Control Choice - Do you use ComboBoxes instead of single-select List Boxes?
  v1.0 Posted at 27/11/2012 7:53 PM by Rebecca Liu
ComboBoxes are better than List Boxes for data entry because:
  • They occupy less screen space
  • They are less trouble to scroll through, owing to the fact that you can afford to have more room for the list (as it's collapsed most of the time)
  • As you can see in the figures below, using a combo also makes the required field indicator (*) easier to see.
Web Page with ListBoxes
Figure: Bad Example - Using list boxes
Web Page with ComboBox
Figure: Good Example - Using ComboBoxes - takes up less screen space and the required field indication is easy to see
Note: When are single-select list boxes OK?
As mentioned before, there are exceptions to this rule. It would be hard to imagine the Include/Exclude boxes in the SQL Server Enterprise Manager's Server Registration Wizard being handled with ComboBoxes, for example.
Register SQL Server Wizard
Figure: Include/Exclude Listboxes are an example of a valid use for List Boxes
We have a program called SSW Code Auditor to check for this rule.

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