Using overlays, you can dynamically apply information to a viewable rendition when users download it from Vault. Overlays only appear on downloaded renditions and do not affect source files. They are associated with a specific lifecycle state, which lets you use this feature to indicate the current document status, even when the document is downloaded and printed. This functionality is important when companies need to ensure that expired or draft documents are clearly marked as such.

Using standard overlay templates, information can appear in the header, footer, and/or diagonally across the page. You can use tokens to insert information from specific document fields or details when setting up a standard overlays. For example, the ${status} token would resolve to the lifecycle state of the document at the time Vault generates the overlay.

The standard font for overlays is FreeSerif. By default, the font size is 11 pt for the header and footer, and 70 pt for the diagonal watermark.

Accessing Overlay Management

Administration options are available in Business Admin > Templates > Overlays. By default, users with any Admin security profile can access this page and modify overlays. However, only Admins with the Document Lifecycles: Edit permission can associate an overlay template with a lifecycle state.

How to Create Overlays

To create an overlay template:

  1. From the Overlays page, click Create Overlay.
  2. Enter a name for the overlay. This value only appears in the Admin area.
  3. Optional: Enter text for the Header and use the token tool to add fields from the application. The header appears at the top of the downloaded rendition.
  4. Optional: Enter text for the Diagonal Watermark and use the token tool to add fields from the application. The diagonal watermark appears diagonally across the center of the downloaded rendition.
  5. Optional: Enter text for the Footer and use the token tool to add fields from the application. The footer appears at the bottom of the downloaded rendition.
  6. Optional: Select the Match page to nearest Overlay Override paper size checkbox to enable an overlay page size tolerance.
  7. Optional: Select the Allow download without Overlay checkbox to allow downloads if Vault fails to apply the overlay.
  8. Click Save.
  9. Optional: Preview your template with the Download Preview button.
  10. Optional: Add advanced overlay templates by clicking Upload under Overlay Overrides and selecting an XFA PDF. Repeat this process for any paper sizes and orientations you need. You can preview these overrides by selecting Download Preview from their actions menu.
  11. Navigate to Admin > Configuration > Document Lifecycles > [Lifecycle] > Overlays and configure the conditions that will manifest the overlay.
  12. Users see the overlay the next time they download a viewable rendition for a document when its overlay conditions are met.

How to Edit Overlay Templates

To edit an existing overlay template, navigate to the Overlays page and click on a template.

  • Edit the standard overlay template or basic template details by clicking Edit, making changes, and saving.
  • Remove an existing overlay template override by selecting Delete from the actions menu that appears on the template row under Overlay Overrides.
  • Add a new overlay template override by clicking Upload and adding an XFA PDF.

How to Preview Overlay Templates

You can preview your overlay template with the Download Preview button, which is located next to the Delete button. This will download a PDF preview of your overlay, with three example pages: Two pages in portrait view and one in landscape. You can also download a preview of each of your override templates, by selecting Download Preview from their actions menu.

How to Delete Overlay Templates

Deleting a template removes it permanently from the Vault. Before deleting, you must change the associated lifecycle state to not use the template. To delete:

  1. From the Overlays page, hover over the overlay.
  2. Click on the X icon.
  3. Click Continue in the confirmation dialog.

About Character Limits

When using tokens in the standard overlay header, footer, or diagonal watermark, keep in mind that these areas have maximum character limits. Consider the maximum length of the fields related to each token. Vault truncates the text on a single line after it reaches the maximum, so you may notice that some details are not visible when the tokens resolve.

The limit for headers and footers is 80 characters per line and there are two (2) lines. Text will not wrap from the first line to the second. Diagonal watermarks allow one (1) line with up to 50 characters.

Displaying the Current Time on Overlays

If necessary, you can use the currentTime__v token on your overlay template to display the current time when Vault generates the rendition. This can be helpful if multiple downloads may occur on the same date. This token displays the current time and the time zone based on the downloading user’s locale settings. You can use the current time token and the current date token to display the date and time the rendition was downloaded.

Required Overlays

By default, Vault prevents users from downloading renditions without applied overlays in the event overlays fail to apply. To allow users to download renditions without overlays in the event the overlay fails to apply, navigate to Business Admin > Templates > Overlays and select an overlay template. Click Edit, select the Allow download without Overlay checkbox, then click Save.

File Size & Page Limitations for Overlays

Vault optimizes downloaded viewable renditions configured with basic or advanced overlays by removing duplicate fonts, images, and other elements, resulting in smaller PDF files.

Upon downloading, Vault may not apply overlays to files exceeding 100 MB or 1000 pages.

About Document Margins

Vault applies overlay headers and footers in the top and bottom 0.5 inches of the document’s margins. When creating documents, use at least 0.5 inch margins if you plan to use overlay headers and footers. These overlays are centered but can extend to 0.25 inches from the left and right sides of the page, depending on how many characters you use.

About Overlay Overrides

Overlay overrides allow you to create more complex overrides to a standard template by uploading a preconfigured XML Forms Architecture (XFA) PDF file which controls the specific fonts, styles, layout, images, and Vault fields captured when the template is rendered on a document. These are forms-enabled PDF files typically created in Adobe LiveCycle Designer or Adobe AEM Forms Designer. You must create the files outside of Vault and upload them as templates.

Overrides are specific to page dimensions and orientation. When Vault applies an overlay, it looks for overrides first and applies them to any pages in the document that match the page specifications. If no matching overlay template overrides are found, Vault applies the standard overlay template. Vault applies this logic to each individual page within a viewable rendition, so some pages may use override templates, while others may use the standard template.

For example, your overlay setup includes template overrides for 8.5”x11” portrait pages and 8.5”x11” landscape pages. Your document includes several pages with each of these specifications, as well as several 5”x5” pages of graphs. Vault would apply the override templates to the 8.5”x11” pages (the portrait override to the portrait-oriented pages and the landscape override to the landscape-oriented pages), but would apply the standard template to the 5”x5” pages.

Overlay overrides are complex to render and make it slower to prepare the viewable rendition for download. If download times are a concern on your Vault, we suggest using basic overlay templates instead.

Configuring an Overlay Page Size Tolerance

When configured, Vault applies overlays to documents within 0.5” of the specified height or width of the overlay. If no matching overlay template overrides within the 0.5” page tolerance are found, Vault applies the standard overlay template.

For example, your overlay setup includes templates for 8.5”x11” portrait pages. Your document includes pages with these specifications, as well as several 9”x11” portrait pages and one 8”x8” page. Vault will apply the override templates to both sets of portrait pages, but will apply the standard template to the 8”x8” page.

To configure page size tolerances for overlays, navigate to Business Admin > Templates > Overlays and select an overlay template. Click Edit and set the Match page to nearest Overlay Override to paper size checkbox, then click Save.

Guidelines for Overlay Override Files

When creating XFA PDF files to use as overlay template overrides:

  • You must use the “Text Field” type to add a Vault field, regardless of the field’s type in your Vault. For example, include the document name by inserting a text field labeled name__v. Vault will not accept templates with text field names that do not match document field names in your Vault.
  • To include images, such as your company logo, add them as image objects. Image field objects are not supported within Vault. Image objects must be flagged to embed the image in the PDF.
  • Vault can support up to 150 mapped fields in the overlay override file.
  • Be mindful of the wrapping and truncation options that you’re using. Overlays can only be a single page. If the overlay resolves to more than one page, Vault discards the second page, so any details that wrap onto a second page will be lost.

Here are a few suggestions to help ensure your template looks professional and functions as expected:

  • Use a custom Adobe object style to keep fonts, font sizes and weights consistent.
  • Define which elements can be resized, split across pages, hyphenated, among others.

Disabling Overlays for Specific Documents

Organizations sometimes need to import documents which already have overlays applied. Vault provides the Disable Vault Overlays shared field, which allows you to skip overlays for specific documents. To use this functionality, an Admin must apply the Disable Vault Overlays fields to any document types which require the option to skip overlays. Users can then set the field to Yes on individual documents to disable overlays. If the field is set to No or is blank, Vault applies overlays to the document as usual. When creating a new draft version of a document, the value of this field in the new draft will always default to No.

You cannot disable overlays on content that Vault creates, including eSignature pages and generated 2253 forms.