A new tool to easily build Entity Selection list boxes

To display a list of records, an entity selection list box is the most suitable when using ORDA technology. 4D v18 R2 simplifies your life with a new tool to easily build entity selection list boxes: List box builder. What is it? It’s a simple dialog where you can set up your list box in a few quick steps (select the table and fields to display, enter column titles, and define the column order). 


In the Form editor click on the new icon to display the List box builder dialog.

Form editor toolbar


Next, select a table and the fields to be displayed in the list box. The order of the fields corresponds to the order of the columns in the generated list box (you can reorder them with a simple drag and drop action).


Entity selection list boxes require an expression for the entity selection to be displayed. By default, 4D prefills the expression with “Form.currentSelection”.

Clicking on the Copy button with copy the expression with code to load the entire entity selection from the selected table. The following example shows the clipboard contents of the prefilled expression and the additional code:


One last click on the Build widget button and voilà! The entity selection list box is generated. Let’s add a button and paste the clipboard contents into the button’s object method.


A live demonstration

In this demonstration video, we’ll use the “Contacts” database. The video shows two examples. In the first example, we create a form with an entity selection list box to display everyone in the “Contact” table.

In the second example, we create two list boxes: “Category” and “Contact”. When a user clicks on a category, the list of contacts for this category is displayed in the second list box.


Vanessa Talbot
• Product Owner •Vanessa Talbot joined 4D Program team in June, 2014. As a Product Owner, she is in charge of writing the user stories then translating it to functional specifications. Her role is also to make sure that the feature implementation delivered is meeting the customer need.Since her arrival, she has worked to define key features in 4D. She has worked on most of preemptive multi-threading new features and also on a very complex subject: the new architecture for engined application. Vanessa has a degree from Telecom Saint-Etienne. She began her career at the Criminal Research Institute as a developer for the audiovisual department. She has also worked in media and medical fields as expert in technical support, production as well as documenting new features.