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Quick Drop Keyboard Shortcut - Nattify VI

When I need to edit a VI I didn't write, I find it irritating when the VI was created with IDE preferences that don't match my own. So I wrote this plugin that will "Nattify" any VI at the press of a button (Ctrl-Space, Ctrl-N to be specific). Nattification currently does the following:


  1. Turn off automatic error handling.
  2. Turn off auto grow on all structures.
  3. Make the front panel the default color.
  4. Change all control/indicator terminals on the block diagram to Terminal View.
  5. Move all error wires to the back of the Z-plane order.
  6. Rename the error control on the conpane to 'error in', and the error indicator to 'error out'.
  7. Set all subdiagram labels to 'Left' justification.
  8. Move control/indicator terminal labels to the left/right sides, respectively.
  9. Make control/indicator labels transparent.
  10. Clean up the panel and reposition/resize the window to the upper-left corner of the screen. Also reposition/resize the block diagram window to the upper-left corner of the screen. Note that this functionality was brazenly stolen from Kosta's Arrange VI Window plugin.

If you don't want to modify the panel appearance, you can type 'p' in the Quick Drop window before pressing Ctrl-N. This will skip cleaning up the panel and changing its color.


I understand you may not share all my same preferences. But that's cool, the code should be very easy to navigate (since I implemented it as a Natt Sequence), so feel free to install the plugin, then add/remove/modify any of the existing functionality to match your preferences. If you do add anything, let me know in the comments below, maybe it's something I'd also like, and I just haven't thought of it yet.


This plugin can be used with LabVIEW 2014 and later. Default key assignment is Ctrl-N. See here for installation instructions. Make sure you place the support LLB next to the Nattify.vi on disk.


P.S. - If this sounds familiar, I wrote a simpler version of this tool as part of my Don't Wait for LabVIEW R&D... Implement Your Own LabVIEW Features! presentation at NIWeek 2018.

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Message 1 of 14

This is awesome, thanks for sharing this Darren! I used this today and went a bit crazy and decided I needed to Nattify all of the VIs in a project. So I made this little VI to wrap a slightly-modified version of your Nattify.vi* and apply it to all of the VIs in a project. I thought I'd share it in case anyone else finds it useful or is trying to do the same thing. 


I'm using LabVIEW 2019 so if anyone needs it in a previous version I (or someone else) can save it in a previous version and upload it. 


Since this uses a version of Darren's Nattify.vi it needs the support llb next to it on disk. I found that in one of the VIs to align the front panel it uses a feedback node which makes it have a bug when calling it a few times in a row, so you will need to use this other support library instead. 


*The only change is it passes out the vi ref and doesn't take in some of the inputs that are only needed for quickdrop.

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Message 2 of 14

Thanks for sharing your additional Nattification tooling, Dani.


FYI, I just posted a small update to the Nattify tool. Now, if you type 'p' in Quick Drop before pressing Ctrl-N, the tool will skip the panel cleanup and changing the panel color. I did this because I found myself wanting to Nattify UI VI diagrams, but not change their panel appearance.

Message 3 of 14

@danijobe - Would you be able to save this for LV2018 or earlier?   I havent moved to 2019 yet, and I was wanting to use your project version.  Thanks!


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Message 4 of 14

I used a VM and loaded LV2019 to back save to 2018.


Attached are the original VIs from danijobe saved in LV 2018.


I also modified the NattifyProject VI to only Nattify the vis in the root of the project, and to exclude dependencies.   I did not want to modify all the default NI code and other dependencies, only my VIs actually in the project.


Message 5 of 14

For those of you using Nattify on your entire program structure, especially large programs you didn't create, consider modifying it so that if a subVI has "Show front panel when called" enabled in the properties, it doesn't rearrange the front panel.  That way pretty much all of the UI subVIs will skip it automatically unless the VI uses FP.Open and FP.Close nodes.

Message 6 of 14

Darren, thanks for your wonderful tool!


I added following feature: If you type anything in Quick Drop before pressing Ctrl-N, the tool will show a FP where you can choose which steps of Nattification you want to happen.

code-lux_2-1594800926229.png            code-lux_3-1594801591419.png


Further I splitted Arrange Windows in two steps FP and BD and I modified Icon View in order that it leaves References and Classes as icons as these icons show extra information.


The VIs are saved in LV2018



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Message 7 of 14

Hi everyone, I´ve added the following option: "Separate compiled code from source file" to help with your Source Code Control.


It is usually something I need to check as I'm an SCC regular user, so I think it could be another Nattify step.


Darren, thank you for this awesome tool!


The VIs are saved in LV2018


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Message 8 of 14

Hi, thank you for this useful tool !

I wanted to add some features and I finally made a lot of modifications to be even more practical and also for more reusability !


Here, some modifications I have made :

  • Create a project, organize and rename VIs and refactoring some parts of the code
  • The selection popup is displayed with Ctrl+Maj+N (and not writing in the string control anymore)
  • The modification made in the selection popup are saved (then the configuration saved is used for nattify)
  • In the selection popup, separation of front panel actions and block diagram actions and possibility to select or deselect all these actions with a global checkbox
  • For the action "Justify labels", selection of justification mode added
  • For the action "Front panel color", selection of color added
  • New action : the events in structure event are sorted by name
  • New action : the connected terminals are automatically aligned before and after all the other elements of the block diagram
  • Possibility to apply Nattify to all currently opened VIs



I am glad to share this with you.



   CLA            CTA



Message 9 of 14

If you like Nattify, and you have ever wanted to run it on an entire directory of files, you might find this interesting.

I took all the Nattify steps and turned them into a G-CLI App. I plan on adding more formatting steps in the future.


Sam Taggart
CLA, CPI, CTD, LabVIEW Champion
DQMH Trusted Advisor
Read about my thoughts on Software Development at sasworkshops.com/blog
Message 10 of 14