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Adobe PDF (Livecycle)  Drop down box is populated with ID field not the descriptor field and won't let me select a different value.

Posted on 2010-03-24
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-11-12
I am using Livecycle to create a PDF form, however the drop down box doesn't seem to populate correctly nor will it allow me to select a different value.

Thanks in advance!

Select a new value from the drop down box that is bound to an ADBC database backend.

Steps taken
1.    Open the PDF using Adobe Pro with the form wizard.  The wizard does a pretty good job of detecting the text boxes, radio buttons.
2.    I then save the file as form_input1.pdf.
3.    I open the file using Livecycle so I can connect it to the database backend (SQL Server) via a stored procedure called spClientData.
4.    I added a New Name Connection via OLEDB database calling it dsClientData.
      a.    Build the connection string via the Wizard:
             Provider=SQLOLEDB.1;Persist Security Info=True;User ID=sa;Initial
            Catalog=testDB;Data Source=;Use Procedure for Prepare=1;Auto
            Translate=True;Packet Size=4096;Workstation ID=WS134;Use Encryption for
            Data=False;Tag with column collation when possible=False
      b.    Select record source: Stored Procedure – spClientData

5.    Repeat the process for another connection (dsOrigination) to populate the drop down box using another stored procedure called spOriginationList.

6.    Change the Origination text box to a Drop Down box.

7.    Select the Object tab/Binding tab and select Default.Binding field selecting dsClientData as the datasource and the origID as the binding field.
      NOTE: If I allow it to update all related properties it changes the type back to Numeric type,    
                 which I change back to the Drop-down type.
8.    At this point I click on the Object/Field tab.

9.    List Items should be enabled as a link to allow the list items to be bound to the dsOrigination.  However it is not enabled even after following the steps to enable this per this link (http://it.toolbox.com/blogs/enterprise-modeling/dynamic-dropdown-lists-in-adobe-livecycle-designer-32393):
      a.    File > Form Properties and open the preview tab, preview type: Interactive form.
      b.    Tools > Options > Data Binding and making sure the Show Dynamic Properties option is selected.

10. At this point I got stuck, so to at least get the drop down box working I decided to start with a blank form.

11. I added the 2 datasources as in steps 4 & 5.

12. When I follow steps 7, 8, 9 the List Items link is enabled.

13. I entered into the dialog box:
     a.    Data Connection: dsOrigination
     b.    Item Text: origText
     c.    Item Value: origID
    d.    Click Ok

14. At this point I Saved the file to my desktop as NewForm.pdf

15. I run the form on the desktop inside of PDF reader 9.0 and the dropdown box displays only the origID and I am unable to click the drop down box to select another value.

16. What am I missing, why isn’t the origText displaying and why can’t I select a different value?
Question by:prgMan
  • 4
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Author Comment

ID: 28873180
Thanks Matt!  Really appreciate it
LVL 12

Accepted Solution

GlennHarris earned 2000 total points
ID: 28880139
Well, i thought this could be a lot of issues; I was able to recreate your problem on my end.
At first I'd have thought it was an SQL or database issue.
I started by looking at it as a DSN issue, that did not help solve the problem, but here's what i did so you won't waste time. When Livecycle builds the ODBC connection string, it creates a file dsn but you may need a system or user dsn. I ended up using a system dsn.
To create a dsn on windows use the control panel > administrative tools > Data sources (odbc) as a system dsn and try the test form again.
This solved the problem: Select your drop down list; in the object panel  on the binding tab, click the green link Specify Item Values; Change the data connection, then for itemtext and itemvalue, choose your field again!
Certainly a challenging problem, hope this helps

Author Comment

ID: 29249022
Hi Glenn,
Still not letting me see the values, the odd thing is I can populate a text field pointing to the database.

Not sure if this might also be a factor, I am working on a Windows 7 (64 bit machine), I'm going to try your suggestion on my old laptop at home.  See if that works.  So far W7 is not developer friendly everything is locked down.  Is this a precursor to HAL?  Open the door HAL....
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LVL 12

Assisted Solution

GlennHarris earned 2000 total points
ID: 29287885
Well I run XP Pro still on SP2.
After I'd connect to the data i'd always have to convert the text box to a drop down after, quite a pain. I was able to see the first value too before i uncovered the green link to Specify Item Values and bind to the data
I don't recommend anyone run 64-bit yet IMHO on a desktop, it's just not prime time ready yet, probably soon like 1-2 years hopefully.
I'd recommend you try to pull the data into excel and see how that works, you can likely use the same DSN acrobat made. Not that it should matter, I made a system DSN in the ODBC manager. I could be an issue of administrative rights on the desktop if you're in a secured network environment.

Author Comment

ID: 29903585
Hi Glen,
Sorry for the delay I got grabbed to build another app in .net.  I feel a more comfortable in that environment, speaking adobe is like speaking surfer speak.  Kinda like English but not quite.  It is odd that the dropdown converts into a text box, I thought it was just me doing something wrong.  

I think your right on the 64 bit issue, I tried it on my older laptop which is using Windows XP Pro and it worked.  I don't understand why but that's just odd.  My network/boss insists that 32 bit machines are going to be hard to come by.  Not sure on that with all the problems we have been having with the 64 bit.  I upgraded my new laptop to 64 bit last night and then spent 4 hours installing/finding drivers.  

I think I will go with your suggestion with the 32 bit Windows XP pro and work on these.  I have Virtual PC and I believe I should be able to do it in there.  

Thanks again for your help.

Author Closing Comment

ID: 31706792
thanks Glen and Matt, much appreciated

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