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Global Variables

Global variables are administrative settings that can be customized by the user and applied throughout the knowledgebase. They are usually edited by navigating to Setup > System > Manage Global Variables. Global variables typically change some aspect of the system itself and can determine a wide variety of settings in the KB, such as:

  • The title wording displayed in the open tab of the browser.
  • The URLs for logging in and logging out of the KB.
  • The maximum size of email attachments.
  • The displayed product name.
  • The default language.
  • The maximum column length per row in tables.
  • Whether attached PDF files containing text fields with an OCR option should have the OCR included in the attachment.
  • How long a record stays locked when a user opens it for editing.

For a list of all global variables, refer to the Global Variables List page.

There are also several security settings that were previously managed with global variables. For more information on these settings, see Security.

Edit a Global Variable

Global variables are configured in a KB using the Global Variable wizard. The wizard consists of two tabs:

  • Customized Variables: Contains the list of variables that have been changed from the default value.
  • Variables with Default Values: Contains the entire list of variables, including those which have been customized, which are shown with a checkmark icon, and those that have default values, which are shown with an edit icon. If you edit a variable on this list and change it from the default value, it is automatically added to the Customized Variables tab. If you change a customized variable back to the default value, it is automatically removed from the Customized Variables tab.

Customized Variables tab in Manage Global Variables

Use the following steps to edit a global variable: 

  1. Click the Setup gear in the top-right corner and go to System > Manage Global Variables.
  2. Select the appropriate tab in the Global Variable wizard.
  3. Click the edit icon next to a variable to bring up the Manage Global Variables and Constants dialog.

    Settings that are not configurable are greyed out. The variable's name, label, and localization support are only configurable when creating new system constants.

  4. Enter the Variable Notes. This section typically describes the variable's function and lets you provide any additional information about the global variable, such as the reason for changing its default value.
    Variable Notes field
  5. Define the global variable's value. The system also includes the variable's default value. This section may be slightly different depending on the global variable you're editing, and some global variables have additional options not discussed here.
    Global Variable Value field
  6. Select whether the variable is Deletable. If the value is set to Yes, the variable can be deleted. However, deleted variables aren't actually removed from the system. They are reset to the default value and removed from the Customized Variables tab. You can still access and customize them again from the Variables with Default Values tab. If Deletable is set to No, you can manually set the value back to its default value to remove it from the Customized Variables tab.
  7. Click Finish and refresh the session for the new variables to take effect. The quickest way to refresh a session is to reselect your language from the language drop-down menu on the user info/language bar at the top of the knowledgebase. You can also refresh the session by logging out and in again.

Edit Global Variables with the Admin Console

Some global variables in the Power User Interface can also be also set in the Admin Console by navigating to General > Variables. Customizing a global variable in the Admin Console makes its setting active for all KBs on that server. If you haven't customized a variable in a particular KB, the Admin Console’s setting for that variable takes precedence. However, if that variable has been customized in the KB, it takes precedence over the variable setting in the Admin Console.

Some variables can be set only in the Admin Console and cannot be changed in the Power User Interface. Due to their potential to cause performance issues on a shared server, these Admin Console-specific global variables are only available for customers installed on dedicated or on-premise servers.