31 Replies Latest reply on Nov 27, 2017 7:53 PM by floejoe

    Tab order issue

    Level 1
      Could use some help. I can't get the tab order to work. I have set the tab order and my document has a logical field order, but it keeps skipping over certain fields. The funny thing is that if I move one of the fields down 1/2 an inch, it'll work. This of course makes the document look bad however. Can someone tell me why the tab order would be completely ignored if I just shift a text field?

        • 1. Re: Tab order issue
          Level 1
          Hi Ryan, are you using Acrobat or Designer to create your form? Tab order is a little different depending on the tool.

          If you are using Acrobat then the tab order can be controlled using the page properties window. With Designer, you have a menu option that allows you to change the "Z-Order" by clicking on the fields in the order you wish them to tab.

          You can also code the positioning using script if you do get stuck.
          • 2. Re: Tab order issue
            Level 1
            I am using Designer 7. I used the "View tab order" and put them in the proper order, but it still skips certain fields. The form I am creating is pretty basic. Any chance I could e-mail this form to you in order to show you what I'm talking about?
            • 3. Re: Tab order issue
              Level 1
              Sure Ryan, email to lsutton (at) adobe (dot) com.
              • 4. Re: Tab order issue
                Level 1
                any solution to this issue? I am having the same problem. it does not remember the tab order
                • 5. Re: Tab order issue
                  Level 1
                  We ultimately got around this issue with some java code added. We found that the radio buttons were definitely contributing, so we took them out of the order, hence forcing the user to mouse click to these. I'd suggest matching your hierarchy to your tab order first if you haven't already done so. This tended to fix some of the tab order between text fields at least.
                  • 6. Re: Tab order issue
                    Level 1
                    yes I just noticed that our hierarchy is not in the correct order. I will move the items around and see if this helps. Thanks for the tip.
                    • 7. Re: Tab order issue
                      Level 1
                      that didn't help. i must be honest and say that if you have a tab order helper that you can choose the number for the controls tab order and it doesn't go in that order, its nuts and its wasting time trying to sort it out. what is the point of being able to set the tab order if it doesn't work?
                      • 8. Re: Tab order issue
                        Level 1
                        Ok I have figured it out. In the "PDF structure" tab you need to have everything lined up as well, in the same object. IE
                        . It is totally unstrcutured compared to the rest of the PDF but it fixed my problem and this is with the radio buttons as well.
                        • 9. Re: Tab order issue
                          Level 1
                          I just downloaded Adobe Acrobat 8.0 and I am using Adobe LiveCycle Designer. I am having the same issue. I click on the tab order. I order the fields (numbers verify that I have the order I want) and guess what? When I hit the tab key, the cursor goes in a different order from field to field than what I have seleted.

                          HELP! This is really going to confuse the people I am creating the form for.
                          • 10. Re: Tab order issue
                            Level 1
                            When you check the XML representation of the form, does the traverse ref attribute contain the value of the next field on your form?

                            • 11. Re: Tab order issue
                              Level 1
                              I would make sure your hierarchy is in the same order as your tabs as well.
                              • 12. Re: Tab order issue
                                Level 1
                                Ah ha! I was not aware of this xml file. I moved the out of order field from the bottom to the third position in this file, where it belonged, then renamed the toolTip. It works now.

                                Thank you for your very quick reply!
                                • 13. Re: Tab order issue
                                  Level 1
                                  Same issue, have checked and Hierarchy, PDF Structure and XML Source all in correct order. But tabbing through the document is still in the wrong order.

                                  Using LiveCycle Designer 8.0

                                  The project I'm looking at is thousands of pages of existing pdf and word applications that need to be made into forms.

                                  Is there a solution to this problem or do I need to look elsewhere for a product that can do this?
                                  • 14. Re: Tab order issue
                                    Level 1
                                    I'm having the same problem!! I've completed the form exactly the way I wanted it in LiveCycle 8.0. However when I check it in Adobe Reader my tabs are all messed up. My Hierarchy is the same order as my tabs, My XML Source has already been changed so the form will work with Adobe Reader 6.0. I've even cleared the tab order in Adobe Reader. Any suggestions?
                                    • 15. Re: Tab order issue
                                      Level 1
                                      I got a reply from Adobe. In LiveCycle, Save As - Adobe 7, then it works. On some exisiting forms that are not following the order, I needed to go back through reseting the tab numbers before it settled in to the correct order in Reader.
                                      • 16. Re: Tab order issue
                                        Level 1
                                        I'm experiencing the same tabbing issue and have not found any answers to it. My Hierarchy is correct, checked the XML file and still nothing. I started off with Designer 8 so I can't save as - 7.
                                        • 17. Re: Tab order issue
                                          (Jonathan_P._Sullivan) Level 1
                                          I was having this problem and Saving As Acrobat 7 (instead of Acrobat 6) , then resetting the Tab sequence worked for me.
                                          • 18. Re: Tab order issue
                                            Level 1
                                            Can someone tell me how a user can tab between radio buttons. I have set up radio buttons, but can't seem to tab between the buttons, only arrow through. My webmaster is requiring tabbing between the buttons.
                                            • 19. Re: Tab order issue
                                              Level 1
                                              If you created your form in Designer 7 or later I don't think you can. Using the arrow keys between radio buttons is the new norm I believe. Someone correct me if I am wrong.
                                              • 20. Re: Tab order issue
                                                Level 1
                                                I am trying to set the tab order on a form I created in designer. I am able to get so far, then I come across a field that will not allow me to select it. I pretty much took the first six fields I created and dupliacted them all over the form - could this have something to do with it? I've done it before though and not had this issue.
                                                • 21. Re: Tab order issue
                                                  Level 1
                                                  Hi Anna, select View and then tab order from your main menu and you should be able to see the order that the tabbing will follow. If you're using Designer 8.2 you have a tab on the left hand side that displays the tab order and also let's you move the order up and down easily.

                                                  If the ordering does not work, check the XML behind the form and look at the "traverse" element values.
                                                  • 22. Re: Tab order issue
                                                    Level 1
                                                    Thanks Lee,

                                                    I actually have 7.0. I was able to select each field and "bring to front" in the order that I wanted to tab them and that worked. So I assume it had something to do with duplicating multiple fields at one time(?) What a useful tool moving the tab order up and down on the tab display would be - looks like time for an upgrade!
                                                    • 23. Re: Tab order issue
                                                      Level 1
                                                      One more question - I have 3 Date/Time fields on this form, and I am trying to change the way it displays the date. I tried to enter it into the Data Pattern under the binding tab, and it works - until you tab to the next field. Then it goes back to displaying it the original way. Am I missing something here? (It's set for User Entered-Optional)Thanks much, Anna
                                                      • 24. Re: Tab order issue
                                                        Level 1
                                                        Hello all, I have had some fun with this one and this is how I have got all tabs to work like a charm on a huge 11 page finance doc with heaps of fields and columns.

                                                        1. Design whole form so no more changes are needed
                                                        2. Go to every individual page and select all elements = CTRL A and right click and select wrap for sub form. (Must do every page before you order tabs on any page. This will break most linking problems & naming problems)
                                                        3. Name sub form in Hierachry on all new subforms and be neat with your naming ie: form01, form02, form03 etc (you will soon notice some boxes highlight themselves when you go to tab order on the pages to start the order process as they have found themselves to be alone and not attached to any duuplicating dramas)
                                                        4. Go through and turn off all boxes not to be tab in the Tab order mode.
                                                        5. Now number tabs thorugh to last field how you want them to order in tab mode and save page then test in preview mode. If one field is playing up just go and rename that one field to a different name to all in doc - ie:- Bob01
                                                        6. save every page as you go
                                                        7. Open pdfs then in Acrobat professional and enable user rights so all info can be saved on the pdfs for the user

                                                        Good luck and hope this helps
                                                        • 25. Re: Tab order issue
                                                          nlighten Level 1

                                                          I had a close issue of the same magnitude.


                                                          Quick background:

                                                          1. Form was essentially designed in MS WORD
                                                          2. Saved as PDF
                                                          3. Opened in Adobe Live Cycle as (Create an Interactive Form with Fixed Pages)
                                                          4. I had other versions of the forms with the fields already in place, I copied and pasted all form fields into my new version



                                                          Tab order worked in Preview PDF


                                                          Cause: I discovered that a HyperLink e-mail address that was put in while designing the form in MS WORD was the cause


                                                          Solution: Changed the hyperlink to regular text.  I made it blue and underlined it (Looks like a hyperlink).  Saved form as PDF

                                                          and opened it up back in Adobe Live Cycle. Customized tab order slightly by going to Window > Tab Order and making custom modifications.


                                                          Issue is resolved.

                                                          • 26. Re: Tab order issue
                                                            gr33nwater Level 1

                                                            Thanks nlighten!!  You just made my day. 


                                                            Removed hyperlink and tab order issue appears to be resolved. 


                                                            Really appreciate you taking time to document issue/solution.

                                                            • 27. Re: Tab order issue
                                                              beniakawa Level 1

                                                              How do you take java button out  of the tab order?

                                                              • 28. Re: Tab order issue
                                                                Radhika Magaji Level 1


                                                                What if i want to restrict user from using the arrow keys within radio button??

                                                                I have 3 options in on radio group where the 2nd and 3rd options are protected. Ofcourse tab order does not work there but when the focus is on the first option, i am still able to move to the next options (2nd and 3rd) with arrow keys and they get selected despite them being "protected".

                                                                This happens only when i use arrow key and now while using mouse!


                                                                Please help!



                                                                Radhika Magaji

                                                                • 29. Re: Tab order issue
                                                                  jentil Level 1


                                                                  Go to Edit - Preferences - Forms and untick the box that says "Automatically adjust tab order when modifying fields".


                                                                  • 30. Re: Tab order issue
                                                                    FLSouthpaw Level 1

                                                                    jentil wrote:



                                                                    Go to Edit - Preferences - Forms and untick the box that says "Automatically adjust tab order when modifying fields".



                                                                    Yes that is the easy fix for tabs mysteriously reordering in Acrobat (especially radio buttons) when creating/modifying form fields.... only took almost 9 years for the correct answer ... Thanks...

                                                                    • 31. Re: Tab order issue
                                                                      floejoe Level 1

                                                                      I couldn't follow the last entry as they must have changed it in CC.


                                                                      Just go to Object > Interactive > Set Tab Order.


                                                                      A window will open allowing you to move fields up or down based on how you want the tab to flow.