UX Improvements for the microflow and nanoflow editors - Mendix Forum

UX Improvements for the microflow and nanoflow editors


Just some ideas that could improve the microflow/nanoflow editor: 


Smart tools for alignment

Microflows and nanoflows should look clean, neat, and tidy. Activities should be aligned and distributed evenly, and the flowing lines should not have any weird arches. 

I enjoy the tools that we have to achieve this but here are some issues that make it a little bit difficult to achieve and some tools that would make it easier to make our work look clean.

1: Fix impossible alignment

Sometimes it is impossible to align one action to the flow of other actions, it just won’t snap to the right position. This can be frustrating and you’ll have to shift the surrounding activities to fix the alignment. It would be great if this issue could be fixed.


2. Alignment/enhancements with shortcut Keys:

It would be great if holding SHIFT while dragging an activity would cause it to move only on one axis (shift should work for both horizontal & vertical directions, similar to how this is done in Adobe Illustrator)   

In addition, holding ALT while dragging an activity could result in cloning the element.

3. Auto alignment: Route flow

It would be great to have the ability to route the flow in Mendix Studio Pro similar to the example below:

Currently, I am inserting merges into the flow to achieve a similar look and feel:


4. Setting multiple handlers at once

To create symmetrical lines it would be useful to have the ability to set both handlers for a line  



Converting/substracting a microflow to a nanoflow & vice versa (Converting is implemented in 9.24 🥳)

Microflows and Nanoflows are very similar, yet they act differently. Sometimes when you start building something in a Nanoflow, you will find out that it would be better in a Microflow (Or the other way around). When this happens, you will have to:

  1. Create a new microflow, 
  2. Copy the actions to that microflow
  3. Rename the Nanoflow
  4. Rename the Microflow
  5. Delete the Nanoflow
  6. Replace the Nanoflow usages with the Microflow

Quite a few steps! It would be convenient to have the following abilities:

GUI Improvements

When a breakpoint has a condition configured, the question mark is hard to notice.

I find it difficult to distinguish the ‘Loop’ from the ‘Action activity’

Misc/Small changes


Shortcuts (Partly implemented in 9.21 🥳

When you want to use a list operation (union, intersect..) or a list aggregate(average, count..), it is easy to select the wrong type of action.

Therefore, while selecting the “Type of Action” for a new activity, I would like to have some shortcuts to not only select the type of the action but preconfigure the main option. Although shortcuts would be especially useful for list operations/aggregate list, they could be introduced for other actions as well (as listed below.)

For example:

Aggregate shortcuts:

Other activities where shortcuts could be included:


Other ideas worth mentioning:

https://community.mendix.com/link/ideas/147 Support for basic arrays

https://community.mendix.com/#/ideas/15762598695800547 Provide option to handle remaining enumeration values on exclusive split / add multiple cases to the same outgoing arrow to group them.

4 answers

similair ideas

Increase the microflow canvas grid


Feature to auto format/align


Auto Alignment of Activities in microflows and nanoflows.


Microflow Grid



in my opinion, domain model and nano/microflow editors should be as, or more intuitive than Miro.

simple things like, using spacebar to pan, having infinite canvas, ctrl+D to duplicate.

Auto align items, a more natural grid and snapping.

alignment of the connecting lines by making them straight.

This is 90% of where people work, can we please make this the ultimate developer experience.

even the connecting line to a loop is out of alignment, even making other connection point, like the top corners could solve this.


Thank you Jason. Sounds good to me, I will add your idea to the list.


Some good news 🥳:

  •  Shortcuts have been implemented in 9.21.0: 
    In the microflow editor, you can now filter microflow actions to process lists (for example, using Union, Sum, or Sort), which makes it easier to select the right list activity type.
  • Converting a microflow to a nanoflow & vice versa will be added in 9.24

yes to all :D 

infinite canvas would be nice instead of the weird scrolling when at the edge of a canvas (like figma, miro)