I work for a company that produces an appliance that's designed to be configurable via a Web interface. We have such an interface that 'works', but it's sort of dismal and we're looking to basically re-do the entire thing.

In the course of researching for this, I have had a very hard time locating resources that apply to this sort of project. Most UX and Web-design-related resources are focussed on things like e-commerce applications and sites that primarily provide information (blogs, product-launch pages, and so on). This is completely different from our product, which is primarily configuration-based — lots of nearly static pages that are almost entirely input fields and tick boxes.

What I'd like to find are resources similar to general-purpose Web-design magazines (like Smashing and A List Apart), but with a particular — and (ideally) modern — focus on these types of projects.

Is there anything like this out there?

  • I would search for SharePoint 2013 Central Admin since it's just for configuration of Sites. Jan 1, 2013 at 9:54
  • Seems to me like many of the problems applicable to conventional web user interface design hold equally true for your scenario. Are there any more concret aspects that puzzle you?
    – kontur
    Jan 2, 2013 at 14:28
  • I guess i'm mainly interested in the design of large/complex forms (as opposed to simple ones like sign-up forms), the design and structuring of large menus, best practices for organisational structure (is it preferable to combine forms into a few somewhat large pages or to have many discrete, smaller pages?), and things like that. General accessibility and design is of course not an issue.
    – kine
    Jan 3, 2013 at 5:21
  • I found this to be helpful smashingmagazine.com/2018/02/…
    – A.com
    Mar 26, 2021 at 21:03

1 Answer 1


Your "configuration web interface" category is essentially a mix of filters, dropdowns, checkboxes, forms etc.

I would suggest to read:

Ultimate Guide to table UI patterns which is an excellent read on practices of table design - which essentially would be in some form an essential component of your configuration web interface.

Second, I would like to suggest to read Best Practices for Search Filters which focuses solely on filtering, however if your configuration has some filtering mechanism for any of the configurations (something like Dell's website has),you would definitely want to read this one.

  • I don't think our interface has so much content as to require filters (i think there are about 30 pages currently), so that part isn't necessary, at least not at this point. The table thing is helpful, albeit not precisely what i'm looking for. The design of large forms and menus is really the main thing i'm interested in, i think. Thank you, in any case!
    – kine
    Jan 3, 2013 at 5:24

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