Stefan Cameron on Forms
Building intelligent forms using Adobe LiveCycle Designer

Archive for March, 2008

Field Background Color Fill

Did you know that you can quickly set the background fill color of a field via script using the


property? This can be very handy if you want to highlight a field for some reason. The property takes an RGB color value as a string: "255,0,0" would give a red fill.

What you may not realize is that fields actually have two areas: The "nominal extent" represents the entire field, including the caption, while the "content extent" represents only the data input portion of the field. There’s a difference between setting the fill color of one vs. the other.

The Nominal Extent Fill

When you set the fill color using the "fillColor" property, you’re setting the fill color of the nominal extent’s border property. It’s actually a shortcut:

TextField1.fillColor = "255,255,0"; // yellow

is equivalent to this:

TextField1.border.fill.color.value = "255,255,0";

Here’s a text field with no fill:

And here it is after setting its "fillColor" property to yellow:

(On a side note, you may notice that the field now has a border and you’re probably wondering where it came from. See this article for an explanation and what you need to do to get rid of it.)

The Content Extent Fill

So how do we set the fill color of the content extent without filling the entire field? The content extent’s fill color is specified within the field’s content extent (or "UI", in XFA terms) border and is accessed like this:

TextField1.ui.oneOfChild.border.fill.color.value = "0,200,0"; // green

(If you’re wondering what the "oneOfChild" property is, see this article.)

The result of the above line of script on the initial text field is as follows:

For example, you could use the content extent fill color as a way to communicate to someone that a field is disabled (by setting its content extent fill color to light gray (230,230,230)).

Finally, you can combine the two as follows (this being the combination of setting both the nominal and content extent fill colors):

Posted by Stefan Cameron on March 14th, 2008
Filed under Scripting,Tutorials

XFA 2.7 Spec Now Available

In toe with the recent release of LiveCycle ES SP2 comes the availability of version 2.7 of the XFA spec. There aren’t any significant changes that I can think of in this release but I thought you might want to know about its availability nonetheless.

XFA 2.7 is supported by LiveCycle Designer ES 8.1.2.

Posted by Stefan Cameron on March 12th, 2008
Filed under Designer,XFA

LiveCycle Designer 8.1.1 SP2 Posted

I’ve just received word that Service Pack 2 has been posted. You will find SP2 patches for Designer 8.1.1 EFGJ as well as LiveCycle Workbench and LiveCycle ES as a whole. See the readme file for more information on what issues were addressed.

This service pack contains many bug fixes. If you haven’t installed SP1 yet, that’s OK since SP2 is a cumulative service pack that also contains all of the SP1 fixes.

Posted by Stefan Cameron on March 7th, 2008
Filed under Designer

XFA 2.6 Spec Now Available

I was just looking at the Adobe XML Forms Architecture (XFA) web page and noticed that the XFA 2.6 spec was posted recently (near the end of January 2008, I think). I have to admit I didn’t expect to see it there for a while still but this is a good thing!

XFA 2.6 is supported by LiveCycle Designer 8.1 and Acrobat/Reader 8.1.

Posted by Stefan Cameron on March 5th, 2008
Filed under Acrobat,Designer,XFA