As described in Overview: A Starting Point, the Description contains the formatted description of the item or issue and can be edited in various ways. This article describes more in-depth how to use the Description editor to edit and format content in an item's Description, but it is also used in the same way for RVF Attributes. 

Open the Description editor by double-clicking in Description: 

Get Acquainted With the Editor

The Toolbar

The editor offers familiar text-editing tools:

They are all options you will likely recognize from other word processing applications. It's recommended that users familiarize themselves with all the options. Note that the system-wide default font style and size is Arial, 10. If something else is desired, you can change it on-the-fly or select templates that are pre-defined by system Architects. 


A Zoom tool lets you zoom in on the description content which can be very helpful during online meetings.

Paste Special...

One worth getting extra focus is the Paste Special... option in the Edit menu since there are so many variations of text and pictures that you may want to include in a description. The option will open a dialog with paste options that depend on the content of the clipboard. 

For copied text, the options are: 

  • RichView Format 
  • Rich text format includes formatting information
  • Text format includes only the characters
  • Unicode text includes only the characters but allow for a richer set of characters

For copied pictures, you have two options: 

  • Graphic files inserts the copied content as an object with an embedded structure, possibly including pictures, etc.
  • Bitmap picture includes an accurate picture, but any resizing of the picture may degrade appearance

Paste as Text

There is also a Paste as Text menu option that enables you to quickly paste the text with no formatting, i.e., it will remove all formatting, e.g., font color, text background color, font styles, from the text.

The options in the right-click context menu will depend on the element you have selected: 


The (Insert) Hyperlink option in the menu and on the toolbar enables you to add external hyperlinks to your description, e.g., web site URLs, etc. so that system users can redirect to those locations during their work in SystemWeaver, or from the PDF output.

Note: For clickable, blue, underlined hyperlinks in the PDF output from SystemWeaver using the Windows 10 PDF printer, you must use the URL as the display text. Use the Insert Hyperlink option and enter the URL as the Text. Example: 

Note: If the hyperlink text is long and consequently wraps to another line in the PDF output, the first line is clickable when using Windows Print to PDF, and subsequent lines are not. 

1st line: 

Subsequent lines: 


When working with tables, additional options will become available:


The built-in spell-checker is active by default and uses the dictionaries included in the file folder of the swExplorer client application. You can auto-correct spelling errors, using any of the proposed corrections, or add the word to the dictionary:

You can manage and add dictionaries for other languages using the advanced options described in Advanced spell checker options.

Maximum Size of the Description

Due to performance concerns, the data size of a Description is limited. Since the Description is often loaded whenever a user opens an item structure, a description of a single item could increase the loading time for users who do not even intend to read the particular description. The size of a single description may seem irrelevant, but since descriptions account for a big portion of the data size of a item, having a size limit can reduce loading time substantially.

The data size bar in the footer of the editor indicates the compressed size of the content of the description, relative to the maximum size. In case the limit is exceeded, the indicator displays the excess in orange:

Save and Exit

To save your editing and exit the editor, press the Savebutton.

To exit the editor without saving, press . If you have changed the description, you will get a confirmation dialog.

Formatting Content 

This section provides some additional guidance relating to inserting pictures and tables and assuring an acceptable printed output. 

Inserting Pictures

Because there are so many variations of images and ways to copy and paste, this is a topic in and of itself! For pasting pictures, we suggest that you refer to Using the Image Editor for guidance. If you do encounter problems, you may find helpful information in our Forums, for example: My .wmf images are not printing properly in documents. If an illustration is extremely large in size and you are unable to insert it in the Description, consider adding it as an attachment using the Attachments view

The Work Area for Printed Output

When adding content to an item that will be printed, elements for which you have assigned a fixed width, e.g., images, tables, should be kept under/sized to just under 18 cm of the work area in the Description editor. This does not apply to text as it auto-grows. In the below example, the process image and the table (if the table width has been set to a specific width) will be cut-off in the output:

For elements such as tables, if you set them to auto-size (by selecting the table, choosing Table Properties and setting the width to "auto"), it will behave like the text and will not be truncated in your output.

Using the Page Width Selection Option

To help you assure that description content does not get cut off in PDF output, your System Architect can configure a page width selection option in the editor. The options are configured to match specific document or report configurations. The tool enables users to preview whether or not the content of a Description will fit within the width of a specific document. 

If configured for your installation, you will see a page width selection drop-down on the editor toolbar: 

Select the option that corresponds to the document your content will be included in. All content falling outside (to the right of) the indicator line will not be included in that configured output nor in the Documents View (for Documents). This means that all portions of images that do not fit within the page size work area to the left of the line will need to be manually resized to fit. Tables may also need to be manually resized to fit, or you can set their width to auto as described above. Note that content must be to the left of the indicator line and not on top of it.

Text will automatically wrap within the page size area to the left of the indicator line as long as the Paragraph>Word Wrap setting is activated (this is the default setting in the editor).

Insert Image or Table Caption

To add a caption to an image or table, select the object and select Insert Caption under the Format menu or in the right-click context menu. 

In the Caption dialog, select the Properties for the caption and click Insert


Mathematical Expressions

To add mathematical expressions to the description, there are currently a couple of options. If you are running version R31 or later, use the Insert equation tool. 

With versions earlier than R31, you can paste an equation as a picture. If the source is an external document, you can add it as an attachment to the item as well or use an external reference.

Another option is to use a table to create the expression as shown below. 


Use of Table to Create:

Note: Description references are added to Description via the Overview view and not by using the editor.

What's Next? 

Browse through all Document Management articles and Configuration Examples for tips