Please note : This help page is not for the latest version of Enterprise Architect. The latest help can be found here.

Diagram Toolbox

What is the Toolbox?

The Enterprise Architect Toolbox is a panel of icons that you use to create elements and connectors on a diagram.

Within the Toolbox, related elements and connectors are organized into pages, each page containing the elements or connectors used for a particular type of diagram. The diagrams include standard UML diagrams, Enterprise Architect Extended diagrams, and any MDG Technologies and Profiles that you have added to Enterprise Architect. When you open a diagram, the Toolbox automatically provides the element and relationship pages corresponding to the diagram type. This does not prevent you using elements and connectors from other pages in a given diagram, though some combinations might not represent valid UML.

Display the Toolbox

To display the Toolbox, select the View | Diagram Toolbox menu option, or press [Alt]+[5].

The Toolbox can be docked on either side of the diagram, or free floated on top of the diagram to expose more surface for editing.


You can also hide and show the whole Toolbox using the HideShowButton2 Show Element Toolbox button on the Workspace Views toolbar.

To display specific pages in the Toolbox, select the More Tools option at the top of the Toolbox and select the appropriate UML, Extended or customized diagram type from the menu.

In most cases, three pages display: <type> elements, <type> Relationships and Common. If you select the <default> option, you display only the Common page.


Create Elements and Connectors:

  1. In the Project Browser, double-click on the icon against the required diagram. The diagram opens with the appropriate Toolbox pages for that diagram type. (If you want a different set of elements and connectors, click on More tools and select the appropriate diagram type as explained above).
  2. Click on the required item; for example, the Class element or Associate relationship.
  3. For element items, click anywhere on the diagram to place the new element.
  4. For connector items, drag the cursor between the source and target elements on the diagram. The solid border of the elements changes to a hatched border as you pass the cursor over them, indicating the source and potential target elements. To add bends to the connector, press [Shift] as you change the drag direction of the cursor.
    Alternatively, drag from the source element to an empty area of the diagram; the Quick-linker enables you to create the target element.
  5. Edit the element properties or connector properties, as required.


Dropping a Package element from the Toolbox into a diagram creates a new package in the Project Browser, and a default diagram of the same type as the current diagram.


  • If you are creating several elements of one type, after creating the first just press [Shift]+[F3] or [Ctrl]+click to create the next element of that type. For connectors, click on the source element and press [F3] to create another connector of the same type.
  • You can change an unstereotyped element to one of its stereotyped elements by dragging the stereotyped element from the Toolbox onto the unstereotyped element in the diagram. For example, you can stereotype a Class by dragging a Table element or a Profiled Class element onto it.
  • If the diagram element already has the stereotype, you can also drag the Toolbox element onto it to synchronize the element's stereotype Tagged Values.

Customize The Toolbox

You can customize the Toolbox pages by pinning them within the Toolbox, or by adding MDG Technologies and UML Profiles to the Toolbox.


Enterprise Architect provides Toolbox pages for a wide range of MDG Technologies, such as Archimate, BPEL, BPMN, Data Flow Diagrams, ICONIX and Mind Mapping, as part of the initial install.

You can also change other features of the Toolbox appearance - see Toolbox Appearance Options.