Over the past weeks I’ve been using Visual Paradigm both professionally as well for some hobby based scenarios, it’s actually a program I can enjoy in both ways. And when I like something I sometimes can’t help vent a little, so here you go. Hope this is in the right place and can help some of you guys out.
Customizing the Visual Paradigm interface
One of the key features of Visual Paradigm is that you can pretty much customize the environment entirely to your needs. For example: are there any tabs on the toolbar which you’d rather not see all the time? Or options on those tabs? The problem is that sometimes you may run into a situation where your license doesn’t allow you to use specific features and seeing all those disabled options could become bothersome or maybe even annoying. Are Visual Paradigm (“VP”) trying to lure you into another license? :?
Naah! This is actually easily solved! Open the help tab (or menu item) and find the option “Customize UI” and click it. This is roughly what you’ll see:
This may look overwhelming at first, but don’t worry… Basically every section in the program is an item on this list. And this window allows you to hide all those items, so that you’ll never have to bother with them again until you unhide them. License or no license 8).
Now, there are a few important rules to keep in mind:
Other than these rules you’re really home free, anything can be hidden if you want it to.
I’m using the Modeler license, something which I can honestly seriously recommend, it’s well worth the money if you ask me. Now, if you check the VP feature list you’ll notice that my license doesn’t support code engineering nor database generation. However, some options are still shown on my toolbars, and I don’t want that.
More specifically: while using the classic interface I don’t want to be bothered with the Modeling, Doc and Code options on the toolbar. On top of that I also want to hide these menu options: “Modeling => Storyboard”, “Modeling => Play Storyboard”, Modeling => Animation". Next: “Tools => Doc composer”, “Tools => Code Engineering” and “Tools => Hibernate”. Here I’ve illustrated some of those “annoying” options:
Note that the same applies to the sleek interface, I’m only using classic because my shown examples will be more obvious.
So, how to proceed from here? Click the help menu (or help tab!) and select the Customize option (“Help => Customize UI…”). Now find these options in the list on the left and after you selected them click the ‘Add selected’ option (greater than sign in the middle). Note that you can select multiple items by keeping control pressed:
As you will probably notice some of these items have ‘sub items’. For example there are plenty of options ‘behind’ “Menu/Tools/Code Engineering” (like “Menu/Tools/Code Engineering/Instant Generator/Java”). Basically you need to hide main items and don’t bother yourself with sub-items unless you want to keep some of those around.
When done click on ‘Ok’ and VP will tell you that you need to restart the program in order for your changes to take effect. Do so. Here’s what the customized (classic) UI looks like on my end:
As you can see several items on the right side of the toolbar are now gone.
And of course the same applies when using the ‘sleek’ interface, which I personally prefer to use. Just make sure that you’re selecting the right options. So keep in mind to select “Sleek Toolbar” instead of “Toolbar” or vice versa…
Also keep the “VP Coolness factor” in mind! When you switch between the classic and the sleek user interface then VP will automatically convert your hidden items as well. So items which you hid on the classic toolbar will also become hidden on the sleek toolbar after switching. How cool is that? 8)
If you messed up
So what to do if you accidentally hid the Customize UI option itself? :shock: Then you’re pretty much stuck: in order to unhide this option you’ll be needing the option which you just hid. Basically creating the perfect loop:
Now you might be tempted to tell me: “But Peter… you can’t hide this option because it’s not listed in the hide option screen!”, but you’d be partially right. Although you can’t hide this specific option itself you still can hide the entire Help tab, yikes! :mrgreen:
Fortunately there’s still hope
Editing the VP UI config file
Make sure VP isn’t running and locate your VP application directory, usually this is set to: C:\Users<yourname>\AppData\Roaming\VisualParadigm. (edit): An easy way to access this is to paste this (without the quotes) into your file explorer window: “%userprofile%\AppData\Roaming\VisualParadigm”.
Then find the file called vpuicustomization.xml. You will need to remove one specific entry:
After you deleted this save the file, start VP again and you should see your Help tab once again. When in doubt you can also chose to simply delete this file entirely, but keep in mind that this would also reset all your changes, effectively requiring you to manually hide all your options again. My approach might be easier for you.
Now, this has become quite the write-up so I’m leaving it here for now. If appreciated then I’ll explain those custom styles another time soon!