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The Knack Dashboard & Builder

Danielle Kellogg Updated by Danielle Kellogg

Before you get started on your app, it helps to have a solid understanding of how the Knack Dashboard and Builder work. In this article, we’ll cover all the basics you need to know before diving into your app.

The Knack Dashboard

Think of your dashboard as your Knack "home page." It’s here that you can manage all your apps, as well as your account and billing settings.

From the Apps tab, you can view, share, or delete current apps, add a new app, or view apps that have been shared with you. You’ll also see an overview of your plan usage:

From the Account tab, you can set your account name and URL. This is used in the URLs for all of your apps that aren’t embedded. You may also temporarily freeze or delete your account from this page.

The User tab manages your Knack user settings. Click "edit" to change your profile (name and email) or password:

Finally, your Billing tab allows you to manage your Knack billing details. From here, you can update payment information, upgrade your plan, and access past receipts.

Note that you can return to your Knack dashboard from any of your apps by clicking the user icon in the upper right-hand corner, then selecting Account:

You can also access the Knack dashboard from the dropdown menu under the app’s name:

Schema

The Schema section of your Builder is where you build your app’s structure and define how your app’s data will be organized. This is done using objects, user roles, and connections. 

In Knack, data is separated into groups called objects. Think of an object as a spreadsheet or a database table. You’ll see your app’s objects listed along the left-hand side of your data section.

Each object includes various fields. Fields define specific attributes of an object, similar to columns in a spreadsheet. Knack has several different field types that can be added depending on the type of data you are managing.

Knack apps also offer the option to define groups of users who will have access to your app. This is done using user roles that are similar to objects, with fields. 

  1. Objects: Your objects are listed on the left. Click an object to view, edit or add new fields. Edit the settings, copy or delete an object by clicking the more icon (the “...” icon) next to the object name. Add a new object by clicking the green “+” button.
  2. User Roles: All the user roles for your app are listed here. Add or edit fields just as you do with objects. Note that user roles have several fields that cannot be deleted: Name, Email, Password, User Status, and User Roles.
  3. Payments: When e-commerce is enabled on your app, payment objects will appear allowing you to view and manage payments that have been made in your app.
  4. Fields: All the fields for the selected object or user role are listed on the right side of the Builder. To edit a field, click on the field box, or click the “...” more icon to reveal options. Add a new field by selecting the “+ Add Field” button from the top menu.

Records

All the records for each object and user role are available to view and manage in the Records section of your Builder. Records can be added here directly or with forms in your Live App.

You can view the records in an object by clicking the Records section of the Builder and selecting one of the objects or user roles. 

  1. Click the "Add Record" button to add records manually.
  2. The top bar contains options to import or export records, run a batch update, or delete records.
  3. Edit each record by clicking directly onto the field you’d like to change.

Read more about working with the Schema and Records section of your Builder here

Pages

The Pages section of your builder is where you build the visual elements of your app and define how your data will appear and be managed in your Live App. This is done by adding views to your app, that may include forms, tables, lists, and calendars. 

Pages and Views

Each page in your app contains views that define how your data is displayed and managed by your users. These views will work with the app structure and data that you defined in the Schema and Records section of your Builder. Types of views include:

  • Forms to add or edit records
  • Tables, lists, and calendars to display multiple records
  • Searches to find specific records
  • Details to view a specific record
  • Reports to view summaries and calculations of multiple records

In the Pages section, you can see all pages listed in the page tree on the left side and a preview of your page to the right. As you build your pages, your page preview will update automatically to show you a preview of your most recent page updates.

  1. All the pages are listed on the left and displayed in a page tree. You can select and expand starting pages to show the connected child pages. Click the green "+" button to add a new page.
  2. Click on a specific page to see a preview of how that page appears in your Live App. In the above examples, the page has a Details view showing an individual Contact record.

You can hover over a view in the page preview to move, copy, edit or delete the view. When editing the view, the toolbox will open on the left side of the Builder with view settings.

Each view will work with fields from one of your objects. For example, here you can control which fields from the Contact object display as fields in the Details view:

Each view works with records from a specific object. When you add a new view, you can choose which object you want that view to work with. 

Read more on working with the Pages section of your builder and the Live App.

Tasks

The Tasks section of the Builder is where scheduled tasks can be added and managed for your objects and user roles. A scheduled task can be used to automate record updates, insert a connected record or send a custom email based on specific pre-defined criteria at a set schedule of daily, weekly, or monthly. 

View or add a task by selecting an object or user role from the right side of the Builder. Any existing tasks will appear to the right side of the Builder. Use the “+ Add Task” button in the top navigation to add a new task.

Read more on using tasks with your app here

Settings

The Settings section of your Knack Builder is where you manage settings specific to the app you are working in. Here you can manage basic settings like the App Name and URL, as well as adding custom code to your app. 

  • App Settings: In the App Settings section you can manage general details like app name, as well as security, view details, and map provider.
  • Live App Design: The Live App section contains options to customize the look and feel of the app by choosing the design settings for buttons, page layout, text, and headers. 
  • User Logins: The User Logins section allows you to enable users and logins for your app as well as manage security settings for your Live App.
  • E-Commerce: The E-Commerce section allows you to enable e-commerce and manage payment processors so you can take payments in your Live App. 
  • API & Code: In the API & Code section custom Javascript and CSS can be added to your app. You can also find your App ID and API key here. 
  • Embed: Here you can generate embed codes to embed your app into an external web page. 

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