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Smart Client: Java Swing Look And Feel > Look And Feel Theme (optional, depending on the used Look And Feel) > Styling within the Solutionsolution

Web Client: Default StyleSheet > Web Client Template modification > Styling modification > Styling within the Solutionsolution

This chapter descibes describes the various level levels of Styling options for a solution in Servoy. First the smart Smart and Web client Client specific Styling options will be are discussed, after which Styling options within the Solution are discussed, that are applicable to both Clients within the solution are presented


Smart Client Specific Styling Options

Servoy Smart Clients are Java Swing applications and Java Swing has the concepts of Look And Feels (LAFs) that can be applied on to all Swing components.

Servoy supports using Java Swing Look and Feels out of the box.


There are many third party Look And Feels around for Java, both free/open source LAFs and commercial LAFs. The quality of these LAFs differs, so when opting to use a third party LAF, make sure to properly test the LAF in combination with the developed Solution solution in Servoy. A public listing of the majority of the available third party LAFs can be found on


Servoy partners with Centigrade, a company that provides User Interface Design services and products, one of the products being a customizable Look and Feel that is fully compatible with Servoy. For more information, see the Centigrade website.

Specifying the Default Look and Feel for Smart Clients

The Smart Client Settings  on the Servoy Application Server allow the configuration of the default LAF for all Smart Clients, through the 'the selectedlnf' property. This property needs to be set to the className of the Look And Feel class. When the classNAme className is unknown, it can be retrieved by calling the following function in a Smart Client, after manually selecting the LAF in the Smart Client Preferences:

Code Block
var laf = Packages.javax.swing.UIManager.getLookAndFeel() 

Not every LAF is supported on every platform. Notoriously the OSX platform is limited in the supported LAFs. It is therefor possible to exclude the Smart clients Clients started on OSX from getting the supplied LAF, using the 'the pushLnfToMac' setting.

If the LAF supports themes, the default theme to use can be specified through the 'the lnf.theme' setting.

Manually Changing the Look and Feel in a Smart Client

Through the Preference Preferences panel in the Smart Client, users can select the Look and Feel of their liking. The Preference panel is accessible through Edit > Preferences > Look and Feel.

Access to the Preference panel by the user can be removed using the window plugin, that allows to remove the Preference menuitem in menu item from the Edit menu.

Web Client Specific Styling Options

Web Client Default StyleSheet

The default styling of Forms forms and Element element in the Web Client is determined by a default stylesheet that can be customized. See Customizing the Web Client for more info.


Servoy allows the style classes of the Servoy elements that have 'have styleClass' property to be pushed into the DOM elements.

For this, the webclient setting servoy.webclient.pushClassToHTMLElement needs to be set to true. The The styleClass set on the Servoy element will be pushed into the DOM hierarchy, on the first element of the hierarchy corresponding to the Servoy element.

Example This is an example of how the the styleClass of a TEXT_FIELD is pushed into the DOM element

The 'The styleClass' property set on the field ' is: 'fieldStyleClass', and is defined in the StyleSheet like this:


Code Block
<div servoy:id="sv__82335AC7_C903_46F1_8F36_9B44AA4615E3_wrapper" id="sv____82335AC7__C903__46F1__8F36__9B44AA4615E311_wrapper" class="fieldStyleClass" style="position:absolute;height:16px;min-width:130px;width:130px;left:150px;top:130px;">
	<input servoy:id="sv__82335AC7_C903_46F1_8F36_9B44AA4615E3" name="10" class="field" type="text"
	value="3" id="sv____82335AC7__C903__46F1__8F36__9B44AA4615E311" autocomplete="off"
	'sv____82335AC7__C903__46F1__8F36__9B44AA4615E311')" onkeypress="return
	Servoy.Validation.numbersonly(event,false,'.',',','$','%',this,-1);" style="margin:0px;" tabindex="4"


Web Client Template Modification

Each Form form created in Servoy Developer results in a customizable HTML and CSS template which are at runtime utilized to create the HTML markup of the Web Client. See Customizing the Web Client for more info on template customization.

Solution Styling Options

Within a Solutionsolution, regardless of whether the Solution solution will run in a Smart or Web Client, Servoy provides 2 layers of designtime styling options and 2 layers of runtime dynamic styling options


The two levels of designtime styling options are StyleSheets and designtime properties of all the UI components.


Servoy provides the ability to separate the Styling from the Solutionsolution's code through CSS StyleSheets. These StyleSheets can be created and managed inside the Servoy Developer IDE (Solution Explorer > Resources > Styles).

A StyleSheet is linked to a Form form using the Formform's 'styleName' property. 

The StyleSheet can define default styling for each UI objects within Servoy (Forms forms and Elementselements) and provide any number of additional StyleClasses for each UI object. These additional StyleClasses can be set on individual UI objects through their 'their styleClass' property.

In addition to providing styling for specific UI objects, the StyleSheet can also provide odd/even/selected for the rows in the grids of forms in TableView and Portals. 

When creating a new StyleSheet in Servoy Developer, the "New StyleSheet wizard" provides a option to insert a StyleSheet sample in the newly created StyleSheet. This sample provides a good overview of the available options.


Switching StyleSheets 

At designtime, Forms forms can be designed to use a specific StyleSheet. In order to facilitate skinning the Solutionsolution, for example for different customers, Servoy provides the option to dynamically switch the StyleSheet use at runtime using the following code:


When this code gets executed, any Form form that was designed to use the StyleSheet 'baseStyle' will instead start using the 'customerXStyle'. Note that this will only take effect on Forms forms that are loaded after performing the switch.


While the StyleSheet support provides generic styling options, with the option to differentiate on individual UI objects through additional StyleClasses, all the UI objects also support several styling related properties, like borderType, background anf and fontType for example.

As long as these properties are set to default the styling of the element will be according to the applicable StyleSheet and StyleClasses. When specifying a a custom value for the property, it overrides the Styling inherited through the StyleSheet.


For a complete overview of the runtime API of all UI components see RuntimeForm for Form form instances and the childnodes child nodes of elements for all the different Element types element types.

Conditional Styling Using the onRender Event

The The onRender event on Forms forms and Elements elements provides a way to conditionally change the appearance of the UI component.

The The onRender event is available on Formsforms, Portals portals and Elementselements. This event allows changing display properties of supporting components just before they are shown or updated. As such it can be used for conditional formatting for example.

On Form forms and Portals portals the event is fired not only for the Formform/Portal portal itself, but also for all the standard Servoy Elements elements on the Formform/Portalportal, if the element does not have its own own onRender event handler. The Formform/Portal level portal level onRender event will not fire for beans.

The The onRender event handler is called with a parameter of type JSRenderEvent, that provides the following functions:

  • getRecord(): the record of the rendered object
  • getRecordIndex(): the index of the rendered object
  • getRenderable(): the rendered object
    The returned object is of type Renderable. A Renderable object can be an instance of a RuntimeForm, RuntimePortal or any of the other other RuntimeXxxx elements. 
    The The Renderable class exposes all the properties that can be set in the the onRender event and also utility functions to get the rendering element type and its dataprovider.
    The The Renderable class is a generic class and some of the properties and methods are not applicable on the actual object being rendered. For example, if the object being rendered is an instance of RuntimeForm, the property property toolTipText or the method method getDataProviderID are irrelevant. When these are set/called anyway, they will fail silently silently .
  • hasFocus(): whether or not the rendered object has the focus
  • isRecordSelected(): whether or not the record of the rendering object is selected

Any updates made in the the onRender event to the rendering object are persistent within the Client client session until changed through the runtime API of the element or in a consecutive consecutive onRender event. This means that in the the onRender logic, both states of a property need to be handled. This means that if the the onRender is used to set the the fgcolor of a field depending if the dataprovider's value is negative or not, the the fgcolor needs to be explicitly set for both negative and positive numbers. When the same foreground property is also set in scripting and should overrule the onRender, the developer needs to take care of this inside the the onRender logic.

Example use: Making negative values in a column red and zero values orange

Code Block
 * Called before the form component is rendered.
 * @param {JSRenderEvent} event the render event
function onRender(event) {
/** @type {JSRecord<db:/udm/orders>}*/
var rec = event.getRecord()
if (rec && rec.amt_tax == 0) {
    event.getRenderable().fgcolor = '#ff6600';
 } else if (rec && rec.amt_tax < 0) {
    event.getRenderable().fgcolor = '#ff0000';
 } else {
    event.getRenderable().fgcolor = '#000000';

(warning)  About performance: The The onRender event will be fired often. It's therefor advised to keep the logic inside the the onRender event handler method as optimized as possible, for quick execution. It's advised to refrain from calling any code outside the API of the the JSRenderEvent or the the Renderable class.