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Data Area in Infor Smart Office for Infor Lawson Canvas Shortcuts

January 29, 2018

By Vince McGowan, Senior Principal Software Engineer

Infor Lawson canvas shortcuts within Infor Smart Office provide quick access to application screens without having to find the application in the Navigator widget or by entering a token name in the Start box. There are several ways to create an application shortcut:

  • Right-click on the canvas and select Create Shortcut
  • Drag a running application icon from the top bar to the canvas
  • Drag a Navigator widget item to the canvas
  • In an active application window select Tools -> Bookmarks -> Create Canvas Shortcut

In all but the latter case, the shortcut settings will look like this:


But in the last case, the shortcut will include as a parameter the Data Area (PDL) the current form is running against:


As you may have guessed, the Data Area parameter is not strictly required and when not specified will use the user’s currently assigned Data Area. The Data Area setting for a user in both Infor Smart Office and Infor Ming.le is retrieved from the LSF user settings. Both user interfaces provide a method for changing the setting if permitted.  Within Smart Office this is done on the Advanced tab of User Settings.

This ability to change the Data Area is only useful in an Infor Lawson environment containing multiple Data Areas. But what of the shortcuts created with a Data Area parameter? If I have created a shortcut from the application window Tools menu, change my Data Area, and launch the shortcut, it will launch but I may not know for certain which Data Area it is running against and may always want screens to open against the current Data Area.

There are a few features to help with that:

  • The Lawson Data Area widget
  • A user setting to display the current Data Area in the window title bar
  • A user setting to always use the selected Data Area.

The Lawson Data Area widget is available in the Widget Library and can be placed on the canvas to at a glance determine what the current Data Area is. A future enhancement to this widget will allow users to change the Data Area from the title bar context menu without having to open settings.

The user setting to display the Data Area in the window title bar is also available on the Advanced tab of User Settings. The image below shows this setting is disabled because the administrator has forced this setting in the Smart Office Settings Editor and locked it down so users are unable to change it.

And the third option is the setting ‘Always use selected Data Area’ on the Applications tab of Settings. By checking this setting Smart Office will ignore any PDL parameter found on a shortcut and use the currently selected Data Area, just as a shortcut without a PDL parameter does.

A couple of additional points –

  • Shortcuts created from the Tools menu of the application window by default will be named to include the Data Area name when the Data Area is displayed in the title bar. The shortcut name can be changed of course when creating the shortcut.
  • Even if a shortcut is named with a Data Area, if the ‘Always use selected Data Area’ is checked the title bar will display the current Data Area and not the Data Area of the shortcut name.
  • There is a special shortcut created from the Tools menu: Create Canvas Shortcut to Current. This shortcut, in addition to containing a PDL parameter, will also include the key information necessary to retrieve the data record currently being viewed. This key data may be unlikely to be valid in another Data Area.


One response to “Data Area in Infor Smart Office for Infor Lawson Canvas Shortcuts”

  1. David Martin says:

    Does this override the data area in a Info Browser widget?

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