Dialog boxes should be used sparingly because they interrupt user workflow. Instead, provide information in line with a specific item where possible. For example, if a user doesn't complete a required field in a form, your application should identify the incomplete field instead of displaying a dialog box that describes the error.
You can use the same approach with progress information. For example, when a user downloads an application, your application can display the progress information in the current context. This approach allows users to complete other tasks while the action is in progress.
- Use dialog boxes sparingly. Restrict dialog boxes to the following situations:
- To inform users of urgent information or the status of important actions
- To warn users of unexpected conditions or situations where there is the possibility of data loss
- To present users with multiple options for choice or disambiguation
- When a user action is required for your application to proceed
- Use an implicit save model where possible. For example, when setting options, apply each setting as the user changes it. Some exceptions exist. For example, if a user chooses to close a document that is being edited, you can use a dialog box to prompt the user to save changes.