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DriveWorks Pro 21
Form Design

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Form Design

Create interactive and responsive UI to capture customer requirements.

With the DriveWorks Form Designer, you can:

  • Apply modern web stying (css) to create visually stunning User Forms.
  • Ensure customers and sales teams configure the ideal solution every time with intelligent rules-based guided selling.
  • Enable customers and sales teams to configure custom products on any device with DriveWorks Live.
  • Validate entries to ensure only products that can be manufactured are configured, eliminating errors and boosting quality.
  • Configure products in 3D on any device with DriveWorks 3D Preview.

Designing A User Form

The Form Design Area displays the main Form View and Property Panel.

Add a Form Control to a User Form

To add a new Form Control to the form displayed in the Form View:

  1. Select the required control from the Control Toolbox on the Command Bar.
  2. Enter a name for the control.
  3. Click OK


Most controls (but not all) will display a caption when added.

This can be modified from the Control Properties by setting the Caption or Text property.

By default the caption takes the name given to the control when the control is created (not on renaming the control).

As control names cannot include spaces, capitalized words are automatically separated with a space for the Caption.

For example:

When the name shown in the image below is given to a control.

The Caption displayed will be:

Please Enter The Length

Control Guides

Control Guides allow quick and accurate alignment of controls when designing User Forms.

Control Guides appear when controls are moved on the User Form.

Control Guides align to other controls in two ways:

  • Margin Guides - Snap a set distance away from another control.
  • Alignment Guides - Snap to the edges of another control.

Control Guides can also snap to any Resolution Guide in use on the User Form.

Adjust Control Guide Settings

Control Guides settings allow the following properties to be changed to suit your preferences.

  • Enable/ Disable.
  • Margin and Alignment Guide Color.
  • Snap Range.

See Settings to access the Settings dialog and Form Designer Settings for more information on Control Guide Settings.

Group Controls

Form Controls can be grouped so they move as one when repositioning is required.

To Group Controls

Controls can be grouped by:

  1. Select two or more controls from the same User Form.
  2. Right click on one of the selected controls.
  3. Select Group Controls from the menu.

To Ungroup Controls

Controls can be ungrouped by:

  1. Selecting a group of controls from the User Form.
  2. Right click on the group.
  3. Select Ungroup Controls from the menu.

Keyboard Positioning

Accurate Positioning of Form Controls Using Keyboard Arrows.

To fine-tune a controls position, use the keyboard arrow keys to move the selected control one pixel at a time.

  1. Select a single control or multiple controls to be moved.
  2. Press and hold the Alt key on the keyboard and the arrow key that corresponds to the direction the control is to be moved.
    • Alt + - Move the control(s) 1 pixel up.
    • Alt + - Move the control(s) 1 pixel left.
    • Alt + - Move the control(s) 1 pixel down.
    • Alt + - Move the control(s) 1 pixel right.


Multiple form controls can be selected by the following methods:

  • Fence Selection - Click in a blank area of the form and drag a fence around the controls to be selected.
  • Ctrl or Shift Select - Select a control and then hold the Ctrl or Shift key down to select other controls.

When multiple form controls are selected from the form designer all properties that are shared between the controls will be displayed in the property list.

Also if any properties have the same value or rule, this will be displayed in the property list.

How To Apply CSS Styling To A Projects Forms

Each Project requires a file named ProjectStyles.css located in the same folder as each Project.

Image showing the ProjectStyles.css file located alongside the Project file.

Obtain an example CSS File

DriveWorks provides an example CSS file that can be modified to suit your requirements.

The ProjectStyles.css file is obtained by:

  1. Create a New Project.

    We recommend creating a New Individual Group to store this Project, away from any Production or Development environment.

  2. In the New Project wizard, select Responsive Form Project Template from the Templates section.

    Click Next.

  3. Select a Location and Name for the new Project.

    Click Next.

    Click Finish.

  4. Browse to the location the new Project was created and copy the ProjectStyles.css file to the same location as the Project(s) it is to be applied.

    We recommend experimenting on a single Project and then copying the ProjectStyles.css to all other required Projects when satisfied with the results.

Modifying The ProjectStyles.css File

The ProjectStyles.css file can be modified 'live', using any text editor (Visual Studio Code, Notepad++, etc.), while in the Form Design task.

Saving the modifications in the text editor will instantly update the Form Designer with the changes.

Target An Individual Control

An individual control can be targeted to specific code in the CSS file by applying a value to the data-metadata tag (in the CSS) and using that value in the (Metadata) property of the control.

For example the CSS file contains the following:

[data-metadata*="animate"] {
  transition: all var(--animation-speed) var(--animation-curve);

Where the Control's (Metadata) property contains the value animate - by partial matching.

For more information on CSS selectors, see: Mozilla - Attribute selectors.


Useful CSS Tutorials

Helpful References

Property Panel

The Property Panel is displayed on the right of the Form View.

It consists of two sections that interact with each other and the Form View:

  • Control Tree

    Displayed above the Property Grid, this lists all Forms and Controls in the Project.

  • Property Grid

    Displayed below the Control Tree, this lists all Properties for the selected Form or Control.

Control Tree

All controls that exist on each Form are listed in the Control Tree.

The Control Tree provides a single place for finding form controls and easily navigating to the form the control exists on.

Selecting a Control from the list will:

  • Display all Properties for the selected Control in the Property Grid below
  • Highlight the Control with positioning grips in the Form Design Area

    The Form View will switch to the form the selected control exists on.

Control Tree Order

Each control is listed under the form on which they appear, the list can be ordered by:

  • Z-Index (Default order)
  • Name
  • Type
Order by Z-Index

The Z-Index specifies the stack order of a control on a user form.

Controls that appear higher in the list appear further back (behind) on the user form.

The Z-Index order allows easier organization of controls that overlap or that are placed over each other.

Click the Order by Z-Index button  to order the controls by the Z-Index.

Changing the Z-Index of a control

There are two methods by which the Z-Index of a control can be modified:

  • Using the tools available at the top of the control tree window.
  1. To do this select the control to be moved from the control tree.
  2. Click the Bring Control Forward  or Send Control Back button
  • Drag and Drop the control into position in the control tree.
  1. To do this click and hold on the control to be moved and drag to its required z order position.
Order by Name

Each control can be ordered by the Name given to the control.

Click the Order By Name button  to order the controls in each form by the Name given to them.

Order by Type

Each control can be ordered by the type of control (Text Box, Combo Box, Label etc.)

Click the Order By Type button  to order the controls by their type.

Toggle design mode visibility

Design Mode Visibility allows a control to be hidden during design mode only. This is useful when controls are positioned on top of others and require to be turned off to allow easier selection of the controls behind.

Design Mode Visibility does not override the Visible property of the control. When running a project the visibility of a control will always use the Visible property result.
Select the control to have its visibility turned on or off and click the Toggle Design Mode Visibility button .

Lock control position

Once the position of a control is determined its position can be locked to prevent accidental moving during Form Design.

Select the control to be locked and click the Toggle Locking Control Position button .

Collapse All

All forms that exist in the project can be quickly brought back into view by clicking the Collapse All button  to collapse the controls in view on each form.


Controls can be quickly found by using the filter box above the control tree.

Clearing the Filter

Once a filter has been applied it can be cleared by:

  • Removing the characters from the Filter box by using the backspace or delete keys on the keyboard.


  • Clicking the clear button from the filter box (The red cross that appears once characters are entered).

Move Controls

If a control has been placed onto a form and now requires to be on another form it can be dragged from its existing form onto the new form all from within the Control Tree.

  1. Expand the forms within the Control Tree so the control to be moved and the controls on the form it is to be moved to are in view.
  2. Select the control to be moved and then left click and hold to drag.
  3. Drag the control to the required form.

Controls can also be moved by using Cut and Paste commands.

Property Grid

When a control is selected the property grid changes to show all of the properties of that control and their current values.

The property grid is made up of the following areas:

  • Two buttons which toggle between categorized and alphabetical views
  • Two columns, property names on the left, and property values on the right.
  • A description of the currently selected property.
  • User Form Properties
  • Control Properties

User Form Properties

Properties for each User Form can be set by clicking on the form in the Form View.

The Form Properties that can be set are:

  • Background Color - Sets the background color of the User Form.
  • Default Font - Sets the default font for all controls placed on the form.
  • Show Standard Navigation

    The Standard Navigation buttons found at the bottom of the User Form during specifying are turned off with the Show Standard Navigation property.

    Standard Navigation buttons look like the image below:

    Customizable In Form Navigation can be created using Macro buttons with appropriate Specification Tasks associated to them.

    Before turning Standard Navigation off be sure your alternative navigation works as expected.

    Please refer to the article How To: Create In Form Navigation for more information.

    Show Standard Navigation is a User Form property.

    To display the properties of a User Form click in any blank space on the User Form in the Form Designer.

  • Show Task List - Determines if the Task List that displays Form Messages is shown during specification.
  • On Enter - Allows a Specification Macro to be selected to run when the User Form is loaded.
  • On Next - Allows a Specification Macro to be selected to run when the User Form transitions to the Next Form.
  • On Previous - Allows a Specification Macro to be selected to run when the User Form transitions to the Previous Form.
  • (Tag) - Allows an alternative name or description for the User Form to be entered.

User Form properties must be set for each User Form in the project.

Control Properties

Each control has various properties that can be set or have rules applied to them that will dynamically change the behavior of each property during specification.

When a control is added to the User Form and selected various properties become available in the property grid.

All control properties have the following possible states:

  • Fixed

    Fixed properties set certain behavioral properties or define the actual name of the control. These properties can only be changed in the form design stage.

  • Active

    Active properties can be set to be one of the following states:

    • Dynamic

      A property set to be dynamic gives the option to apply a Rule to the property that will be evaluated during the running of a specification.

      This allows the property to change during specification.

      For example this could be a change to data in a list type control, the position of the control on the user form or if the control is visible or not. Dynamic properties applied by DriveWorks cannot be made static, but they do not necessarily require a Rule.

    • Static

      A static property, like a fixed property, is set during Form Design.

      Unlike fixed properties there is the option to make this dynamic. Static properties can be made dynamic.

All control properties can be used in Rules. See How To: Reference Control Properties for more information.

For information on changing a static property to a dynamic property please see How To: Change A Static Property To A Dynamic Property.

Set the Value of a Dynamic Property

  1. With the User Form active in the Form Design area select the control that you want to set the value for.
  2. Locate and select the dynamic property in the property grid
  3. Click the button that appears to the right of the property value.

  4. This launches the Rule Builder from which the value can be set.

Set the Value of a Fixed or Static Property

  1. With the User Form active in the Form Design area select the control that you want to set the value for.
  2. Locate and select the property in the property grid.
  3. The selected property value can be changed by swiping over the current value and entering a new value.
  4. Or select the drop-down box to the right of the property value and select the new value from the list of options.

Command Bar

Clipboard, Undo and Search

This group of commands provide common Windows functionality for:

  • Cut, Copy, Paste

    Cut, Copy and Paste controls from one form to another.

    Can also be used to copy controls across different Projects.

    The pasted control name will be incremented if the original name already exists in the Project.

  • Undo and Redo

    Will undo or redo the previous actions.

  • Search Rules

    Provides the ability to search and edit all Rules within the Project, see Search Rules for more information.

These commands are also available through Keyboard Shortcuts.


The Form in view can have the zoom level set by selecting the required buttons from the command bar.

  • Zoom +

    Increases the zoom level, in 10% increments, to maximum 500%

  • Zoom -

    Decreases the zoom level, in 10% increments, to a maximum of 20%

  • Reset Zoom

    Resets the zoom scale to 100%.

    This option is only available when the Form in view is not at 100%.

    100% is the level that the User Form will always be displayed at when in a Specification.

The above options are also available by right clicking on the User Form.

These commands are also available through Keyboard Shortcuts.

Zoom Level

When the zoom level is not 100% the current zoom level is indicated at the top right of the Form Designer.

The zoom level is hidden when the current view is at 100%.


You can use the Test button on the Command Bar to try out your form, and to set default values for controls.

This command is also available through Keyboard Shortcuts.


To align two or more Form Controls, either box select (by click-dragging over the controls you want to align), or ctrl-select them individually, and then select the relevant alignment button.

The following alignment tools are available:

  • Align Left
  • Align Center
  • Align Right
  • Align Top
  • Align Middle
  • Align Bottom
  • Equalize Width
  • Equalize Height
  • Equalize Vertical Spacing
  • Equalize Horizontal Spacing

Resolution Guides

Resolution Guides help you to design User Forms within a specified boundary.

These are particularly useful when designing your User Forms for use on a common device.

There are a number of preset resolution guides available, these are:

  • iPhone 5 Portrait
  • iPhone 5 Landscape
  • iPhone 2/3 Portrait
  • iPhone 2/3 Landscape

The width and height of the presets match the screen resolution of the products they are named after, these can be adjusted on creation.

Add a Resolution Guide

To add a Resolution Guide:

  1. Select Form Design from Stage 2: User Interface.
  2. Click the Add Resolution Guide button.

  3. Enter a Name, Width and Height for the guide or select from the list in the Templates drop-down.

  4. Click Create. The Resolution Guide will be applied to all User Forms.

Edit a Resolution Guide

To edit a Resolution Guide:

  1. Right click on either the start or end Node of the guide.

  2. Select Edit from the menu.
  3. Make the required changes in the Edit resolution guide dialog.

Delete a Resolution Guide

To delete a Resolution Guide:

  1. Right click on either the start or end Node of the guide.

  2. Select Delete from the menu.

Resolution Guide Settings

Resolution Guides can have further settings applied.

See Settings to access the Settings dialog and Form Designer Settings for more information on Resolution Guide Settings.

Control Toolbox

The Form Controls available are:

3D Preview BoxA control that displays an interactive 3D Model during specification.
Check BoxA control which allows a user to toggle between TRUE/FALSE.
Child Specification ListA list used to support nesting of specifications inside other specifications.
Combo BoxA list of data presented as a drop-down menu.
Data TableA table of selectable data retrieved from a data source.
Date PickerA control that allows a date to be selected from an interactive calendar.
Dialog ButtonProvides support for launching a dialog to show information to the user, and ask for input.
Frame ControlA control in which any User Form, within the project can be displayed.
HyperlinkProvides a clickable link to a URL.
Item ListA list of data created or edited using dialogs.
LabelProvides a way of displaying fixed or dynamic text on a form.
List BoxA list of options from which the user can select a single item.
Macro ButtonProvides support for running a Macro in the design master when clicked.
Measurement Text BoxProvides support for entering linear dimensions in a variety of units.
Numeric Text BoxA text box which only supports numeric input within a fixed or dynamic range of values.
Option ButtonA single option, in the form of radio buttons, from which the user can select a single item. Option Buttons can be grouped outside a frame and across different forms.
Option GroupA list of options grouped within a single frame, in the form of radio buttons, from which the user can select a single item.
Picture BoxA control which can display a picture whose path can either be a fixed value, or the result of a Rule.
SliderA horizontal or vertical bar with an indicator that can be dragged to represent a numeric unit.
Specification HostA control that allows you to host a Specification or a Child Specification.
Spin ButtonA control which supports numeric input within a fixed or dynamic range of values, and with buttons that increment or decrement the value of the control by a certain amount.
Text BoxA control which supports textual input.
Upload ControlA control that allows a client side file to be uploaded.
Web FrameA control that allows external web content to be rendered onto a User Form.

See Add a Form Control to a User Form to add a control to the form displayed in the Form View.

Export Form As Template

User Forms can be exported as a template, for re-using in other Projects.

User Form template creation allows data within a Project to be included in the template.

Multiple User Forms can be included in the template. Use Ctrl + select to choose the required User Forms from the Forms List.

  1. Select the User Form(s) to be exported.
  2. Click the Export Form As Template button from the command bar.
  3. Enter Template Details:
    • Template Name - is the name of the template that will be created.

      The file extension (.drivefort) is not required to be given in the Template Name field.

    • Description - is a brief description of the template. This will be displayed in the Add From template wizard, once the template is installed.
    • Save Location - is the location the template will be created in.
  4. Select Project Constants.

    This lists all Constants in the Project. Constants can be selected individually or all at once (right click, Select All).

  5. Select Project Variables.

    This lists all Variables in the Project. Variables can be selected individually or all at once (right click, Select All).

  6. Select Calculation Tables.

    This lists all Calculation Tables in the Project. Calculation Tables can be selected individually or all at once (right click, Select All).

  7. Select Specification Macros.

    This lists all Specification Macros in the Project. Specification Macros can be selected individually or all at once (right click, Select All).

  8. Select Additional Content.

    This allows any other file to be selected for inclusion in the template.

    Its primary purpose is to allow the inclusion of images, DriveWorks 3D files.

    Do not include Individual Group or Project files, temporary files, other templates, etc.

Install a Form Template

Once the template has been created, it must be installed on each DriveWorks Administrator machine it is required to be added from.

DriveWorks templates can only be installed on machines that have DriveWorks Administrator installed.

  1. Locate the template created above, for example this will be:


  2. Double click the file.
  3. Follow the steps in the Install wizard.

To add the template to a Project, see Creating a Form from a Template.