About UDM

Ultimate Dropdown Menu Version 4 is unique among its contemporaries - there is no other menu system available on the internet today, which quite matches UDM's combination of accessibility, usability and feature-rich design.

Since Version 4's release in January 2004, some of our competitors have emulated our designs, while others have copied our accessibility features; but none have reproduced the whole package!

UDM was the world's first fully-featured and accessible DHTML menu, and remains the most flexible and robust solution on the market.

How can a DHTML menu be accessible?

Because UDM is not generated in pure javascript - it's made out of HTML lists, which means that every browser gets some form of useable navigation, all the way back to plain text.

And the styling can be plain CSS, so that for people using a supported browser but with javascript disabled, your navigation bar still looks the same!

Neither Flash nor Java can claim anything like that level of accessibility - the main navigation bar is accessible to all browsers that understand HTML - and unlike traditional DHTML navigation, it doesn't rely on javascript to exist.

Here's how it degrades:

Full functionality for supported browsers with javascript enabled. The majority of your site visitors will see the menus like this.
Partially-supported graphical browsers, and supported browsers with javascript disabled, can see the main navbar styled with CSS.
Core navigation through an unordered-list of links. Legacy and text-only browsers, most PDAs, search-engine robots, screenreaders and other access technologies will use the navigation like this.

Please see the accessibility tests page for more details.

It means that UDM is comparable to any leading website menu system - the fact that it's accessible doesn't imply any reduction in functionality or design-richness. Even if UDM were not accessible, it would still be among the most sophisticated menu systems around.

More specifically, we use the phrase "fully-featured" because UDM is not the only accessible menu in existence - other developers are using and offering accessible list-based menus.

But UDM was the first to be both accessible and meet the criteria by which you would judge a conventional DHTML menu:

  1. you can use it without having to know how it works;
  2. it has rich design capabilities, that allow complex styles to be generated easily, without you having to account for browser variations yourself;
  3. it has advanced usability features, such as synchronised open and close timers, self-repositioning menus, and intuitive keyboard navigation.

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Server-Side Frameworks

UDM is available in a range of server-side frameworks, that generate CSS and scripting on the server, and can bring the total filesize down to only 20K!

Diet-UDM also available

The menu script is also available in a lite or ultra-lite version, that can bring the total filesize down to only 24K.

Modules and extensions

A range of design and behavior extensions are available for UDM.

Popular extensions

"You are here"
Tells you where you are in the navigation tree.
Load XML
Use an XML document as your menu data source.
Scrolling Menus
Adds up/down scrolling behavior to overlong menus.

See all available extensions

We'll customise for you!

With our in-depth knowledge we can save you time and money in development.

Get a quote today!


We would like your feedback! Take the UDM4 Survey!

UDM 4 is valid XHTML, and in our judgement, meets the criteria for WAI Triple-A conformance.