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End User Recipe: Update Status

As we've seen in the Dashboard page, a link from the employee's name connects to an update status page, where we can modify the employee status. All the available status options are contained in a dynamically generated drop-down list.

After a new status option has been chosen and the form submitted, the Dashboard table is updated. Because we're keeping track of each update, we're actually inserting a new record. Not only does this have the expected effect of moving the bullet on the In/Out Dashboard to the proper column, but it also records when the status was altered. This opens the door to a possible enhancement for this application that displays a log of status changes.

Step 1: Implement Update Status Design

The requirements for an update status page are pretty straightforward: a form with a dynamic list element and a submit button.

  1. Create a basic dynamic page, either by hand or derived from a template.

  2. In the InOutBoard folder, locate the folder for your server model and open the update_status page found there.

  3. Add a table to the Content region of your page to contain the interface elements for the application.

  4. From the Snippets panel, drag the Recipes > InOutBoard > Wireframes > Update Status - Wireframe snippet into the Content editable region.

  5. Within the table, place another HTML table to hold the form and its three elements: a dynamic list, a hidden form element to hold the employee's ID, and a submit button. Make sure you leave a labeled space to hold the employee's name, dynamically generated.

  6. Place your cursor in the row below the words Update Status and insert the Recipes > InOutBoard > Forms > Update Status - Form snippet [Figure 4.6].

Figure 4.6Figure 4.6

Step 2: Add Database Components

Two recordsets are needed for this page: one to hold the employee's name, and one for the status values that will populate the list element. Both are straightforward and can be inserted without going into the Recordset dialog advanced view. We'll extract the employee data first.

  1. From the Bindings panel, choose Add (+) and select Recordset (Query).

  2. In the dialog's simple view, enter an appropriate name for the recordset.

  3. Enter Employee in the Name field.

  4. Choose a connection (data source) to use.

  5. Select Recipes from the Connection list.

  6. Choose the table in the data source to work with.

  7. Select Employees (employees for PHP) from the Table list.

  8. From the Columns option, choose Selected and select only those fields you'll need.

  9. From the Columns list, choose EmployeeID, EmployeeFirst, and EmployeeLast by selecting one and then holding the Ctrl (Command) key and selecting the others.

  10. In the Filter area of the Recordset dialog, set the four Filter list elements like this:

  11. EmployeeID

    = (Equals)

    URL Parameter

    ID


  12. Leave the Sort option set to None and click OK to close the dialog.

Now let's make a recordset to populate the Status drop-down list.

  1. From the Bindings panel, choose Add (+) and select Recordset.

  2. In the dialog's simple view, enter an appropriate name for the recordset.

  3. Be careful not to use a reserved word such as Status for your recordset.

    Enter rsStatus in the Name field.

  4. Choose a connection (data source) to use.

  5. Select Recipes from the Connection list.

  6. Choose the table in the data source to work with.

  7. Select Status (status for PHP)from the Table list.

  8. Leave the Columns, Filter, and Sort options set to their respective defaults and click OK to close the dialog.

  9. Save the page.

Step 3: Data Binding Process

It's time to bind the results of our recordsets to elements on the page. Aside from the relatively standard operations of adding dynamic text and populating a list element dynamically, we'll also link our hidden form element to the EmployeeID field of the Employee recordset. As you'll see later, values in hidden form elements can be passed back to the data source just like user-supplied values.

First, we'll bring in the employee name as dynamic text elements:

  1. From the Bindings panel, expand the Employee recordset.

  2. Drag the EmployeeFirst data source field onto the row next to the Employee Name label.

  3. Press the right-arrow key to move off the selection and add a space.

  4. Select the EmployeeLast data source field and choose Insert.

Now let's apply the Status recordset to populate the list element.

  1. Select the UpdateStatus list element.

  2. From the Property inspector, click the Dynamic button.

  3. In the Dynamic List/Menu dialog, select the rsStatus recordset from the Options From Recordset list.

  4. In the Values field, choose StatusID.

  5. In the Labels field, select StatusName.

  6. Leave the Select Value Equal To field blank.

  7. Click OK to close the Dynamic List/Menu dialog.

Finally, let's associate the hidden form element with a field from one of our recordsets. Make sure you have Invisible Elements enabled so that you can easily locate the hidden form element's icon.

  1. Select the hidden form element on the page.

  2. Choose the EmployeeID hidden form element located in the cell next to the Update Status button.

  3. From the Property inspector, select the lightning bolt next to the Value field to open the Dynamic Data dialog.

  4. In the Dynamic Data dialog, select EmployeeID from the Employee recordset [Figure 4.7] and click OK to close the dialog when you're done.

  5. Save the page.

Figure 4.7Figure 4.7

Recipe Variation: Selecting the Current Status

As designed, the Status list element initially always displays the first of the status elements in the list (in our example, In the Office)—regardless of the employee's current status. Some developers might want to bind the selection of the list element to the employee's current status. To do this, you'd need to create another recordset based on the Dashboard table (which contains the DashboardStatus field) and filtered by setting EmployeeID equal to the URL parameter ID. Then, in the Dynamic List/Menu dialog, select the lightning icon next to the Select Value Equal To field and choose DashboardStatus from the Dashboard recordset just established.

Step 4: Insert Record to Update Status

All that remains for this page is to store the modified information: the change in the status list. This is handily accomplished with Dreamweaver's standard Insert Record server behavior.

Why are we using Insert Record to modify a value rather than Update Record? By taking this route, we're able to keep track of all the status changes, even when they are made. If you take a close look at the Dashboard table in the Access database, you'll notice that the DashboardUpdate field is formatted as a date/time field and—most importantly—the default value is set to a function, Now(), which returns the current time and date.

For ASP

  1. From the Server Behaviors panel, choose Add (+) and select Insert Record.

  2. In the Insert Record dialog, select your connection from the list.

  3. Choose Recipes from the Connections list.

  4. Select the table in the data source to modify from the list.

  5. Choose Dashboard from the Insert into Table list.

  6. Enter the path to the file you want the user to visit after the record has been updated in the After Inserting, Go To field.

  7. Choose Browse and locate the dashboard.asp file.

  8. Choose the form to use.

  9. Select UpdateStatus from the Get Values From list.

  10. With the current form selected in the Get Values From list, set the form elements to their corresponding data source fields.

  11. Set the UpdateStatus form element to the StatusID data column and submit it as Numeric.

    Set the EmployeeID form element to the DashboardEmployee data column and submit it as Numeric.

  12. Verify your choices and click OK to close the dialog.

  13. Save the page.

For ColdFusion and PHP

  1. From the Server Behaviors panel, choose Add (+) and select Update Record.

  2. In the Update Record dialog, choose the current form.

  3. Select UpdateStatus from the Submit Values From list.

  4. Select your data source from the list.

  5. Choose Recipes from the Data Source list.

  6. Enter your username and password, if needed.

  7. Select the table in the data source to insert into from the list.

  8. Choose Dashboard (dashboard for PHP) from the Insert into Table list.

  9. Set the data source fields to their corresponding form elements.

  10. Make sure the DashboardID data column is set to be an unused Primary Key.

    Set DashboardEmployee to the FORM.EmployeeID form element and submit it as Numeric (Integer in PHP).

    Set StatusID to the FORM.updateStatus form element and submit it as Numeric (Integer in PHP).

    Set DashboardUpdate so that it does not get a value.

  11. Enter the path to the file you want the user to visit after the record has been inserted in the After Inserting, Go To field.

  12. Choose Browse and locate the dashboard file for your server model.

  13. Verify your choices and click OK to close the dialog.

  14. Save the page.

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