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Steps that are skipped can be dimmed?

Status: Completed

This feedback has been addressed in TestStand 2014! If you set a step to "Skip" then it will grey out the step text while setting it to "Force Pass" or "Force Fail" will cause the text to be green or red, respectively.



I came up with a suggestion to improve the TestStand software ( currently using 4.2.1)- may be in the forthcoming versions.


1.Is it possible to slightly dim ( or grey) the steps that are skipped while creating the sequence file? This can help the user to know by looking at the sequence as to what steps have been skipped.


2. Ability to assign a color to the steps with particular settings: ex: 'preconditions'.


Would this help the user for a quick analysis of the sequence file during sequence creation? I am not totally sure but was just a suggestion for improvement. Any expert comments please?





NI Employee (retired)

Hi Yogesh,


I definitely appreciate your suggestion(s), because as far as most users know, the only visual indicator we have of special settings like the ones you mentioned is the Settings column in the Step List.


One thing I do encourage you to check out, however, is the Step List Configurations.  To access them, right-click anywhere in the Step List and choose Edit Step List Configurations.  You can actually edit the look and feel of the Step List using this dialog box (just choose a configuration setting and select "Edit") and we do give you the control to use Expressions to specify conditional Text and Background coloration, as shown here for a step that is Skipped:


Background Color.png


Does this help?


Derrick Snyder

Product Manager

NI TestStand | NI DIAdem

Derrick S.
Product Manager
National Instruments

Like I mentioned in YogeshPai's forum post, and Derrick did above, this is already possible in TestStand. There's a little bit of research involved in figuring out how to "catch" a particular setting (for example, I used Step.PassAction and Step.FailAction to check for a Post Action setting) but all the information you need is available in the help file.


 Custom Step List - Skip, Precondition, Post Action


Yogesh, if you get hung up on something, feel free to post in your thread and I'd be glad to give you some pointers.


P.S. Though it's a joke, I can't stop you from donating 😉

Jervin Justin
NI Employee (retired)
Status changed to: Under Consideration
Jervin Justin
NI TestStand Product Manager
NI Employee (retired)

Hi everyone,

As we consider implementing something along these lines, we are looking for some additional feedback.  For instance, what other step settings or conditions would you want to see highlighted?  Are there any that you would not want to be highlighted?

Thanks for any further comments and suggestions to help as we evaluate this suggestion!


Jen W
Applications Engineer
National Instruments

NI Employee (retired)

There were some issues with using step list configurations to do this from versions of TestStand earlier than 2010. Namely the step that gets its color changed might not be the correct one. Just letting you know.

Active Participant

since more step settings that are going to be 'troublesome' are caught by the analyzer tool i don't think it'd be a good idea to have too many crazy colors etc in the standard sequence view.  I'm worried it's already plenty busy as is 🙂


some sort of subtle greying-out of skipped logic would be nice however, and would be in keeping with other environments (LV, VB etc)  without adding too much distraction


the only other coloring that I think would be handy would be in the sequence editor, some way to quickly assert  (right click menu) one ore more 'flag' steps in a bright color, with a hot key to bounce between them, similar to  visual studio. This would be super helpful to me on working with long sequences and scrolling around...


currently I use breakpoints for this, but it's non-ideal 🙂 having a flag property I can set/clear is currently too much work to fuss with in the step-attributes/sequence view settings 


--Elaine R.




Maybe could you indicate the status with icons along each element of step list (disabled, precondition, post actions...) as is done in other programs like Photoshop with layers or


The fact is that the status of each step is not evident at all. You need to navigate to another tab just to check several subtabs seraching for the status of certain options.


You need to seriously review the usability and readability of the step list. For me, as a developer, is the most important tool in production area.

NI Employee (retired)



The step list does show this information as follows:




I'm not sure how icons would improve this since no one would know what the icons mean initially. Perhaps if you describe what you mean in more detail it would be clearer to me the improvement you are proposing.



NI Employee (retired)
Status changed to: Completed

This feedback has been addressed in TestStand 2014! If you set a step to "Skip" then it will grey out the step text while setting it to "Force Pass" or "Force Fail" will cause the text to be green or red, respectively.