This video shows how to add text fields to a form.
you need to determine what type of form field is best suited to the question being asked. It's your decision whether you're going to be using a text field, or a drop-down list, or a check box, or a radio button, or whatever. Usually though, it should be pretty obvious which tool you'll need to use. For instance, here on the left side of the form, address, city, state, and so on. The best sort of field for this is a text field, which is a field that allows the user to type in whatever information they want. Now, I need to bring up my form tools again, so I'm going to come over here to Tools, and More Tools. I'll click Prepare Form, again, I'm going to work with my currently open document. And we have form field auto detection set to OFF, which we did in the last movie so that Acrobat doesn't automatically try to detect form fields in this document. I'll click Start, and now I have my form tools available, and I'll click the Text Field tool. When I bring my mouse back over my document, notice I now see the text field attached to it. There are two main ways I can place this text field. First, I can just line it up where I want it to be, and then click, and there's my field. I'm given an opportunity to name it right away, which is always a good idea, so I'll give it the same name as the line I placed it on, in this case, FullName. I always try to avoid spaces and special characters, just in case my form fields are going to be submitted electronically. Spaces can sometimes cause problems in processing field data. We also have the option here to make this a required field, meaning you can set this field so the user will be alerted if they don't complete this field. I'll leave that unchecked, though. For now, I just want to resize this field so that it's of the same length as the dash line that I placed it on. So that's one way to place a text field. I'm going to click the Text Field tool again. This time, instead of clicking to get the default text field, I'm going to click and drag. So I'll place my cursor right about there, where I want the box's lower left-hand corner to be, and I'll click and drag out, maybe like so. So that'll ask me to set the size of the text field right away. I'll name this Address1. Now, these two fields are both slightly different in size in terms of their height. As we'll see later, the height of the field can determine the size of the text inside it. I want them to be consistent here, so I'm going to Shift + click both fields to select them. Now, it doesn't necessarily look like they're both selected here, but they are. And because I want the height of the first field to match the height of the second field, I'm going to right-click the second field. Here, we'll find the options for Set Fields to Same Size, and then we can choose to match the height, width, or both. In this case, I'll choose Height, and now they match. Now, I do want to drag this first field down a bit to place it back on top of the line. So I would just continue working my way down this section of the form, adding text fields. Now, for the next field, Address Line 2, instead of creating the field from scratch with the Text Field tool, I'm going to start dragging this address field down. But while doing so, I'm going to hold down Option on my Mac to create a copy of that field. Notice the little plus symbol that appears next to the arrowhead there. On Windows, you can hold down Control. While you're dragging, if you add the Shift key, you'll be able to keep the copy lined up with the original that you're dragging from. So that allows me to create a copy of the field with the same properties as the original. And I can do the same for the next line. Again, I'll hold down Option and drag, or Control on Windows. And I can add Shift to keep the field lined up. And then I can resize this field for the line that it's on. Of course, I should also rename these fields. I'll do this by double-clicking the field to open up the Properties window. I'll call this one Address2. It's important to give each of your fields a unique name, especially if you're going to be exporting the field data later. While I have this window open, Under the General tab, where we currently are, below Name we also have the option of including a tooltip. The tooltip is what appears when the user rolls their mouse over that field. So you can type anything in here that you feel might help the user to fill out this field properly. So for this example, I might type enter city name here, so that when the user rolls over this field, that text will appear. And I'll show you that in just a moment. I'm going to go to the Appearance tab next. By default, there's no border color or fill color. If I wanted to, I could make an actual box on the form by turning on the border color so we would see an outline. Now, if I wanted to fill it in with a color, I could click there as well. And that might be useful if you're adding fields to a form where there aren't any lines or boxes. But in this case, we already have these dash lines on the form. Now, under the Font area, you can choose to leave the text at the default size, you can choose other sizes, or we can choose Auto. This is going to allow the text to resize in the text field if it gets so long that it reaches the end of the box. The text will become smaller to be able to fit more content within that form field. We could also choose a font here, but I'm going to leave that set to Helvetica and the text color to black. And those are the properties I'm going to be concerned with for the moment, so I'm going to close this, and let's test our fields. I'll click Preview, and you can see, by default, Acrobat highlights every available form field in this sort of periwinkle color so you can easily see them. If you want to turn that off, you can go to Preferences. On Windows, that'll be Edit Preferences, and with Form selected, you can uncheck Show border hover color for fields. I'm going to leave that on for now, though, so I'll click Cancel. So I can test my fields by typing into them. I can press Tab to jump to the next field. And if I place my mouse over the City field, I see the tooltip that we added to that field. This is also the field where we set the font size to automatic, right now, the text looks like the same size as the other text in those other fields, but if I keep typing text, you can see the text starts getting smaller. I'll just delete that extra text. But you'll need to determine for yourself which fields on your forms need a fixed font size and which you should let automatically size. All right, let's click Edit to go back to the editing view. And here, I'm just going to quickly drag out copies of the remaining text fields. So I'll drag this one down here, again, holding down Option or Control. We can resize that one, make another one here. And another one here, actually, I'm just going to hold down Shift so it lines up the right side of the field. And then I can drag out its width. And then I'll drag out one more copy. Now, you'll notice that the city name has also copied into these fields, because it was present in the field when I made each copy. But this allows me to show you something else important. Each of these five fields is still named City. I'm going to click Preview again. And if I delete the name from any of these fields and press Enter, notice it disappears from all of them. That's because they all have the identical name. Similarly, if I type into any of these fields and press Enter, that text appears in all of those fields. So this is why it's important for each field to have its own unique name. Let's delete that out of there and go back to Edit. So I'm going to quickly rename these fields now. I'll double-click on State or Province, go to General, we'll call this one State. Now, I also want to make sure to get rid of this tooltip here. Now, I could change it if I wanted to say, enter state name here, but in this case, I think I'll just delete them. I'll select Zip Code next, then Country, and Email. Now, if you look over here to the right, you can see a list of all the fields we've added. Clicking any field in here highlights it in the document, which can be useful to quickly locate a specific field out of the dozens you might have added to your document. All right, so that's the basics of how to add text fields. But when creating a form, you'll often want to restrict the type of content that can go into a text field, for example, you might want to set up the Zip Code field to only accept numbers. We'll take a look at how to do that next.
- Exporting PDFs from other popular applications
- Creating text fields
- Adding check boxes, radio buttons, and drop-down lists
- Using bar codes
- Using the Form Wizard
- Performing calculations in fields
- Working with signatures
- Distributing forms