Network Notepad Professional Edition Help





Keyboard and Mouse Controls

Action Description
  Right-click item Display context menu for item.
  Left-click item Select item.
  CTRL+ Left-click item Select additional items.
  Left button down on background Clear current selection and begin rubber-band select.
  CTRL-A Toggle between selecting all items and selecting no items.
  Right button down on background Begin moving page with mouse.
  Arrow keys Move page.
  Left-click item and hold for 1.5s Begin drag and drop selected items.
  SHIFT + Left button down on item Drag and drop selected items.
  SHIFT + Mouse over corner of selected item Cursor indicates rotate. Left button down initiates rotate using mouse.
  Mouse over edge of selected item Cursor indicates resize. Left button down initiates resize using mouse.
  SHIFT + Arrow keys Nudge selected items up,down,left or right.
  CTRL + +/- keys Rotate item.
  SHIFT + +/- keys Resize item.

The Toolbar


Tool Bar

  Back and Forwards Buttons    Back and Forward buttons move back and forth through previously loaded diagrams.   Align Buttons    Align Horizontal and Align Vertical Buttons are used to align objects, text and link termination points. 
  Home    Home button loads the default diagram.       Auto Align Button when selected pasted items and links are automatically aligned horizontally or vertically with the previously pasted object.
  Open    Open a network diagram file.   Snap To Grid   Snap to Grid. When pasting or dragging and dropping, objects are aligned with the grid. To make the grid visible select Options > Grid Lines.
  Save    Save the current document.   Send To Back and Bring To Front    Send to Back, Bring to Front Buttons change  the order that items are drawn.
  Print     Print the current document.   Connection Points    Connection Points Button selects between linking to the centre of an object or linking to any part of an object. 
  Undo Redo   Undo and Redo.   Link Mode    Link Button toggles link mode on and off.
  Object Libraries    Object Libraries Button opens the current Object Library and displays available objects to use in the diagram.       Link Style Drop Down List.
  Online Scripts Library    Online Library button opens a web browser window and navigates to the Online Library.   Remove Links    Unlink Button removes links between selected objects.
      Cut button removes selected items and places them on the clipboard.   Zoom   Zoom in/out.
  Copy    Copy Button copies selected items to the clipboard.   IP Addresses    Display IP Addresses Button.
  Paste    Paste Button switches to paste mode for a single paste operation.   Function Buttons    Programmable function buttons.
  Paste Multiple    Paste Multiple Button switches to paste mode and remains in paste mode for multiple paste operations.   Exit    Exit Button.
  Delete    Delete Button deletes selected items.   Reload document    Reload document button (optional button see Setup) reloads the current document. It is useful when editing .ndg files outside of Network Notepad.
  Text Mode    Text Mode Button toggles text mode on and off.   Close Document    Close current document.


To pan around either use the scrollbar or position the mouse pointer over the background of the diagram, hold down the right mouse button and move the mouse.
To follow a link to another diagram - Right click the object and select "Goto next diagram". Objects which link to another diagram have a blue caption by default.
The toolbar back and forward buttons may also be used to jump to the previous or next diagram.
The Home button loads the default diagram if one has been specified in the Setup form.
Network Notepad Professional and Enterprise Editions support multi-page diagrams. The Tab bar along the bottom of the window shows a tab for each page in the diagram.

Using The Zoom Buttons

-+ Zoom buttons and Zoom Dropdown list lets you quickly zoom in and out the view of the current page. CTRL+Mousewheel also operates the Zoom. You can work on diagrams at any zoom level as normal, though it usually helps when rotating objects and text to return the view to the default 100% scale.

Tip: Right click the Zoom dropdown list to quickly default the view back to 100%.

Adding Objects To A Diagram

Click the Object Libraries Button Object Libraries to display the current Object Library.
Drag and drop Objects from the Library to the diagram.
You may also paste Library objects by selecting the object from the library and then closing or minimising it.
Point the cross hair where you want to place the objects.
To automatically hide the Object Library whenever you select a new object, enable "Auto Hide" in the setup dialogue or from the Object Library ring menu.
The Paste button performs a single paste operation and exits paste mode. The Paste Multiple button performs multiple paste operations without exiting paste mode.

The Online Libraries Button Online Libraries opens a list of objects available online.

Tip: Double right click the background to toggle the last used mode (Paste, Text, or Link) off and on.

Cutting And Deleting Objects From A Diagram

Highlight the objects you wish to cut or delete by left clicking them and then hit the Cut Button Cut to place them on the clipboard. Click the Delete Button Delete on the toolbar to remove selected items.
Pressing SHIFT+Delete on the keyboard is another way to delete selected items.

Selecting/ Deselecting Single/ Multiple objects

Objects need to be selected (Red highlight) and deselected  for cutting and pasting. To select an object, left click it.
To select multiple objects at once, drag a "rubber band" around them with the left mouse button.
You must start selection with the mouse pointer positioned over a blank piece of background.
To select or unselect additional objects, hold the CTRL key down while selecting.
To select no objects, left click the background or choose Edit and then Select None from the ring menu.  CTRL-A also toggles between selecting all and selecting none.

Tip: CTRL-A toggles between selecting all and selecting none.

Aligning Objects

To align objects, first select the item to align to and then select items to be aligned with the first item. Choose Format and Align Horizontal or Align Vertical from the Ring Menu or click the horizontal and vertical align buttons Align, and then select whether to align centres or edges of the objects from the sub menu.
When pasting objects and drawing links, objects and lines are automatically aligned if the Auto Align button Auto-align is selected.

Resizing Objects

Use Shift + and Shift - to adjust the size of the current object retaining its current proportions.
You can also resize an object by dragging the edge or corners.
Objects can also be resized by changing the x and y scale in the Object Properties form or on the Object Properties Toolbar.


Linking Objects

To link two objects, firstly use the Link Style Dropdown Box to choose the desired type of Link.
Click the link button Link, the mouse pointer will indicate you are in Link Mode. Click on pairs of objects to join them.
You may also right-click an object and choose "Link" to enter link mode.
To finish linking objects, click the link button Link again or hit the escape key.
Clicking the background whilst in link mode enables you to form joins (elbows) in links.
Clicking an existing link automatically sets the Link Style Dropdown Box to the matching link style.

Tip: Double right click the background to toggle the last used mode (Paste, Text, or Link) off and on.


Linking To Part of An Object

The Connection Points button Connection Points selects whether links are automatically centred when a connection is made or whether the link connects to the point on the object which was clicked.
The option can also be set using the Format Connection Points option on the main ring menu.
Connection points can be centred by right clicking a link and selecting "Centre Connection Point".
Connection points can also be positioned using drag-and-drop, nudge and align.


Link Align

The link align feature converts any sloping link segments on a link to horizontal and vertical link segments. Right-click a link and select Align On or Align Off to switch this feature on and off.
Link align can also be set to be on or off by default for each link style in the Format Link Styles form.

Link Align

Moving A Link From One Object To Another

To move a link from one object to another, click on the link near the end to be moved so that it shows the red circular link termination. Drag the link termination and drop it on to the other object.

Move Link 

Layers (Drawing Order)

You can control the drawing order for objects, text and links by setting the layer. Layer 5 is drawn first through to layer 0 which is topmost. Set the layer using one of these methods:

  • Right-click and choose the layer (Objects, Text and Links).
  • Set the layer in the properties form (Objects only).
  • Use the Bring-to-Front or Send-to-Back buttons on the toolbar  (Objects, Text and Links).



Background Objects

Setting an object to be a background object in the Object Properties form enables you to draw multi-segment links over the top of an object without connecting to it.

Unlinking Objects

To remove links between objects, right-click the link and choose delete or select the objects which are linked and then click the Unlink Button Unlink.

Using the Link Break Feature

The Link Break Feature enables you to break a link and create a join anywhere on an existing link. When you right-click the link  and select Break a new "link-node" is highlighted which you can then drag and drop or nudge to the desired position.
To remove a join select the link-node which forms the join and delete it.

 Moving and Copying Objects

To move selected objects, hold the left mouse button down on an object for 1.5s and then drag and drop. Alternatively holding the Shift Key down enables drag and drop immediately.
To copy objects, select them and then click then Copy Button Copy. Click the Paste Button Paste to enter Paste Mode and the position the cross hair and left click to paste copies of the objects. To finish pasting, click the Paste Button Paste again, or double right click the background to exit the current mode, or hit the escape key.

Nudging Objects

To nudge selected objects, hold down the Shift key while pressing one of the cursor keys.

Setting An Object's IP Address

To set an Object's IP Address, right-click the Object and choose "Properties".
Enter the IP address in the Address field. For more information see Object Properties.

Changing The Name (Or IP Address) Of An Object

To change the name of an object or change its  IP address, Double Left Click on current name or IP address and type in the new details. Press Enter to complete.
You may also change these details by right clicking the object and selecting "Properties".
To insert a Carriage Return in an Object or IP Label use Shift + Enter.

Adding Text To A Diagram

Click the Text Mode Button Text Button and observe that the mouse pointer changes to a cross hair 1.
Click the diagram to position the text entry box and then enter your text.
To finish entering text, click the Text Mode button again or press the Escape key.

Tip: Double right click the background to toggle the last used mode (Paste, Text, or Link) off and on.


Text Mode 

Editing Text

Double click text to start editing it. The Text Mode button will indicate you are in text mode. Press ESC to finish editing the text, or click the text mode button on the toolbar.
To delete a Text Box, double click it and then hit backspace. Press ESC or click the text mode button to exit text mode.

Formatting Text

Format Text

To Format Text, right click text in your diagram and select Format Text. The Format Text window is now displayed. From here you can set the Font, Font Size, Colours, Transparency, Effects and also set the angle of rotation in degrees.
You can also select Format > Text Styles from the main ring menu to make adjustments to Text Styles.

Text Style: Commonly used text formats can be created and named using these settings. Right click text in your diagram and choose Set Text Style to select from defined text styles. Text Styles can be saved to and loaded from file.

Make This The Default Text Format: Sets the default text format to the settings shown. The default text format is used when adding text to a new diagram. 

Moving Text

To move text, hold the left mouse button down on the text for 1.5s, then drag the text to the new position. Alternatively hold the SHIFT key down and drag the text.
To Rotate Text, hold the SHIFT key down and drag one of the corners of the text.

Text Types

Text can be set to one of four possible types by right-clicking and choosing "Set Type":

  "Default" - For standalone text. Enter key adds a new line. Use escape key (or button on toolbar) to submit.
  "Caption" - For normal object captions. The enter key or escape key submits (or button on toolbar). Shift-Enter adds a new line.
  "Address" - As caption label, but is displayed according to the Show/Hide IP Addresses button on the toolbar.
  "Flow" - Caption for flowchart symbols. Enter key adds a new line. Use escape key (or button on toolbar) to submit.

Adding Float Text To Objects

Information can be displayed when the pointer is held over an object for a few seconds.
To Add or Edit Float Text, right click the object and select Edit Float Text.
Enter text into the Float Text entry box and hit escape when complete.


Text Properties Toolbar

Text Properties Toolbar

The Text Properties Toolbar is optionally displayed by selecting Options > Text Properties Toolbar. It provides access to the properties for the most recently clicked text or if no text is selected it provides access to properties for the current font which is used when adding new text.
The controls displayed on the toolbar are covered in the Format Text section above.

Adding Backbones

Add horizontal and vertical backbones to your diagram by selecting them from the Backbones object library.
Position the cross hair roughly where you want the centre of the backbone to be and click the left mouse button.

Resizing And Moving Backbones

To resize a backbone, position the mouse pointer over either end then hold the left mouse button down to drag the backbone larger or smaller.
To move a backbone, hold the shift key down whilst dragging the backbone to a new position.

Customizing Backbone Styles

Backbones are Shapes and they can be customised by right clicking and select Format Shape.

Linking An Object To A Backbone

To link an object to a backbone, click on the link mode button  and then join the backbone to the object. 

Grouping and Locking

Objects may be grouped together and then locked in position relative to each other to form composite objects.

The first object you select will become the "parent" object and further objects selected will be "child" objects.
Select the parent object, followed by the child objects and then select Format > Group from the ring menu to group the objects together. At this point, you may still move the objects relative to each other. Copying and pasting the parent object will copy and paste all of the child objects as well.
To lock the child objects position relative to the parent object, right click the child object and select "Lock" from the menu. Now when you move the child object, the parent and all of its child objects are moved together. If you resize the parent object all locked child objects are also proportionally resized and moved.
Right-clicking a parent object and selecting Lock > Group Lock or Group Unlock locks or unlocks all child objects and labels associated with the object.
To ungroup objects, select each of the members of the group and then click Format > Ungroup on the ring menu.

Example using the two shapes created in the Custom Shapes section to form a composite Title Box object:

Position the two shapes to form a title box.
Select the parent box and then the title bar box (CTRL-left click), then Format and Group from the ring menu.
Right click the title bar box and select "Lock" to lock its position relative to the main box.

Locking objects which are not a member of a group is used to lock the position of the object on the page. This is useful for things like template borders and title blocks which don't normally need to be moved. Objects locked to the page have the following properties:

  • They cannot be moved with drag and drop.
  • They cannot be selected with CTRL-A or by dragging a band around them.

Anchoring and Locking

Anchoring fixes the position of objects and text relative to one of the four corners of the page. This is useful when resizing the page to ensure a title block and border remain fixed to the edge.
Select objects and text to be anchored and then Format > Anchor from the menu.
Locking objects and text prevents them from being dragged to a new position (relative to their parent) and also prevents them from being selected and unselected using CTRL-A. It is useful if the title block and border are locked. You can then select your diagram using CTRL-A and reposition it using drag and drop or nudge, without adjusting the position of the title block and border.
Select objects (link nodes) and text to be locked and then Format > Lock or right click objects or text and select Lock.


Rotating Objects and Text

Rotate objects and text using any of the following methods:

  1. Specify a rotate angle in the Object Properties Form and in the Format Text Form.
  2. Drag any of the four corners of the text or object with the mouse. Hold down the SHIFT key when dragging. The mouse pointer indicates when you are correctly positioned for this as shown in the example here.
  3. CTRL +/- rotates the currently selected text or object in 1 degree steps.

Hiding IP Addresses

To Reveal or Hide IP addresses, toggle the IP Address Button IP Addresses.

User-Defined Apps

A list of user-defined Apps is presented for execution when you right click an object. The first 6 of the Apps are also available using the function buttons on the main toolbar: Function Buttons. Variables such as IP address or hostname of the object can be included in the App definition.
A set of user-defined Apps is called a toolset. Multiple toolsets can be configured for use with different types of equipment and then assigned to the objects in your diagram from the Object Properties form.

Configuring User-Defined Apps

Select the User-Defined Apps tab in the Setup form.

Command Line: This is the command which is executed when the app is selected.
Display Title: This is the text displayed in the menu. If left blank the Command Line is displayed instead.
Hide: If set to true will minimise the Network Notepad window when the app is run.
Multiple: If true then the tool is run against all selected objects. If false then the tool just runs for the most recently clicked object.

The following Network Notepad variables may be included in the Command Line and Display Title definitions:
$IPADDRESS - is substituted for the most recently clicked object's IP address. $IPADDRESS is truncated at a "/" character.
$ADDRESS - is substituted for the most recently clicked object's IP address (and is not truncated like $IPADDRESS is).
$HOSTNAME - is substituted with the most recently clicked object's hostname.
$BROWSE - invokes the default browser/application.
E.g.1. $browse http://$ipaddress..... will open the object's ip address in a web browser window.
E.g.2. $browse c:\docs\$hostname.doc..... will try and open for example "router1.doc" in whatever application is configured to handle .doc files.
$EXPLORE - invokes an instance of Internet Explorer.
E.g. $explore $ipaddress...... to browse the object by ipaddress.
CopyToClipboard - Copies the resolved definition to the windows clipboard.
$FILENAME- is substituted for the current diagram's filename (.ndg).
$VAR1,$VAR2 - User variables. These are set in the Object Properties Form on the Misc Tab and can contain any user-defined data. Ellipsis buttons are provided to browse for filenames.
E.g. $browse $VAR1..... Could be used to open a specific file associated with the object.
$FieldN - Passes field number N from the object table. e.g. the CDP user-defined app tool definition includes $field2 to pass the object number which it then uses to construct the data put on to the clipboard.
$HWND - Passes the Network Notepad Windows Handle.
$ADDRLIST - Functionally the same as $ADDRESS, but intended to pass a list of IP addresses separated by ";" characters.
$APPDIR - is substituted with the Network Notepad installation folder.
For the Professional Edition it usually returns:
C:/Program Files(x86)/Network Notepad Professional/
For the Enterprise Edition it usually returns:
C:/Program Files(x86)/Network Notepad Enterprise/
$DOCVAR1 - is a per-document user variable which is configurable in the Diagram Properties form.
&& - Enables multiple apps to be called in one definition. See the Wake-On-Lan plugin example below.


User-Defined Apps 


  • Use SSH to connect to a device using Putty:

    "C:\Program Files\putty\putty.exe" -ssh $IPADDRESS
  • Use Putty in telnet mode to connect to a device:

    "C:\Program Files\putty\putty.exe" -telnet $IPADDRESS
  • Remote control a device using VNC:

    "C:\Program Files\UltraVNC\vncviewer.exe" $IPADDRESS
  • Remote Desktop:

    C:\windows\system32\mstsc.exe /v:$IPADDRESS
  • Open a spreadsheet to access for example asset information for each device in your diagram:

    $browse "F:\Asset Files\$hostname.xlsx"

  • NNPing Plugin:

    NNPing $ipaddress 1000 3 up.wav 3 down.wav

  • Wake-On-Lan Plugin:

    NNPing $ipaddress 1000 3 up.wav 3 down.wav on&&nnwol.exe $VAR1

    Where && is used to separate and execute multiple apps.
    User variable $VAR1 is configured in the Object Properties form on the Misc Tab and is set to provide
    <broadcast IP address> <port> <mac-address>
    e.g. 9 21-3a-55-37-6e-76

    The nnping "on" parameter overrides the usual toggle-on, toggle-off state when calling nnping.

Tip: Enclose file pathnames containing spaces with quotation marks as shown in the first three examples above. If you don't do this then Windows cannot distinguish the difference between c:\program files and c:\program.exe for example.

Copy Tools From Other Toolsets: When creating a new toolset you can use this option to list all tools in all toolset and tick those you wish to copy to the new toolset.

Up/ Down Buttons: Change the order the tools are presented by moving the selected tool up or down in the list of tools.

Toolset: Network Notepad Professional and Enterprise Editions allow you to define multiple toolsets. You can choose a toolset to use with an object in the Object Properties form.

Naming Toolsets:
Toolsets can be named by entering text in the Toolset dropdown list in place of the default numbers.

Add Toolset Button Add Toolset: If you need more than the default 10 toolsets, you can add more with this button.

Edit Button : Toolset definitions are stored in a local tooldefs.txt file. This button enables you to edit the file directly, making it easy to copy, paste and share toolsets. Here is an excerpt from a tooldefs.txt file:

Toolset(0)=1. Routers

Command(0,1)=$APPDIRputty.exe -telnet $ipaddress
Display(0,1)=telnet $IPADDRESS

Command(0,2)=Copy2Clipboard $IPADDRESS

Command(0,3)=$explore http://$IPADDRESS

Command(0,4)=ping -t $IPADDRESS

Toolset(1)=2. Synology

Command(1,1)=$browse http://$ipaddress:5000


When editing the tooldefs.txt file keep the numbers in brackets in order. That is the is (toolset number) in the case of the Toolset statement and (toolset number, tool number) in the case of the Command, Display,Automin and Multiple statements.
When editing the tooldefs.txt file, be sure to click the Refresh button before clicking OK in the setup form.

Refresh Button Refresh: The refresh button is used to re-read the tooldefs.txt file after editing it outside of Network Notepad. The tooldefs.txt file is written to when you click the OK button.

Page Setup

Use the Page Setup form to select the paper size and orientation used when printing the current page. These are set individually for each page in the document.


To print a diagram use the print button on the toolbar.
Diagrams are sized to fit the printed page, so if you have large canvas dimensions then objects will appear small when printed. Drag the canvas smaller or reduce the Canvas width and height in the Diagram Properties form to make the objects to appear larger when printed.

Tip: To ensure a diagram fills the paper when printed:

1. Set a page size in the Diagram Properties form which matches the proportions of your paper. E.g. for letter size paper (11" x 8.5"), you might use a page width of 1100 and height 850 or 2200 x 1700 or any other size with the same proportions. For A4 size paper (297mm x 210mm) you might set a page size of 2970 x 2100 or 5940 x 4200 or any other size with same proportions.

2. Set the Orientation (Portrait or Landscape) to match your page dimensions. E.g for page width 2200 and height 1700 you should set it to Landscape, or for page width 1700 and height 2200 set it to Portrait.

Print Preview

The print preview menu option gives you an idea how your document will look when it is printed.


Page Setup

Searching Diagrams

To search a diagram, press CTRL-F to display the find dialog. Enter the text to find in the text box.
Use F3 to Find Next.
Tick the Search All Pages box to search for the text in all pages of your document.
Tick the Search All Open Documents box to search for the text in all open documents.

Find Dialog

Tip: Network Notepad Files are stored as plain text. Use Windows "Search for Files" to scan through all your diagrams and find what you are looking for.

Customizing Link Styles

Select Format > Link Styles on the ring menu or right-click a link and select Format Link style.

Format Link Styles

Link Style:
Select an existing link style to modify.
New: Create a new link style starting from scratch. You will be prompted to enter a name.
Create a new link style starting with cloning the current link style. You will be prompted to enter a name.
Rename: Rename the current selected link style.
Delete the selected link style.
The Up and Down Arrow buttons enable you to change the order in which Link Styles are presented.

Style Settings

Format: Choose between Line, Lightning, Lightning2, Curve and Curve2 Styles. For the Lightning style to be effective set the width to 14 or more. You can override the link style setting for individual links to switch between Line, Curve and Curve2 from the link context menu (right-click link).
Width: Width of Link.

Select Colour of the link. The slider sets the transparency.
Line Style: Select from Opaque and various dashed line styles.
Dash Cap: Select from Flat, Round and Triangle to set how dash and dot line styles are drawn.
Join Style: This setting controls how the join is drawn between segments of a multi-segment link.
Join Radius: This enables radiused curves to be drawn between the segments of a link.
Align: Adjacent points in a link are automatically aligned horizontally and vertically. This option can also be switched on or off for individual links from the link context menu (right-click link).
Secondary Style: Enables the link to be drawn using more than one link style. Click the Format button to work on the secondary style.

Line Caps

Startcap, Endcap: Selects from a range of built-in startcap/ endcap and custom startcap/ endcap styles. The appearance of the former is dependent on the width of the link and hence is fairly limited. Selecting Custom startcap/ endcap gives much more control over the appearance. The graphic in the centre shows how the X,Y,W and H custom cap parameters control the dimensions and position of the cap.
Intersect: Adjusts the Y value of the custom cap so it intersects with the edge of the connected object. Currently this only works if the link connects to the centre of the object (Right-click link and choose centre connection point).

Some example Link Styles available Arrow heads drawn using the intersect option

Load Defaults: Wipes all of the link styles and loads a new set from the linkdefs.nls file. If you delete a link style which is used in the diagram the link is draw using a dashed red line.
Open Link Styles: Wipes all of the link styles and load a new set from the selected file.
Save Link Styles: Save the link styles table to a file.


Curve Link Style

Curved link styles use one or two link nodes to act as control points for the curve. From the ring menu select "Options" and "Show Link nodes" to display link nodes while you are drawing curves.
Click the first object, click the background to place the first control point, click the background again to create a second control point and then click the second object to complete the link. 

Curve2 Link Style

Curve2 Link Style allows you to draw curved Links with any number of control points.
From the ring menu select "Options" and "Show Link nodes" to display link nodes while you are drawing curves.




Attaching Labels To Links

When labels are attached to links, by default they are rotated automatically to follow the slope of the link.
When the connected objects are moved, the labels automatically adjust to the new slope angle as shown in the example here.
You can switch the automatic rotation on or off using the "Rotate to follow slope" menu option displayed when you right-click the label.

Link Labels

How To Attach Labels To A Link

  Link Labels 2 LinkLabel LinkLabel Link Labels 5
1. Place labels in approximate positions using
the text tool.

2. Select the link first (black/red circle indication at link termination point) then select each of the labels.

3. Click Format and then Group.
The labels are grouped with the link and are automatically rotated to follow the slope of the link segment.
Selecting the link now also highlights the related labels.

4. Finalise label positions using Drag and Drop or nudge.


Alignment Points

There are three alignment points on a link segment, one at each end and one in the centre of the link segment. The position of a label is relative to the nearest alignment point when the label was first grouped with the link.
In the example shown here, when SW2 is moved the first label's position is relative to that end of the link and so it moves by the same distance. The label on the right is relative to the SW1 end of the link and so remains more or less static. The third label is relative to the centre point on the link and so after SW2 is moved it moves to the new centre point of the link.

Detatching A Label from A Link

To detach a label from a link, right-click the label and click Ungroup in the context menu.

Link Labels 6




Object Properties Form

Tool Set: Select which set of user-defined apps are to be used with this object. Toolsets can be renamed in the setup form. The ellipsis button provides a shortcut.

Links Table Button: See below.


Name: The name of the object.
Address: Specifies the IP address of the object. This can be passed to user-defined apps using the $IPADDRESS or $ADDRESS variables.
Anything entered after a "/" character is not passed when using $IPADDRESS but is passed when using $ADDRESS.
("/" is commonly used to document the subnet mask length e.g. /24)
The dropdown lists next to the labels allow you to change the position of the labels relative to the object. Choose from NSEW (as in the positions on a compass), C for centred and " " for hidden.
* is shown if the label has been dragged and dropped away from the standard positions.
You can also toggle the displaying of all address information in your diagram using the "Display IP Addresses" button on the main toolbar.  


Object Type: Name of the object as shown in the Object Library.
X/Y Scale: Used to enlarge or reduce the size of the Bitmap.
Layer: Sets the order which the object is drawn. The backdrop and grid lines are drawn first followed by objects, labels and links at layer 5 up to layer 0. The "Send to Back" and "Bring to Front" buttons on the main toolbar moves the selected items through the different layers.
Background: Setting an object to background allows links to be drawn on top of an object rather than connecting to it.
(You can also draw a link on top of an object by using the right mouse button instead of the left when forming a join in the link).
Quick RotateFlip: Allows a number of preset rotations and translations of the object.
Rotate: Specify the objects angle of rotation in degrees, or select from the list of rotations at 45 degree intervals. You can also use the mouse to drag and rotate.
Float Text: Text which appears when the mouse pointer hovers over an object.

Misc Tab

Hyperlink: See Linking Diagrams section below.
User Variables:
User-defined variables $VAR1 and $VAR2 can pass any text you like to user-defined apps. Ellipsis buttons give the option to browse for filenames.

Properties Form


Linking Diagrams

Diagrams may be linked together such that one or more special objects in a diagram provide a link to other pages or files. To follow a link to another diagram, right click the object and select "Goto next diagram" or double click the object. To configure an object to link to another page or file use the following settings on the Misc Tab in the Object Properties form:
: This tick box enables the "Goto next diagram" option when this object is right clicked.
Location: Filename of next diagram (include .ndg extension). Leave this blank for the current diagram.
Page: Optional page to open in the next diagram.
Seek: Optional text to seek and centre-on when the next diagram is loaded.
Use bookmark: Completes the Location, Seek and Page fields with the last bookmarked location (Edit > bookmark). 


We will link an object on page1 to an object on page 3:
Go to destination object on page 3.
Right-click the object and click "Bookmark Object".
Go to the source object on page 1.


Open it's Properties and select the "Misc" Tab.
Tick the "Link" box, click "Use Bookmark" and then click OK.
You can now right-click the object on page 1 and click "Go To Next Diagram".
To create a link back the other way, bookmark the object on page1 and add it to the properties of the object on page 3.


Drag And Drop Method For Linking Diagrams

Another way to create a link to a diagram is to drag and drop the .ndg file you want to link to on to the canvas of the current diagram. This adds an object which provides the link as discussed above.

The Links Table

The links table shows a table of all the connections to an object.
Clicking any column heading sorts the table by that particular column.
An IP Address, Hostname and Comment may be entered for each end of each link.
The  columns are drop-down boxes from which you choose the display position relative the object for the IP Address or Hostname.
The "Add to table"/ "Remove from table" buttons are used to transfer or remove the object's IP address and Hostname to/from the table. To enable this button, you must highlight one of the rows by clicking column 0.

Changing Link Styles

To change a link's style in a diagram right click the link and choose "Set link style". You may also change a link style from the Links table by clicking a cell in the Link Type column and choose the new link style from the drop down list.


Object Properties Toolbar

Object Properties Toolbar

The Object Properties Toolbar is optional. It provides quick access to some of the properties for the most recently clicked object.
Enable the toolbar by selecting Options > Object Properties Toolbar from the main ring menu.
The controls displayed on the toolbar are covered in the Object Properties Form section above.



Click the Object Library button Object Libraries on the main toolbar to open the Object Library Form.
Select different libraries from the Drop down list or use File > Open to browse for object libraries.

Searching Object Libraries

The search box on the toolbar may be used to search all available libraries for objects.
You can save objects found as a new Library using the save button on the toolbar.

Adding Objects To An Object Library

Drag a .ico, .bmp, .wmf, .gif, .png or .jpg  file on to a blank part of the Object library form.

Right clicking an object allows you to change an objects default name, filename and X/Y scale.

Use "File","Save Object Library" to save the updated Object Library file.

Deleting Objects From The Object Library Form

To delete an object from the current Object Library, select the object followed by "Edit" and "Cut Image from Object Library".

Auto-Hiding The Object Library Form

To auto-hide the Object Library Form whenever an object is selected click File > Auto-hide.

Object Libraries

Creating New Object Library Files

From the Object Library ring menu select File>New to create a new, blank Object Library file. Paste new object images as explained previously and then use File > Save As to save the new Object Library.

Workgroup Object Libraries

A workgroup Object Library (Folder) may be specified in the main setup form. Network Notepad will use this library when the shared drive is available. Otherwise it will use the default local copy.
To set this up initially, copy contents of the local objects folder to the shared folder.

Copying Object Libraries

You have created your own Object Library, how would you share it with a colleague?
An Object Library usually consists of an index file (.plf) and many bitmap files (.bmp,.gif,.png,.jpg), metafiles (.wmf,.emf) and icon files (.ico). All of the Object Libraries and associated graphic files are stored in a single object library folder. To make it easy to copy an Object Library and all of its associated grahics files there is a menu option in the Object Library window "Copy Object Library". This copies the current library index file and all the associated graphics files to the Windows clipboard so that you use the Windows Explorer paste option to copy the files to a new folder. From there you can zip the library to make it portable.


Shapes are simple graphics which can be customised. There are some shapes preconfigured in the "Shapes" and "Backbones" Object Libraries.
Select Format > Shape from the main ring menu or right click a shape in a diagram or Object Library.

Format Shape

Format Shape

Template Shape: Is a list of shapes populated from the current diagram or library. The selected shape is used as the starting point for further customization.
Shape Parameters: Are the settings which control how the shape is drawn
Format: Choose from a list of basic shapes.
Width and Height: Sets the default width and height of the shape. The graphic can be resized later using the X/Y scale in the object properties form.
Arc Size:/Offset: For rectangular shapes Arc Size sets the corner radius. For parallelogram shapes Offset adjusts the offset of two of the sides.
Antialias: Select between On,Off and On rotate.
Colours: Choose the background colour of the shape. Select a second colour if gradient fill is to be used. The slider sets the transparency.
Gradient Fill: Tick the enable box to enable gradient fill. X1,Y1,X2,Y2 sets the start and end coordinates of the gradient fill.
Border: Set the width >0 for a border to be displayed. The rest of the parameters here set the colour and dash style for the border.
Output, Shape Name: The name of the customized shape to save.
It is important to try and keep customized shape names unique. For example, if you created a new shape called "circle" and there is already a different shape in your diagram called "circle" you will not get the desired result when the new shape is added to your diagram (You cannot over-write an existing shape with another shape by giving it the same name but you can modify the existing shape). The ellipsis button may be used to generate a new random shape name.
Update all:
Selects whether or not to replace all shapes in the diagram of the type originally clicked with the new shape if the name of the shape has changed.
Save to Diagram:
If you selected format shape by right clicking a shape in a diagram, this option chooses whether that shape is replaced with the new shape.
Save to Library: When defining a new shape you should tick this box to save the new shape to an Object Library. The elipsis button is used to select a different library to save to.






Example Shapes

  Rectangle, Width=200, Height=100, background set to transparent by setting the colour slider control to the left.
Arc size 20 sets radiused corners.
  Rectangle, Width=200, Height=100. This variant has only the top two corners radiused.

See Grouping and Locking for information on combining these shapes in to a composite object.


"Script Objects" provide a way to construct vector-based graphics for use in Network Notepad from plain-text scripts. Some examples are available in the scripts library.

Script Syntax

A Script Object consists of the following statements and commands:

1. The Script Statement.
2. Path Statements.
3. Pens and Brushes.
4. Commands.
5. Align Statements.


1. The Script Statement

  script The script statement sets the name, the overall size of the object, and the revision number.
    script name width height revision
    name - name of the script object. If the name contains spaces then enclose it in "quotation marks". The name should be globally unique.
    width - width of the object.
    height - height of object.The width and height set the size of the outline box displayed when pasting the object.
In the examples I am using a default scale of 1pixel per mm.
    revision - Revision number of the script. When pasting scripts which already exist in the diagram, the script will only be replaced if the new script is a higher revision.
script "Test object" 50 20 0.1

2. Path statements

  path Path statements define the shapes, lines and text in the object.
    path name name

name - name of graphics path.
    path startfigure

Starts a new path rather than continuing the current path.
    path addline x1 y1 x2 y2

Adds a line to the current path.
    path addlines x1 y1 x2 y2... xn yn

Adds a series of lines to the current path.
    path addrectangle x1 y1 width height

Adds a rectangle at the position specified with the width and height specified.
    path addarc x y width height start-angle sweep-angle

Adds an arc to the current path.

x y width height - define a rectangle which forms the bounds of the arc.
start-angle - measured in degrees clockwise from the x-axis.
sweep-angle - angle swept from start angle.
    path addstring x y "text" font-name font-size font-style

Adds a text string to the current path.

x y - specify the top left corner position of the text.
"text" - text string to draw.
font-name - Name of font. Enclose in quotation marks if the font name contains spaces.
font size - Font size.
font style - Numeric value, Regular=0, Bold=1, Italic=2, Underline=4, Strikeout=8
Add font style values to combine them e.g. Bold+Italic+Underline =7
Use a fill command rather than a draw command to render text. If you use a draw command the outline of the text is drawn.
    path closefigure
Closes a path by extending it to the start point in the path.

Example path statements:

path name module
path addrectangle 0 0 77 40
path name vent
path addarc 0 0 6 6 90 180
path addarc 38 0 6 6 270 180
path name "SFP Slot"
path addrectangle 0 0 14 9
path name label
path addstring 0 0 "SFP" arial 2.25 1
path name screw
path addarc 0 0 8 8 0 360
path name screwhead
path startfigure
path addlines 3 2 2 3 3 4 2 5 3 6 4 5 5 6 6 5 5 4 6 3 5 2 4 3
path closefigure

3. Pens and Brushes

  pen Pen statements set the colour and width of a line when used with the draw command below.
    pen name colour transparency width

name - name of the pen.
colour - Blue green and Red values in Hex.
transparency  - Number from 0-255 where 255 is solid colour.
width - width of line drawn with the pen.

pen black_pen0.5 &h000000& 255 0.5
draw outline black_pen0.5
  brush Brush statements set the colour used with the fill command below.
    brush name colour transparency

Brushes are used with fill commands to fill an area enclosed by a path.
name - name of the brush.
colour - Blue Green and Red values in Hex.
transparency - Number from 0-255 where 255 is solid colour.

brush grey_brush &ha0a0a0& 255
fill body grey_brush
  gradientbrush A gradientbrush is used to fill an area enclosed by a path using a brush which transitions from one colour to another.
    gradientbrush name colour1 transparency1 colour2 transparency2 width height angle

name - name of the gradientbrush.
colour1 - starting colour in hex.
transparency1 - Number from 0-255 where 255 is solid colour.
colour2 - Ending colour in hex.
transparency2 - Number from 0-255 where 255 is solid colour.
width, height - define the size of the brush.
angle - direction of gradient.

gradientbrush cloudbrush &hE4E4E4& 255 &h646464& 255 1 62 90
fill cloudpath cloudbrush

4. Commands

  draw Draw the outline of a path using the specified pen. Draw at position x y and apply an optional local scale transform and/or rotate transform.
    draw path pen x y [xscale yscale] [angle]

path - name of path to draw.
pen - name of pen to use.
x y - position of drawing.
xscale yscale - scale transform. Negative values are used to flip the drawing about the x or y-axis.
angle - optional rotation angle in degrees (introduced in version 1.3.11).

draw "top box" black_pen0.5 20 10
  fill Fill an area enclosed by a path using the specified brush. Draw at position x y and apply an optional local scale transform and/or rotate transform.
    fill path brush x y [xscale yscale] [angle]

path - name of path to fill.
brush - name of brush to use.
x y - position of drawing.
xscale yscale - scale transform. Negative values are used to flip the drawing about the x or y-axis. For an example of this see the left and right brackets in the 2960 switch which use the same path but flipped about the y-axis.
angle - optional rotation angle in degrees (introduced in version 1.3.11).

fill test "grey brush" 20 10
  paint Enables a Script Object to include other Script Objects in it's drawing.
    paint script x y [xscale yscale]

script - The name of the script object to draw. It must be present in the current diagram's table of Script Objects.
x y - The coordinates of the Script Object.
xscale yscale - Optionally draw the Object Script using non-default scale values.
(The paint command was introduced in version 1.3.36)

paint "RJ45 Socket" 50 20
  texturefill Fills a path using another script as the brush.
    texturefill path script [x y] [xscale] [yscale] [angle]

path - name of path to fill.
script - name of script to use as a brush.
x y - position of drawing.
xscale yscale - optional scale transform.
angle - optional rotation transform.

texturefill ventarea ventscript9
  option The option command is followed by optional fill, draw and paint statements which can be enabled or disabled at run-time by right-clicking the object and choosing "Options". E.g. See the brackets and screws options in the 2960 switch example.
    option name [optional mask]

- provides the text which will be displayed in the options menu.
- This option controls how the entries in the options menu work. Without a mask or with a mask value 0 you can switch any option on or off. With a mask the options covered by the mask are mutually exclusive. You can select one option only from the masked options and at least one of those masked options must be selected.
In the example below the first 3 options are grouped using the mask value 7 and allow you to choose a background colour. The next two options are grouped using mask value 24 and allow you to choose a border colour.
The mask values are derived from the order the options are read in and assigned a bit value. The first 3 options correspond to bits 0-2 which gives a binary value 111 and mask value 7. Bits 3-4 give a binary value 11000 and mask value 24.
The option end statement enables drawing to continue after the options.

option end

"option end" is a special case. It is not displayed in the options menu and merely permits normal drawing to continue after options.

script "cloud7 with options" 100 70 1.6
pen red_pen &h0000ff& 255 1
pen blue_pen &hff0000& 255 1
brush grey_brush &hD4D4D4& 255
brush red_brush &h9595FF& 255
brush yellow_brush &h16E3E9& 255
brush black_brush &h000000& 255
path name cloud
path addarc 0 22 40 40 278 -188
path addarc 60 22 40 40 90 -160
path addarc 52 8 35 35 -10 -102
path addarc 23 1 40 40 330 -153
path name text
path addstring 27 32 "The Cloud" arial 7 1
option "background grey" 7
fill cloud grey_brush
option "background red" 7
fill cloud red_brush
option "background yellow" 7
fill cloud yellow_brush
option "border red" 24
draw cloud red_pen
option "border blue" 24
draw cloud blue_pen
option end
fill text black_brush
  antialias Switches antialiasing off or on. The default setting is on.
    antialias off | on

off - switch off antialiasing.
on - switch on antialiasing.

5. Align Statements

  align Align statements optionally enable objects to be automatically aligned when one object is pasted or dragged and dropped on to another object.
    align +|- type points

A "+" script can only align with a "-" script.
- For scripts to align the type must match between the two scripts.
- A list of X Y alignment points.

align + screw -11 6 454 6 -11 50.5

Format Script Object

Format Script Object provides an environment for creating and modifying Script Objects. Access it from the Format menu or right-click a Script Object in a diagram or the library window.

Format Script Object

To paste a script in to the editor, switch to script view (Script button) and paste in to the main panel.

Colour Pickers for pens and brushes are available in the Tabular view by clicking the elipsis column (...) in the respective tables.

&hBbGgRr& specifies the Blue, Green and Red components of the colour in Hex.

Tspcy is the colour transparency value from 0 to 255, where 255 is solid colour.

The form is resizable and the panels can also be resized by dragging the horizontal and vertical bars which divide the panels.

Click the Refresh button to apply changes made in the script panels.


Merging Script Objects

Format > Merge Script Objects enables mulitple Script Objects to be merged in to a single Script Object. Text can also be merged.
In the following example an small ethernet hub is built up from components in the online Script Objects Library and then merged:

1. Add the parent object which will act as a container for the other components.
I have used Format Script Object to create a box and given the script a new unique name (this is important).

Hub Box script "Netgear FE104" 158 25 0.5
brush blue_brush &h8B4001& 255
path name Box
path addrectangle 0 0 158 25
fill "Box" blue_brush

2. Copy and paste script components from the online library on to the parent object.
I have added four RJ45 sockets and then using the Text tool added a brand label.


3. Put the parent box and child components in to a group.
Select the parent Box first followed by the 4 sockets and the label, then select Format > Group on the ring menu.
The objects are now loosely bound together.

Hub Components

4. Select the group by clicking the parent box and then select Format > Merge Script Objects.
The parent box and the 5 child objects are now merged into a single Script Object.

Merged Hub script "Netgear FE104 Hub" 158 25 0.6
brush blue_brush &h8B4001& 255
brush black_brush &h000000& 255
brush silver_brush &hd0d8dc& 255
brush brush1 &hFFFFFF& 255
path name Box
path addrectangle 0 0 158 25
path name rj45down
path addlines 2 7 2 9 3.5 9 3.5 10 9 10 9 9 10.5 9 10.5 7 12.5 7 12.5 0 0 0 0 7
path name single_port
path addrectangle 0 0 15 12
path name path1
path addstring 0 0 NETGEAR arial 3 1
fill "Box" blue_brush
fill single_port silver_brush 111.5 8
fill rj45down black_brush 112.5 19 1 -1
fill single_port silver_brush 66.5 8
fill rj45down black_brush 67.5 19 1 -1
fill single_port silver_brush 81.5 8
fill rj45down black_brush 82.5 19 1 -1
fill single_port silver_brush 96.5 8
fill rj45down black_brush 97.5 19 1 -1
fill path1 brush1 5.25 2.25

5. To save the new object to the current local library, right-click the object and select Format Script Object. Click the "Save to Library" checkbox and click OK.
Please email me a copy of your new scripts (or any new components) for inclusion in the online library!

There are a number of restrictions with the Merge Script Objects feature:

  • The component objects must not be rotated.

  • The component objects must use their default x-scale and y-scale settings (That will be 1,2 or 4 depending on the Format > Resolution setting).

  • Name and Address labels are excluded from a merge.



The Setup Form

To access the Setup Form select File > Setup from the main ring menu.

  Setup Form  

General Settings Tab

Language: Select the Language used for Network Notepad.
Edit Language: This button opens the selected language translation file for editing.
Refresh: This button refreshes translations from the language translation file.
Show index: To assist with language translations this temporarily prepends entries with section number and line number to show where each text entry is located in the language translation file.
Grid Line Spacing: Sets the spacing for grid lines when grid lines option is switched on ("Options","Grid Lines"). 
Default IP Address:A partial or complete IP Address which will be applied to all new objects added to the diagram.
Maximum Open Documents: Sets how many documents can be opened at once. Each open document presents its own tab bar at the bottom of the screen.
Reload Document Button:Enables a Reload Document button on the toolbar. This is useful if you edit the diagram outside of Network Notepad and need to quickly reload the current file.
Default Diagram: Sets the diagram loaded by default if no diagram is specified on the command line. Use the ellipses button to browse for a file or the "Use Current" button to make the current diagram the default diagram. The "None" button clears the default diagram.

User-Defined Apps Tab

For information on the User-Defined Apps, see User Defined Apps.

Monitoring Tab

Default Node Settings: Sets the default node settings applied when adding new objects. Node settings are used by add-ons such as NNMonitor to set what actions to take when a node changes state. Node settings can be changed for individual objects from the "Node" menu when you right-click an object.
Overlays: Sets the style and colour used for overlays set by add-ons such as NNMonitor and NNPing to indicate the up, down or transitioning state of nodes.

Updates Tab

Enable Automatic Updates: Tick to enable automatic updates (default).
Update Type:
Select from Automatic, Check and Download, and Check only.
Manual Proxy Settings:
Tick to enable automatic updates with manual proxy server settings.


The Diagram Properties Form

The Diagram Properties Form is accessed from the main ring menu File > Edit Diagram Properties.

Document Panel

The Document panel shows settings which apply to the entire document as opposed to just the current page.
$DOCVAR1: This is a per-document user variable which can be passed to user-defined apps.
Auto-run app:  A customer requested an option to auto-start NNMonitor when a document is loaded and this setting is where this is configured. It can be used to launch any user-defined app, but with the restriction that it will only run if it exactly matches the command line of a user-defined app. If it is not an exact match an error message is displayed.

Page Panel

The settings in the page panel just relate to the current page.
The Diagram Name, Notes1 and Notes2 are text fields stored in the diagram.
Resolution: Select from Draft, Fine and Superfine.
Fine uses a bitmap which is twice as big as Draft and Superfine uses a bitmap which is twice as big as Fine.
Page Width and Page Height specify the size of the canvas in pixels. See also: Printing.
Lock button: Locks the page width and height so that the page cannot be resized with the mouse.
Backdrop: Specify an image file for the Backdrop of the diagram.
Forground Colour and Background Colour: Sets the colours used for Object Name and IP Labels.
Link Text Colour: Selects the colour for text used to highlight objects which link to another diagram.
Float Text Foreground and Background Colours: Sets the colours used for Float Text.
Make These The Default: Sets the defaults for new diagrams.

Diagram Properties



When you start a new drawing or add a new page to an existing document, you are prompted to select from a list of templates. A diagram template is simply a minimal diagram which contains defaults for the new drawing. It sets the page width and height and orientation, default font, link styles and it can contain some default drawing, for example a title block and border.

Creating Diagram Templates

To create new diagram template, set up a new single page document with the desired settings and default drawing as mentioned above and then save it to the templates folder using File > Save to Templates.




Adding A Backdrop Image

Drag and drop a bitmap file (.bmp, .png, .gif or .jpg) on to the page to use as a backdrop image for your diagram.
In the Diagram Properties form, you may also specify a filename for a backdrop bitmap, and you can select whether to stretch, centre or tile the image.

Export To Bitmap Graphics File

To export a diagram as a bitmap file, from the ring menu, select File and then Export To Bitmap Graphics File. Enter a suitable filename when prompted. The following bitmap file types can be selected from drop-down list: .bmp, .gif and .png.

Export To A PDF File

To export a Network Notepad diagram or document to a searchable PDF file:

File > Export To PDF > Export Page or Export Document

Setting A Default Diagram

You may configure a default diagram to be displayed when Network Notepad is run. The default diagram is configured in the Setup Form.

Working with CSV files

Network Notepad can save to and load from .csv files which means you can use a spreadsheet to view and edit diagram files.
In the File > SaveAs and File > Open dialogs select .CSV file in the type dropdown list.

Import CSV Data

This feature lets you import a list of Objects from CSV data. Open the form from the menu option File > Import CSV Data.

Import CSV Data 

Paste a list of objects in the form in the following format:

Name, Address, Object Type


switch1,,workgroup switch

When you click the OK button, Network Notepad switches to paste mode and shows the outlines of the objects to be pasted


Paste the objects to complete the operation.


Transfer License To Another PC

When a licensed PC is to be replaced, the Network Notepad license can be transferred to the replacement PC using the procedure shown below. There are a couple of points to be aware of when doing this:

  • It is a one-way procedure. You cannot transfer a license back to the original PC. It is possible to reactivate the license on the original PC but only with assistance from Support.
  • As soon as you proceed with the transfer, Network Notepad will no longer be licensed and will not function the next time you try to open it.
  • Web browser access to the Internet is required to create the replacement license file.

1. On the PC which is to be replaced, open the Network Notepad License Manager and click File > Transfer License To Another PC.

2. Click OK at the first confirmation dialog.

Transfer Dialog 1

3. Tick the "I agree" box and click OK at the second confirmation dialog.

Transfer Dialog 2

4. Copy the URL displayed to a PC with Internet access and browse to the URL (If you happen to close the dialog at this point, the URL will be displayed again next time you open the License Manager).

Transfer URL

5. Fill out the online form and enter the Hardware-ID from the new PC (Run the License Manager on the new PC to display its Hardware-ID) and click Next.

Transfer Form

6. Confirm the details on the next page.

Confirm Details

7. Download the new PC's license file. A copy is also sent to the email address entered in to the form previously.

Collect License File

8. Copy the license file to the new PC and double-click the file to install it or use the License Manager menu option File > Install a License File.