Template Properties Dialog Box

The Template Properties dialog box is a "user-friendly" version of the template configuration file that enables you to view and edit template details as well as set options affecting interviews and document assembly.

You can edit the template properties by clicking the Template Properties button in either the right pane of Workspace Explorer, from the Author tab on the Word ribbon, from the ribbon in Composer, or by clicking the Properties button in the New Template dialog.

Answer Intake Properties Dialog Box

When you are working in Composer or creating a new answer intake, this dialog is called the Answer Intake properties dialog. All properties are the same, except in the Assembly Behavior tab; Update table of contents, references, field, etc is not available for answer intakes.

Common Tasks

Using the properties in this dialog box, you can accomplish the following main tasks:

General Tab

The properties on the General tab enable you to:

Property What it Does
Title Enables you to edit the template title that HotDocs displays in the template details pane of Workspace Explorer, the HotDocs Interview title, and in HotDocs Advance. The name of the file on disk is not affected.
Description With the exception of auxiliary-only templates, enables you to edit the text that appears below the title of the template in the template details pane of Workspace Explorer.
Template Identifier Displays the Globally Unique Identifier that the HotDocs system uses to manage the template's life cycle. If you need to upload the same template as two different packages in the HotDocs Advance, you can generate and associate a new GUID with the template by clicking the Generate New Template Identifier button.

You can edit a Template Identifier (GUID) manually if you need to. Template Identifiers must use hexadecimal format (0-9 and A-F).

Auxiliary-only template Enables you to declare that you intend to use the current template only to augment the contents and functionality of another template using either a placeholder field or an ASSEMBLE instruction.

If you set this property on a template, HotDocs rejects any attempt to upload the template to HotDocs Advance (it can only be uploaded by uploading the template that references it).

Setting this property also means that the template does not appear within Workspace Explorer by default. To see the template in Workspace Explorer, you must change the filter setting to Include auxiliary-only templates.

When you create a template by first selecting a portion of an existing template, this property is automatically selected.

Repeat context Only appears when you select the Auxiliary Template Only property. Enables you to select the repeated dialog you want this auxiliary template to use as its repeat context. To set the repeat context, the auxiliary template must use the same component file as the parent template that references the auxiliary template.
Component File Enables you to change which component file the template "points to". You can choose a different component file from the drop-down list.
Additional Templates To accommodate Inserts of other templates within the current template, this property enables you to manually set a dependency on other templates that you want HotDocs to include in this template's package when you upload your template. To do so, press the plus (+) button.
Other Additional Files Enables you to list additional files (such as graphic files that this template needs for operation) you want HotDocs to include in this template's package when you upload your template. To do so, press the plus (+) button.

Interview Behavior Tab

The Interview Behavior tab enables you to set options for how the template user views and interacts with the interview:

Property What it Does
Generate default interview Selected by default; causes HotDocs to generate a default interview of "implicit" dialogs by asking the components in the template. Unless you add components to dialogs, HotDocs presents the questions in the default interview based on the order in which the components occur in the template.

For Answer Intakes, this option is always deselected and disabled.

Use custom interview computation Selecting this option enables you to select a custom interview computation from the drop-down list. If you have not created a custom interview, it only displays the default blank INTERVIEW computation.

For Answer Intakes, this option is always selected.

Automatically disable irrelevant variables and dialogs When a template user's answer to a given question causes a variable or dialog in the interview to not be needed, disables the variable and/or the dialog containing the question.
Default display of irrelevant variables and dialogs Enables you to determine HotDocs' default display behavior for irrelevant variables and dialogs:
  • Show – causes HotDocs to display the question or dialog, even if the variable is irrelevant
  • Gray – displays, but graphically "grays out" the question or dialog; does not allow user to answer
  • Hide – does not display the question or dialog to the user
Interview includes navigation Outline Determines whether the interview outline is included in the interview.
Outline is open by default Determines whether the interview outline appears opened to the left of the interview tab when the interview first loads.
Interview includes Additional Information Determines whether the Additional Information pane appears to the right of the interview
Additional Information is open by default Determines whether the Additional Information pane appears opened to the right of the interview when the interview first loads.
Express navigation When selected, interview navigation to function in an "express" manner, i.e. clicking the Next button during the interview will skip any child dialogs and proceed to the next dialog.

Template users can still navigate to child dialogs with Express Navigation turned on, but navigating to them will require clicking on the individual child dialog.

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Enable navigation past required variables When selected, enables a template user in an interview to navigate past a dialog that contains a required question (from a variable that you have made required with a REQUIRE instruction). Template users must still answer the required question before completing the interview.
Interview language Enables you to choose the language you want HotDocs to display your interview user interface elements in (strings, text boxes, prompts, etc.). You can type a language code other than those provided in the drop-down, though if you choose language for which there is no HotDocs module, HotDocs only provides you with a limited set of interview behaviors. If you delete the inherited setting for this property, the interview detects the locale from the browser (if possible), or it falls back to the locale specified by the server default setting.

The initial interview language property corresponds to what you choose in the Default Language for New Templates property in the HotDocs Options dialog box.

Assembly Behavior Tab

The Assembly Behavior tab enables you to determine how HotDocs displays some of the content in the final assembled document:

Property What it Does
Assembled document name Enables you to choose the assembled document’s title and filename. By default, HotDocs will use the template title as the assembled document title and filename. When you check Use a computation and select a computation from the drop-down menu, HotDocs uses that computation as the assembled document’s title and filename. The computation must be an existing text computation in the component file which does not use parameters.
Default unanswered text Use the drop-down list to select the placeholder you would like HotDocs to insert into the assembled document in place of any unanswered questions from the interview. Select from:
  • ***Variable*** – places the unanswered variable name surrounded by three asterisks. For example, ***EmployeeName***.
  • [Variable] – places the unanswered variable name surrounded by square brackets. For example, [EmployeeName].
  • Underscores – places seven underscores in a line, like this  _______.
  • Asterisks – places six asterisks in a line, like this ******.
  • Nothing – places nothing in place of the unanswered component.
Assembly formatting language Enables you to choose the language you want HotDocs to use for formatting date and number values when assembling your document. The initial value that displays corresponds to what you chose in the Default Language for New Templates property in the HotDocs Options dialog box. If you remove this property's default setting and do not apply a new one, HotDocs assembles the document in accordance with the language you chose for each context. If the template is not an auxiliary template, and you do not set this property, HotDocs defaults to "en-US" as the assembly language for the template.
Post Assembly Processing Enables you to instruct HotDocs to provide further processing to a document after assembly. There are two options available under this heading that only enable for DOCX templates:
  • Update Table of Contents, References, Fields, Etc. – Select this option to instruct HotDocs to update the document's table of contents and/or index after assembling the final word processor document. HotDocs updates these references based on any changes applied during document assembly.
  • Convert to PDF  – Enables you to instruct HotDocs to always convert the an assembled DOCX document to PDF and deliver the PDF document as the final output. When you select this option, HotDocs also selects the Update Table of Contents, References, Fields, etc. option, then disables your ability to edit that option. This ensures that the update action occurs before HotDocs converts the assembled document to PDF. Deselecting this option returns the Update TOC property to whatever you previously set it to.