User Interface Overview

UI Nomenclature

This section provides an overview of the LabOne User Interface, its main elements and naming conventions. The LabOne User Interface is a browser-based UI provided as the primary interface to the GHFLI instrument. Multiple browser sessions can access the instrument simultaneously and the user can have displays on multiple computer screens. Parallel to the UI, the instrument can be controlled and read out by custom programs written in any of the supported languages (e.g. LabVIEW, MATLAB, Python, C) connecting through the LabOne APIs.

functional whole UI overlay0
Figure 1. LabOne User Interface (default view)

The LabOne User Interface automatically opens some tabs by default after a new UI session has been started. At start-up, the UI is divided into two tab rows, each containing a tab structure that gives access to the different LabOne tools. Depending on display size and application, tab rows can be freely added and deleted with the control elements on the right-hand side of each tab bar. Similarly, the individual tabs can be deleted or added by selecting app icons from the side bar on the left. A click on an icon adds the corresponding tab to the display, alternatively the icon can be dragged and dropped into one of the tab rows. Moreover, tabs can be moved by drag-and-drop within a row or across rows.

Table 1 gives a brief descriptions and naming conventions for the most important UI items.

Table 1. LabOne User Interface features
Item name Position Description Contains

side bar

left-hand side of the UI

contains app icons for each of the available tabs - a click on an icon adds or activates the corresponding tab in the active tab row

app icons

status bar

bottom of the UI

contains important status and warning indicators, device and session information, and access to the command log

status indicators

main area

center of the UI

accommodates all active tabs – new rows can be added and removed by using the control elements in the top right corner of each tab row

tab rows, each consisting of tab bar and the active tab area

tab area

inside of each tab

provides the active part of each tab consisting of settings, controls and measurement tools

sections, plots, sub-tabs, unit selections

Further items are highlighted in Figure 2.

functional whole UI overlay1
Figure 2. LabOne User Interface (more items)

Unique Set of Analysis Tools

All instruments feature a comprehensive tool set for time and frequency domain analysis for both raw and demodulated signals.

The app icons on the left side of the UI can be roughly divided into two categories: settings and tools.

Settings-related tabs are in direct connection to the instrument hardware, allowing the user to control all the settings and instrument states.

Tools-related tabs place a focus on the display and analysis of gathered measurement data.

There is no strict distinction between settings and tools, e.g. the Sweeper will change certain demodulator settings while performing a frequency sweep. Within the tools one can often further discriminate between time domain and frequency domain analysis. Moreover, a distinction can be made between the analysis of fast input signals - typical sampling rate of 4 GSa/s - and the measurement of orders of magnitude slower data - typical sampling rate of ≤50 MSa/s - derived for instance from demodulator outputs and auxiliary inputs. Table 2 provides a brief classification of the tools.

Table 2. Tools for time domain and frequency domain analysis
Time Domain Frequency Domain

Fast signals (4 GSa/s)

Oscilloscope (Scope tab)

FFT Analyzer (Scope tab)

Slow signals (≤50 MSa/s)


Spectrum Analyzer (Spectrum tab)



Data Acquisition


The following table gives the overview of all app icons. Note that the selection of app icons may depend on the upgrade options installed on a given instrument.

Table 3. Overview of app icons and short description
Control/Tool Option/Range Description


btn mnu files um

Access settings and measurement data files on the host computer.


btn mnu inout um

Gives access to all controls relevant for the Signal Inputs and Signal Outputs of each channel.


btn mnu plotter um

Displays various continuously streamed measurement data as traces over time (roll mode).


btn mnu scope um

Displays shots of data samples in time and frequency domain (FFT) representation.


btn mnu daq um

Provides complex trigger functionality on all continuously streamed data samples and time domain display.


btn mnu sweep um

Sweep frequencies, voltages, and other quantities over a defined range and display various response functions including statistical operations.


btn mnu mainconfig um

Provides access to software configuration.


btn mnu device um

Provides instrument specific settings.

ZI Labs

btn mnu lab um

Experimental settings and controls.

Table 4 provides a quick overview over the different status bar elements along with a short description.

Table 4. Status bar description
Control/Tool Option/Range Description



Signal Input Overload - Red: present overload condition on the signal input also shown by the red front panel LED. Yellow: indicates an overload occurred in the past.



Overload Signal Output - Red: present overload condition on the signal output. Yellow: indicates an overload occurred in the past.

Command log

last command

Shows the last command. A different formatting (MATLAB, Python, ..) can be set in the config tab. The log is also saved in [User]\Documents\Zurich Instruments\LabOne\WebServer\Log

Show Log

btn uielements external

Show the command log history in a separate browser window.



Display system errors in separate browser tab.



Indicates the device serial number.

Identify Device

btn uielements identify um

When active, device LED blinks



Multiple device synchronization indicator. Grey: Nothing to synchronize - single device on the UI. Green: All devices on the UI are correctly synchronized. Yellow: MDS sync in progress or only a subset of the connected devices is synchronized. Red: Devices not synchronized or error during MDS sync.



A blinking red indicator shows ongoing data recording (related to global recording settings in the Config tab).



Clock Failure - Red: present malfunction of the external 10 MHz reference oscillator. Yellow: indicates a malfunction occurred in the past.



Packet Loss - Red: present loss of data between the device and the host PC. Yellow: indicates a loss occurred in the past.



Sample Loss - Red: present loss of sample data between the device and the host PC. Yellow: indicates a loss occurred in the past.


btn uielements C um

Reset status flags: Clear the current state of the status flags

Full Screen

btn uielements fullscreen um

Toggles the browser between full screen and normal mode.

Plot Functionality

Several tools provide a graphical display of measurement data in the form of plots. These are multi-functional tools with zooming, panning and cursor capability. This section introduces some of the highlights.

Plot Area Elements

Plots consist of the plot area, the X range and the range controls. The X range (above the plot area) indicates which section of the wave is displayed by means of the blue zoom region indicators. The two ranges show the full scale of the plot which does not change when the plot area displays a zoomed view. The two axes of the plot area instead do change when zoom is applied.

The mouse functionality inside of a plot greatly simplifies and speeds up data viewing and navigation.

Table 5. Mouse functionality inside plots
Name Action Description Performed inside


left click on any location and move around

moves the waveforms

plot area

Zoom X axis

mouse wheel

zooms in and out the X axis

plot area

Zoom Y axis

shift + mouse wheel

zooms in and out the Y axis

plot area

Window zoom

shift and left mouse area select

selects the area of the waveform to be zoomed in

plot area

Absolute jump of zoom area

left mouse click

moves the blue zoom range indicators

X and Y range, but outside of the blue zoom range indicators

Absolute move of zoom area

left mouse drag-and-drop

moves the blue zoom range indicators

X and Y range, inside of the blue range indicators

Full Scale

double click

set X and Y axis to full scale

plot area

Each plot area contains a legend that lists all the shown signals in the respective color. The legend can be moved to any desired position by means of drag-and-drop.

The X range and Y range plot controls are described in Table 6.

Plot data can be conveniently exported to other applications such as Excel or Matlab by using LabOne’s Net Link functionality, see LabOne Net Link for more information.

Table 6. Plot control description
Control/Tool Option/Range Description

Axis scaling mode

btn uielements scalingmode um

Selects between automatic, full scale and manual axis scaling.

Axis mapping mode

btn uielements axisscaling um

Select between linear, logarithmic and decibel axis mapping.

Axis zoom in

btn plt zoom in um

Zooms the respective axis in by a factor of 2.

Axis zoom out

btn plt zoom out um

Zooms the respective axis out by a factor of 2.

Rescale axis to data

btn plt zoom auto um

Rescale the foreground Y axis in the selected zoom area.

Save figure

btn plt save figure um

Generates PNG, JPG or SVG of the plot area or areas for dual plots to the local download folder.

Save data

btn plt save data um

Generates a CSV file consisting of the displayed wave or histogram data (when histogram math operation is enabled). Select full scale to save the complete wave. The save data function only saves one shot at a time (the last displayed wave).

Cursor control

btn plt cursors um

Cursors can be switch On/Off and set to be moved both independently or one bound to the other one.

Net Link

btn mnu netlink um

Provides a LabOne Net Link to use displayed wave data in tools like Excel, MATLAB, etc.

Cursors and Math

The plot area provides two X and two Y cursors which appear as dashed lines inside of the plot area. The four cursors are selected and moved by means of the blue handles individually by means of drag-and-drop. For each axis, there is a primary cursor indicating its absolute position and a secondary cursor indicating both absolute and relative position to the primary cursor.

Cursors have an absolute position which does not change upon pan or zoom events. In case a cursor position moves out of the plot area, the corresponding handle is displayed at the edge of the plot area. Unless the handle is moved, the cursor keeps the current position. This functionality is very effective to measure large deltas with high precision (as the absolute position of the other cursors does not move).

The cursor data can also be used to define the input data for the mathematical operations performed on plotted data. This functionality is available in the Math sub-tab of each tool. The Table 7 gives an overview of all the elements and their functionality. The chosen Signals and Operations are applied to the currently active trace only.

Cursor data can be conveniently exported to other applications such as Excel or MATLAB by using LabOne’s Net Link functionality, see LabOne Net Link for more information.

Table 7. Plot math description
Control/Tool Option/Range Description

Source Select

Select from a list of input sources for math operations.

Cursor Loc

Cursor coordinates as input data.

Cursor Area

Consider all data of the active trace inside the rectangle defined by the cursor positions as input for statistical functions (Min, Max, Avg, Std).


Display the value of the active trace at the position of the horizontal axis cursor X1 or X2.

Plot Area

Consider all data of the active trace currently displayed in the plot as input for statistical functions (Min, Max, Avg, Std).


Find positions and levels of up to 5 highest peaks in the data.


Find positions and levels of up to 5 lowest troughs in the data.


Display a histogram of the active trace data within the x-axis range. The histogram is used as input to statistical functions (Avg, Std). Because of binning, the statistical functions typically yield different results than those under the selection Plot Area.


Display a curve fitted to a resonance.

Linear Fit

Display a linear regression curve.

Operation Select

Select from a list of mathematical operations to be performed on the selected source. Choice offered depends on the selected source.

Cursor Loc: X1, X2, X2-X1, Y1, Y2, Y2-Y1, Y2 / Y1

Cursors positions, their difference and ratio.

Cursor Area: Min, Max, Avg, Std

Minimum, maximum value, average, and bias-corrected sample standard deviation for all samples between cursor X1 and X2. All values are shown in the plot as well.

Tracking: Y(X1), Y(X2), ratioY, deltaY

Trace value at cursor positions X1 and X2, the ratio between these two Y values and their difference.

Plot Area: Min, Max, Pk Pk, Avg, Std

Minimum, maximum value, difference between min and max, average, and bias-corrected sample standard deviation for all samples in the x axis range.

Peak: Pos, Level

Position and level of the peak, starting with the highest one. The values are also shown in the plot to identify the peak.

Histogram: Avg, Std, Bin Size, (Plotter tab only: SNR, Norm Fit, Rice Fit)

A histogram is generated from all samples within the x-axis range. The bin size is given by the resolution of the screen: 1 pixel = 1 bin. From this histogram, the average and bias-corrected sample standard deviation is calculated, essentially assuming all data points in a bin lie in the center of their respective bin. When used in the plotter tab with demodulator or boxcar signals, there additionally are the options of SNR estimation and fitting statistical distributions to the histogram (normal and rice distribution).

Resonance: Q, BW, Center, Amp, Phase, Fit Error

A curve is fitted to a resonator. The fit boundaries are determined by the two cursors X1 and X2. Depending on the type of trace (Demod R or Demod Phase) either a Lorentzian or an inverse tangent function is fitted to the trace. The Q is the quality factor of the fitted curve. BW is the 3dB bandwidth (FWHM) of the fitted curve. Center is the center frequency. Amp gives the amplitude (Demod R only), whereas Phase returns the phase at the center frequency of the resonance (demod Phase only). The fit error is given by the normalized root-mean-square deviation. It is normalized by the range of the measured data.

Linear Fit: Intercept, Slope, R²

A simple linear least squares regression is performed using a QR decomposition routine. The fit boundaries are determined by the two cursors X1 and X2. The parameter outputs are the Y-axis intercept, slope and the R²-value, which is the coefficient of determination to determine the goodness-of-fit.


btn uielements add um

Add the selected math function to the result table below.

Add All

btn uielements addalll um

Add all operations for the selected signal to the result table below.

Clear Selected

btn uielements clear um

Clear selected lines from the result table above.

Clear All

btn uielements clearall um

Clear all lines from the result table above.


btn uielements copy um

Copy selected row(s) to Clipboard as CSV

Unit Prefix

Adds a suitable prefix to the SI units to allow for better readability and increase of significant digits displayed.


btn uielements csv um

Values of the current result table are saved as a text file into the download folder.

Net Link

btn uielements link um

Provides a LabOne Net Link to use the data in tools like Excel, MATLAB, etc.


btn uielements help um

Opens the LabOne User Interface help.

The standard deviation is calculated using the formula \(\sqrt \frac{1}{N-1}\sum_{i=1}^{N}(x_i-\bar{x})^2\) for the unbiased estimator of the sample standard deviation with a total of N samples \(x_i\) and an arithmetic average \(\bar{x}\). The formula above is used as-is to calculate the standard deviation for the Histogram Plot Math tool. For large number of points (Cursor Area and Plot Area tools), the more accurate pairwise algorithm is used (Chan et al., "Algorithms for Computing the Sample Variance: Analysis and Recommendations", The American Statistician 37 (1983), 242-247).

The fitting functions used in the Resonance Plot Math tool depend on the selected signal source. The demodulator R signal is fitted with the following function:

\[\begin{equation}\tag{1} R(f)=C+A\frac{f}{\sqrt{f^2+\left(\frac{Q}{f_0}\right)^2\left(f^2-f^2_0\right)^2}}\end{equation}\]

where \(C\) accounts for a possible offset in the output, \(A\) is the amplitude, \(Q\) is the quality factor and \(f_0\) is the center frequency. The demodulator \(\phi\) signal s fitted with the following function:

\[\begin{equation}\tag{2} \phi(f)=tan^{-1}\left(Q\frac{1-\left(\frac{f}{f_0}\right)^2}{\frac{f}{f_0}}\right) \end{equation}\]

using the same parameters as above.

Tree Selector

The Tree selector allows one to access streamed measurement data in a hierarchical structure by checking the boxes of the signals that should be displayed. The tree selector also supports data selection from multiple instruments, where available. Depending on the tool, the Tree selector is either displayed in a separate Tree sub-tab, or it is accessible by a click on the btn uielements tree um button.

functional tree selector
Figure 3. Tree selector with Display drop-down menu

Vertical Axis Groups

Vertical Axis groups are available as part of the plot functionality in many of the LabOne tools. Their purpose is to handle signals with different axis properties within the same plot. Signals with different units naturally have independent vertical scales even if they are displayed in the same plot. However, signals with the same unit should preferably share one scaling to enable quantitative comparison. To this end, the signals are assigned to specific axis group. Each axis group has its own axis system. This default behavior can be changed by moving one or more signals into a new group.

functional vertical axis groups
Figure 4. Vertical Axis Group in Plotter tool

The tick labels of only one axis group can be shown at once. This is the foreground axis group. To define the foreground group click on one of the group names in the Vertical Axis Groups box. The current foreground group gets a high contrast color.

Select foreground group

Click on a signal name or group name inside the Vertical Axis Groups. If a group is empty the selection is not performed.

Split the default vertical axis group

Use drag-and-drop to move one signal on the field [Drop signal here to add a new group]. This signal will now have its own axis system.

Change vertical axis group of a signal

Use drag-and-drop to move a signal from one group into another group that has the same unit.

Group separation

In case a group hosts multiple signals and the unit of some of these signals changes, the group will be split in several groups according to the different new units.

Remove a signal from the group

In order to remove a signal from a group drag-and-drop the signal to a place outside of the Vertical Axis Groups box.

Remove a vertical axis group

A group is removed as soon as the last signal of a custom group is removed. Default groups will remain active until they are explicitly removed by drag-and-drop. If a new signal is added that match the group properties it will be added again to this default group. This ensures that settings of default groups are not lost, unless explicitly removed.

Rename a vertical axis group

New groups get a default name "Group of …​". This name can be changed by double-clicking on the group name.

Hide/show a signal

Uncheck/check the check box of the signal. This is faster than fetching a signal from a tree again.

functional axis drag and drop
Figure 5. Vertical Axis Group typical drag and drop moves.
Table 8. Vertical Axis Groups description
Control/Tool Option/Range Description

Vertical Axis Group

Manages signal groups sharing a common vertical axis. Show or hide signals by changing the check box state. Split a group by dropping signals to the field [Drop signal here to add new group]. Remove signals by dragging them on a free area.

Rename group names by editing the group label. Axis tick labels of the selected group are shown in the plot. Cursor elements of the active wave (selected) are added in the cursor math tab.

Signal Type

Select signal types for the Vertical Axis Group.


integer value

Selects a channel to be added.


integer value

Selects signal to be added.

Add Signal

btn uielements addsignal um

Adds a signal to the plot. The signal will be added to its default group. It may be moved by drag and drop to its own group. All signals within a group share a common y-axis. Select a group to bring its axis to the foreground and display its labels.

Window Length

2 s to 12 h

Window memory depth. Values larger than 10 s may cause excessive memory consumption for signals with high sampling rates. Auto scale or pan causes a refresh of the display for which only data within the defined window length are considered.


The Trends tool lets the user monitor the temporal evolution of signal features such as minimum and maximum values, or mean and standard deviation. This feature is available for the Scope , Spectrum, Plotter, and DAQ tab. Using the Trends feature, one can monitor all the parameters obtained in the Math sub-tab of the corresponding tab.

The Trends tool allows the user to analyze recorded data on a different and adjustable time scale much longer than the fast acquisition of measured signals. It saves time by avoiding post-processing of recorded signals and it facilitates fine-tuning of experimental parameters as it extracts and shows the measurement outcome in real time.

To activate the Trends plot, enable the Trends button in the Control sub-tab of the corresponding main tab. Various signal features can be added to the plot from the Trends sub-tab in the Vertical Axis Groups . The vertical axis group of Trends has its own Run/Stop button and Length setting independent from the main plot of the tab. Since the Math quantities are derived from the raw signals in the main plot, the Trends plot is only shown together with the main plot. The Trends feature is only available in the LabOne user interface and not at the API level.