RPTLIST Documentation Utility
Version 2.02
02 Nov 98

Readme file


I. What is it?

RptList is an Alpha Four version 6 application that will create a report showing a one line description of each database and set in a specified directory. Optionally, the description of each report, form, and browse table is shown with its database. This is the first utility I run when a new job requires that I modify an application written by someone else. It is also great documentation for your finished project. It is concise, but gives a good roadmap to what is being done where.

II. How do I use it?

To install, unzip the RPTLIST.zip file into the directory of your choice. The files do not need to be loaded in the same directory as your data. RptList must be run from Alpha Four v6. It can, however, document directories created by earlier versions of Alpha Four. I have only tested it with Alpha Four v4 data directories.

To begin, from the Alpha Four Main Menu, select the Applications option. From the Applications sub-menu, choose Run, navigate to the location of RptList, and select it. Use the first menu item, Select Directory, to select any file in the directory to be documented. The second menu item, Find Descriptions, will ask if you want the optional documentation for forms, reports, and/or browses, and then produce it. You can choose to view on screen, print, or send the output to a file. Pretty tough, hugh?

After you have generated a list of forms used by a database, you may want to use another Alpha Four freeware application, JH_Doc (written by Joe Holland, and modified by me), that will generate a "screen shot" of a form, and provide supporting information.

III. Important Issues

* Temporary File

RptList creates a temporary database, and some associated files, to store the data it collects. The name of this file is _RPTLIST.DBF. If this file already exists, it will be overwritten with the new file.

* Opening Files

RptList opens each database that it documents. It does not open reports, forms, or browses. No files are changed, but naturally, I can not be responsible for any problems you encounter. Until you are satisfied that RptList is working correctly, I would make a copy of the data directory before running the application.

* Beeps

As Rptlist is retreiving the descriptions, and building it's own database, the screen will show which database is currently being documented. If a database has a list of reports that scroll onto a second screen, you will hear a beep as the script looks for all report descriptions. Rptlist has not been tested with Form or Browse lists that take more than one page, but it should work.

* Files

Files included with this application are

Rptread.1st This file

Rptlist.app Application file

Rptlist.as4 Application file

Rptlist.scp Script library

* Screen Colors

Well, it's not too important. As RptList moves through the different databases, you may see the screen colors change. This will happen if the databases use different color pallettes. Actually, this is one way to tell if you have used a consistent color scheme for all your databases.

IV. Contacting the Author

Bill Parker is an Alpha Four / Five developer and user group leader in Dallas, TX. If you have questions, comments, or suggestions, you can reach me at the following address.

Bill Parker
Dallas Alpha User Group
ParTec Database Systems
(214) 369-5889

V. Legal Stuff

* License Agreement

RptList is FREEWARE. It may be freely distributed and used by individuals and corporations without charge. It may not, however, be sold or distributed for a price (other than user group diskette duplication and distribution fees.) It must be distributed as a whole, including this accompanying documentation. You are licensed to use this program only for the purpose of generating the documentation output.

* Disclaimer

This software is provided on an as-is basis. If you choose to use it, you do so at your own risk. Neither the author nor ParTec Database Systems offers any warranty or guarantee of any kind, nor do they (individually or together) accept any liability for any consequences of the use of this software, including, but not limited to data, form, and index loss or damage.