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Each control setting property is explained below. Keep in mind that all controls do not have the same setting properties.

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A control’s label is displayed on your form beside or above the control. When you first drag in a control it is assigned an arbitrary and unique label—checkbox 43 for example. Obviously for your users’ sake you will want more meaningful labels. Change a control’s label either on the form itself (by clicking the control and selecting the label) or by overlaying the arbitrary name in the Properties Label field.  Message controls are the only controls without labels—they are used for static text so you don’t need a label, too.

You aren’t restricted to plain text for labels.  You may use arbitrary XHMTL when typing the label name.  Say you want two different font sizes and colors for a label as in the illustration below. 

In the Label field, type this XHTML: Password <span style = "font-size:0.9 em; color: red; "> (6 characters) </span>.

When typing labels you are free to use any special characters with the exception of the less-than sign (<).  If you need a less-than sign in your label, substitute the characters & l t ; (with no spaces between) for the less-than symbol.

Labels can also contain templates that will be replaced by values entered into your form as the form is used. See Templatized Strings for details.

Note that a control's name defaults to its label minus any spaces and special characters. Spaces and special characters are removed in order to make the name valid for use in rules and, for XML users, valid as a xsd schema element name. If the name begins with a numeral (for example,123Name), frevvo prepends an underscore to the it (for example, _123Name) to make it a valid XSD element name. Control names will be truncated to 32  characters for all the controls except triggers and panels.

Also note that if you have two controls with the same label, the control's name will automatically be made unique. If you try to edit the name such that it would no longer be unique frevvo will prevent the edit.



Most controls automatically ensure that users provide the correct data type, but patterns give you the flexibility to impose additional restrictions on what users enter in a particular control.

In the Pattern field in the Properties area, type your pattern using XML schema regular expressions. Check this site for more information. A simple example is a pattern that restricts a text control to only allow strings formatted as a US zip code: \d{5}|\d{5}-\d{4}. If you type this expression in the Patterns property, your form will permit values entered into this field only if they are five digits or five digits followed by the '-' character, followed by 4 digits.  

When you define patterns you don’t have to restrict what the control handles automatically. It is not necessary to enter a pattern [a-z] for a Number control, since users can’t type letters in a number field anyway. Since essentially you would be attempting to expand the allowed data types in the control, frevvo would ignore this pattern if you entered it.

You have to first save the form before the pattern takes effect. Thus patterns cannot be tested in the form designer, only in use mode.

See Patterns and Validation for more information and useful patterns.


This property lets you create a tooltip that will display in your form when the user mouses over the control. Simply type the text for your tooltip in the Hint field.  


This property lets you provide for your users more detailed help about a specific control. If you enter text here, a  icon will appear next to the control on your form.  When the user clicks , the help text you supplied in the Help property will be displayed in a floating box.

Error Message

This lets you display a specific error message if the user does not supply a valid value in the control.  If you leave this property blank users will get generic feedback (an “invalid value” message, for example) if they supply a bad value—but if you use this property, you can make the error message more helpful.

For example, if you are using a pattern that requires the user to enter an area code of 203 in a phone control, you can use the Error Message property to let users know this explicitly if they try to enter a different area code.

Refer to the Table control for information on error messages and columns in a table.

Control Type

This applies to selection controls (dropdowns, radios and checkboxes) and most input controls (text, text area, email, phone, quantity and number) and is populated automatically when you first drag in a control.  You can change this property if you want to switch a control in your form to a different type of control. This saves you from having to remove the original control and drag in a new one. The Control Type property is also used to change a date control to a time or date/time control. See Date, Time, Date/Time for more information.

There are some limitations: you cannot change a selection control to an input control or vice versa. This means you easily can switch a checkbox to a dropdown list, but you cannot use this property to change a checkbox to a text control.   

This property is also useful for verifying what kind of controls are in your form. Since you assign new labels to your controls after you drag them in, you occasionally might forget whether you are looking at a text control or phone control, for example. This property lets you know what kind of controls are in your form no matter what the labels say.

If your control was generated from a schema element, it will have a Display As property instead of a Control Type property. See below.

Display As

This property applies only to controls generated from XSD schema elements. (If the control was dragged in from the palette, it has a Control Type property). 

Use the Display As property to change the way your control looks on your form (for example, To change a text control to a dropdown, select dropdown from the list of allowable controls). This will change the control's appearance but will not affect how the control validates data.  If you need to modify the control's validation behavior, you must update the schema.  See Data Sources for further information. The Display As property is not available for the following schema controls: Message, Repeat, Date, Time, Date/Time, T/F.

Frevvo Type

This property applies only to controls generated from XSD schema elements that contain <frevvo:displaytype> information.

 Refer to the Data Sources topic for information about frevvo XSD annotations.

Date Format

This property applies only to Date controls and the Date portion of the Date/Time control. Select the Date control type to display only the date input field with a   calendar icon. Clicking the calendar to choose the date or hand-typing it, will display the date in the format selected. European date formatting is supported. Allowable Date Formats consist of three different seperators (.- or / or .) and three date display formats (DD/MM/YYYY, MM/DD/YYYY, and YYYY/MM/DD). The default value is MM-DD-YYYY.

On a mobile device, the date picker is typically used to provide a date. If you set a default date in your form it must be formatted as YYYY-MM-dd in order for it to display correctly.

The date format choices are shown below:

  • mm-dd-yyyy      (07-26-1966)                        
  • mm/dd/yyyy      (07/26/1966)
  • mm.dd.yyyy      (07.26.1966)  
  • dd-mm-yyyy      (26-07-1966)
  • dd/mm/yyyy      (26/07/1966)                         
  •      (26.07.1966)
  • yyyy-mm-dd      (1966-07-26)                         
  • yyyy/mm/dd      (1966/07/26)
  •      (1966.07.26)

 By using this property, dates entered into the form get translated according to the chosen format and will be reformatted to match the selected format.

  1. A date typed into a form field will be reformatted to match the selected Date Format 
  2. A date entered into a form field will be translated according to the selected format. For example,if you choose a European format of DD-MM-YYYY and enter 10-05-2009 the date value will be translated as May 10, 2009. If you choose a US format of MM-DD-YYY the date value will be translated as October 5, 2009. 
  3. If you choose any of MM-DD-YYYY using either - or / or . as the separator, all will be valid for that format but will be translated to the selected separator
  4. Users can still enter dates like Feb 3, 2001. It will be translated into the specified format

The date will be converted to the standard xsd:date format of yyyy-mm-dd  in the submissions XML document. Here is an example: <Order Date>2012-03-06</Order Date>. Refer to Viewing XML Documents for more details.

Time Format

This property applies only to the Time control which is created by selecting the Time option from the Date control type dropdown.  Select the Time control type to display only a time input field on your form. Changing the control type to Time will not display the date picker. Select one of four variations of military and standard convention time choices from the Time Format dropdown. The default time format is hh:mm using military time. (EX: 18:30). The allowable Time Format choices use military and standard time and two separators, the dot and the colon. Examples are shown below:


  • hh:mm                         (18:30)
  •                         (18.30)
  • hh:mm - AM/PM           (06:30 PM)
  • - AM/PM           (06.30 PM)
  • hh:mm:ss                     (18:30:15)
  •                     (18.30.15)
  • hh:mm:ss - AM/PM       (06:30:15 PM)
  • - AM/PM       (06.30.15 PM)

By using this property, time entries entered into the form are reformatted to match the selected format. For example, if you choose a military time format of hh:mm:ss and enter 2:00 PM the time value will display in the form as 14:00:00. It will be converted to UTC and saved in the submissions XML document. Here is an example: <Order Time>18:00:00Z</Order Time>. Refer to Viewing XML Documents for more details.  

Date/Time Formats

Select the Date/Time control type, to display two input fields: one for date entry and one for time entry. Dropdown menus, as described above, provide the selection of the nine allowable date formats for the date portion of the control and eight choices in military and standard time for the time portion. When you select Date/Time as the control type, the properties panel will display dropdowns to format the date and time. Refer to Date Format and Time Format for details. Default formats for date and time remain mm-dd-yyyy and hh:mm.    

  1. When you enter a date in the date portion of the date/time control (or select the date with the picker), it will automatically fill the time portion of the control with a value for 12:00 AM. The value displayed depends on the time format selected: For Example:.   
    • 00:00 will display if the selected time format is hh:mm
    • 12:00 AM will display if the selected time format is hh:mm – PM          
    • 00:00:00 will display if the selected time format is hh:mm:ss    
    • 12:00:00 AM will display if the selected time format is hh:mm:ss – PM      
  2. You cannot enter a time value without a date value. 
  3. The time input field cannot be labeled. It is recommended that the label for the date portion be descriptive enough to include the time portion. If date and time labels over the appropriate input fields are required, two separate controls can be used or the label for the date portion can be extended over the time input field, as shown in the image below:

The local time will be converted to and saved in UTC format and the date will be converted to the standard xsd:date format of yyyy-mm-dd in the submission XML document. Here is an example: <OrderDate>2013-08-12T19:13:00Z</OrderDate>. Refer to Viewing XML Documents for more details. 

Max Length

This property is available for text controls and other input controls and limits how many characters users can supply in the control. Simply type a number (positive integer) in the Max Length field. Text area controls do not support this property due to an HTML limitation. However it is very easy to add this functionality to the text area control using a business rule.

# of Rows

This property applies only to text area controls and lets you define the initial size of the text area. Scroll bars will appear automatically when the user reaches the # of rows you specify. 


Make a control required when you want to force users to enter a valid value in the control before they submit your form. To do this, check the Required checkbox in the Properties area. If the data is optional, leave the checkbox unchecked. 

As soon as you mark a control required, red asterisks appear next to it on your form. Until users populate all required controls with valid data, they will not be able to submit the form because the Submit button will be disabled.

You cannot mark grouping controls (tabs, panels and repeats) required. A section is one grouping control that does have a Required Property.  If a Section has the required property checked, required controls within it show an asterisk (*) in design and Use mode. If the Section has required unchecked, required controls within it DO NOT show the asterisk (*) in design and Use mode. The asterisk (*) appears only when one of the required controls in the section is filled making it mandatory to fill other required controls within the section. 

Input controls that are direct children (directly inside) of repeat controls also cannot be marked required, nor do they need to be, since the min# and max# properties take care of this already. You may, however, make controls required when they are inside sections, tabs and panels.

You cannot edit the required property for controls that have been generated from an uploaded schema, since the schema already specifies this via the minOccurs attribute. If a control from schema appears as required and you don't want it to be required, edit the XSD and set minOccurs=0. Re-upload the XSD. Then the control will no longer appear required.

This property is very useful when using rules to hide/show sections depending on something else in the form. If you hide the section you may have to set the required property to false . See Visible/Invisible Sections in Rules Examples for full details.


This property appears for dropdown, radio and checkbox controls and is how you populate the choices the user sees in these controls.

You may have option labels different from option values. The syntax for the options is <value>=<label>. The <label> is what will be displayed on your form and the <value> is what is saved as the selected value when the user submits the form.

When you first drag one of these controls into your form they have generic values: Option 1, Option 2 and Option 3. This matches the generic text you see in the Properties area. To supply your own values, simply overlay the values in the Options property with the values you want and add more (or delete) as necessary.

If you do not enter both <value> and <label> using the <value>=<label> syntax, then the value will default to the label. As soon as you tab off the options property, options without values will automatically be converted to the syntax.

Here the options are entered without values. In this case frevvo will default the value to the label.

As soon as you tab out of the Options property the options will be automatically converted to the <value>=<label> syntax.

If you would like the submitted values to differ from the visible label then edit the options as follows. In this case the values are A, B, C, while the visible labels remain morning, afternoon, evening.

The order of choices in your control will match the order in the Properties area.  If you have choices that need a logical order (you’d want a dropdown of US states to be sorted alphabetically, presumably), make sure the order is correct in the Properties area. (You can’t sort the text you enter in the Options property field but you can cut and paste.) 

In addition to the generic Option 1, 2 and 3 choices, a dropdown control also includes a blank option that by default will appear first in the list. This blank option will appear no matter what text you supply in the Options property. You cannot remove the blank option but you can make one of the other options the default. See setting defaults.

What if you want a '=' character to appear in your options? Since the 1st equal sign is the delimiter between the value and the label, you can put an equal in the label as follows. For example, suppose you want your label to be "good = gold." If you enter this as the option, what you'll see in your dropdown is the label "gold." To solve this, use this options string: "a=good = gold". Now the label will be as you wish. Currently, if there is an equal sign in the label, it is not possible to also have an equal in the value. This will be supported in a future release.

The choices cannot be changed if they have been generated from an uploaded schema, since the schema specifies the choices. On controls generated from schema, you won’t see the Options property in the Properties area. However, you can change the option labels. See Labels.

Checkbox option values cannot contain spaces. For example if you set your checkbox option to "Black Cat=Black Cat", it will automatically be converted to "Black_Cat=Black Cat" as soon as you tab out of the options property. This is because checkboxes are multi-select. When the form is submitted, space is used as the separator character for the checkbox control's value. Thus a space character cannot be in the value itself as it would be interpreted as a separator.


This property applies only to controls generated from schema elements. (If you drag a control in from the palette, it has a Options property; if the control was generated from a schema element, it has a Labels property instead.)

You can change the controls labels, although the XSD values for the control in the the schema do not change. In other words, you can change what a user sees in the form, but not the underlying values (i.e., you cannot use the [value=label] syntax you use for palette controls to change the element values).

For example, the schema below specifies choices for an event registration as: ''A'', ''B'', ''C''. However, the form would be easier to understand if the labels for A, B and C were ''morning'', ''afternoon'', and ''evening''. You can edit the labels, and the form will show morning, afternoon and evening. However, when this form is submitted, the submission will still correctly contain the required values A, B or C. If you want to change these values, you must edit and re-upload the schema.

Changing Labels for Controls Generated from Schema Elements
<xsd:element minOccurs="0" name="Registration">
        <xsd:restriction base="xsd:string">
          <xsd:enumeration value="A"/>
          <xsd:enumeration value="B"/>                    
          <xsd:enumeration value="C"/>

Note also that you cannot add more labels to the control than the number of XSD values defined for the control in the schema. Using the example above, you cannot add a fourth label to the control because the schema specifies only three possible values (A, B, C) for the control.

The Labels property is also very useful when used in conjunction with the Display As property. For example, imagine your XSD schema contains an element named "product" which is of the type xsd:string. But you know for a fact that there are a limited set of product types that are allowed by the back-end system (a database, for example). An xsd:string element will create a text control on your form by default. But you can easily change the form to restrict the types by using the Display As property to change the control from text to dropdown. Then use the labels property to enter the list of product choices. The submission values will now be restricted to that set of options rather then any text string.

Though you can still edit the underlying schema to add an enumeration or set the options in  a business rule, using the labels property makes this common task easier.


This property determines whether the control is enabled or disabled when users first access your form. If you check the DISABLED checkbox, users may not enter a value in the control until the control is enabled. (You can enable the control using a Rule.)

For example, say you are creating a wedding invitation form and want to know if the people completing your form are bringing a guest. Your form might include a text control for the guest’s name that becomes enabled only after users indicate (in another control) that they are in fact coming to the wedding.  

You are not permitted to disable grouping controls.


This property determines whether the control is visible or hidden when users first access your form.  It is almost identical in concept to the Enabled property, but instead of disabling the control you hide it and write a Rule that makes it visible based on what users enter in another control. 

Hide Label

This property determines whether the control’s label will be displayed on your form.  Check the checkbox to hide the label on your form; leave it unchecked to show the control’s label.  


This property applies only to message controls and is where you enter the static text that will appear on your form. In addition to regular text, you may include in this property field arbitrary XHTML markup that will be formatted and displayed by the browser.

Min# and Max#

These properties appear as part of a Table Control or when your form has an input control inside a repeat control and apply to the input control. Simply type a number (positive integer) in the two property fields. If you specify a min # of 1 and max # of 10, users must enter values in at least one input control or they will be unable to submit the form, but they may enter as many as ten. See Repeat Controls for more details. 

If you set the min# to 0, users initially will see one email control but won’t be required to supply an EMail address to submit the form. 

MIn/Max properties for the Table Control allow the user to add/delete table rows in a form as needed. See Tables for more details.

Min/Max properties are not editable for controls generated from an uploaded schema, since the schema already specifies this via the minOccurs and maxOccurs attributes.


This property applies only to text controls and other input controls. If you check the Password checkbox, the text the user enters will appear on the form as asterisks (it will be submitted as normal text, however).


This property determines whether the value saved in the submissions repository is hidden when viewed in the frevvo web submissions UI. Check the checkbox if the data users will enter into this field contains sensitive data that should not be visible when viewed in the web UI. Sensitive field values will be encrypted in the submissions database using an SHA algorithm. The control must be designated as a Saved Field in the form. This property does not enable hashig of the value stored in the XML document.

CSS Class

This is the control’s class name that was added to your form's XHTML markup. You can use this CSS class to reference the control in any CSS when customizing themes.

One built-in css class name is 'f-page-break'. If you want to add a page break to the printed view of the form's pdf, tiff, add f-page-break to the control that you want to start at the top of a new page. See Printing Forms for the details.

You can find information about adding css code to a custom theme to support international characters in Print View and submission PDFs here.


Every control has a name. The name is automatically generated and defaults to the control's label minus any spaces and special characters. Spaces and special characters are removed in order to make the name valid for use in rules and, for XML users, this makes the name valid as a xsd schema element name. Control names will be truncated to 32  characters for all the controls except triggers and panels. 

Do not name your controls action or method. These are reserved names. If you use these names your form will not properly submit or cancel and may cause a http 404 error when the users try to submit or cancel. Also, avoid using JavaScript Reserved Keywords as control identifier names as these words have a special function in the JavaScript language. Click here for a partial list.

If you have two controls with the same label and at the same level, the control's name will automatically be made unique. If you try to edit the name such that it would no longer be unique, frevvo will prevent the edit. In order to use a control in a rule the name must be unique in your form. When a control is dropped inside a section control, it is at a different nesting level then a control dropped outside a section. Also two controls, one inside a section called Car and another in a section called Boat are also at different nesting levels. In both cases the form designer will allow you to name the controls the same. For example both Car and Boat can contain a control named VIN. 

Use English alphabet characters only when naming controls. For example, controls named with ó as in Póliza may cause issues when the control is used in a business rule and with submission data.

The Name property is instrumental in several usages within frevvo

  • Name is how you refer to your control in Rules
  • Name is also used when initializing form fields via the frevvo _data URL parameter for controls added from the palette.
    Note: For controls added from XSD schema, you must use the underlying element name to initialize the control via _data. 
  • Name is how you refer to form fields from Document URIs
  • Name is used in Form Action Display Message and Go to URL Templates
  • Name is used in Doc Action Email Address Templates
  • This is the name given to the XML element corresponding to the control you drag into your form from the palette.

You can change the Name of controls from schema, although schema controls maintain their underlying XSD element name. For example, suppose you are using controls from two schemas in a form and both contain a control named ''FName''. You could change the name of one of these controls to ''FirstName'' to make them unique within the form. This is helpful if you're  adding rules to the form, or if you want to use the form as a template.

Except for _data, controls from XSD use the same rules (as above) as controls from palette.  


This property determines whether or not this form field will appear in the  in the PDF document view of the form. If unchecked, the field will not appear in either view.

You can set the property on a section control and it will automatically apply to all controls inside the section control. This is often used in business rules. See Show/Hide/Print.

Enable if Valid

This property applies only to Submit controls. By default frevvo disables the form's submit button until all required fields are filled and contain valid data. See Valid Forms for details of this feature. However, sometimes you may wish to override frevvo' default behavior and allow the user to submit a form even if it is invalid. To do this, uncheck this property.

Prefix Property

Custom groups with rules included when dropped back onto the same or another form, will contain a special "Prefix" property. The property will automatically be given a unique value if you drop the group onto the same form 2 or more times. This ensures that the group controls have unique element name. You can view the impact the prefix has on the element names by viewing the form's schema or the control's property panel. Using the prefix property, you can write a separate rule to manipulate the 2nd or greater instance of the custom control. Refer to this documentation for the details.

Max Size

The Max Size property is used to set the upper limit for each attachment uploaded using the Upload Control in your forms/flow. It is set to 10Mb in the frevvo cloud. In-house customers should refer to the Max Size property for information about configuring this property for an in-house installation.

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