objects
Distributing objects spaces them evenly within the area bounded by the current selection. The selected objects can be
spaced evenly across or down, or arranged in rows and columns. When you distribute objects in the current selection
area, the objects are spaced evenly between the leftmost and rightmost edges of the objects in the selection area.
Before distribution, the amount of space between each object differs.
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After distribution, the amount of space between each object is the same.
When you distribute a number of objects in rows and columns, the objects closest to the outer edges of the selection
area determine the positions of the leftmost and rightmost columns and the top and bottom rows.
Before distribution, the objects are not positioned in columns and rows
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After distribution, the objects are positionedin columns and rows
For complex layouts, distributing a single row or column at a time provides more control than distributing all of the
objects in rows and columns at once. For the best results, you could try distributing the leftmost column first, followed
by the topmost row. Afterward, select and left align each row with the leftmost column.
1 Select the objects that you want to distribute.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To distribute the objects evenly across the current selection area, select Layout > Distribute > Across or click
.
Distribute Evenly Across
• To distribute the objects evenly down the current selection area, select Layout > Distribute > Down or click
Distribute Evenly Down
.
• To distribute the objects in rows and columns, select Layout > Distribute > In Rows & Columns or click
Distribute Evenly In Rows And Columns
.
More Help topics
“To align objects to each other” on page 342
“To align objects to a grid” on page 342
“To center objects on the page” on page 343
“Keys for manipulating objects” on page 612
To resize objects
You can change the size of an object or a group of objects by using the mouse. When you resize more than one object
at a time, the objects are resized proportionally. To change the size of several objects by different amounts, you select
and change the size of each object individually.
You can also change the size of an object by editing the settings in the Layout palette.
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Note: You can only resize an image field if its Sizing option (located in the Field tab of the Object palette) is set to an
option other than Use Image Size.
1 Select each object that you want to resize.
2 Position the pointer over one of the selection handles, and when the pointer becomes a double-headed arrow, do
one of the following steps:
• To make the object larger, drag the handle away from the selection.
• To make the object smaller, drag the handle toward the middle of the selection.
As you drag the handle, the status bar displays the size of the object.
More Help topics
“To make objects the same size” on page 346
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
To make objects the same size
You can make two or more objects the same width, height, or both. The dimensions of the last object you select
determine which width or height are used. For example, if you Shift+click several objects to make the same width, the
objects are resized to match the width of the object that you selected last. In a group of selected objects, the last object
has solid resizing handles.
Note: You can only resize an image field if its Sizing option (located in the Field tab of the Object palette) is set to an
option other than Use Image Size.
1 Select the objects that you want to make the same size.
2 Select Layout > Make Same Size > [dimension].
More Help topics
“To align objects to each other” on page 342
“To resize objects” on page 345
To make objects expand to fit
When data is merged, objects can grow in both width and height from the anchor point. Because any expansion of the object
occurs in the opposite direction from the anchor point, the anchor point may restrict the direction in which an object may
grow. For example, if you choose an anchor point of Top Middle, the object may grow to the left, right, and down.
Important: The Expand To Fit option should not be selected for Acrobat 6-compatible forms. Users cannot edit the data
in expandable fields in Acrobat 6 compatible forms. Instead, you should position and size fields to accommodate the
longest possible user-entered data value.
To manually expand objects, you can also select the Show Text Overflow Indicators option on the Wizards and Tips
panel in the Options dialog box. See “Wizards and Tips (Options dialog box)” on page 676.
1 Select the object.
2 In the Layout palette, select the Expand To Fit option for the width, height, or both.
More Help topics
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
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To position objects
You can specify the precise position of an object using the X and Y coordinates in the Layout palette. The X coordinate
defines the horizontal position of the object relative to the left edge of the subform. The Y coordinate defines the
vertical position of the object relative to the top edge of the subform. The overall size of an object includes the caption
(if any) and the associated fillable area.
1 Select the object.
2 From the Layout palette menu, select either of these options:
• Absolute Coordinates
• Relative Coordinates
3 In the Layout palette, specify the X and Y coordinates of the object.
More Help topics
“Using Snap to Grid” on page 347
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
Using Snap to Grid
You can use the Snap to Grid option to automatically snap objects that you place on the form design to the nearest
point on the grid. The Snap to Grid option is available in the Drawing Aids palette and from the View menu.
When you move an object, Snap to Grid ensures that the X and Y coordinates of the object's anchor point are evenly
divisible by the grid unit. If an object's width or height is not evenly divisible by the current grid unit, you cannot
position the object beyond that last grid point where it will not exceed the extent of the page content area.
If you want to position an object tightly against the right or bottom edge of a page, keep the following points in mind:
• If Snap to Grid is selected, the only way to position an object tightly against the right or bottom edge of the page is
to ensure that its width and height are evenly divisible by the grid unit. The simplest way to achieve this is to resize
the object by dragging the bottom-left corner while Snap to Grid is selected. Snap to Grid will restrict the size of the
object to even multiples of the grid unit.
• If Snap to Grid is not selected, you can manually position the object as close as possible to the right and bottom edge
of the page.
More Help topics
“To align objects to a grid” on page 342
“Drawing Aids palette” on page 16
Using to Snap to Guideline
Use the Snap to Guideline option to automatically place objects on guidelines you define. The Snap to Guideline
option is available in the Drawing Aids palette and from the View menu. Use the Drawing Aids palette to add or delete
guidelines.
When Snap to Guideline is enabled, an object that you move to within one grid space of a guideline snaps to the
guideline automatically. If additional snapping options are enabled, the object must be closer to the guideline before
it snaps to the guideline.
When you select multiple objects, the objects are treated as one object for snapping.
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More Help topics
“Drawing Aids palette” on page 16
“To use the drawing aids” on page 19
Using Snap to Object
Use the Snap to Object option to automatically position the edge of an object using the edge of another object. The
Snap to Object option is available in the Drawing Aids palette and from the View menu.
When Snap to Object is enabled, an object that you move to within one grid space of another object snaps to the other
object automatically. If additional snapping options are enabled, the objects must be closer to each other before the
object you are moving snaps.
Snap to Object snaps objects to other objects even if the objects do not touch. For example, in the following illustration,
the bottom edge of object B snaps to the top edge of object A.
When the Snap to Object option is enabled, you can disable it temporarily by pressing the Alt key when you position
the object. Pressing the Alt key temporarily enables the option when it is disabled.
Note: Because the Alt key disables the arrow keys, you cannot use it to toggle Snap to Object on or off when you use arrow
keys to move objects.
When you select multiple objects, the objects are treated as one object for snapping.
More Help topics
“Drawing Aids palette” on page 16
“To use the drawing aids” on page 19
Using Snap to the Center of the Page
Use Snap to the Center of the Page to automatically place the center of an object at the vertical or horizontal center of
the page. The Snap to the Center of the Page option is available in the Drawing Aids palette and from the View menu.
The center lines are not objects. They are displayed only when you are positioning objects near them and Snap to the
Center of the Page is enabled.
When Snap to the Center of the Page is enabled, an object that you move to within one grid space of a page center line
snaps to the line automatically. If additional snapping options are enabled, the object must be closer to the center line
before it snaps to the line. An object can snap to the vertical and horizontal center lines at the same time, which places
it at the exact center of the page.
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Working with Objects
When you select multiple objects, the objects are treated as one object for snapping.
More Help topics
“Drawing Aids palette” on page 16
“To use the drawing aids” on page 19
Formatting
Formatting text
You can define font properties for text objects, object captions, and data values.
The Font palette contains all of the font properties available. You can define these font properties in the Font palette:
• Type of font
• Font size and style
• Baseline shift
• Vertical and horizontal scale of font
• Letter spacing
• Auto kern
You can use the Font toolbar to quickly define common text formatting properties, including font type, size, and style.
Note: If you are creating objects that may display text in languages that use non-Latin-1 characters, make sure that you
choose a font for the object that supports the full character set of the language and the appropriate locale by using the Field
tab of the Object palette.
More Help topics
“Font properties in the Font palette” on page 386
“Font palette” on page 16
“Formatting paragraphs” on page 352
“Paragraph properties in the Paragraph palette” on page 386
To apply a different font
1 Select the text you want to change or select the object.
If Edit > Lock Text is enabled, double-click the text.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To edit the caption and data value, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit
Caption and Value.
• To edit only the caption, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Caption.
• To edit only the data value, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Value.
3 In the Font palette, from the Font list, select a font name.
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To change the font size
1 Select the text you want to change or select the object.
If Edit > Lock Text is enabled, double-click the text.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To edit the caption and data value, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit
Caption and Value.
• To edit only the caption, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Caption.
• To edit only the data value, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Value.
3 In the Font palette, from the Font Size box, type or select a point size.
To apply bold, italic, underline, or strikethrough formatting
1 Select the text you want to change or select the object. If Edit > Lock Text is enabled, double-click the text.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To edit the caption and data value, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit
Caption and Value.
• To edit only the caption, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Caption.
• To edit only the data value, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Value.
3 In the Font palette, do one of the following actions:
• To apply bold formatting, click Bold.
• To apply italic formatting, click Italic.
• To apply underline formatting, click Underline.
• To apply strikethrough formatting, click Strikethrough.
To change the color of text
1 Select the text you want to change or select the object. If Edit > Lock Text is enabled, double-click the text.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To edit the caption and data value, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit
Caption and Value.
• To edit only the caption, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Caption.
• To edit only the data value, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Value.
3 In the Font palette, click the color selector and select the color you want.
To change the baseline shift of text
Use the baseline shift option to specify the amount of space to move a character (or group of characters) up or down
relative to the baseline. Positive numbers shift characters up, and negative numbers shift characters down.
You can use baseline shift to make small adjustments to text such as positioning copyright and trademark symbols (©
and ™), or to create superscript or subscript such as a number or figure used in a formula or mathematical expression,
which is smaller than the adjacent text, and is set slightly above or below the line of type.
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Adjusting the baseline shift does not change the line spacing or font size of the characters. When you change the
spacing between lines or the font size, the baseline-shift position is maintained proportionally. You can change font
sizes in the Font palette, and adjust line spacing in the Paragraph palette.
1 Select the text to change or select the object. If Edit > Lock Text is enabled, double-click the text.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To edit the caption and data value, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit
Caption and Value.
• To edit only the caption, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Caption.
• To edit only the data value, in the Font palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Value.
3 In the Font palette, in the Baseline Shift box, type the amount of shift to apply.
To change the letter spacing of text
Use the letter spacing options to adjust the amount of space between the letters in a word or group of words. Designer
uses EM units of measure (proportional width of a letter m) to space letters. The minimum value you can enter is -1
000 (-1em). The maximum value you can enter is 10 000 (10em). The default value is 0 (no spacing). You must enter
whole numbers; fractions are rounded off to the nearest whole number.
Note: The Letter Spacing box displays Mixed when you apply different letter-spacing values within one or more selected
objects.
1 Select the text to change or select the object. If Edit > Lock Text is enabled, double-click the text.
2 In the Font palette, do one of the following actions:
• To edit the caption and data value, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Caption and Value.
• To edit only the caption, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Caption.
• To edit only the data value, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Value.
3 In the Font palette, in the Letter Spacing box, type the amount of letter spacing to apply.
To change the vertical or horizontal scale of text
Use the vertical and horizontal scale options to increase or decrease the size of text. Designer calculates font scaling in
percentage units. The default value for the vertical and horizontal scale is either 100% or no scaling. The minimum
value you can enter is 1%. The maximum value you can enter is 1000%. Negative values are not applicable. You can
enter values that have up to two decimal places (for example, 50.75%).
The percentage symbol (%) is automatically generated when the value in the box is validated. If you type an invalid
value, the last correct value is displayed instead.
Note: The Vertical Scale and Horizontal Scale boxes display Mixed when you apply different vertical or horizontal scale
values within one or more selected objects.
1 Select the text to change or select the object. If Edit > Lock Text is enabled, double-click the text.
2 In the Font palette, do one of the following actions:
• To edit the caption and data value, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Caption and Value.
• To edit only the caption, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Caption.
• To edit only the data value, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Value.
3 In the Font palette, in the Vertical Scale box, or in the Horizontal Scale box, or in both, type the percentage of scaling
to apply.
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To auto kern text
Use the auto kern option to reduce the amount of space between certain letters. Auto kerning minimizes uneven
spacing and maintains a uniform distance between the letters within a word or group of words. For example, letter
combinations, such as WA, MW, and TA, are typically kerned for a better appearance.
1 Select the text to change or select the object. If Edit > Lock Text is enabled, double-click the text.
2 In the Font palette, do one of the following actions:
• To edit the caption and data value, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Caption and Value.
• To edit only the caption, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Caption.
• To edit only the data value, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit Value.
3 In the Font palette, select Auto Kern.
Formatting paragraphs
You can define paragraph properties for text objects, object captions, and data values. To define these properties, you
must first select the object.
The Paragraph palette contains all of the paragraph properties available in Designer. You can define these paragraph
properties in the Paragraph palette:
• Alignment and spread
• Lists
• Indentation
• Line spacing
• Hyphenation
You can use the Text Formatting toolbar to quickly access the most common paragraph formatting commands.
More Help topics
“Hyphenate text” on page 92
“Paragraph properties in the Paragraph palette” on page 386
To align paragraphs
1 Select the text you want to change or select the object. If Edit > Lock Text is enabled, double-click the text.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To edit the caption and data value, in the Paragraph palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select
Edit Caption and Value.
• To edit only the caption, in the Paragraph palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit
Caption.
• To edit only the data value, in the Paragraph palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit
Value.
3 Do one of the following actions:
• To align text left of right, in the Paragraph palette, click Align Left or Align Right.
• To center text, in the Paragraph palette, click Align Center.
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• To justify text, in the Paragraph palette, click Justify.
• To align text to the top of the area reserved for the caption and value, in the Paragraph palette, click Align Top.
• To align text to the middle of the area reserved for the caption and value, in the Paragraph palette, click Align
Middle.
• To align text to the bottom of the area reserved for the caption and value, in the Paragraph palette, click Align
Bottom.
To create a bulleted list
1 Select the text that you want to add bullets to, and then click Bulleted List.
2 To select a bullet style, click the arrow next to Bullets.
3 Do one of the following actions:
• To increase the list indentation, click Increase Indent.
• To decrease the list indentation, click Decrease Indent.
To create a numbered list
1 Select the text that you want to add numbering to, and then click Numbered List.
2 To select a number style, click the arrow next to Numbered List.
3 Specify the starting number in the Start box.
4 Do one of the following actions:
• To increase the list indentation, click Increase Indent.
• To decrease the list indentation, click Decrease Indent.
To add compound tags to a numbered list
1 Click anywhere within the numbered list.
2 Select the Compound Tags checkbox.
3 Select the items in the numbered list that you want to apply the compound tags to, and then click Increase Indent.
For example, in the following list:
1. Item A.
2. Item B.
3. Item C
4. Item D
increasing the indent of Item B and Item C, results in the following numbered list:
1. Item A.
1.1. Item B.
1.2. Item C
2. IItem D
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To change the indentation of paragraphs
1 Select the text you want to change or select the object. If Edit > Lock Text is enabled, double-click the text.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To edit the caption and data value, in the Paragraph palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select
Edit Caption and Value.
• To edit only the caption, in the Paragraph palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit
Caption.
• To edit only the data value, in the Paragraph palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit
Value.
3 Do one of the following actions:
• To increase or decrease the left indent of text, in the Paragraph palette, under Indents, enter the indent you want
in the Left box.
• To change the right indent of text, in the Paragraph palette, under Indents, enter the indent you want in the
Right box.
• To create a first-line indent, in the Paragraph palette, in the First list, select First Line. In the By box, type the
measurement to indent.
• To create a hanging indent, in the Paragraph palette, in the First list, select Hanging. In the By box, type the
measurement to indent.
To change the spacing of paragraphs
1 Select the text you want to change or select the object. If Edit > Lock Text is enabled, double-click the text.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To edit the caption and data value, in the Paragraph palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select
Edit Caption and Value.
• To edit only the caption, in the Paragraph palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit
Caption.
• To edit only the data value, in the Paragraph palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and select Edit
Value.
3 Do one of the following actions:
• To change the spacing before or after text, in the Paragraph palette, under Spacing, enter the spacing you want
in the Above or Below box.
• To space lines, in the Paragraph palette, from the Line Spacing list, select an option.
Hyphenation in selected paragraphs
Although the hyphenation values you select in the Form Properties and Options dialog boxes apply to the text in the
entire form, you can use the Hyphenate option in the Paragraph palette to add or remove hyphenation in individual
paragraphs. Use the Hyphenate option to manually adjust text layout on an object-by-object basis.
You can hyphenate the text in the caption area of objects such as text fields, decimal fields, and numeric fields, and the
value area of text field objects (default text and text the form filler enters).
It is recommended that you become familiar with the various options you need to select for objects that contain
hyphenated text. (See “Hyphenate text” on page 92.)
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When the Hyphenate New Items is selected in the Options dialog box on the Formatting page, the Hyphenation option
is automatically selected with new objects added to a form.
More Help topics
“Hyphenate text” on page 92
“Considerations for setting hyphenation” on page 93
“Setting and removing hyphenation in forms” on page 94
“Paragraph properties in the Paragraph palette” on page 386
“Formatting (Options dialog box)” on page 674
“Formatting (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 657
To hyphenate the text in a selected paragraph
1 To enable) the Hyphenate option in the Paragraph palette, do one of the following actions:
• (New forms) Select Tools > Options > Formatting, and then choose Allow Hyphenation in Text and Field
Captions, or Allow Hyphenation in Text Field Values, or both.
• (Current form) Select File > Form Properties > Formatting > and choose Allow Hyphenation in Text and Field
Captions, or Allow Hyphenation in Text Field Values, or both.
2 Select the text to hyphenate.
3 (Does not apply to text objects) In the Paragraph palette, click the Currently Editing palette menu and do one of
the following actions:
• To hyphenate caption and data value text, select Edit Caption and Value.
• To hyphenate only caption text, select Edit Caption.
• To hyphenate only data value text, select Edit Value.
4 To hyphenate the text in the value area of text field objects, in the Object palette, on the Field tab, select Allow
Multiple Lines.
5 In the Layout palette, select Expand to Fit (Width), or Expand to Fit (Height), or both.
6 In the Paragraph palette, select Hyphenate. The change is applied.
To remove hyphenation from a selected paragraph
❖ Click the text to remove hyphenation from and, in the Paragraph palette, deselect Hyphenate. The change is
applied.
Formatting objects
More Help topics
“Font properties in the Font palette” on page 386
“Paragraph properties in the Paragraph palette” on page 386
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
“Border properties in the Border palette” on page 385
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To add space around an object
All objects have a certain amount of white space or margin around them.
1 Select the object.
2 In the Layout palette, set the margins for Left, Right, Top, and Bottom.
To add a border around an object
To define border properties for an object that supports borders, you must first select the object. The properties that
you define in the Border palette apply to the whole object.
1 Select the object.
2 In the Border palette, from the Edges list, select an editing option.
• To apply a border to each edge separately, select Edit Individually. This option does not apply to threedimensional borders.
• To apply the same border to all edges, select Edit Together.
3 Beneath the Edges list, select a style, width, and color for the borders.
4 To have notched corners, click one of the Corners buttons and, in the Radius box, define the corner radius (in
inches, centimeters, or points).
5 To fill the object with color or a pattern, select an option from the Style list and, using the adjacent color selector
buttons, select appropriate fill colors.
To add a border around the fillable area
You can also specify the border properties of the fillable areas of an object. For example, for a text field, you can apply
one type of border and fill to the overall object and another type of border and fill to the value area that displays data.
These objects have fillable areas:
• Command buttons
• Check boxes
• Signature Fields
• Drop-down lists
• List boxes
• Numeric fields
• Password fields
• Radio buttons
• Text fields
1 Select the object.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab. From the Appearance list, select Custom.
3 Select a style for the border of the fillable area. The options are the same as those in the Border palette.
4 If applicable for the object, type a border width and select a color for the border.
5 To have notched corners, click one of the Corners buttons and in the Radius box, define the corner radius (in
inches, centimeters, or points).
6 To fill the fillable area with color or a pattern, select an option from the Style list and using the adjacent color
selector buttons, select appropriate fill colors.
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To change the default formatting for new objects
You can set the default formatting for new objects and save it in the Object Library. For example, you can change the
default font for all new Text objects to Times New Roman.
1 Insert an object.
2 Make the changes to the object. For example, add a border, apply a different font, change the size of the text.
3 Drag the object into a category in the Object Library palette.
4 In the Add Library Object dialog box, type the name of the object and click OK.
If another object of the same name already exists in that tab, Designer asks you to confirm that you want to replace
the existing object.
Using leaders in text
Use leaders to guide the reader from one piece of information to another across a page, such as in a table of contents,
price list, or invoice. You can add leaders to a line or block of text in text objects and in the caption area of objects such
as text fields, decimal fields, and numeric fields. When the text object or caption area is in edit mode, the Leader
command is available in the Insert menu and the Context menu.
You can define and edit leader properties such as the end position, pattern, line thickness or dot spacing, and
alignment. You can also adjust the positioning, size, and appearance of leaders by using the options in the Font and
Paragraph palettes.
When you add a leader, Designer draws a leader from the insertion point to the end position that you specify. The
leader end position is based on ruler increments. The default end position extends the leader to the right edge of the
caption or static text object. You can only define or edit one leader at a time. All changes are applied immediately.
You can define different leaders for each paragraph of text. However, it is important to understand that a new
paragraph inherits the leader properties from the previous paragraph. In other words, when you create a new
paragraph, any leaders defined in the previous paragraph apply to the new paragraph.
Note: Designer can not anticipate the content of run-time data. If you intend to populate a form with rich text that
contains leaders, you must set the target version to Acrobat 9 when you design the form.
More Help topics
“Delete Tab Stops dialog box” on page 644
“Font properties in the Font palette” on page 386
“Font palette” on page 16
To add a leader
1 Place the insertion point where you want the leader to start within the text object or caption area, and then select
Insert > Leader.
2 In the Leader End Position box, type the ruler position where you want the leader to end.
3 In the Leader Pattern list, select the pattern to fill the leader.
4 In the Leader Dot Spacing or Leader Underline Weight list, select the amount of space to appear between dots or
dashes, or select the thickness of the line.
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5 Set the alignment for the leader by doing one of these actions:
• To align the left side of the text that follows the leader (immediately before the first letter) with the specified end
position, click Left Align Leader.
• To align the right side of the text that follows the leader (immediately after the last letter) as the end position for
the leader, click Right Align Leader.
6 Click anywhere in the Layout Editor to close the dialog box.
To edit a leader
1 Select the leader and edit it.
2 Click anywhere in the Layout Editor to close the dialog box.
To delete a leader
The Delete Leader command removes the selected leader (tab), the associated tab stops, as well as any leader
properties, such as pattern, spacing, and alignment.
Note: The Delete Leader command is available on the Edit menu after you select a leader. However, if the Delete Leader
command remains unavailable after you select a leader, this means that the leader is not associated with a tab stop. When
this is the case, you can use the Delete key to remove the leader.
1 Select the leader to delete.
2 Select Edit > Delete Leader.
To enable a visual clue for No Leader
When you select the No Leader option while inserting Leaders, the leaders are not displayed in both, the Preview PDF
and the final PDF form. You can turn on a visual indicator to display tab stops when No Leader is selected. As this
value is read while opening the document, close and reopen already open documents for this value to take effect.
1 In Tools > Options > Formatting, check Show non blank tab stop in design view option.
2 Specify a character to see in place of blanks.
To delete tab stops
If you use the Delete key on the keyboard to delete a selected leader, only the tab character is removed. Any associated
tab stops or leader properties such as pattern, spacing, and alignment are not removed.
To delete unused tab stops, you must use the Delete Tab Stops dialog box.
Note: The Delete Tab Stops command is available on the Edit menu when there are one or more tab stops in the current
paragraph. If there are two or more paragraphs within a selection, the dialog is unavailable.
1 Select Edit > Delete Tab Stops.
2 Complete one of the following actions:
• To delete selected tab stops, select one or more tab stops from the list, and then click Clear.
• To delete all tab stops, click Clear All.
3 Click OK.
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Creating an insertion point
Use insertion points in forms that are assembled on a server by using the Assembler services.
An insertion point is a subform that acts as a placeholder for a fragment that is inserted into the form when the form
is assembled. You can add one or more insertion points to the body or the master pages of a form.
Use one of these methods to create an insertion point:
• Insert an insertion point object into a form:
• Inserts a subform with the default name InsertionPoint.
• Inserts an insertion point subform that contains an insertion point placeholder (a text object that contains
temporary placeholder content).
• Sets the Data Binding (Open, Save, Submit) option on the Binding tab to No Data Binding.
• Insert an insertion point into an existing subform:
• Inserts an insertion point subform within the selected subform. The default name is (untitled Subform)
• Inserts an insertion point placeholder into the insertion point subform.
• For the existing subform, sets the Data Binding (Open, Save, Submit) option on the Binding tab to Use Name
(<object name>). For the insertion point subform, sets the Data Binding (Open, Save, Submit) option on the
Binding tab to No Data Binding.
• Selects the Expand To Fit options on the Layout tab for the insertion point placeholder (text object). Therefore,
the insertion point placeholder can expand according to the amount of text contained in the insertion point
placeholder.
• Define an existing subform as an insertion point:
• Makes the select subform an insertion point.
• Maintains all existing option settings for the subform. For example, if the Data Binding (Open, Save, Submit)
option on the Binding tab is set to Use Name (<object name>) before you define the subform as an insertion
point, this option setting is retained after the change.
• Does not insert an insertion point placeholder. You can manually add a text object as an insertion point
placeholder.
You can insert one or more insertion points into an insertion point. By default, each new (child) insertion point
occupies the same area as the parent insertion point. As such, multiple insertion points can overlap. Therefore, it is
recommended that you use the Hierarchy palette to select the individual objects that make up an insertion point. The
Hierarchy palette is a graphical representation of the contents in the Design View and Master Pages tabs. What you
select in the Hierarchy palette is also selected in the body or master page that it is associated with.
In the Draw Aids palette, you can select various border styles for an insertion point on the Drawing Aids palette.
You can optionally name an insertion point subform in the Name box on the Subform tab. To relate the insertion point
subform to the associated fragment when the form is assembled, use the same name for the insertion point and the
fragment. It is recommended that you type the name in medial capitals, a mix of uppercase and lowercase (for example,
LiveCycle or InDesign).
Insert an insertion point object into a form
1 In the Hierarch palette, select where to insert the insertion point object.
2 Click Insert > Custom > Insertion Point.
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3 (Optional) In the Name box, type a name for the insertion point subform.
4 Position the insertion point within the form as required.
Insertion point into an existing subform
1 In the Hierarch palette, select the subform to insert an insertion point into.
2 Click Insert > Insertion Point.
3 (Optional) In the Name box, type a name for the insertion point subform.
Define a subform as an insertion point
1 In the Hierarchy palette, select the subform to define as an insertion point.
2 In the Object palette, click the Subform tab and select This Subform Is An Insertion Point.
3 (Optional) In the Name box, type a name for the insertion point subform.
Add an insertion point placeholder (to a subform that is defined as an
insertion point)
1 In the Hierarchy palette, select a subform that is defined as an insertion point, and click Insert > Standard > Text.
2 In the Object palette, on the Draw tab, select This Is An Insertion Point Placeholder.
3 Click inside the text object and type the text to identify the subform as an insertion point. For example, type This
is temporary placeholder content.
Formatting captions
A number of the standard field objects in the Object Library palette support captions. Captions provide textual
information to the viewers about the form field.
When you add an object that supports captions, Designer assigns a default name for the caption. The default name is
the name of the object. For example, if you add a list box object to the form design, the default caption is List Box.
When creating the form design, you can see the caption for the object in two places: on the form design next to the
object (the default position) or in the Field tab of the Object palette.
You can edit the caption text by using the Field tab of the Object palette or by editing the caption text directly on the
page. If the text wraps as you type, increasing the size of the object will display the text properly. If the object displays
, the object either needs to be resized or have the caption reserve adjusted. A reserve of 0
a white cross in a red box
sets the caption area to auto-fit so that it adjusts to fit the entire caption. The caption is protected and users cannot be
modified it when filling the form.
Note: When you bind a caption to a data source, the caption is always shown in the form, even if you have set Caption
Position in the Layout tab to None.
If you need to rearrange field objects, but do not want to risk modifying their captions, you can use the Lock Text
command. Using this command lets you to move the field objects around easily but makes the caption not as easy to
modify.
Note: You cannot select or edit captions if a field object is locked. See “To lock objects” on page 341.
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More Help topics
“Formatting” on page 349
“To create a caption by merging a text object and a field object” on page 327
“Font properties in the Font palette” on page 386
“Paragraph properties in the Paragraph palette” on page 386
“Layout properties in the Layout palette” on page 385
“To lock objects” on page 341
“Dynamically populate a caption” on page 528
To set a default font for captions in new forms
1 Click Tools > Options.
2 Click Default Fonts.
3 Under Default Caption Font Properties For New Forms, select Typeface, Size, and Style options, as needed.
To set a default font for captions in an existing form
1 Click File > Form Properties.
2 Click Default Fonts.
3 Under Default Caption Font Properties, select Typeface, Size, and Style options. as needed.
To rename a caption
1 Select the object.
2 Do one of the following actions:
• To change the caption in the Layout Editor, select the text of the caption and type a new caption. If Edit > Lock
Text is enabled, double-click the text.
• To change the caption by using the Object palette, click the Field tab type a new caption in the Caption box.
You can dynamically populate a caption with a value from a data source.
To position a caption
Captions are positioned relative to the fillable area of an object.
1 Select one or more objects.
2 In the Layout palette, select a position for the caption from the Position list.
Note: When you bind a text field caption to a data source, the text field's caption label is always shown in the form,
even if you selected None for the caption position in the Layout tab
To specify the amount of space for a caption
You can adjust the amount of white space between the caption and the fillable area.
1 Select one or more objects.
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2 In the Layout palette, type a new value in the Reserve box.
Note: If you enter a reserve space before selecting a position for the caption, Designer adjusts the reserve space
automatically.
To set the caption area to auto-fit
1 Select one or more objects.
2 In the Layout palette, type 0 in the Reserve box. This number sets the caption area to auto-fit so that it adjusts to fit
the entire caption.
To hide a caption
1 Select one or more objects.
2 In the Layout palette, select None from the Position list.
Making objects visible, invisible, or hidden
Depending on the purpose of the form, you may want to control which objects are displayed in a PDF form when users
view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when users print the form from within Acrobat or Adobe Reader. With
the various options in the Presence list in the Object palette, you can selectively make different objects in a PDF form
visible, invisible, or hidden when the form is viewed on-screen or printed from within Acrobat or Adobe Reader. You
can also specify that an object only print when the form is printed on the front or both sides of the printed page.
Keep in mind the following factors when applying presence options to objects:
• The Invisible and Hidden options are unavailable for groups, content areas, master pages, page sets, and subform
sets.
• The presence option you apply to container objects such as subforms overrides the presence option applied to each
contained object. For example, if you apply the Visible (Print Only) option to a subform set, the subform and the
collected objects will not appear on-screen but will appear in the printed form, regardless of the presence setting of
the individual objects.
• If you want to print a form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, do not apply the Visible (Screen Only) option to any
content area objects that contain objects you want to display in the printed form. When you apply the Visible
(Screen Only) option to a content area object, the objects within the content area are only displayed onscreen and
do not appear in the printed form. A warning marker appears in the upper-right corner of the master page when a
content area or master page object is not present in both the screen and the print views. If you want to display one
set of objects when a form is printed and another when the form is viewed onscreen, you can create one master page
with two content area objects, one for each set of objects. You apply the Visible (Print Only) option to one content
area object, and the Visible (Print Only) option to the other.
• When you apply the Visible (Print Only) option to an object, the object will appear in the Design View and Master
Page tabs but will not appear in the Preview PDF tab.
The following list describes some of the ways you can use the presence options:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat, Adobe Reader,
or the server), and occupies space in the form layout. For example, if you want the form to look the same on-screen
and in print, you can apply the Visible option to all of the objects in the form. Visible is the default presence setting for
all objects.
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Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form if printed from within Acrobat or
Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout. The object is visible in the printed form if printed from the
server. For example, if you have a form that users will fill, submit online, and then print, you can apply the Visible
(Screen Only) option to Print and Submit buttons so that the buttons are visible on-screen but not visible in the printed
form.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form if printed from within Acrobat or
Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout. The object is visible in the printed form if printed from the
server. For example, if you need to include some instructional text in the printed form that is not required on-screen,
such as mailing instructions, you can apply the Visible (Print Only) option to Text Field objects that contain the
instructions so that the text is visible in the printed form but not visible on-screen.
Inactive Inactive presence indicates that an object is hidden and excluded from event processing. Calculations,
validations, and other events do not trigger for inactive objects. The enumeration of the presence attribute determines
which of the form processing stages a form object participates in. Inactive objects participate in the step of merging
data with template to create Form DOM.
Note: Presence Inactive applies to all Designer objects.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. For
example, if you want an area in a form to remain invisible until a user selects a certain option, such as the section for
payment-type information in a billing form, you can apply the Invisible option to the text field objects used for
gathering credit card information so that they remain invisible until the user selects a Radio button that indicates the
credit card type.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout. For example, if you want a section in a form to remain hidden until a user selects a certain
option and to not occupy space in the form layout when the section is hidden, you can apply the Hidden (Exclude from
Layout] option to the subform that contains the various objects in the section so that the form layout adjusts as needed.
Note: The Hidden (Exclude from Layout) option works as described only when you apply this option to objects that are
placed within a subform that is set to Flowed.
One-sided Printing Only The object is visible on-screen, visible on the front side of each printed page of the form
(when printed from within Acrobat, Adobe Reader, or the server), and occupies space in the form layout. For example,
to have the page number appear at the lower-right of the pages, apply the One-sided Printing Only option to the page
number object.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is visible on-screen, visible on the both sides of each printed page of the form
(when printed from within Acrobat, Adobe Reader, or the server), and occupies space in the form layout. For example,
to have the page number appear at the lower-right of each odd-numbered printed page and at the lower-left of each
even numbered printed page when double-sided printing, you must create two master pages. In the first master page,
you place the page number object at the lower-right and apply the Visible option. In the second master page, you create
two page number fields. Place one at the lower-left and apply the Two-sided Printing Only option; place the other at
the lower-right and apply the One-sided Printing Only option.
To make an object visible, invisible, or hidden
The Presence list appears in a different tab, depending on the object selected.
1 Select the object.
2 In the Object palette, click the appropriate tab.
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3 In the Presence list, select one of the following options:
• To make the object visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupy space in the form layout, select
Visible.
• To make the object visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupy space in the form layout, select
Visible (Screen Only).
• To make the object not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupy space in the form layout, select
Visible (Print Only).
• To make the object not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupy space in the form layout,
select Invisible.
• To make the object not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and not occupy any space in the form
layout, select Hidden (Exclude from Layout).
• To make the object visible on-screen, visible on only the front side of each sheet in the printed form, and occupy
space in the form layout, select One-sided Printing Only.
• To make the object visible on-screen, visible on both sides of each sheet in the printed form, and occupy space
in the form layout, select Two-sided Printing Only.
Formatting field values and using patterns
Depending on the requirements of your situation, you can specify one or more of the following patterns to control how
field values, such as text fields, numeric fields, and date/time fields are formatted at run time:
• A display pattern, which describes how data will be displayed in the form. If you define an initial default value, it is
formatted according to the display pattern. The display pattern is also responsible for formatting user input and
any bound values retrieved at run time.
• An edit pattern, which describes the syntax for entering data into a date/time field, numeric field, text field, or
password field at run time.
• A validation pattern, which is used to validate user input at run time.
• A data pattern, which describes the syntax of bound or saved data.
The formatting options that you choose will depend on the purpose of your form. For example, if you are designing
an interactive form, for each field you should define an edit pattern to process user input and a validation pattern to
validate the input. You would only define a data pattern if the fields are bound to a data source.
Keep in mind that if you specify only an Edit pattern for a Numeric Field or Decimal fields object, form fillers can still
enter alphabetic characters in the field. To avoid this behaviour, do one of the following actions:
• Do not specify just an Edit pattern. Ensures that Acrobat and Adobe Reader filter out unwanted alphabetic
characters.
• Specify Edit and Display patterns. Ensures that the data is formatted correctly according to the Display pattern.
• Specify Edit and Validation patterns. Ensures that the value is rejected and the field is cleared when a form filler
enters an alphabetic character.
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When to use patterns
Use patterns to control how field values are processed at run time. For example, users can enter letters and numbers
into a text field and any special punctuation or spacing can be applied automatically according to a predefined pattern
before the value is displayed.
Capturing and displaying user input
If you are creating a form to capture data, you can specify how data should be formatted. You specify how the data
should appear using a display pattern. If you do not specify a display pattern, the data appears according to Designer
defaults.
If users will be entering data that does not match the Designer defaults, you must specify an edit pattern. The edit
pattern describes the syntax of the user input. Given the pattern, the run-time application converts the user input into
a raw value and then formats the value according to the display pattern.
If you are designing an interactive form, consider what user input must be validated. For example, a text field may or
may not require validation depending on usage. A multiple line text field allowing the form filler to enter a comment
does not need to be validated. Similarly, a numeric field will automatically prevent the form-filler from entering any
non-numeric data. However, if the data has to be restricted to a specific range of numbers, you will want to validate
the user input. You can choose to display a custom message to prompt users for a correct value at run time. If you do
not specify a custom message, the system generates one automatically.
Remember that by using the options on the Form Validations tab in the Form Properties dialog box, you can configure
how Acrobat displays validations messages, highlights failed or mandatory fields that contain invalid data or no data,
and sets the focus on the first field that fails to validate. See “Displaying validation errors in Acrobat” on page 119.
Note: User input can be processed through FormCalc formulas and JavaScript scripts (for example, a script can request
the raw value of a field). Because formulas and scripts operate on raw and formatted values, it is important to validate
those fields where input is restricted.
One example of how an edit and validation pattern may be used together is a credit card or social security number
entry. You could define a text field with the following edit patterns:
text{9999-9999-9999-9999}|text{9999 9999 9999 9999} for credit cards
or
text{999-99-9999}|text{999 99 9999} for a US social security number
In both cases, the user may enter the number with hyphen(-), space ( ), or just the 16 or 9 digit number. The canonical,
or simplest form of the number is the 16 or 9 digit number.
You may also choose to add the following validation pattern:
text{9999999999999999}
or
text{999999999}
In this case, only the number is stored and the validation checks for the correct number of digits. However, in this case,
it might be more useful to specify a validation script rather than a pattern. There are algorithms that will checksum a
credit card number to ensure that it looks like a valid credit card number and not just a random 16 digit number. An
example is the Luhn Algorith for credit cards.
The result is a form that has a text field where the edit pattern allows user entry in one of three typical ways for typing
a credit number, and the validation runs a script that validates that the number looks like a valid credit card number.
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Retrieving and displaying bound data
If bound data will be merged with a form, you can specify how the data should be formatted for display using a display
pattern. If you do not specify a display pattern, the data is displayed according to Designer defaults.
If the bound data does not match Designer defaults, you must specify a data pattern. The data pattern describes the
syntax of the bound data. Given the pattern, the run-time application converts the retrieved data into raw values and
then formats them for display.
Defaults for value formatting
Default values must conform to the following rules, depending on the type of field.
Field
Rule
Date/Time Field
A default date/time value must conform to the short format for the locale specified for the date/time field. However, by default, Designer
displays the default value in the medium locale format at both design time and run time.
For example, consider a form with a Date/Time Field set to use the German (Germany) locale. You enter the default value for a date in the
short format DD.MM.YY. After you change the focus to another field, the value specified in the field on the page is displayed in the medium
format DD.MM.YYYY. The formatted value also appears in the medium format if you view the form in the Preview PDF tab.
Note: At run time, by default, form fillers must edit the value of date/time fields using the short format for the locale
specified for the field. If you specify an Edit Pattern on the Edit tab in the Patterns dialog box (Field tab > Patterns),
that pattern overrides the short format, and users must enter data that conforms to the Edit Pattern.
Numeric Field or Decimal
Field
A default numeric value can be any integer or any decimal number that contains a single radix point. The radix character can be either a “.”
(period) or “,” (comma) depending on the locale selected. Thousands separators (or grouping symbols) and currency symbols are not valid
as part of the default value.
For example, if a numeric field is set to the locale English (USA), and you specify the default value $1,234.56, both the currency symbol “$”
(dollar sign) and the thousands separator “,” (comma) are not valid.
Text Field
A default text value (including passwords) can be any alphanumeric text string, including spaces.
Note: Only those fields listed in the table have default values that must conform to locale-specific formatting.
To specify a default value
Date/time fields, numeric fields, and text fields can display an initial (default) value when the form is opened. The value
can be derived from a run-time property, or you can specify the value explicitly in Designer. The value can also be
derived from an external data source through binding. At run time, Designer formats field default values according to
the locale specified for each field.
1 Select a date/time field, decimal field, numeric field, or text field.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab. Select a locale from the Locale list.
3 In the Object palette, click the Value tab. Type the value into the Default box.
The default value must be specified in locale-sensitive format.
Note: If the data is bound and a data pattern has been specified, the value must match the data pattern specified in
the Binding tab.
To specify a display pattern
At run time, Designer displays date, time, and numeric field values in locale-sensitive format. If you want to display a
field value in a format other than the default, you can specify the custom pattern by clicking the Patterns button on the
Field tab.
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Note: Drop-down lists support custom user entries, but a display pattern for custom user entries cannot be specified. You
can write a script to format the user input if required.
Because the display pattern describes how data will be displayed in the form, all default values, user-entered values,
and values retrieved from a database are converted to the format described by the display pattern.
Note: Dates earlier than January 1, 1900 are not formatted by the display pattern.
1 Select the date/time field, numeric field, or text field.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 Click Patterns and either select one of the predefined display patterns from the Select Type list or type a custom
pattern in the Pattern box.
To prompt users to enter data
Prompts are useful for situations where users are expected to enter data or make a selection. You can write a message
to prompt users to enter a value into a date/time field, numeric field, text field, password field, or drop-down list, or
prompt users to select an option from a drop-down list, list box, or radio button group.
Recommending that users enter data
You can recommend that users enter data in a field but still let them submit the form if they do not. If a user enters
data in the field, leaves the field and then clears it, a message box appears. A custom message appears if one written in
the Empty Message box. A standard empty field message appears if you do not type a custom message. A message only
appears if there was data in the field, the value was deleted, and the user exited the field without re-entering data. If the
user never attempts to enter data in the field and tries to submit the form, a field is required message appears. The user
can choose to ignore the message and submit the form. Choose User Entered - Recommended to recommend that
users enter data in a field.
Requiring that users enter data
You can make it mandatory for users to enter data in a field before they can submit a form. If a user enters data in the
field, tabs out, and then returns to clear it, a message box appears. A custom message appears if one written in the
Empty Message box. A standard empty field message appears if you do not type a custom message. A message only
appears if there was data in the field, the value was deleted, and the user exited the field without re-entering data. If the
user never attempts to enter data in the field and tries to submit the form, a field is required message appears. Choose
User Entered - Required to make it mandatory that users enter data in a field.
Remember that by using the options on the Form Validations tab in the Form Properties dialog box, you can configure
how Acrobat displays validations messages, highlights failed or mandatory fields that contain invalid data or no data,
and sets the focus on the first field that fails to validate. See “Displaying validation errors in Acrobat” on page 119.
Note: If users do not enter a value into the field and try to submit the form, the error message field is required appears.
However, users can save and close a PDF form without providing recommended or required values. In this case, no
messages appear to prompt users for input.
1 Select the field, drop-down list, list box, or radio button group.
2 In the Object palette, click the Value tab. From the Type list, select one of these options:
• User Entered - Recommended
• User Entered - Required
3 In the Empty Message box, type the prompt. If applicable, the prompt should specify the required input format. For
example, if you defined an edit pattern, the user input must conform to the edit pattern.
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To specify an edit pattern
At run time, Designer displays date, time, numeric, and decimal field values in locale-sensitive format. If you want to
permit form fillers to edit field values in a format other than the locale-sensitive default, you can specify an Edit Pattern
on the Field tab. If the user’s input does not conform to the edit pattern, the data is input as-is.
If you specify only an Edit pattern for a Numeric or Decimal field object, form fillers can still enter alphabetic
characters in the field.
The edit pattern can be different than the display pattern. For example, because it is easier for users to enter short dates
and read long dates, you could consider specifying a short date for a date/time field’s edit pattern and a long date for
its display pattern. When the display and edit patterns are different, the value is formatted to match the display pattern
as soon as the user exits the field.
Note: This option is not available when the Type option in the Value tab of the Object palette is set to Protected,
Calculated - Read Only or Read Only.
1 Select the date/time field, numeric field, text field, or password field.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 Click Patterns, click the Edit tab, and either select one of the predefined display patterns from the Select Type list
or type a custom pattern in the Pattern box.
To validate user input
Three separate validations are possible for any field. The order of initiation of these validations is as follows:
• Test the field for null content.
• Verify the format of the field value against a specific field pattern. For more information about field patterns, see
“Simple patterns” on page 370.
• Invoke a validation script.
You can define a validation pattern to validate user input for date/time fields, numeric fields, text fields, and password
fields. By default, null entries are not accepted when a value is required. Raw values are compared to the validation
pattern directly and, if the raw value matches the validation pattern, it is formatted for display.
If the user-entered value does not match the validation pattern, a programming error or warning appears. The
error/warning is trapped by Acrobat, Adobe Reader, or Forms, which returns a message to the user automatically. If
an edit pattern has not been specified and the user input does not match Designer defaults, validation fails.
A validation message appears if objects that require values contain null values and the user attempts to submit data to
Forms.
Note: Users can save and close a PDF form without providing required values. In this case, no validation is performed.
If needed, you can write a custom validation pattern message to replace the default error or warning message.
In addition to a validation pattern, or in cases where a validation pattern is not supported (for example, for radio
button groups and check boxes), you can validate user input by using a validation script. Validating input through a
script ensures that the data is acceptable for your application. A custom message and run-time error or warning is also
supported in this case.
Remember that by using the options on the Form Validations tab in the Form Properties dialog box, you can configure
how Acrobat displays validations messages, highlights failed or mandatory fields that contain invalid data or no data,
and sets the focus on the first field that fails to validate. (See “Displaying validation errors in Acrobat” on page 119.)
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You can dynamically populate a validation pattern message with a value from a data source. This option allows you
to ensure that users enter a valid value in the field.
To define a validation pattern and custom message
1 Select the date/time field, numeric field, text field, password field, drop-down list, or list box.
2 In the Object palette, click the Value tab.
3 Click Validation Pattern and either select one of the predefined validation patterns from the Select Type list or type
a custom pattern in the Pattern box.
4 In the Validation Pattern Message box, type a message to prompt users to enter the correct value. The message
should specify the required input format. To start a new line in the message, press Ctrl+Enter.
5 To have a programming error to appear instead of a warning, select the Error option.
To display a message when an attached script detects unacceptable input
1 Select the date/time field, numeric field, text field, password field, drop-down list, list box, check box, or radio
button group.
2 In the Object palette, click the Value tab. In the Validation Script Message box, type the message.
3 To have a programming error appear instead of a warning, select the Error option.
To specify a data pattern
Data binding options enable you to build a form that captures data for enterprise infrastructures and/or use an external
data source to populate a form at run time. For example, given appropriate binding information (see “Binding fields
to a data source” on page 504) and access to the data source (see “Working with Data Sources” on page 494), Acrobat
and Adobe Reader can import and display data from an OLEDB database when the form is opened. Objects can also
be bound to an XML schema, an XML file, or a WSDL data source.
Acrobat, Adobe Reader, and Forms interpret the data-binding properties to store captured data and parse retrieved
data. By default, an object’s data is stored and merged according to Adobe data-merging rules. When a form opens in
Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or is rendered by Forms, the field values are populated from the data source. Any changes
to a field’s value by the user are committed to the associated data source when the form is saved in Acrobat or Adobe
Reader or the data is submitted to Forms.
If the data is not bound to a data source (for example, if the form data will be returned by email), the data pattern
specifies the format that the data is saved in. If you do not create a data pattern, the data will be saved in canonical
format. If a form may be filled by end users in a variety of locales or if the data may be returned to more than one locale,
having the data in canonical format helps ensure that it is interpreted the same way by all users.
You can specify data patterns for date/time fields, numeric fields, text fields, and password fields. If the data pattern
prevents Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or Forms from parsing a retrieved value, the value appears in the form unchanged
(it is not formatted for display).
1 Select the date/time field, numeric field, text field, or password field.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 Click Patterns, click the Data tab, and either select one of the predefined data-binding patterns from the Select Type
list or type a custom pattern in the Pattern box.
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Simple patterns
Simple patterns can be used to format the values of date/time fields, numeric fields, text fields, and password fields.
They each have their own rules governing the valid formation of patterns. There is a limited set of characters that you
can use in a pattern, and the syntax of a valid pattern differs among date/time fields, numeric fields, text fields, and
password fields.
For information about the valid characters that you can use in a pattern and examples of valid constructs, see one of
the sections listed below. For information about complex patterns for a date/time field, numeric field, or text field, see
“Complex field patterns” on page 377.
Locales
A locale is a standard term used when developing international standards to identify a particular nation (language,
country or region). For the purposes of FormCalc, a locale defines the format of dates, times, numeric, and currency
values relevant to a specific nation or region so that users can use the formats they are accustomed to.
Each locale is comprised of a unique string of characters called a locale identifier. The composition of these strings is
controlled by the international standards organization (ISO) Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), a working group
of the Internet Society (www.isoc.org).
Locale identifiers consist of a language part, a country or region part, or both. The following table lists valid locales for
this release of Designer.
Language
Country or Region
ISO Code
Arabic
Algeria
ar_DZ
Arabic
Bahrain
ar_BH
Arabic
Egypt
ar_EG
Arabic
Iraq
ar_IQ
Arabic
Jordan
ar_JO
Arabic
Kuwait
ar_KW
Arabic
Lebanon
ar_LB
Arabic
Libya
ar_LY
Arabic
Morocco
ar_MA
Arabic
Oman
ar_OM
Arabic
Qatar
ar_QA
Arabic
Saudi Arabia
ar_SA
Arabic
Sudan
ar_SD
Arabic
Syria
ar_SY
Arabic
Tunisia
ar_TN
Arabic
United Arabian Emirates
ar_AE
Arabic
Yemen
ar_YE
Armenian
Armenia
hy_AM
Azerbaijani-Cyrillic
Azerbaijan
az_Cyrl_AZ
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Language
Country or Region
ISO Code
Azerbaijani-Latin
Azerbaijan
az_Latn_AZ
Basque
Spain
eu_ES
Bosnain
Bosnia and Herzegovina
bs_BA
Bulgarian
Bulgaria
bg_BG
Catalan
Spain
ca_ES
Chinese
People’s Republic of China (Simplified)
zh_CN
Chinese
Hong Kong S.A.R., China
zh_HK
Chinese
Taiwan (Traditional)
zh_TW
Croatian
Croatia
hr_HR
Czech
Czech Republic
cs_CZ
Danish
Denmark
da_DK
Dutch
Belgium
nl_BE
Dutch
Netherlands
nl_NL
English
Australia
en_AU
English
Belgium
en_BE
English
Canada
en_CA
English
Hong Kong S.A.R., China
en_HK
English
India
en_IN
English
India Rupee
en_IN_RUPEE
English
Ireland
en_IE
English
New Zealand
en_NZ
English
Philippines
en_PH
English
Singapore
en_SG
English
South Africa
en_ZA
English
United Kingdom
en_GB
English
United Kingdom Euro
en_GB_EURO
English
United States of America
en_US
English
U.S. Virgin Islands
en_VI
Estonian
Estonia
et_EE
Finnish
Finland
fi_FI
French
Belgium
fr_BE
French
Canada
fr_CA
French
France
fr_FR
French
Luxembourg
fr_LU
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Language
Country or Region
ISO Code
French
Switzerland
fr_CH
German
Austria
de_AT
German
Germany
de_DE
German
Luxembourg
de_LU
German
Switzerland
de_CH
Greek
Greece
el_GR
Hebrew
Israel
he_IL
Hindi
India
hi_IN
Hungarian
Hungary
hu_HU
Indonesian
Indonesia
id_ID
Italian
Italy
it_IT
Italian
Switzerland
it_CH
Japanese
Japan
ja_JP
Kazakh
Kazakhstan
kk_KZ
Khmer
Cambodia
km_KH
Korean
Korea
ko_KR
Korean
Korea Hanja
ko_KR_HANI
Lao
Laos
lo_LA
Latvian
Latvia
lv_LV
Lithuanian
Lithuania
lt_LT
Malay
Malaysia
ms_MY
Norwegian - Bokmal
Norway
nb_NO
Norwegian - Nynorsk
Norway
nn_NO
Persian
Iran
fa_IR
Polish
Poland
pl_PL
Portuguese
Brazil
pt_BR
Portuguese
Portugal
pt_PT
Romanian
Romania
ro_RO
Russian
Russia
ru_RU
Serbian-Cyrillic
Serbia and Montenegro
sr_Cyrl_CS
Serbian-Latin
Serbia and Montenegro
sr_Latn_CS
Slovak
Slovakia
sk_SK
Slovenian
Slovenia
sl_SI
Spanish
Argentina
es_AR
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Language
Country or Region
ISO Code
Spanish
Bolivia
es_BO
Spanish
Chile
es_CL
Spanish
Columbia
es_CO
Spanish
Costa Rica
es_CR
Spanish
Dominican Republic
es_DO
Spanish
Ecuador
es_EC
Spanish
El Salvador
es_SV
Spanish
Guatemala
es_GT
Spanish
Honduras
es_HN
Spanish
Mexico
es_MX
Spanish
Nicaragua
es_NI
Spanish
Panama
es_PA
Spanish
Paraguay
es_PY
Spanish
Peru
es_PE
Spanish
Puerto Rico
es_PR
Spanish
Spain
es_ES
Spanish
United States of America
es_US
Spanish
Uruguay
es_UY
Spanish
Venezuela
es_VE
Swedish
Sweden
sv_SE
Tagalog
Philippines
tl_PH
Thai
Thailand
th_TH
Thai
Thailand Traditional
th_TH_TH
Turkish
Turkey
tr_TR
Turkish (Turkey Lira)
Turkey
tr_TR_LIRA
Ukrainian
Ukraine
uk_UA
Vietnamese
Vietnam
vi_VN
Usually, both elements of a locale are important. For example, the names of weekdays and months, in English, for
Canada and Great Britain are formatted identically, but dates are formatted differently. Therefore, specifying an
English language locale is insufficient. Also, specifying only a country as the locale is insufficient. For example, Canada
has different date formats for English and French. For information about how to set the locale in Designer, see “To
specify a locale (language and country or region) for an object” on page 272.
In general, every application operates in an environment where a locale is present. This locale is known as the ambient
locale. In some circumstances, an application might operate on a system, or within an environment, where a locale is
not present. In these rare cases, the ambient locale is set to a default of English United States (en_US). This locale is
known as a default locale.
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Epoch
Date values and time values have an associated origin or epoch, which is a moment in time from which time begins.
Any date value and any time value prior to its epoch is invalid.
The unit of value for all date functions is the number of days since the epoch. The unit of value for all time functions
is the number of milliseconds since the epoch.
Designer defines day one for the epoch for all date functions as Jan 1, 1900, and millisecond one for the epoch for all
time functions is midnight, 00:00:00, Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). This definition means that negative time values
can be returned to users in time zones east of GMT.
Date formats
A date format is a shorthand specification of how a date appears. It consists of various punctuation marks and symbols
that represent the formatting that the date must use. The following table lists examples of date formats.
Date format
Example
MM/DD/YY
11/11/78
DD/MM/YY
25/07/85
MMMM DD, YYYY
March 10, 1964
The format of dates is governed by an ISO standard. Each country or region specifies its own date formats. The four
general categories of date formats are short, medium, long, and full. The following table contains examples of different
date formats from different locales for each of the categories.
Locale identifier and description
Date format (Category)
Example
en_GB
DD/MM/YY (Short)
08/12/92
English (United Kingdom)
fr_CA
08/04/05
YY-MM-DD (Medium)
92-08-18
D. MMMM YYYY (Long)
17. Juni 1989
EEEE, ' le ' D MMMM YYYY (Full)
Lundi, le 29 Octobre, 1990
French (Canada)
de_DE
German (Germany)
fr_FR
French (France)
Time formats
A time format is a shorthand specification to format a time. It consists of punctuations, literals, and pattern symbols.
The following table lists examples of time formats.
Time format
Example
h:MM A
7:15 PM
HH:MM:SS
21:35:26
HH:MM:SS 'o''clock' A Z
14:20:10 o’clock PM EDT
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Time formats are governed by an ISO standard. Each nation specifies the form of its default, short, medium, long, and
full-time formats. The locale identifies the format of times that conform to the standards of that nation.
The following table contains some examples of different date formats from different locales for each of the categories.
Locale identifier and description
Time format (Category)
Example
en_GB
HH:MM (Short)
14:13
HH:MM:SS (Medium)
12:15:50
HH:MM:SS z (Long)
14:13:13 -0400
HH ' h ' MM Z (Full)
14 h 13 GMT-04:00
English (United Kingdom)
fr_CA
French (Canada)
de_DE
German (Germany)
fr_FR
French (France)
Date and time patterns
The following symbols must be used to create date and time patterns for date/time fields. Certain date symbols are only
used in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean locales. These symbols are also specified below. For more information, see
“Examples of date/time patterns” on page 415.
Note: The comma (,), dash (-), colon (:), slash (/), period (.), and space ( ) are treated as literal values and can be included
anywhere in a pattern. To include a phrase in a pattern, delimit the text string with single quotation marks ('). For
example, 'Your payment is due no later than' MM-DD-YY can be specified as the display pattern.
Date symbol
Description
Formatted value for English (USA) locale where the localesensitive input value is 1/1/08 (which is January 1, 2008)
D
1 or 2 digit (1-31) day of the month
1
DD
Zero-padded 2 digit (01-31) day of the month
01
J
1, 2, or 3 digit (1-366) day of the year
1
JJJ
Zero-padded, three-digit (001-366) day of the year
001
M
One- or two-digit (1-12) month of the year
1
MM
Zero-padded, two-digit (01-12) month of the year
01
MMM
Abbreviated month name
Jan
MMMM
Full month name
January
E
One-digit (1-7) day of the week, where (1=Sunday)
3 (because January 1, 2008 is a Tuesday)
EEE
Abbreviated weekday name
Tue (because January 1, 2008 is a Tuesday)
EEEE
Full weekday name
Tuesday (because January 1, 2008 is a Tuesday)
YY
Two-digit year, where numbers less than 30 are considered to fall after the 08
year 2000 and numbers 30 and higher are considered to occur before 2000.
For example, 00=2000, 29=2029, 30=1930, and 99=1999
YYYY
Four-digit year
2008
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Date symbol
Description
Formatted value for English (USA) locale where the localesensitive input value is 1/1/08 (which is January 1, 2008)
G
Era name (BC or AD)
AD
w
One-digit (0-5) week of the month, where week 1 is the earliest set of four
contiguous days ending on a Saturday
1
WW
Two-digit (01-53) ISO-8601 week of the year, where week 1 is the week
containing January 4
01
Several additional date patterns are available for specifying date patterns in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean locales.
Japanese eras can be represented by several different symbols. The final four era symbols provide alternative symbols
to represent Japanese eras.
CJK date symbol
Description
DDD
The locale’s ideographic numeric valued day of the month
DDDD
The locale’s tens rule ideographic numeric valued day of the month
YYY
The locale’s ideographic numeric valued year
YYYYY
The locale’s tens rule ideographic numeric valued year
g
The locale’s alternate era name. For the current Japanese era, Heisei, this pattern displays the ASCII letter H (U+48)
gg
The locale’s alternate era name. For the current Japanese era, this pattern displays the ideograph that is represented by the Unicode
symbol (U+5E73)
ggg
The locale’s alternate era name. For the current Japanese era, this pattern displays the ideographs that are represented by the
Unicode symbols (U+5E73 U+6210)
g
The locale’s alternate era name. For the current Japanese era, this pattern displays the full width letter H (U+FF28)
g g
The locale’s alternate era name. For the current Japanese era, this pattern displays the ideograph that is represented by the Unicode
symbol (U+337B)
Time symbol
Description
Locale-sensitive input value
Formatted value for English
(USA) locale
h
One- or two-digit (1-12) hour of the day (AM/PM)
12:08 AM or 2:08 PM
12 or 2
hh
Zero-padded 2 digit (01-12) hour of the day (AM/PM)
12:08 AM or 2:08 PM
12 or 02
k
One- or two-digit (0-11) hour of the day (AM/PM)
12:08 AM or 2:08 PM
0 or 2
kk
Two-digit (00-11) hour of the day (AM/PM)
12:08 AM or 2:08 PM
00 or 02
H
One- or two-digit (0-23) hour of the day
12:08 AM or 2:08 PM
0 or 14
HH
Zero-padded, two-digit (00-23) hour of the day
12:08 AM or 2:08 PM
00 or 14
K
One- or two-digit (1-24) hour of the day
12:08 AM or 2:08 PM
24 or 14
KK
Zero-padded, two-digit (01-24) hour of the day
12:08 AM or 2:08 PM
24 or 14
M
One- or two-digit (0-59) minute of the hour
2:08 PM
8
2:08 PM
08
Note: You must use this symbol with an hour symbol.
MM
Zero-padded, two-digit (00-59) minute of the hour
Note: You must use this symbol with an hour symbol.
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Time symbol
Description
Locale-sensitive input value
Formatted value for English
(USA) locale
S
One- or two-digit (0-59) second of the minute
2:08:09 PM
9
2:08:09 PM
09
2:08:09 PM
09
Note: You must use this symbol with an hour and minute symbol.
Zero-padded, two-digit (00-59) second of the minute
SS
Note: You must use this symbol with an hour and minute symbol.
FFF
Three- digit (000-999) thousandth of the second
Note: You must use this symbol with an hour, minute, and seconds
symbol.
A
The part of the day that is from midnight to noon (AM) or from noon to midnight 2:08:09 PM
(PM)
PM
z
ISO-8601 time-zone format (for example, Z, +0500, -0030, -01, +0100)
2:08:09 PM
-0400
2:08:09 PM
-04:00
2:08:09 PM
EDT
Note: You must use this symbol with an hour symbol.
Alternative ISO-8601 time-zone format (for example, Z, +05:00, -00:30, -01,
+01:00)
zz
Note: You must use this symbol with an hour symbol.
Abbreviated time-zone name (for example, GMT, GMT+05:00, GMT-00:30, EST,
PDT)
Z
Note: You must use this symbol with an hour symbol.
Reserved symbols
The following symbols have special meanings and cannot be used as literal text.
Symbol
Description
?
When submitted, the symbol matches any one character. When merged for display, it becomes a space.
*
When submitted, the symbol matches 0 or Unicode white space characters. When merged for display, it becomes a space.
+
When submitted, the symbol matches one or more Unicode white space characters. When merged for display, it becomes a space.
Complex field patterns
In addition to defining simple patterns for date/time fields, numeric fields, and text fields, you can define a localespecific pattern or handle variable patterns.
Locale-specific patterns
If you want to force a locale on a pattern, regardless of the locale that has already been assigned to an object, you can
define a locale-specific pattern. The syntax of a locale-specific pattern is defined as follows:
category_name(locale_name){pattern}
where
•
category_name can be date, time, num, or text.
•
locale_name is identified by a language and/or country or region code, as defined in RFC 1766 (Tags for the
Identification of Languages, 1995).
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•
pattern is the simple pattern for processing values.
For example, to force a date/time field to translate a date into the French language according to France’s country code,
you would define the pattern as follows:
date(fr_FR){DD MMMM, YYYY}
Variable patterns
In cases where the user input or bound data is available in more than one format (for example, telephone numbers may
or may not have a three-digit area code), you can define a pattern that accounts for the differences. The syntax for
defining a number of acceptable patterns is as follows:
category_name{pattern}|category_name{pattern}|category_name{pattern}
where each pattern is separated by a vertical bar (|). You can specify an unlimited number of patterns. For example,
the following construct handles two different text patterns:
text{999*9999}|text{999*999*9999}
To set a default font for values in new forms
1 On the Tools menu, select Options.
2 Click Default Fonts.
3 Under Default Value Font Properties For New Forms, select Typeface, Size, and Style options. as needed.
To set a default font for values in an existing form
1 Click File > Form Properties.
2 Click Default Fonts.
3 Under Default Value Font Properties, select Typeface, Size, and Style options. as needed.
More Help topics
“Form Validation (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 659
“Dynamically populate a validation pattern message” on page 530
“Numeric patterns” on page 441
“Text field patterns” on page 491
“Password patterns” on page 452
Setting up an object for other languages
To set up an object for Arabic and Hebrew
Objects, which are the building blocks of every form, have different appearances depending on the language the form
is designed for.
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For example, a drop-down list in an English form has the caption typically on the left and the drop-down arrow on the
right. However, in Arabic and Hebrew, the drop-down list has the caption on the right and the drop-down arrow on
the left because these are right-to-left languages.
To set up an object for Arabic and Hebrew, you must do the following steps:
• Set the locale to Arabic or Hebrew.
• Position the caption on the right (except for check boxes and radio buttons, which need to be positioned on the left).
• Right-align the caption and value.
• Set the font to one that the language supports.
Setting up an object for Arabic and Hebrew applies to the following objects:
• Check boxes
• Date/time fields
• Decimal fields
• Signature Fields
• Drop-down lists
• List boxes
• Numeric fields
• Password fields
• Radio buttons
• Text fields
Note: The options described in this Help topic are available only if support for the appropriate language is enabled
through Microsoft Office Language Settings.
1 Add the object.
For example, from the Object Library palette, drag the Drop-Down List object onto the form design.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 From the Locale box, select a language and country or region option.
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For example, select Arabic (Bahrain).
4 Select the object.
5 In the Font palette, select the font that supports the locale you selected.
For example, Adobe Arabic supports Arabic and Adobe Hebrew supports Hebrew. You can locate the font you
need for your language on the Internet if it is not already on your system.
6 Select the object.
7 In the Paragraph palette, click Right Align to right-align the caption and value.
8 In the Layout palette, select the appropriate option from the Position list for the caption.
Object
Position
Check boxes
Left
Date/time fields
Right
Decimal fields
Right
Signature Fields
Right
Drop-down lists
Right
List boxes
Right
Numeric fields
Right
Password fields
Right
Radio buttons
Left
Text fields
Right
View the object in the Preview PDF tab to ensure that it appears properly.
To set up an object for Thai and Vietnamese
To set up an object for Thai and Vietnamese, you must do the following steps:
• Set the locale to Thai or Vietnamese.
• Set the font to one that the language supports.
Note: The options described in this Help topic are available only if support for the appropriate language is enabled
through Microsoft Office Language Settings.
1 Add the object.
For example, from the Object Library palette, drag the Drop-Down List object onto the form design.
2 In the Object palette, click the Field tab.
3 From the Locale box, select a language and country or region option.
For example, select Thai (Thailand Traditional).
4 Select the object.
5 In the Font palette, select the font that supports the locale you selected.
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For example, Adobe Thai supports Thai and Myriad® Pro and Minion® Pro support Vietnamese. You can locate
the font you need for your language on the Internet if it is not already on your system.
6 View the object in the Preview PDF tab to ensure that it appears properly.
To set up a date field for other languages
1 Ensure that the regional and language options are set to the appropriate language in the Microsoft® Windows®
Control Panel.
2 In Designer, drag the Date/Time field object onto the form design from the Object Library palette.
3 In the Object palette, select the Field tab and click the Patterns button.
4 On the Display tab, in the Pattern box, type DD/MM/gYY.
For example, for Thai dates use the following:
•
g shows B.E
•
gg shows the abbreviation of B.E in Thai
•
ggg shows the full name of B.E in Thai
5 In the Preview PDF tab, the Date/Time field and calendar look like this.
Using special objects
In addition to the standard and custom objects in the Object Library palette, Designer includes a number of objects
and/or properties that provide special functionality in a form at run time. These objects and properties include:
• Global fields
• Floating fields
• Run time properties
• Variables
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To define a global field
A global field contains information that appears in multiple locations on your form. For example, an invoice contains
an invoice number that must appear in multiple places on the form. In the form design, you could set the invoice
number to be a global field and reuse it elsewhere as needed.
Global fields are extremely useful when you have information that you know will be repeated in multiple places. Not
only does the use of global fields reduce the amount of data that needs to be sent, they help ensure that exactly the same
data appears in the necessary areas of the form.
Using the Global binding property, you can apply the same value to all objects in the form that have the same name.
When you apply the global setting to an object, all objects with the same name will be bound to the same data at run
time. Because identically named global objects are linked to the same data value, the data displayed in one global object
is automatically displayed in all other global objects having the same name. You cannot have more than one identically
named object in a form where some, but not all, of the objects are set to global.
You can apply the global binding setting to the following types of objects:
• check boxes
• date/time fields
• drop-down lists
• image fields
• list boxes
• numeric fields
• decimal fields
• password fields
• radio buttons
• text fields
• barcoded fields (excluding Paper Form Barcode)
When you apply the global setting to an object, Designer automatically applies the global value to all other objects in
the form with the same name. Conversely, if you remove the global setting from an object, Designer removes the value
from all other objects with the same name and setting.
Note: When you apply global binding to an object, you cannot add run-time properties such as the current page, number
of pages, and current date/time to that object.
1 Add the required objects to the form design.
2 Give each object the same name.
3 Select one of the like-named objects.
4 In the Object palette, click the Binding tab and select Use Global Data from the Data Binding list. Designer displays
a message confirming that global binding will be applied to all objects that have the same name as the selected
object.
More Help topics
“Working with Data Sources” on page 494
“To name and rename objects” on page 271
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To insert a floating field
You can insert a floating field into a text object to display different types of information. Floating fields are objects that
support the merging of text, numeric values, run-time properties, and scripting within a text object when the form is
rendered. You can insert floating fields into text objects only.
Floating fields are text field objects by default, but you can change the object type from the Type list in the Field tab of
the Object palette.
You can also bind floating fields to a data source to display specific text or numeric values. For example, you can insert
a floating field to render individual customer names in the introductory greeting of a form letter. The floating field
appears as a TextField object, as shown in this example.
(Dear Mr./Ms. {TextField})
1 Click inside the Text object in which you want to place the floating Text Field object.
2 Place your cursor on the line where you want Designer to insert the floating Text Field object.
3 Select Insert > Floating Field.
4 To set the properties of the Floating Field, click the Floating Field marker inside the Text object, and then select
options as needed. It is good practice to rename the floating Text Field object and specify the necessary binding.
Set the properties of the floating field object independently of setting the properties of the text object. By default,
floating field objects are set to Hidden (Exclude from layout) in the Presence list.
If you want to dynamically update the value of a floating field inside Adobe Reader (through scripting, for example),
you must use Adobe Reader 9.1 or later. Set the target version to Acrobat and Adobe Reader 9.1 or later and save the
form as a dynamic PDF form. If you expect a large amount of text to exceed the bounds of the floating field, set the
Expand to Fit option for both the floating field and its parent text container to make them growable.
More Help topics
“To insert run-time properties” on page 383
“Using text” on page 325
“Using text fields” on page 330
To insert run-time properties
Using run-time properties in a form design, you can display certain types of information in the form at run time. The
types of information you can display are the current page, page count, current date/time, viewer locale, viewer name,
and viewer version.
You can insert run-time properties into the following objects:
• Numeric field
• Text
• Text field
You can only insert run-time properties into the value portion of the field and not the field’s caption.
You use the commands in the Insert menu to add run-time properties to a text object. Alternatively, you can use the
Type list to add run-time properties to either a text field object or a numeric field object. Designer adds the run-time
property to the selected object, along with a calculate script that generates the intended value and a default value based
on the property.
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Note: When you add the current page run-time property to an object, do not apply the global binding option as well
because Designer will apply the same page number on every page instead of unique values.
To add a run-time property to a text object
1 Click the text field.
2 Select Insert and select the run-time property you want to insert.
To add a run-time property to a text field or numeric field object
1 Click the text field or numeric field.
2 On the Object palette, click the Value tab and select Calculated - Read Only from the Type list. The Runtime
Properties option appears.
3 Select Runtime Properties and, in the list below it, select the run-time property you want to insert.
More Help topics
“About numeric fields” on page 301
“Using text” on page 325
“Using text fields” on page 330
To add variables to a form
Use variables to insert varying text or values. A variable is a segment of text or values that Designer can automatically
update or change (on demand) using scripting.
The variables element can hold any number or any kind of separate data items. Because each data item is individually
named with its own name attribute, they can be individually addressed by scripts.
You can define text variables and then insert them into captions or other text. For example, you could apply variables
to product terminology that may change at some point. If the variable (term) needs to change, you can open the
affected form and update the variable value, and Designer will automatically update all instances of the term.
To create a variable, you must name the variable and provide the value you want Designer to use. For example, you
might create a variable called ProductName that contains the current name of a product, which you can update if
needed.
Variable values are saved with the form.
More Help topics
“Variables (Form Properties dialog box)” on page 660
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Chapter 9: Object Properties
Layout properties in the Layout palette
Using the Layout palette, you can specify a number of characteristics that apply to the selected object, including its size
and position, margins, and location of captions. You can specify layout properties for each object on the page.
X and Y Sets the horizontal and vertical position of the object’s anchor point. If the setting in the Anchor list is not Top
Left, X and Y options change to AnchorX and AnchorY. See “To position objects” on page 347
Width, Height, and Expand to Fit/Auto-fit Sets the minimum overall height and width of the object and enables
expansion in that direction if required. See “To position objects” on page 347 and “To make objects expand to fit” on
page 346.
Note: To manually expand objects, you can also select the Show Text Overflow Indicators option on the Wizards and Tips
panel in the Options dialog box. See “Wizards and Tips (Options dialog box)” on page 676.
The Auto-fit options appears for subform objects only. When selected, the subform changes size in Designer to fit the
enclosed content.
Anchor Sets the object’s anchor point. See “To rotate objects” on page 343.
Rotate
Rotates the object around its anchor point. See “To rotate objects” on page 343.
Content Alignment in a Flowed Container Sets the alignment of the selected object in a subform that flows content.
Margins Sets the amount of white space on the left and right sides of the object and above and below the object. See
“Formatting objects” on page 355.
Caption Sets the position of a caption. See “Creating an insertion point” on page 359.
Reserve Sets the amount of space reserved for a caption. See “Formatting objects” on page 355.
A reserve of 0 sets the caption area to auto-fit. It adjusts the size of the object to fit the caption.
Border properties in the Border palette
Using the Border palette, you can edit the border properties for objects that have borders. You can edit the borders
individually or together.
Edges Sets border properties for all or individual edges:
• Edit Individually Applies a border to each edge separately. This option does not apply to three-dimensional
borders.
• Edit Together Applies the same border to all edges.
• Side
• Color Picker
Corners
Sets the style and width of the borders.
Sets the line color.
Applies a style to border corners.
Radius Sets the radius of notched corners.
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Object Properties
Omit Border Around Page Breaks Omits the selected object’s bottom border on the first page and top border on the
second page.
Style Sets the background fill color or pattern:
• Color Picker
Sets the background fill colors.
More Help topics
Understanding Borders and Margins in Flowed Layouts
Font properties in the Font palette
Using the Font palette, you can change the font family, size, style, and scale, as well as the baseline shift, letter spacing,
and kerning of the text in one or more selected objects.
Font Sets the typeface.
Font Size Sets the typeface size.
Style
Sets the typeface style.
Baseline Shift Sets the amount of space to move a character (or group of characters) up or down relative to the
baseline. Positive numbers shift characters up, and negative numbers shift characters down.
Letter Spacing Sets the amount of space to leave between the letters in a word or between a group of words.
Vertical Scale Sets the degree (percentage) by which to increase or decrease the vertical size of text.
Horizontal Scale Sets the degree (percentage) by which to increase or decrease the horizontal size of text.
Auto Kern Reduces the amount of space between letters within a word or group of words.
Note: The Font Size and Style options are available with fixed size fonts (for example, Courier New). However, it is
recommended that you do not modify fixed sized fonts. Fixed sized fonts are printed in their original size and style. (See
XDC Editor Help.)
Paragraph properties in the Paragraph palette
Using the Paragraph palette, you can change the justification, indentation, and line spacing of the selected text.
Align
Sets horizontal alignment options:
• Align Left Left-aligns the caption or value.
• Align Center Center-aligns the caption or value.
• Align Right Right-aligns the caption or value.
• Justify Justifies the caption or value. Full justification is applied to all of the lines except the last line in a multipleline caption or value (single-line paragraphs cannot be justified).
Sets the alignment for numeric fields based on the radix (decimal point). This option appears on the
Paragraph palette only when a numeric field object is selected.
Radix
Important: Numeric fields with a defined radix alignment setting are not supported in PDF forms for Acrobat 6.0.2 and
Adobe Reader 6.0.2.
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Object Properties
Vertical Alignment
Sets vertical alignment options:
• Align Top Aligns to the top of the area reserved for the caption and value.
• Align Middle Aligns to the middle of the area reserved for the caption and value.
• Align Bottom Aligns to the bottom of the area reserved for the caption and value.
Lists Sets list options:
• Bulleted List Starts a bulleted list. Click the arrow to choose different bullet styles.
• Numbered List Starts a numbered list. Click the arrow to choose different number styles.
• Decrease Indent Decreases the indent level of the list.
• Increase Indent Increases the indent level of the list.
• Start Sets the start number for the selected item in the numbered list.
• Compound Tags Creates a multi-level numbered list.
First Sets the first line indentation:
• None Indents all lines by the same amount.
• First line Indents the first line only.
• Hanging Indents all lines except the first.
By Sets the amount of the first line or hanging indentation.
Spacing Sets the amount of space above and below the paragraph:
• Above Sets the amount of vertical space above the paragraph. This value is added to any value specified in the
Below box.
• Below Sets the amount of vertical space below the paragraph. This value is added to any value specified in the
Above box.
Line Spacing Sets the amount of space between lines:
• Single Makes the line height equivalent to the height of the tallest character in the line.
• 1.5 Lines Makes the line height one and a half times the height of the tallest character in the line.
• Double Line Makes the line height twice the height of the tallest character in the line.
• Exactly Makes the line height equivalent to the setting in the At box.
Hyphenate Adds or removes hyphenation in individual objects (text objects, the caption area of objects such as text
fields, decimal fields, numeric fields, and signature fields, and the value area of text field objects). Use the Hyphenate
option to manually adjust the layout of text on an object-by-object basis. This option is available when you select Allow
Hyphenation in Text and Field Captions, or Allow Hyphenation in Text Field Values, or both.
Accessibility properties in the Accessibility palette
Designer includes a number of options that support screen readers. For each field object in a form, you can specify one
of several settings for screen reader text:
• Custom screen reader text, which you set in the Accessibility palette
• Tool tips for objects, which you set in the Accessibility palette
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Object Properties
• Captions for fields
• Names of objects, as specified in the Name option in the Binding tab
The settings determine the information that screen readers read for objects on PDF forms. Only one setting is
spoken for each object.
When the form is saved as tagged PDF, Designer searches the form for these settings. The default search order is
Custom Text, Tool tip, Caption, and Name. You can override this default order by using the Screen Reader
Precedence option in the Accessibility palette.
You can dynamically populate a tool tip and custom screen reader text with values from a data source.
Note: Tool tips appear at run time when the user hovers the pointer over an object. The settings on the Accessibility
palette have no effect on objects when the form is rendered as a PDF form.
Role Determines how screen readers interpret the subform, table, selected row in a table, list, heading, or heading
level:
• Table Assigns the role of a table to the selected subform. When the user navigates to this subform, most screen
readers identify it as a table and indicate the number of rows and columns.
• Header Row Assigns the role of a header row to the selected subform or table row. When speaking the contents
of a body row cell, most screen readers first identify the content of the corresponding cell in the header row.
• Body Row Assigns the role of a body row to the selected subform or table row. If a cell contains a subform,
screen readers typically speak the content of the corresponding cell in the header row, followed by the fields in the
subform.
• Footer Row Assigns the role of a footer row to the selected subform or table row.
• List Assigns the role of a list to the selected subform.
• List Item Assigns the role of a list item to the selected subform. A list item role can only be assigned to a subform
that is contained in a subform that has a List role specified. You cannot define a table or table row as a list or list
item; however, a list item can contain a table.
• Heading Assigns the role of heading to the selected text object.
• Heading Level 1 to Heading Level 6 Assigns the role of the heading level to the selected text object.
• (None) Specifies a row that conveys information about the table or its content. The row is not considered to be
part of the table; however, the screen reader will read its contents.
Tool Tip Defines a tool tip for the object. Tool tips appear at run time when the user hovers the pointer over the
object. A screen reader can read the text entered in this box.
You cannot have both unique custom tool-tip text and unique custom screen-reader text for one object. You must
choose one or the other. If you want to use the same text for the tool tip and the text read by the screen reader, type
a tool tip and select Tool Tip from the Screen Reader Precedence list.
Note: Tool Tip is a dynamic property for most objects. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a
green underline that you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off,
use the Show Dynamic Properties command in the Object palette menu.
Screen Reader Precedence Indicates which setting the screen reader should read. Only one setting is spoken for
each object:
• Custom Text Reads the text specified in the Custom Screen Reader Text box. This setting is the default.
• Tool Tip Reads the text specified in the Tool Tip box.
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Object Properties
• Caption Reads the caption specified for the object. The position of the caption relative to the object does not
change the order in which the screen reader reads the caption. By default, the screen reader reads the caption if
nothing is specified in the Tool Tip box or the Custom Screen Reader Text box. This setting is the preferred choice
for screen readers.
• Name Reads the name of the object, as specified in the Name field in the Binding tab of the Object palette.
• None Disables the custom tool tip or custom screen reader text for the field.
Custom Screen Reader Text Defines custom text for the selected object. The screen reader reads the text entered in
this box.
You cannot have both unique custom tool tip text and unique custom screen reader text for one object. You must
choose one or the other. If you want custom screen reader text to be both the tool tip text and the screen reader text,
type the custom text and select Custom Text from the Screen Reader Precedence list.
Note: Custom Screen Reader Text is a dynamic property for most objects. Dynamic properties are identified by active
labels that have a green underline that you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active
labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic Properties command in the Object palette menu.
Master page properties in the Master Page tab
Use the Master Page tab of the Object palette to set the page name and various layout options for each master page. To
display the Master Page tab, select the master page you want to work with in the Hierarchy palette.
Name Sets the name of the master page.
Paper Type, Height, and Width Sets the size of the master page. The dimensions are displayed in the Height and Width
boxes and can be modified when the Paper Type option is set to Custom.
Orientation Sets the orientation of the master page:
• Portrait The page height is greater than or equal to the page width.
• Landscape The page width is greater than or equal to the page height.
Note: Set the page orientation explicitly as portrait or landscape for the Custom Paper Type. If the form width is greater
than the form height, the orientation does not change to landscape automatically when Custom Paper Type is selected.
Restrict Page Occurrence, Min Count, and Max Select this option only for creating forms whose layout adjusts to
accommodate data. It enables or disables the repetitive rendering of pages that are based on the selected master page.
When the option is selected, you can enter a minimum number of repetitions in the Min Count box and a maximum
number of repetitions in the Max box.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
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Object Properties
One-sided Printing Only The object is printed only when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
Master page properties in the Pagination tab
When you select a Master Page, the Pagination tab in the Object palette presents a number of pagination options.
Odd / Even Specifies whether the master page appears on the front (odd) side, back (even) side, or both sides of the
paper when the rendered form is printed:
• Odd (Front) Pages The master page appears on the odd-numbered printed pages.
• Even (Back) Pages The master page appears on the even-numbered printed pages.
• Blank Pages Inserts a blank page with no flowed content. This option is useful in double-sided printing when you
want the back (even) side of the printed page to be blank so that the next section starts on the front (odd) side of the
next printed page.
• No Odd/Even Restrictions There are no restrictions on the master page during double-sided printing. This option
is the default for all master pages.
Placement Specifies the page that the master page is applied to in the form design:
• First Page (in Page Set) The master page is applied to the first page within the page set.
• Last Page (in Page Set) The master page is applied to the last page within the page set.
• Only Page (in Document) The master page is applied to the only page within the page set. Choose the Only Page (in
Document) option when the data merged into the form does not cause the content area to flow onto more than one
page. Only one master page can have a placement set to Only Page (in Document).
• Rest of Pages The master page is applied to pages between, but not including, the first and last pages generated by
the page set.
• No Placement Restrictions No restriction is applied to the master page’s location. No Placement Restrictions is the
default placement.
Include Page in Numbering Specifies whether pages that have been rendered according to the selected master page
should contribute to the total page count. By default, the option is selected and all pages are counted.
If First Page in Document Sets the page numbering for pages that have been rendered, according to the selected master
page:
• Continue Numbering from Previous Document in Batch The numbering increments from the last document
processed by Forms.
• Start At The numbering starts at this specified value.
Page set properties in the Page Set tab
Use the Page Set tab of the Object palette to set the name and occurrence options for each page set. To display the Page
Set tab, select the page set you want to work with in the Hierarchy palette.
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Object Properties
You can set these options for each page set.
Name Sets the name of the page set.
Printing Controls whether the page set is printed on only the front side of each sheet of paper or on both sides of each
sheet of paper.
Restrict PageSet Occurrence, Min Count, and Max Select this option only for creating interactive forms. It enables or
disables the repetitive rendering of pages that are based on master pages in the selected page set. When the option is
selected, you can enter a minimum number of repetitions in the Min Count box and a maximum number of repetitions
in the Max box.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is printed only when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
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Chapter 10: Properties in the Object
palette
Barcode
Barcode properties in the Field tab
When you select a barcode, the Field tab in the Object palette displays several options for formatting barcodes.
Location
Sets the location of the barcode text. The options available on the list change depending on the barcode selected. This
list is unavailable with certain barcodes.
Property/Value
Sets barcode-specific properties.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
More Help topics
“Using barcodes” on page 273
Barcode properties in the Value tab
When you create a barcode, the Value tab displays several options that you can apply to the object.
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Properties in the Object palette
Type
Enables run-time calculations and prompts:
User Entered - Optional Users can choose whether to enter data.
User Entered - Recommended A user is recommended to enter a value in the field. If the user enters a value, leaves the
field and then clears it, a custom message box appears (if written in the Empty Message box). A standard empty
message appears if you do not type a custom message. If the user never attempts to enter a value in the field and tries
to submit the form, a field is required message appears and the user can choose to ignore the message and submit the
form.
User Entered - Required A user must enter a value in the field. If the user enters a value, leaves the field and then clears
it, a custom message box appears (if written in the Empty Message box). A standard empty message appears if you do
not type a custom message. A message only appears if there was a value in the field, the value was deleted, and the user
exited the field without re-entering a value. If the user never attempts to enter a value in the field and tries to submit
the form, a field is required message appears.
Calculated - Read Only A data value will be calculated and displayed through an attached script. Users cannot edit the
calculated value.
Calculated - User Can Override A data value will be calculated and displayed through an attached script. Users can edit
the value if the calculation script has been written to accept the input. If a user does edit the calculated value, the custom
message you specify in the Override Message box appears.
Protected Prevents a user from making changes to the value in the field. Indirect changes such as calculations can
occur. The protected field is not included in the tabbing sequence and it does not generate events.
Read Only A data value will be merged or calculated and displayed at run time. Users cannot edit the value.
Default
Sets an initial value for the barcode. The length of the default value entered can effect the displayed width of certain
barcodes.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to User Entered - Optional, User Entered - Recommended,
User Entered - Required, or Read Only.
Empty Message
Sets a message for prompting users to enter a recommended or required value. See “To prompt users to enter data” on
page 367.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to User Entered - Recommended or User Entered Required.
Validation Pattern
Sets a validation pattern for validating user input. The pattern must match the syntax of the user input and be
compatible with the data format selected on the Binding tab. See “To validate user input” on page 368.
Note: This option is not available when the Type option is set to Protected, Calculated - Read Only, or Read Only.
Validation Pattern Message and Error
Sets a custom message to display when a raw value does not match the validation pattern. By default, this situation
causes a programming error to be generated at run time. To generate a warning instead, deselect the Error option. See
“To validate user input” on page 368 .
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Properties in the Object palette
Note: Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that you can click to dynamically
bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic Properties command in the
Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a validation pattern message” on page 530.
Validation Script Message and Error
Sets a custom message to display when an attached validation script detects an unacceptable value. By default, this
situation causes a programming error to be generated at run time. To generate a warning instead, deselect the Error
option. See “To validate user input” on page 368 .
Note: This option is not available when the Type option is set to Calculated - Read Only or Read Only. Validation Script
Message is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that you
can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a validation script message” on page 532.
Form Level Validation Settings
Open the Forms Properties dialog box on the Form Validation tab. See “Form Validation (Form Properties dialog
box)” on page 659.
Override Message
Sets a custom message to inform users that they are changing the value of a calculated field. The message appears when
a user changes the calculated value.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to Calculated - User Can Override.
More Help topics
“Using barcodes” on page 273
“To control how a barcode obtains data” on page 275
“Dynamically populate a validation pattern message” on page 530
“Dynamically populate a validation script message” on page 532
Barcode properties in the Binding tab
The Binding tab displays several options for binding barcodes. Options that are not specifically related to creating a
data connection apply both to data bound to a data source and data saved to a file when the object is not bound to a
data source.
Name
Sets the barcode name. See “To name and rename objects” on page 271.
Data Binding
Sets the default data-binding method:
Use name Enables data merging and saving options. Data values are merged and stored implicitly according to Adobe
data-merging rules.
Use global data Associates a single data value with all objects that have the same name (see “To define a global field”
on page 382).
New Data Connection Starts the New Data Connection wizard. To define a connection using the wizard, see “Create
a data connection to an XML schema” on page 497 or “Create a data connection to an OLE database” on page 499.
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Properties in the Object palette
No data binding Disables data binding. Because the object will not capture or display merged data, any information
associated with the object is not written as output when the form data is saved/submitted.
Import/Export Bindings
Sets an import/export binding for a WSDL data connection. See “Create a data connection using a WSDL file” on
page 502.
More Help topics
“Working with Data Sources” on page 494
“Using barcodes” on page 273
“To define custom data-binding properties for a barcode” on page 276
Supported barcode formats
The following is a list of supported barcode formats:
Aztec Aztec format (hardware-rendered)
AUS Post Custom2 AUSPOST Custom 2 format
AUS Post Custom3 AUSPOST Custom 3 format
AUS Post Reply Paid AUSPOST Reply Paid format
AUS Post Standard AUSPOST Standard format
Codabar Codabar format, which offers USD-4, NW-7, and 2-of-7 Code compatibility.
Code 11 Code 11 format (hardware-rendered)
Code 128SSCC UCC/EAN 128 Serial Shipping Container Code (SSCC) format
Code 128 Code128 format
Code 128A Code128, set A format
Code 128B Code128, set B format
Code 128C Code128, set C format
Code 2 of 5 Industrial 2 of 5 Industrial format
Code 2 of 5 Interleaved 2 of 5 Interleaved format, which offers Code 25, I2of5, ITF, and I25 compatibility
Code 2 of 5 Matrix 2 of 5 Matrix format
Code 2 of 5 Standard Code 2 of 5 standard format (hardware-rendered)
Code 3 of 9 - 3 3 of 9 format
Code 93 Code 93 format (hardware-rendered)
Code 49 Code 49 format (hardware-rendered)
Data Matrix Data Matrix format
EAN13 EAN13 format
EAN8 EAN8 format
Japanese Postal Barcode Japanese Postal barcode format
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Properties in the Object palette
Logmars Logmars format (hardware-rendered)
MSI MSI format (hardware-rendered)
PDF 417 A two-dimensional format that accommodates up to 1 800 ASCII characters
Paper Forms Barcode Paper Forms Barcode format
Planet Code Planet Code format (hardware-rendered)
Plessey Plessey format (hardware-rendered)
QR Code Quick Response (QR) 2-D Code format (hardware-rendered)
RFID Radio frequency identification barcode (hardware-rendered)
RSS 14 Stacked RSS 14 Stacked format (hardware-rendered)
RSS 14 Omni RSS 14 Omni format (hardware-rendered)
RSS 14 Truncated RSS 14 Truncated format (hardware-rendered)
RSS Expanded (RSS Expanded format (hardware-rendered)
RSS Limited RSS Limited format (hardware-rendered)
UK Post RM4SCC UK/Royal Mail RM4SCC format
UPC-A UPC-A format
UPC-E UPC-E format (hardware-rendered)
UPS Maxicode UPS Maxicode format (hardware-rendered)
UPC EAN2 UPC EAN2 format (hardware-rendered)
UPC EAN5 UPC EAN5 format (hardware-rendered)
US Postal Zip-5 US Postal 5-digit (ZIP) format
US Postal DPBC Delivery Point ZIP +6 format
US Postal Standard US Postal Standard format
US Postal Intelligent Mail US Postal Intelligent Mail Barcode
Note: Additional hardware-specific barcode formats can be added to the default set of supported barcode formats.
More Help topics
“Using barcodes” on page 273
Valid barcode text characters
This table identifies the characters that you can use in barcode text.
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Properties in the Object palette
Barcode
Valid Characters
Aztec
0123456789
AUS Post Custom2
AUS Post Custom3
AUS Post Reply Paid
AUS Post Standard
Code 2 of 5 Industrial
Code 2 of 5 Standard
Code 3 of 9 - 3
Code 2 of 5 Interleaved
Code 2 of 5 Matrix
EAN13
EAN8
MSI
UPC-A
UPC-E
UPC-EAN2
UPC-EAN5
US Postal Zip-5
US Postal DPBC
US Postal Standard
UPS Maxicode
Codabar
0123456789
-$:/.+
Code 11
0123456789
-
Code 128SSCC
0123456789
Code 128
!#&'<>`
Code 128A
$ % ( ) * + , - . / : ; ? @ # = [ ] \ ^ _ { } | ~ SPACE
Code 128B
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
Code 128C
abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz
Code 3 of 9
0123456789
- . $ / + % * SPACE
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
Code 49
0123456789
<>-.$/+%:;?=
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
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Properties in the Object palette
Barcode
Valid Characters
Code 93
0123456789
& ' - . $ ( ) / + % , SPACE
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
Logmars
0123456789
- . $ / + % SPACE
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
RSS 14
0123456789
RSS 14 Stacked
RSS 14 Stacked Omni
RSS 14 Truncated
RSS Expanded
RSS Limited
PDF 417
No restrictions
Plessey
0123456789
ABCDEF
UK Post RM4SCC
0123456789
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
Japanese Postal
0123456789
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ
More Help topics
“Using barcodes” on page 273
Button
Button properties in the Field tab
When you select a button, the Field tab in the Object palette displays several options for formatting buttons.
Type
Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Caption
Sets a caption for the object.
Note: Caption is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a caption” on page 528.
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Properties in the Object palette
Appearance
Sets the border style:
No Border Removes the line around the button.
Solid Border Creates a thick line around the button.
Raised Border Creates a shadow around the button so that the button looks three-dimensional.
Custom Opens the Custom Appearance dialog box. Select this option if you want to define a custom look for the
button.
Highlighting
Sets the button highlight when the button is clicked:
None Removes the button highlight.
Inverted Inverts the button highlight when the button is clicked.
Push Creates a shadow around the button so that the button looks like it is recessed.
Outline Creates a line around the button when the button is clicked.
Rollover Caption
Sets a rollover caption when the button highlight is set to Push. This caption appears when the mouse pointer moves
over the button.
Down Caption
Sets a down caption when the button highlight is set to Push. This caption appears when the button is clicked.
Control Type
Determines what happens when a user clicks the button. These options are not displayed for the Print or Reset buttons:
Regular The attached script or calculation will run. The script or calculation is provided by the user.
Submit Data will be submitted according to the settings in the Submit tab. See “Button properties in the Submit tab”
on page 403.
Execute A web-service operation or database query will be executed according to the settings in the Execute tab. See
“Button properties in the Execute tab” on page 404.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
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Properties in the Object palette
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
Locale
Renders the data according to the specified locale for language and country or region. You can select a specific
language and country from the list, or you can specify one of these options:
Default Locale Uses the Default Locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box.
Viewer’s System Locale Uses the system locale of the user’s computer.
Note: Locales in the Locale list are organized first by language and then by country or region.
More Help topics
“Using buttons” on page 276
Print button properties in the Field tab
When you select a button, the Field tab in the Object palette displays several options for formatting buttons.
Type
Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Caption
Sets a caption for the object.
Note: Caption is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a caption” on page 528.
Appearance
Sets the border style:
No Border Removes the line around the button.
Solid Border Creates a thick line around the button.
Raised Border Creates a shadow around the button so that the button looks three-dimensional.
Custom Opens the Custom Appearance dialog box. Select this option if you want to define a custom look for the
button.
Highlighting
Sets the button highlight when the button is clicked:
None Removes the button highlight.
Inverted Inverts the button highlight when the button is clicked.
Push Creates a shadow around the button so that the button looks like it is recessed.
Outline Creates a line around the button when the button is clicked.
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Properties in the Object palette
Rollover Caption
Sets a rollover caption when the button highlight is set to Push. This caption appears when the mouse pointer moves
over the button.
Down Caption
Sets a down caption when the button highlight is set to Push. This caption appears when the button is clicked.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
Renders the data according to the specified locale for language and country or region. You can select a specific
language and country from the list, or you can specify one of these options:
Default Locale Uses the Default Locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box.
Viewer’s System Locale Uses the system locale of the user’s computer.
Note: Locales in the Locale list are organized first by language and then by country or region.
More Help topics
“Using buttons” on page 276
Reset button properties in the Field tab
When you select a button, the Field tab in the Object palette displays several options for formatting buttons.
Type Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Caption
Sets a caption for the object.
Note: Caption is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a caption” on page 528.
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Properties in the Object palette
Appearance
Sets the border style:
No Border Removes the line around the button.
Solid Border Creates a thick line around the button.
Raised Border Creates a shadow around the button so that the button looks three-dimensional.
Custom Opens the Custom Appearance dialog box. Select this option if you want to define a custom look for the
button.
Highlighting
Sets the button highlight when the button is clicked:
None Removes the button highlight.
Inverted Inverts the button highlight when the button is clicked.
Push Creates a shadow around the button so that the button looks like it is recessed.
Outline Creates a line around the button when the button is clicked.
Rollover Caption
Sets a rollover caption when the button highlight is set to Push. This caption appears when the mouse pointer moves
over the button.
Down Caption
Sets a down caption when the button highlight is set to Push. This caption appears when the button is clicked.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
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Properties in the Object palette
Locale
Renders the data according to the specified locale for language and country or region. You can select a specific
language and country from the list, or you can specify one of these options:
Default Locale Uses the Default Locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box.
Viewer’s System Locale Uses the system locale of the user’s computer.
Note: Locales in the Locale list are organized first by language and then by country or region.
More Help topics
“Using buttons” on page 276
Button properties in the Submit tab
When you create a button and set its Control Type to Submit, the Submit tab appears in the Object palette. It displays
several options specific to formatting buttons that submit data.
Submit to URL
Sets the location of a web-hosted server. You can specify the ftp, http, https, or mailto protocol.
Submit As
Sets the format of the data to submit.
XML Data Package (XDP) Submits a package in the file format created by Designer. Choose this format if the form
initiates server-side processing, or to submit the form design, the form data, annotations, and all other relevant
information needed for Forms to subsequently render the form at run time.
PDF Submits a package containing an embedded PDF file. Choose this format if the form contains a signature field,
or if a copy of the form along with its data needs to be saved by Forms, or submitted to another type of target server.
Do not choose this option if the form initiates server-side processing, if Forms will be used to render at run time HTML
forms or forms whose layout adjusts, or if the form is a PDF form that will be filled in Adobe Reader without the use
of Reader Extensions.
XML Data (XML) Submits an XML data stream, which allows for the hierarchical representation of data and can be
parsed by any generic XML parser. Choose this format if the server that communicates with the run-time user
application program must receive an XML data steam.
URL-Encoded Data (HTTP Post) Submits a text stream to the specified Uniform Resource Locator (URL) using the
POST method. The text stream can be parsed by an FTP server, a mail server, a web server, or a CGI script that processes
HTML forms. To use this method, users must open the form in Adobe Reader 6.0 or later or in a web browser unless
the URL specifies the mailto protocol.
Sign Submission Applies a data signature to the submitted data. When a form filler clicks the button, a digital
signature is created to cover the submitted data and attachments. Data signatures secure the signed data and guarantee
the data integrity during transmission. You apply data signatures to the form data or to the entire submission,
including attachments. Click the Settings buton to define optional security properties for the data signature, such as
the signature handler, signing certificates, and certificate issuers.
Encrypt Submission Encrypts form content. When a form filler clicks the button, the form content is encrypted before
submission to secure the form content during transmission. You apply encryption to the form data or to the entire
submission, including attachments. Click the Settings buton to define optional encryption properties such as
encryption algorithm, encryption certificate, certificate issuers, and key usage.
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Properties in the Object palette
Include
Sets the items to include as attachments. Attachments may be included with XDP files only.
Annotations Includes review comments, tool tips, and any other special tags needed to capture screen reader text.
PDF (Includes Signatures) When selected, includes a PDF version of the form when it is submitted as an attachment;
otherwise, a reference to an embedded PDF file is included.
Template Includes a copy of the form design without merged data.
Other Includes one or more <xdp> elements in the XDP source file. The specified elements must be separated by
commas and white space is optional. For example: xci, xslt, sourceset.
Data Encoding
Sets the encoding format for data transfers.
UTF-8 Unicode Transformation Format 8.
UTF-16 Unicode Transformation Format 16.
Shift_JIS Shifted encoding of the Japanese Industrial Standard.
Big5 Common standard for encoding traditional Chinese characters.
GBK Simplified Chinese (GB 13000.1-93) character encoding (an extension of GB 2312-80).
KSC_5601 Korean encoding.
GB18030 People's Republic of China (PRC) official character set encoding (supersedes GB2312).
More Help topics
“Using buttons” on page 276
“Submitting data using a button” on page 284
Button properties in the Execute tab
When you create a button and set its Control Type to Execute, the Execute tab appears in the Object palette. It displays
several options specific to formatting buttons with a data connection.
Connection
Sets the connection. See “Create a data connection using a WSDL file” on page 502.
Connection Info
Provides connection information and the name of the operation or query to run.
Run At
Sets the execution location.
Client Processes the request on the client computer.
Server Processes the request on the server.
Client And Server Processes the request on the client computer and server.
Re-merge Form Data
Enables or disables the updating of the form structure after processing completes.
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Properties in the Object palette
More Help topics
“Using buttons” on page 276
“Processing options for a button” on page 280
Check box
Check box properties in the Field tab
When you select a check box, the Field tab in the Object palette displays several options for formatting check boxes.
Type Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Caption
Sets a caption for the object.
Note: Caption is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a caption” on page 528.
Appearance
Sets the border style for the fillable area of the check box:
None Does not include a border around the box.
Solid Square Uses a solid square to represent the box.
Sunken Square Creates a square shadow for the box so that it looks three dimensional.
Solid Circle Uses a solid circle to represent the box.
Sunken Circle Creates a circular shadow for the box so that it looks three dimensional.
Custom Opens the Custom Appearance dialog box. Select this option if you want to define a custom look for the
fillable area.
States
Sets the number of supported states:
On/Off The check box will have On (selected) and Off (clear) states.
On/Off/Neutral The check box will have On (selected), Off (clear), and Neutral (not selected or clear) states.
Values for each state must be defined in the Binding tab of the Object palette.
Size
Sets the size of the box.
Check Style
Sets the check style:
Default Uses an X for the check style.
Check Uses a check mark for the check style.
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Properties in the Object palette
Circle Uses a circle for the check style.
Cross Uses a cross for the check style.
Diamond Uses a diamond for the check style.
Square Uses a square for the check style.
Star Uses a star as the check style.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
Locale
Renders the data according to the specified locale for language and country or region. You can select a specific
language and country from the list, or you can specify one of these options:
Default Locale Uses the Default Locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box.
Viewer’s System Locale Uses the system locale of the user’s computer.
Note: Locales in the Locale list are organized first by language and then by country or region.
More Help topics
“Using check boxes” on page 290
Check box properties in the Value tab
When you create a check box, the Value tab displays several options that you can apply to the object.
Type
Enables run-time calculations and prompts.
User Entered Users may choose to enter data or not.
Calculated - Read Only A data value will be calculated and displayed at run time through an attached script. Users will
not be able to edit the calculated value.
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Properties in the Object palette
Calculated - User Can Override A data value will be calculated and displayed through an attached script. Users can edit
the value if the calculation script has been written to accept the input. If a user does edit the calculated value, the custom
message you specify in the Override Message box appears.
Read Only A data value will be merged or calculated and displayed at run time. Users will not be able to edit the value.
Default
Sets the initial state of the check box.
On The default state is On. The check box is selected initially.
Off The default state is Off. The check box is deselected initially.
Neutral The default state is Neutral. The box is filled with grey initially.
Note: The Default list is available only when the Type option is set to User Entered or Read Only. The Neutral option is
available from the Default list only when the States area in the Field tab is set to On/Off/Neutral.
Validation Script Message and Error
Sets a custom message to display when an attached validation script detects an unacceptable value. By default, this
situation causes a programming error to be generated at run time. To generate a warning instead, deselect the Error
option. See “To validate user input” on page 368.
Note: This option is not available when the Type option is set to Protect, Calculated - Read Only, or Read Only.
Validation Script Message is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green
underline that you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the
Show Dynamic Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a validation script message”
on page 532.
Form Level Validation Settings
Open the Forms Properties dialog box on the Form Validation tab. See “Form Validation (Form Properties dialog
box)” on page 659.
Override Message
Sets a custom message to inform users that they are changing the value of a calculated field. The message appears when
a user changes the calculated value.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to Calculated - User Can Override.
More Help topics
“Using check boxes” on page 290
Check box properties in the Binding tab
When you create a check box, the Binding tab presents data binding options that you can apply to the object. Options
that are not specifically related to creating a data connection apply both to data bound to a data source and data saved
to a file when the object is not bound to a data source.
Name
Sets the name of the check box. See “To name and rename objects” on page 271.
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Properties in the Object palette
Data Binding
Sets the default data-binding method:
Use name Enables data merging and saving options. Data values are merged and stored implicitly according to Adobe
data-merging rules.
Use global data Associates a single data value with all objects that have the same name (see “To define a global field”
on page 382).
New Data Connection Starts the New Data Connection wizard. To define a connection using the wizard, see “Create
a data connection to an XML schema” on page 497 or “Create a data connection to an OLE database” on page 499.
No data binding Disables data binding. Because the object will not capture or display merged data, any information
associated with the object is not written as output when the form data is saved/submitted.
On Value
Specifies the value of the check box’s On state in the data source. See “To change the values assigned to check box
states” on page 291.
Off Value
Specifies the value of the check box’s Off state in the data source.
Neutral Value
Specifies the value of the check box’s Neutral state in the data source.
Import/Export Bindings
Sets an import/export binding for a WSDL data connection. See “Create a data connection using a WSDL file” on
page 502.
More Help topics
“Working with Data Sources” on page 494
“Using check boxes” on page 290
Circle
Circle properties in the Draw tab
When you create a circle, the Draw tab in the Object palette presents options specific to formatting circles.
Type Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Appearance
Sets the shape of the object.
Ellipse Draws an elliptical shape.
Circle Draws a circular shape.
Arc Draws an arc.
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Properties in the Object palette
Start
Sets the start point of an arc.
Sweep
Sets the end point of an arc.
Line Style
Sets the line style and thickness.
Color Picker
Sets the line color.
Fill
Sets a fill style.
Color Picker
Sets fill colors.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
More Help topics
“Using circles, lines, and rectangles” on page 292
Content area
Content area properties in the Content Area tab
When a content area is selected, the Content Area tab presents two options.
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Properties in the Object palette
Name
Sets the name of the content area.
Flow Direction
Sets the flow direction for subforms within the content area.
Top to Bottom Sets the default tabbing order and data-fill order starting from the top of the page and moving to the
bottom of the page.
Western Text Sets the default tabbing order and data-fill order starting from the top of the page and moving to the
right until the last object on the right edge of the page has been reached. When the right edge of the page has been
reached, continue the tabbing order and flow direction at the next object down on the left side of the page.
Right to Left Sets the default tabbing order and data-fill order starting from the right of the page and moving to the
left of the page.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is printed only when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
More Help topics
“Using content areas” on page 294
“Data flow between content areas” on page 295
Date/time field
Date/time field properties in the Field tab
When you select a date/time field, the Field tab displays several options specific to formatting date/time fields.
Type Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Caption
Sets a caption for the object.
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Properties in the Object palette
Note: Caption is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a caption” on page 528.
Appearance
Sets the border style for the fillable area of the field:
None Does not display a border around the field.
Underlined Underlines the field.
Solid Box Displays a solid border around the field.
Sunken Box Creates a shadow around the field so that the field looks three-dimensional.
Custom Opens the Custom Appearance dialog box. Select this option if you want to define a custom look for the
fillable area.
Limit Length to Visible Area
Sets the maximum amount of characters and numbers allowed in the field according to the horizontal length of the
date/time field.
Use Cells and Cells
Enables the comb format.
Patterns
Sets the pattern for displaying formatted values in a form, for syntax of user input, for validating user input, and for
storing and retrieving bound data or saving data when the form is not bound to a data source. See “Patterns dialog
box” on page 679.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
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Properties in the Object palette
Locale
Renders the data according to the specified locale for language and country or region. You can select a specific
language and country from the list, or you can specify one of these options:
Default Locale Uses the Default Locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box.
Viewer’s System Locale Uses the system locale of the user’s computer.
Note: Locales in the Locale list are organized first by language and then by country or region.
More Help topics
“Using date/time fields” on page 297
“To specify a display pattern” on page 366
“To specify an edit pattern” on page 368
“Date and time patterns” on page 375
Date/time field properties in the Value tab
When you create a date/time field, the Value tab displays several options that you can apply to the object.
Type
Enables run-time calculations and prompts:
User Entered - Optional Users can choose whether to enter data.
User Entered - Recommended A user is recommended to enter a value in the field. If the user enters a value, leaves the
field and then clears it, a custom message box appears (if written in the Empty Message box). A standard empty
message appears if you do not type a custom message. If the user never attempts to enter a value in the field and tries
to submit the form, a field is required message appears and the user can choose to ignore the message and submit the
form.
User Entered - Required A user must enter a value in the field. If the user enters a value, leaves the field and then clears
it, a custom message box appears (if written in the Empty Message box). A standard empty message appears if you do
not type a custom message. A message only appears if there was a value in the field, the value was deleted, and the user
exited the field without re-entering a value. If the user never attempts to enter a value in the field and tries to submit
the form, a field is required message appears.
Calculated - Read Only A data value will be calculated and displayed through an attached script. Users cannot edit the
calculated value.
Calculated - User Can Override A data value will be calculated and displayed through an attached script. Users can edit
the value if the calculation script has been written to accept the input. If a user does edit the calculated value, the custom
message you specify in the Override Message box appears.
Protected Prevents a user from making changes to the value in the field. Indirect changes such as calculations can
occur. The protected field is not included in the tabbing sequence and it does not generate events.
Read Only A data value will be merged or calculated and displayed at run time. Users cannot edit the value.
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Properties in the Object palette
Default
Sets an initial value for the field. The value is formatted according to the option selected in the Select Type list in the
Patterns dialog box, but must conform to the value in the short date or time format according to the locale specified
for the field. See “Date formats” on page 374and “Time formats” on page 374to learn more about short dates and times.
If the data is bound and a data pattern has been specified, the value must match the data pattern specified in the
Binding tab. See “To specify a default value” on page 366.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to User Entered - Optional, User Entered - Recommended,
User Entered - Required, or Read Only.
Empty Message
Sets a message for prompting users to enter a recommended or required value. See “To prompt users to enter data” on
page 367.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to User Entered - Recommended or User Entered Required.
Validation Pattern
Sets a validation pattern for validating user input. The pattern must match the syntax of the user input.
Note: This option is not available when the Type option is set to Protected, Calculated - Read Only or Read Only.
Validation Pattern Message and Error
Sets a custom message to display when a raw value does not match the validation pattern. By default, this situation
causes a programming error to be generated at run time. To generate a warning instead, deselect the Error option. See
“To validate user input” on page 368.
Note: Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that you can click to dynamically
bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic Properties command in the
Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a validation pattern message” on page 530.
Validation Script Message and Error
Sets a custom message to display when an attached validation script detects an unacceptable value. By default, this
situation causes a programming error to be generated at run time. To generate a warning instead, deselect the Error
option. See “To validate user input” on page 368 .
Note: This option is not available when the Type option is set to Calculated - Read Only or Read Only. Validation Script
Message is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that you
can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a validation script message” on page 532.
Form Level Validation Settings
Open the Forms Properties dialog box on the Form Validation tab. See “Form Validation (Form Properties dialog
box)” on page 659.
Calculation Script
The value will be calculated by a script written for the object’s calculate event.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to Calculated - Read Only.
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Properties in the Object palette
Runtime Property
Sets the following run-time property for the object. When you select a run-time property, the actual value
corresponding to the option is inserted dynamically when the form is rendered.
Current Date/Time Display the current date and time in the date/time field.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to Calculated - Read Only.
Override Message
Sets a custom message to inform users that they are changing the value of a calculated field. The message appears when
a user changes the calculated value.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to Calculated - User Can Override.
More Help topics
“Using date/time fields” on page 297
Date/time field properties in the Binding tab
When you create a date/time field, the Binding tab presents data binding options that you can apply to the field.
Options that are not specifically related to creating a data connection apply both to data bound to a data source and
data saved to a file when the object is not bound to a data source.
Name
Sets the name of the date/time field. See “To name and rename objects” on page 271.
Data Binding
Sets the default data-binding method:
Use name Enables data merging and saving options. Data values are merged and stored implicitly according to Adobe
data-merging rules.
Use global data Associates a single data value with all objects that have the same name (see “To define a global field”
on page 382).
New Data Connection Starts the New Data Connection wizard. To define a connection using the wizard, see “Create
a data connection to an XML schema” on page 497 or “Create a data connection to an OLE database” on page 499.
No data binding Disables data binding. Because the object will not capture or display merged data, any information
associated with the object is not written as output when the form data is saved/submitted.
Data Format
Sets the format in which data in the field is displayed.
Date Displays the data in the field in date format.
Time Displays the data in the field in time format.
Date and Time Displays the data in the field in date/time format.
Import/Export Bindings
Sets an import/export binding for a WSDL data connection. See “Create a data connection using a WSDL file” on
page 502.
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Properties in the Object palette
More Help topics
“Working with Data Sources” on page 494
“Using date/time fields” on page 297
“To specify the data to display in date/time fields” on page 299
“Date and time patterns” on page 375
Examples of date/time patterns
A formatted value can be displayed or processed. A raw value conforms to Designer defaults.
Predefined patterns
The following table shows the predefined date and time patterns that you can specify by using the Patterns option in
the Field tab of the Object palette and the results of formatting some examples of input default values according to the
locale specified. In these examples, the locale is English (USA).
Predefined pattern
Input value (using the short format, which is
M/D/YY for date and h:MM A for time)
Formatted value
YYYY-MM-DD
8/23/08
2008-08-23
EEEE, MMMM D, YYYY
8/23/08
Saturday, August 23, 2008
HH:MM:SS
5:02 PM
17:02:00
date{YYYY-MM-DD} time{HH:MM:SS}
8/23/08 5:02 PM
2008-08-23 17:02:00
Note: To find the default short format for date and time, select View > XML Source and search for the following lines:
<datePatterns>
<datePattern
<datePattern
<datePattern
<datePattern
</datePatterns>
<timePatterns>
<timePattern
<timePattern
<timePattern
<timePattern
</timePatterns>
name="full">EEEE, MMMM D, YYYY</datePattern>
name="long">MMMM D, YYYY</datePattern>
name="med">MMM D, YYYY</datePattern>
name="short">M/D/YY</datePattern>
name="full">h:MM:SS A Z</timePattern>
name="long">h:MM:SS A Z</timePattern>
name="med">h:MM:SS A</timePattern>
name="short">h:MM A</timePattern>
Custom patterns
The following table shows some custom display patterns that you can define for formatting input default values
according to the locale specified. In these examples, the locale is English (USA).
Custom pattern
Input value (using the short format, which is Formatted value
M/D/YY for date and h:MM A for time)
MMMM DD, YYYY
8/23/08
August 23, 2008
EEEE, 'the' D 'of' MMMM, YYYY
8/23/08
Saturday, the 23 of August, 2008
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Properties in the Object palette
Custom pattern
Input value (using the short format, which is Formatted value
M/D/YY for date and h:MM A for time)
HH:MM
5:02 PM
17:02
h:MM:SS 'o''clock' A Z
5:02 PM
5:02:00 o'clock PM EDT
HH:MM:SS Z
5:02 PM
17:02:00 EDT
Decimal field
Decimal Field properties in the Field tab
When you select a decimal field, the Field tab in the Object palette presents options for decimal fields. All but two of
the options are the same as the options for numeric fields.
Type
Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Caption
Sets a caption for the object.
Note: Caption is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a caption” on page 528.
Appearance
Sets the border style for the fillable area of the field:
None Does not display a border around the field.
Underlined Underlines the field.
Solid Box Displays a solid border around the field.
Sunken Box Creates a shadow around the field so that the field looks three-dimensional.
Custom Opens the Custom Appearance dialog box. Select this option if you want to define a custom look for the
fillable area.
Limit Length to Visible Area
Sets the maximum amount of numbers allowed in the field according to the horizontal length of the numeric field.
Comb of <x> characters
Enables the comb format.
Patterns
Sets the pattern for displaying formatted values in a form, for syntax of the user input, for validating user input, and
for storing and retrieving bound data or saving data when the form is not bound to a data source. See “Patterns dialog
box” on page 679.
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Properties in the Object palette
Limit Leading Digits and Max
Sets the maximum number of digits that can appear before the decimal separator. If the maximum is exceeded, a zero
displays.
Default: Unlimited
Maximum: 15 (including trailing digits). Designer displays a warning message if the leading digits exceed 15 digits.
Limit Trailing Digits and Max
Sets the maximum number of digits that can appear after the decimal separator. If the maximum is exceeded, the
number is truncated.
If you deselect the Limit Trailing Digits option, the precision of decimal data is reflected exactly as it is entered.
Default: 2
Maximum: 15 (including leading digits). Designer displays a warning message if the trailing digits exceed 15 digits.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
Locale
Renders the data according to the specified locale for language and country or region. You can select a specific
language and country from the list, or you can specify one of these options:
Default Locale Uses the Default Locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box.
Viewer’s System Locale Uses the system locale of the user’s computer.
Note: Locales in the Locale list are organized first by language and then by country or region.
More Help topics
“Using decimal and numeric fields” on page 299
“About numeric fields” on page 301
“Numeric field properties in the Field tab” on page 437
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“Numeric field properties in the Value tab” on page 438
“Numeric field properties in the Binding tab” on page 440
Drop-down list
Drop-down list properties in the Field tab
When you select a drop-down list, the Field tab displays several options specific to formatting drop-down lists.
Type
Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Caption
Sets a caption for the object.
Note: Caption is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a caption” on page 528.
Appearance
Sets the border style for the fillable area of the field:
None Does not display a border around the field.
Underlined Underlines the field.
Solid Box Displays a solid border around the field.
Sunken Box Creates a shadow around the field so that the field looks three-dimensional.
Custom Opens the Custom Appearance dialog box. Select this option if you want to define a custom look for the
fillable area.
List Items
Sets the items in the list and their positions. You can add or remove list items, paste items, move
them up or down, or sort the items in ascending or descending order using the buttons beside the label.
Note: List Items is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu.
Allow Custom Text Entry
Enables or disables custom user entries. User-entered values must match the Designer defaults. See “Defaults for value
formatting” on page 366.
Commit On
Determines when the selected option is commited.
Select Commits the option when it is selected.
Exit Commits the selected option when the user exits the list box, moving the focus to another object.
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Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
Locale
Renders the data according to the specified locale for language and country or region. You can select a specific
language and country from the list, or you can specify one of these options:
Default Locale Uses the Default Locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box.
Viewer’s System Locale Uses the system locale of the user’s computer.
Note: Locales in the Locale list are organized first by language and then by country or region.
More Help topics
“Using drop-down lists and list boxes” on page 303
Drop-down list properties in the Value tab
When you create a drop-down list, the Value tab displays several options that you can apply to the object.
Type
Enables run-time calculations and prompts:
User Entered - Optional Users can choose whether to enter data.
User Entered - Recommended A user is recommended to enter a value in the field. If the user enters a value, leaves the
field and then clears it, a custom message box appears (if written in the Empty Message box). A standard empty
message appears if you do not type a custom message. If the user never attempts to enter a value in the field and tries
to submit the form, a field is required message appears and the user can choose to ignore the message and submit the
form.
User Entered - Required A user must enter a value in the field. If the user enters a value, leaves the field and then clears
it, a custom message box appears (if written in the Empty Message box). A standard empty message appears if you do
not type a custom message. A message only appears if there was a value in the field, the value was deleted, and the user
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exited the field without re-entering a value. If the user never attempts to enter a value in the field and tries to submit
the form, a field is required message appears.
Calculated - Read Only A data value will be calculated and displayed through an attached script. Users cannot edit the
calculated value.
Calculated - User Can Override A data value will be calculated and displayed through an attached script. Users can edit
the value if the calculation script has been written to accept the input. If a user does edit the calculated value, the custom
message you specify in the Override Message box appears.
Protected Prevents a user from making changes to the value in the field. Indirect changes such as calculations can
occur. The protected field is not included in the tabbing sequence and it does not generate events.
Read Only A data value will be merged or calculated and displayed at run time. Users cannot edit the value.
Default
Sets the default selection. If Allow Custom Text Entry is selected on the Field tab, you can type a default selection that
is not one of the list items.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to User Entered - Optional, User Entered - Recommended,
User Entered - Required, or Read Only.
Empty Message
Sets a message for prompting users to enter a recommended or required value. See “To prompt users to enter data” on
page 367.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to User Entered - Recommended or User Entered Required.
Validation Pattern
Sets a validation pattern for validating user input. The pattern must match the syntax of the user input and be
compatible with the data format selected on the Binding tab. See “To validate user input” on page 368.
Note: This option is not available when the Type option is set to Protected, Calculated - Read Only, or Read Only.
Validation Pattern Message and Error
Sets a custom message to display when a raw value does not match the validation pattern. By default, this situation
causes a programming error to be generated at run time. To generate a warning instead, deselect the Error option. See
“To validate user input” on page 368 .
Note: Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that you can click to dynamically
bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic Properties command in the
Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a validation pattern message” on page 530.
Validation Script Message and Error
Sets a custom message to display when an attached validation script detects an unacceptable value. By default, this
situation causes a programming error to be generated at run time. To generate a warning instead, deselect the Error
option. See “To validate user input” on page 368 .
Note: This option is not available when the Type option is set to Protect, Calculated - Read Only, or Read Only.
Validation Script Message is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green
underline that you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the
Show Dynamic Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a validation script message”
on page 532.
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Form Level Validation Settings
Open the Forms Properties dialog box on the Form Validation tab. See “Form Validation (Form Properties dialog
box)” on page 659.
Override Message
Sets a custom message to inform users that they are changing the value of a calculated field. The message appears when
a user changes the calculated value.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to Calculated - User Can Override.
More Help topics
“Using drop-down lists and list boxes” on page 303
Drop-down list properties in the Binding tab
When you create a drop-down list, the Binding tab presents data binding options that you can apply to the list. Options
that are not specifically related to creating a data connection apply both to a data source and to data saved to a file when
the object is not bound to a data source.
Name
Sets the name of the list. See “To name and rename objects” on page 271.
Data Binding
Sets the default data-binding method:
Use name Enables data merging and saving options. Data values are merged and stored implicitly according to Adobe
data-merging rules.
Use global data Associates a single data value with all objects that have the same name (see “To define a global field”
on page 382).
New Data Connection Starts the New Data Connection wizard. To define a connection using the wizard, see “Create
a data connection to an XML schema” on page 497 or “Create a data connection to an OLE database” on page 499.
No data binding Disables data binding. Because the object will not capture or display merged data, any information
associated with the object is not written as output when the form data is saved/submitted.
Specify Item Values
Lets you specify custom data values for each list item. If this option is not selected, the data values will match the text
for the list items. If this option is selected, the default values will be sequential integers, starting at "1" for the first list
item. See “To specify list item values for a drop-down list or list box” on page 307.
Note: Specify Item Values is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green
underline that you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the
Show Dynamic Properties command from the Object palette menu.
Up, Down, Sort Ascending, Sort Descending
Reorders the items in the list (for example, if the data should be stored in a different order compared to the
display order of options in the drop-down list). You can move list items up or down, or sort them ascending or
descending using the buttons beside the label.
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Import/Export Bindings
Sets an import/export binding for a WSDL data connection. See “Create a data connection using a WSDL file” on
page 502.
More Help topics
“Working with Data Sources” on page 494
“Using drop-down lists and list boxes” on page 303
Email submit button
Email submit button properties in the Field tab
When you select an email submit button, the Field tab in the Object palette displays several options for formatting
email submit buttons.
Type
Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Caption
Sets a caption for the object.
Note: Caption is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a caption” on page 528.
Appearance
Sets the border style:
No Border Removes the line around the button.
Solid Border Creates a thick line around the button.
Raised Border Creates a shadow around the button so that the button looks three-dimensional.
Custom Opens the Custom Appearance dialog box. Select this option if you want to define a custom look for the
button.
Highlighting
Sets the button highlight when the button is clicked:
None Removes the button highlight.
Inverted Inverts the button highlight when the button is clicked.
Push Creates a shadow around the button so that the button looks like it is recessed.
Outline Creates a line around the button when the button is clicked.
Rollover Caption
Sets a rollover caption when the button highlight is set to Push. This caption appears when the mouse pointer moves
over the button.
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Down Caption
Sets a down caption when the button highlight is set to Push. This caption appears when the button is clicked.
Email Address
Sets the recipient of the email message and the attached form data.
Email Subject
Sets the subject line for the email message.
Submit As
Sets the format of the data to submit.
PDF Submits a package containing an embedded PDF file. Choose this format if the form contains a signature field,
or if a copy of the form along with its data needs to be saved by Forms, or submitted to another type of target server.
Do not choose this option if the form initiates server-side processing, if Forms will be used to render at run time HTML
forms or forms whose layout adjusts, or if the form is a PDF form that will be filled in Adobe Reader without the use
of Reader Extensions.
XML Data (XML) Submits an XML data stream, which allows for the hierarchical representation of data and can be
parsed by any generic XML parser. Choose this format if the server that communicates with the run-time user
application program must receive an XML data steam.
URL-Encoded Data (HTTP Post) Submits a text stream to the specified Uniform Resource Locator (URL) using the
POST method. The text stream can be parsed by an FTP server, a mail server, a web server, or a CGI script that processes
HTML forms. To use this method, users must open the form in Adobe Reader 6.0 or later or in a web browser unless
the URL specifies the mailto protocol.
Sign Submission Applies a data signature to the submitted data. When a form filler clicks the button, a digital
signature is created to cover the submitted data and attachments. Data signatures secure the signed data and guarantee
the data integrity during transmission. Data signatures can apply to the form data or to the entire submission,
including attachments. Click the Settings buton to define optional security properties for the data signature, such as
the signature handler, signing certificates, and certificate issuers.
Encrypt Submission Encrypts form content. When a form filler clicks the button, the form content is encrypted before
submission to secure the form content during transmission. You apply encryption to the form data or to the entire
submission, including attachments. Click the Settings buton to define optional encryption properties such as
encryption algorithm, encryption certificate, certificate issuers, and key usage.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
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One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
Locale
Renders the data according to the specified locale for language and country or region. You can select a specific
language and country from the list, or you can specify one of these options:
Default Locale Uses the Default Locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box.
Viewer’s System Locale Uses the system locale of the user’s computer.
Note: Locales in the Locale list are organized first by language and then by country or region.
More Help topics
“Using buttons” on page 276
“HTTP submit button” on page 427
Flash field
Flash field properties in the Field tab
Caption Sets a caption for the object.
URL Specifies the URL of the Flash source file (SWF) to be displayed in the currently selected Flash field. Enter the
location of the file or click the browse button to select the file.
Embed Flash Data Stores flash data in the form.
Poster Specifies the URL of the image file to display in the currently selected Flash field, when the Flash file (SWF) is
not displayed.
Embed Poster Image Stores the image file in the form.
Property/Value
Activation •Explicit Flash content is activated with a user action or script.
• Page Current Flash content is activated when the page that the Flash field is located on is the current page.
• Page Visible Flash content is activated when the page that the Flash field is located on is visible.
Deactivation •Explicit Flash content is deactivated with a user action or script.
• Page Current Flash content is deactivated when the page that the Flash field is located on is no longer the current page.
• Page Invisible Flash content is deactivated when the page that the Flash field is located on is no longer visible.
Pass Context Click A flag indicating whether a context-click on the Flash content should be passed to the Flash player
runtime or should be handled by the viewer application. A context-click is usually generated by a mouse right-click,
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but may be invoked by other means. This can include, but is not limited to, an explicit context-menu keyboard key or
the combination of a mouse click and a keyboard modifier key.
• Yes Indicates that the context menu in the viewer application will not be visible, and the user will see the context
menu and any custom items generated by the Flash player runtime.
• No the viewer application handles the context click.
Display Flash Content in Floating Window enables floating window property and value settings.
Property/Value
Default Width Specifies the default width of the floating window.
Max Width Specifies the maximum width of the floating window.
Min Width Specifies the minimum width of the floating window.
Default Height Specifies the default height of the floating window.
Max Height Specifies the maximum height of the floating window.
Min Height Specifies the minimum height of the floating window.
Horizontal Alignment Specifies the horizontal alignment of the Flash content window. Horizontal alignment
determines how horizontal offset is applied. Options include Near, Center, or Far.
Vertical Alignment Specifies the vertical alignment of the Flash content window. The vertical alignment determines
how the vertical offset is applied. Options include Near, Center, or Far.
Horizontal Offset Specifies the offset from the alignment point specified by the Horizontal offset. A positive value for
Near and Center alignments produces an offset towards the Far direction. A positive value for Far alignment produces
an offset towards the Near direction.
Vertical Offset The offset from the alignment point specified by the Vertical Alignment. A positive value for Near and
Center alignments produces an offset towards the Far direction. A positive value for Far alignment produces an offset
towards the Near direction.
Edit Opens the Addtional Assets dialog box so you can add, remove, and embed assets like video, sound, image, text,
XML, and SWC files.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
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Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
Note: If you select the Hidden (Exclude from Layout) option, and apply a script to make the Flash Field visible and
enabled when a form filler clicks the field, form fillers must click the field twice to initiate both changes.
Locale
Renders the data according to the specified locale for language and country or region. You can select a specific
language and country from the list, or you can specify one of these options:
Default Locale Uses the Default Locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box.
Viewer’s System Locale Uses the system locale of the user’s computer.
Note: Locales in the Locale list are organized first by language and then by country or region.
More Help topics
“Flash field properties in the Binding tab” on page 426
“Using flash fields” on page 308
Flash field properties in the Binding tab
Name
Sets the Flash field name. See “To name and rename objects” on page 271.
Data Binding
Sets the default data-binding method:
Use name Enables data merging and saving options. Data values are merged and stored implicitly according to Adobe
data-merging rules.
Use global data Associates a single data value with all objects that have the same name. (See “To define a global field”
on page 382).
New Data Connection Starts the New Data Connection wizard. To define a connection using the wizard. (see “Create
a data connection to an XML schema” on page 497 or “Create a data connection to an OLE database” on page 499.)
No Data Binding Disables data binding. Because the object will not capture or display merged data, any information
associated with the object is not written as output when the form data is saved/submitted.
Import/Export Bindings (Execute WSDL) Sets an import/export binding for a WSDL data connection. (See “Create a
data connection using a WSDL file” on page 502.)
More Help topics
“Working with Data Sources” on page 494
“Flash field properties in the Field tab” on page 424
“Using flash fields” on page 308
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HTTP submit button
HTTP submit button properties in the Field tab
When you select an HTTP submit button, the Field tab in the Object palette displays several options for formatting
HTTP submit buttons.
Type
Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Caption
Sets a caption for the object.
Note: Caption is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a caption” on page 528.
Appearance
Sets the border style:
No Border Removes the line around the button.
Solid Border Creates a thick line around the button.
Raised Border Creates a shadow around the button so that the button looks three-dimensional.
Custom Opens the Custom Appearance dialog box. Select this option if you want to define a custom look for the
button.
Highlighting
Sets the button highlight when the button is clicked:
None Removes the button highlight.
Inverted Inverts the button highlight when the button is clicked.
Push Creates a shadow around the button so that the button looks like it is recessed.
Outline Creates a line around the button when the button is clicked.
Rollover Caption
Sets a rollover caption when the button highlight is set to Push. This caption appears when the mouse pointer moves
over the button.
Down Caption
Sets a down caption when the button highlight is set to Push. This caption appears when the button is clicked.
URL
The URL that the form data will be posted to.
Sign Submission Applies a data signature to the submitted data. When a form filler clicks the button, a digital
signature is created to cover the submitted data and attachments. Data signatures secure the signed data and guarantee
the data integrity during transmission. Data signatures can apply to the form data or to the entire submission,
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including attachments. Click the Settings buton to define optional security properties for the data signature, such as
the signature handler, signing certificates, and certificate issuers.
Encrypt Submission Encrypts form content. When a form filler clicks the button, the form content is encrypted before
submission to secure the form content during transmission. You apply encryption to the form data or to the entire
submission, including attachments. Click the Settings buton to define optional encryption properties such as
encryption algorithm, encryption certificate, certificate issuers, and key usage.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
Locale
Renders the data according to the specified locale for language and country or region. You can select a specific
language and country from the list, or you can specify one of these options:
Default Locale Uses the Default Locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box.
Viewer’s System Locale Uses the system locale of the user’s computer.
Note: Locales in the Locale list are organized first by language and then by country or region.
More Help topics
“HTTP submit buttons” on page 278
“Using buttons” on page 276
Image field
Image field properties in the Field tab
When you select an image field, the Field tab displays several options specific to formatting image fields.
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Type
Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Caption
Sets a caption for the object.
Note: Caption is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a caption” on page 528.
URL
Sets the location of the source image file. To employ relative path names for retrieving linked images when the form is
opened, the image files must be stored in a folder that is accessible to users. If Forms is available, the path must be
relative to Forms.
Embed Image Data
When selected, a copy of the image information is stored in the form. When deselected, the image data is stored
separately from the form and the image is resolved when the form is opened.
If the image field will be used to load images dynamically when the form is rendered, do not select the Embed Image
Data option.
Sizing Enables or disables image resizing when the image is loaded.
• Scale Image Proportionally Resizes the image in the object, ensuring that the aspect ratio of the image is preserved.
• Scale Image to Fit Rectangle Resizes the image to match the dimensions of the object. The aspect ratio of the image
is not preserved.
• Use Original Size Does not resize the image. The object is resized to preserve the actual size of the image.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
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Locale
Renders the data according to the specified locale for language and country or region. You can select a specific
language and country from the list, or you can specify one of these options:
Default Locale Uses the Default Locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box.
Viewer’s System Locale Uses the system locale of the user’s computer.
Note: Locales in the Locale list are organized first by language and then by country or region.
More Help topics
“Using image fields” on page 310
Image field properties in the Binding tab
When you create an image field, the Binding tab presents data binding options that you can apply to the object.
Options that are not specifically related to creating a data connection apply both to data bound to a data source and
data saved to a file when the object is not bound to a data source.
Name
Sets the image field name. See “To name and rename objects” on page 271.
Data Binding
Sets the default data-binding method:
Use name Enables data merging and saving options. Data values are merged and stored implicitly according to Adobe
data-merging rules.
Use global data Associates a single data value with all objects that have the same name (see “To define a global field”
on page 382).
New Data Connection Starts the New Data Connection wizard. To define a connection using the wizard, see “Create
a data connection to an XML schema” on page 497 or “Create a data connection to an OLE database” on page 499.
No data binding Disables data binding. Because the object will not capture or display merged data, any information
associated with the object is not written as output when the form data is saved/submitted.
Import/Export Bindings
Sets an import/export binding for a WSDL data connection. See “Create a data connection using a WSDL file” on
page 502.
More Help topics
“Working with Data Sources” on page 494
“Using image fields” on page 310
Image
Image properties in the Draw tab
When you create an image object, the Draw tab in the Object palette presents options specific to formatting images.
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Properties in the Object palette
Type
Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
URL
Sets the location of the source image file. To employ relative path names for retrieving linked images when the form is
opened, the image files must be stored in a folder that is accessible to users. If Forms is available, the path must be
relative to Forms.
Embed Image Data
When selected, a copy of the image information is stored in the form. When deselected, the image data is stored
separately from the form and the image is resolved when the form is opened.
Sizing
Enables or disables image resizing when the image is loaded:
Scale Image Proportionally Resizes the image in the object, ensuring that the aspect ratio of the image is preserved.
Scale Image to Fit Rectangle Resizes the image to match the dimensions of the object. The aspect ratio of the image is
not preserved.
Use Original Size Does not resize the image. The object is resized to preserve the actual size of the image.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
More Help topics
“Using images” on page 312
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Properties in the Object palette
Line
Line properties in the Draw tab
When you create a line, the Draw tab in the Object palette presents options specific to formatting lines.
Type
Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Appearance
Sets the slope of the line.
Line Style
Sets the line style and thickness.
Color Picker
Sets the line color.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
More Help topics
“Using circles, lines, and rectangles” on page 292
List box
List box properties in the Field tab
When you select a list box, the Field tab displays several options specific to formatting list boxes.
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Properties in the Object palette
Type
Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Caption
Sets a caption for the object.
Note: Caption is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a caption” on page 528.
Appearance
Sets the border style for the fillable area of the field:
None Does not display a border around the field.
Underlined Underlines the field.
Solid Box Displays a solid border around the field.
Sunken Box Creates a shadow around the field so that the field looks three-dimensional.
Custom Opens the Custom Appearance dialog box. Select this option if you want to define a custom look for the
fillable area.
List Items
Sets the items in the list and their positions. You can add or remove list items, paste items, move
them up or down, or sort the items in ascending or descending order using the buttons beside the label.
Note: List Items is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu.
Allow Multiple Selection
Enables users to select more than one option in the list (run-time).
Note: If you add a List Box object with the Allow Multiple Selection option selected on the Field tab to a paper forms
barcode collection, you must also select the Enforce Strict Scoping Rules in JavaScript option on the Defaults tab in the
Form Properties dialog. Otherwise, any values that a form filler selects in the List Box object may not encode properly in
the paper forms barcode.
Commit On
Commits the selected option when the user exits the List box, moving the focus to another object.
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
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Properties in the Object palette
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
Locale
Renders the data according to the specified locale for language and country or region. You can select a specific
language and country from the list, or you can specify one of these options:
Default Locale Uses the Default Locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box.
Viewer’s System Locale Uses the system locale of the user’s computer.
Note: Locales in the Locale list are organized first by language and then by country or region.
More Help topics
“Using drop-down lists and list boxes” on page 303
List box properties in the Value tab
When you create a list box, the Value tab displays several options that you can apply to the object.
Type
Enables run-time calculations and prompts:
User Entered - Optional Users can choose whether to enter data.
User Entered - Recommended A user is recommended to enter a value in the field. If the user enters a value, leaves the
field and then clears it, a custom message box appears (if written in the Empty Message box). A standard empty
message appears if you do not type a custom message. If the user never attempts to enter a value in the field and tries
to submit the form, a field is required message appears and the user can choose to ignore the message and submit the
form.
User Entered - Required A user must enter a value in the field. If the user enters a value, leaves the field and then clears
it, a custom message box appears (if written in the Empty Message box). A standard empty message appears if you do
not type a custom message. A message only appears if there was a value in the field, the value was deleted, and the user
exited the field without re-entering a value. If the user never attempts to enter a value in the field and tries to submit
the form, a field is required message appears.
Calculated - Read Only A data value will be calculated and displayed through an attached script. Users cannot edit the
calculated value.
Calculated - User Can Override A data value will be calculated and displayed through an attached script. Users can edit
the value if the calculation script has been written to accept the input. If a user does edit the calculated value, the custom
message you specify in the Override Message box appears.
Protected Prevents a user from making changes to the value in the field. Indirect changes such as calculations can
occur. The protected field is not included in the tabbing sequence and it does not generate events.
Read Only A data value will be merged or calculated and displayed at run time. Users cannot edit the value.
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Properties in the Object palette
Default
Sets a default selection.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to User Entered - Optional, User Entered - Recommended,
User Entered - Required, or Read Only.
Empty Message
Sets a message for prompting users to enter a recommended or required value. See “To prompt users to enter data” on
page 367.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to User Entered - Recommended or User Entered Required.
Validation Pattern
Sets a validation pattern for validating user input. The pattern must match the syntax of the user input and be
compatible with the data format selected on the Binding tab. See “To validate user input” on page 368.
Note: This option is not available when the Type option is set to Protected, Calculated - Read Only, or Read Only.
Validation Pattern Message and Error
Sets a custom message to display when a raw value does not match the validation pattern. By default, this situation
causes a programming error to be generated at run time. To generate a warning instead, deselect the Error option. See
“To validate user input” on page 368 .
Note: Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that you can click to dynamically
bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic Properties command in the
Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a validation pattern message” on page 530.
Validation Script Message and Error
Sets a custom message to display when an attached validation script detects an unacceptable value. By default, this
situation causes a programming error to be generated at run time. To generate a warning instead, deselect the Error
option. See “To validate user input” on page 368 .
Note: This option is not available when the Type option is set to Protect, Calculated - Read Only, or Read Only.
Validation Script Message is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green
underline that you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the
Show Dynamic Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a validation script message”
on page 532.
Form Level Validation Settings
Open the Forms Properties dialog box on the Form Validation tab. See “Form Validation (Form Properties dialog
box)” on page 659.
Override Message
Sets a custom message to inform users that they are changing the value of a calculated field. The message appears when
a user changes the calculated value.
Note: This option is available only when the Type option is set to Calculated - User Can Override.
More Help topics
“Using drop-down lists and list boxes” on page 303
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Properties in the Object palette
List box properties in the Binding tab
When you create a list box, the Binding tab presents data binding options that you can apply to the list. Options that
are not specifically related to creating a data connection apply both to a data source and to data saved to a file when
the object is not bound to a data source.
Name
Sets the name of the list. See “To name and rename objects” on page 271.
Data Binding
Sets the default data-binding method:
Use name Enables data merging and saving options. Data values are merged and stored implicitly according to Adobe
data-merging rules.
Use global data Associates a single data value with all objects that have the same name (see “To define a global field”
on page 382).
New Data Connection Starts the New Data Connection wizard. To define a connection using the wizard, see “Create
a data connection to an XML schema” on page 497 or “Create a data connection to an OLE database” on page 499.
No data binding Disables data binding. Because the object will not capture or display merged data, any information
associated with the object is not written as output when the form data is saved/submitted.
Specify Item Values
Lets you specify custom data values for each list item. If this option is not selected, the data values will match the text
for the list items. If this option is selected, the default values will be sequential integers, starting at "1" for the first list
item. See “To specify list item values for a drop-down list or list box” on page 307.
Note: Specify Item Values is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green
underline that you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the
Show Dynamic Properties command from the Object palette menu.
Up, Down, Sort Ascending, Sort Descending
Reorders the items in the list (for example, if the data should be stored in a different order compared to the
display order of options in the drop-down list). You can move list items up or down, or sort them ascending or
descending using the buttons beside the label.
Import/Export Bindings
Sets an import/export binding for a WSDL data connection. See “Create a data connection using a WSDL file” on
page 502.
More Help topics
“Working with Data Sources” on page 494
“Using drop-down lists and list boxes” on page 303
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Properties in the Object palette
Numeric field
Numeric field properties in the Field tab
When you select a numeric field, the Field tab in the Object palette displays several options for formatting fields.
Type
Sets the type of object. Objects are the building blocks of every form.
Caption
Sets a caption for the object.
Note: Caption is a dynamic property. Dynamic properties are identified by active labels that have a green underline that
you can click to dynamically bind the property to a data source. To turn active labels on and off, use the Show Dynamic
Properties command in the Object palette menu. See “Dynamically populate a caption” on page 528.
Appearance
Sets the border style for the fillable area of the field:
None Does not display a border around the field.
Underlined Underlines the field.
Solid Box Displays a solid border around the field.
Sunken Box Creates a shadow around the field so that the field looks three-dimensional.
Custom Opens the Custom Appearance dialog box. Select this option if you want to define a custom look for the
fillable area.
Limit Length to Visible Area
Sets the maximum amount of numbers allowed in the field according to the horizontal length of the numeric field.
Comb of <x> characters
Enables the comb format.
Patterns
Sets the pattern for displaying formatted values in a form, for syntax of the user input, for validating user input, and
for storing and retrieving bound data or saving data when the form is not bound to a data source. See “Patterns dialog
box” on page 679
Presence
Controls whether an object is displayed in a PDF form when users view the form in Acrobat or Adobe Reader, or when
users print the form:
Visible The object is visible on-screen, visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout. Visible is the
default presence setting for all objects.
Visible (Screen Only) The object is visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form when printed from within Acrobat
or Adobe Reader, and occupies space in the form layout.
Visible (Print Only) The object is not visible on-screen, visible in the printed form (when printed from within Acrobat,
Adobe Reader, or directly from the server), and occupies space in the form layout.
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Properties in the Object palette
Invisible The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and occupies space in the form layout.
Hidden (Exclude from Layout) The object is not visible on-screen, not visible in the printed form, and does not occupy
any space in the form layout.
One-sided Printing Only The object is only printed when using single-sided printing.
Two-sided Printing Only The object is printed when using double-sided printing. This option is useful when you want
to place the page number in a different corner of the page when using double-sided printing than when using singlesided printing.
Note: If you select the Hidden (Exclude from Layout) option, and apply a script to the Flash Field object to make it visible
and activated when a form filler clicks the field, form fillers must click the field twice, once for each event.
Locale
Renders the data according to the specified locale for language and country or region. You can select a specific
language and country from the list, or you can specify one of these options:
Default Locale Uses the Default Locale specified in the Defaults tab of the Form Properties dialog box.
Viewer’s System Locale Uses the system locale of the user’s computer.
Note: Locales in the Locale list are organized first by language and then by country or region.
More Help topics
“About numeric fields” on page 301
“Using decimal and numeric fields” on page 299
Numeric field properties in the Value tab
When you create a numeric field, the Value tab displays several options that you can apply to the object.
Type
Enables run-time calculations and prompts:
User Entered - Optional Users can choose whether to enter data.
User Entered - Recommended A user is recommended to enter a value in the field. If the user enters a value, leaves the
field and then clears it, a custom message box appears (if written in the Empty Message box). A standard empty
message appears if you do not type a custom message. If the user never attempts to enter a value in the field and tries
to submit the form, a field is required message appears and the user can choose to ignore the message and submit the
form.
User Entered - Required A user must enter a value in the field. If the user enters a value, leaves the field and then clears
it, a custom message box appears (if written in the Empty Message box). A standard empty message appears if you do
not type a custom message. A message only appears if there was a value in the field, the value was deleted, and the user
exited the field without re-entering a value. If the user never attempts to enter a value in the field and tries to submit
the form, a field is required message appears.
Calculated - Read Only A data value will be calculated and displayed through an attached script. Users cannot edit the
calculated value.
Calculated - User Can Override A data value will be calculated and displayed through an attached script. Users can edit
the value if the calculation script has been written to accept the input. If a user does edit the calculated value, the custom
message you specify in the Override Message box appears.
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Properties in the Object palette
Protected Prevents a user from making changes to the value in the field. Indirect changes such as calculations can
occur. The protected field is not included in the tabbing sequence and it does not generate events.
Read O