Do you know the phenomen: you develop a bigger application and end up with a lot of structure elements and dynamic elements. Your Editor has to scroll the toolbar trying to spot the element he needs at the moment.

What can be done about it?

1. Use Element Groups

With version AxCMS.net 9.2 it is possible to group the elements in the ribbon toolbar:

Groups are created with a new section in CmsSite.xml: ElementGroupDefinitions.

    <ElementGroupDefinitions>
        <ElementGroupDefinition axid="Formular" name="Formular controls">
            <ElementTemplates>
                <ElementTemplate axid="dyn_1001" atLeast="0" atMost="100"/>
                <ElementTemplate axid="dyn_1002" atLeast="0" atMost="100"/>
                <ElementTemplate axid="dyn_1003" atLeast="0" atMost="100"/>
                <ElementTemplate axid="dyn_1004" atLeast="0" atMost="100"/>
                <ElementTemplate axid="dyn_1005" atLeast="0" atMost="100"/>
                <ElementTemplate axid="dyn_1006" atLeast="0" atMost="100"/>
                <ElementTemplate axid="dyn_1007" atLeast="0" atMost="100"/>
                <ElementTemplate axid="dyn_1008" atLeast="0" atMost="100"/>
                <ElementTemplate axid="dyn_1009" atLeast="0" atMost="100"/>
                <ElementTemplate axid="dyn_1010" atLeast="0" atMost="100"/>
                <ElementTemplate axid="dyn_1011" atLeast="0" atMost="100"/>
                <ElementTemplate axid="dyn_1012" atLeast="0" atMost="100"/>
            </ElementTemplates>       
        </ElementGroupDefinition>
    </ElementGroupDefinitions>

AxID references the elements already defined under ElementTemplateDefinitions.

For a given placeholder you can allow the whole group:

<PlaceholderDefinition axid="basePlaceholder">
    <ElementTemplates>
        <ElementTemplate axid="GreyCellLine" atLeast="0" atMost="2"/>
        <ElementTemplate groupID="Formular" atLeast="0" atMost="100"/>
        ...

It saves time and avoid redundancy mistakes.

If a group is allowed for a placeholder, it also appears on the left in the toolbar allowing to reduce the editor's choice significantly.

2. Use icons to help the editor distinguish the elements easily

For every structure element you create you can optionally define an image to be used in the toolbar. Get use of this feature!

To attach an image use RibbonImage-element under ElementTemplateDefinition:

   <ElementTemplateDefinition axid="20" description="3 columns (3 x 160px)">
      <File>RowControls\Axinom\EnglishPlaceHolder_160_160_160.htm</File>
      <RibbonImage file="/images/RibbonImages/Elements/3_columns.png"/>

Dimensions of the image are 92x62 px, preferably in PNG-format.

3. Use descriptions understandable for the Editors

The AxID you assign to the element is only used inside CmsSite.xml. But the description-attribute will be shown to the editor. So use it reasonably, allowing the editor to understand what this element is about. Even if you follow the previous advice and do use icons, the descriptions are still shown as a tooltip.

4. Be carefull about named elements

It is possible to give a name to any object on any page. Such named elements automatically appear in the toolbar. If this feature is used often, there are more and more items in the toolbar which look very similar. Many of them are probably outdated.

To remove a named element from the toolbar you just need to find it and remove the name. To find them - go to Edit / Objects and check "Only Named".

A radical way to remove all the named elements would be to run this statemet in the MS-database.

UPDATE AxObject SET Name = NULL

Please only run it if you know what you do.

5. Allow only the elements which are really needed for a given placeholder

For every placeholder you can define the elements which can be added there. Only allowed elements are shown in the toolbar.

You can also define different placeholders for different purpose, limiting number of elements available for each placeholder.

Apply this advice with care: if you do too much optimizig, your editors will start missing elements here and there.

 

As you see, there is a lot, developers can do for the editors and increase the success chances of their project.