Category : Dbase (Clipper, FoxBase, etc) Languages Source Code
Archive   : FRM2PR23.ZIP
Filename : FRM2PRG2.DOC

Output of file : FRM2PRG2.DOC contained in archive : FRM2PR23.ZIP

FRM2PRG Version 2 Documentation

I. Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
A. What It Is . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
B. What Good Is It? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
C. Usage . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
1. Command-line Switches . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
2. Examples . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
II. Limitations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
III. History . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
IV. Registration And Sundry Commercials . . . . . . . . . . 5
V. Order Form . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6

FRM2PRG Version 2 Documentation

I. Overview

A. What It Is

This program attempts to convert a dBASE FRM file to a PRG (procedure) file. If
you don't know what one or both of those are, stop now. This program is not
for you.

If you're masochistic enough to use dBASE IV at this point, FRM2PRG is also not
for you. Modify the templates for dBASE IV instead, if you have a coupla spare
months [grin].

B. What Good Is It?

I often prototype reports using MODIFY REPORT, then when the thing gets OK'd or
whatnot I write a custom PRG to do the report, adding some enhancements.
FRM2PRG enables me to generate a PRG file directly from the FRM file, and then
make any modifications.

FRM2PRG should make life easier when converting someone else's app.

...and, of course, those of you who actually *use* FRM files with compiled apps
can now compile them right into the EXE files as PRGs. This may cut down on
EXE size (or then again, it may not).

C. Usage

At the DOS prompt: FRM2PRG {switches} filename{.frm}

Expressions in curly braces are optional.

Output is written to the console by default, but can be also sent to a file
(see below). The output file contains several procedures, one of which is
called "xxx_main" ("xxx" defaults to the first three letters of the FRM
filename unless specified--see "switches" below). As FRM files do not contain
the name of the database file(s) used, there are some places left to fill it
(them) in. After setting up your DBFs and relationships, etc., you can:


... or you can fill in the SELECTs and USEs within file generated by FRM2PRG.
Of course you can also insert SET RELATION, SET FILTER, complicated formulae,
and so on.

-- page 1 --

FRM2PRG Version 2 Documentation

2. Command-line Switches

Switches must be preceded by "/" or "-". They can be in either upper or lower
case. Most switches require a parameter to follow them immediately. Switches
supported by version 2 are ("*" to right means new in version 2):

O (o) -- output file name (defaults to console); *
T (t) -- "Tab" width -- number of spaces for indents (default: 4); *
(use just /t for physical tabs, /t0 for no indents at all)
P (p) -- three letter Prefix for procedure names (default: "any");
S (s) -- Screen output *
A (a) -- plAin page *
U (U) -- sUmmary report only *
L (l) -- Loop condition (default: ".NOT. EOF()");
I (i) -- Initial command after opening databases (default: "GO TOP");
E (e) -- Ending command (default: "*CLOSE DATA").

The latter three switches may often encompass more than one "word", if so, it
gets a little trickier--you enclose the switch, the preceding "-" or "/", and
the parameter in double quotes, i.e., "/iGO thisrec". In the case of the
"Initial command" and "Ending command", you can override them entirely by
using /i or /c with no parameter.

3. Examples

FRM2PRG /T5 /pCUS "-iSET FILTER TO x=y" "/L&scope" myreport

FRM2PRG attempts to read myreport.frm and send output to the screen.
Indentation is in multiples of 5, procedure names start with "CUS_", the
initial command after opening databases is "SET FILTER TO x=y", and the
terminating condition is "&scope" (main loop will say "DO WHILE &scope").

FRM2PRG "-iON ESCA DO prntrupt" "/EDO endrep" -OMONTHEND.PRG monthend

FRM2PRG reads MONTHEND.FRM and creates MONTHEND.PRG. Procedure names start with
the default prefix (first three letters of the FRM filename), indents are in
multiples of 4 (unless you override), initial and ending commands are "ON ESCA
DO prntrupt" and "DO endrep".

FRM2PRG /T testform -S -U -A -Otestproc.prg

FRM2PRG reads TESTFORM.FRM, overrides the plAin page and sUmmary settings, and
makes a procedure file to write the report to the screen (TESTPROC.PRG). Note
that if TESTPROC.PRG exists it will be overwritten without bothering to back it
up [grin]. Also, if the FRM output is 80 or more characters wide the program
will bomb.

-- page 2 --

FRM2PRG Version 2 Documentation

II. Limitations

FRM2PRG should convert most dBASE III Plus FRM files. Multiple-row headings
should come out fine. Multiple-row fields or expressions should also work, up
to 4 deep. FRM2PRG will have a problem, however, if you stack fields and put a
space between "'" and "+":


The biggest limitation of this program is that it attempts to emulate REPORT
FORM exactly in most ways. As there are a lot of options such as "plain page",
"summary only", etc. that can produce varied output, FRM2PRG still may need
some testing to see if it does, indeed, emulate REPORT FORM properly. However,
thanks to Dale Geffs, J. O'Loughlin, Martin Schiff, Randy Wallin, and others
whose names I have misplaced [grin], this version should be pretty clean. All
known bugs should be fixed.

Differences in output between the PRG and the FRM:

o Subtotals are printed on the same page. I just can't stand to do it
otherwise, even though dBASE often doesn't. You may have to adjust the
variable "max_lines" downward to avoid page overflow.

o Since dBASE III Plus FRMs do not store the type of each expression, the only
way I can figure out to right-justify numeric data is to check the fields
which specify "number of decimals" and "total." This means nontotalling
numeric fields with 0 decimals (and their headers) may display out of
alignment unless you add a PICTURE clause yourself.

o Screen output: FRM2PRG generates "write-to-screen" code
because people asked for it, but FRMs don't do a very good job
of screen reporting in general. FRM2PRG attempts to enhance
the FRM screen output a bit by (1) clearing the screen between
pages, and (2) pausing at each full screen. Furthermore, IF
WILL GET SCREWED UP ROYALLY. (This means only use reports
with a width that will fit entirely on the screen.)

III. History

First Beta release (0.2): 8/5/87
Second Beta release (0.4): 8/7/87
Third Beta release (0.6): 8/15/87
Fourth Beta release (0.6a): 8/26/87
First "real" release (1.0): 10/15/87
Release 2.0: 4/2/89
Release 2.1 : 5/23/89

-- page 3 --

FRM2PRG Version 2 Documentation

Version 0.4:

o USEs and SELECTs now moved to *before* control-break "holds" initialized.
o A misunderstanding of how C "break" works caused @...SAYs in PROC PRINLOOP
to only show fields up to the first totalled field. Fixed (I hope).
o added PICTURE clauses to right-justify numerics (with limitations, see
above). o changed initializations of headers to use [] instead of "" so
embedded quotes would not screw things up.
o put in an IIF() for indentation of "** Subtotal **" and the like, the
better to emulate FRM stuff.

Version 0.6:

o fixed subscript problem (?) that was causing garbage in output (sometimes) o
optimized output code slightly, eliminated major_tots logical field, etc. o
added options for procedure prefixes, tabs, loop condition, initial command,
ending command.
o sent help and error messages to stderr, and beefed 'em up.

Version 0.6a:

o changed names of subtots & tots to numerics instead of using the whole field
expression, which was pretty stupid [grin]--alias names and complex
expressions came out pretty weird. o fixed totals and subtotals so they
print on the same line.
o fixed so grand totals would not print on a separate page.
o fixed margin in minor total routine.
o changed the date format so it now prints to the right with the time under
it. This is the first real departure from deBASE's FRM output, I could make
it optional but this is the way I like it.

Version 1.0:

o fixed (I hope) problem with blank column headers not being filled--in other
words, if column a didn't have a second line of heading, column b's
heading heading ended up in column a.
o Right-justified numeric columns' headings.
o Changed default prefix for procedures to first 3 letters of FRM filename.
o found out what "plain page" really means (grin).
o changed total-variable names to be a little more readable, other trivial
cosmetics in output and program.

Version 2.0:

o fixed situation where major and minor holds only got reset if there were
total fields, and multiple times if there were multiple total fields.
o fixed silly reassignment of fields[i] (not good practice [grin]) which
caused ugly gibberish in PRG file.
o straightened out other ugly crap like char *anythang=" " instead of char
anythang[]=" " (gee, he can almost code C these days).
o added bell to error routine.
o added -O (output filename) option.
o fixed summary reports.
o added plAin page and sUmmary command line options.
o fixed reiterative major group print (caused bolding? [grin]).
o eliminated need to use last parameter for FRM filename.
o added -S "output to screen" option.
o changed time display to show twelve-hour AM/PM format.
o enhanced "tab" option to make physical tabs if desired.

-- page 4 --

FRM2PRG Version 2 Documentation

Version 2.1:

o fixed double-spacing of detail lines
o fixed lack of headings, line ct. reset on some pages in certain
o commented out the "CLOSE DATA" default ending line

Version 2.2:

o fixed dumb problem: when /p (prefix override) was specified before
the FRM name on the command line, it was effectively ignored

Version 2.3:

o Fixed NASTY bug where extremely wide reports could cause memory to
hosed nicely [grin]. Hopefully re-fixed stuff from 2.2 (lost the latest
source when my hard disk crashed).

-- page 5 --

FRM2PRG Version 2 Documentation

IV. Registration And Sundry Commercials

Commercial time:

FRM2PRG was developed using information and techniques from the book: dBASE
POWER: Creating and Using Programming Tools, published by Ashton-Tate (I'm a
co-author, along with Pete Olympia and Randy Wallin). Peter was nice enough to
lay out the report form structure in terms even my primitive mentality could

This may be the last version of FRM2PRG. Then again, it may not [grin]. The
long range plan is to produce a complete report generator to accompany
SCRIMAGE, my screen/menu design tool. Registered users of FRM2PRG will
probably get a discount on the next thing, whatever it may be, if it actually
happens. Pretty reassuring, huh? Actually, suggestions are welcome at this
point and now that SCRIMAGE IS SHIPPING! I'll be devoting more and more time to
the report generator project.

I never asked for any money for FRM2PRG in versions before 2.0. However, I
have received an enormous number of phone calls, which ends up costing me mucho
money. I also took a lot more time with this version. What all this is
leading up to is a request for bucks, natch. I am asking $40 for the program
and access to my BBS. The BBS is no big deal but I provide support there and I
also try to occasionally post some interesting programs. And it all costs me
$$$, folks [grin].

If you feel like spending more, I have a bunch of miscellaneous BIN routines
for dBASE and whatnot that I call the Synergy Utilities. To subscribe to the
Synergy Utilities and the BBS (big deal), send $75. (Send $115 for the utils
and FRM2PRG.)

What? You don't need BIN routines, but you could use a utility to make input
and display screens and menus? Send $99 for SCRIMAGE, the premiere screen and
menu design tool for dBASE programmers. (SCRIMAGE is *not* shareware, but a
"demo" version is available that is fully functional except that it cannot save
some file types for later retrieval and modification). SCRIMAGE comes complete
with a printed manual, demo screen and menu designs, extra utilities for
"popping" screens from various environments, and A SIXTY DAY MONEY-BACK

If you are one of those well-intentioned people like me who tend to never get
around to sending the check in, rest easy. You are hereby granted permission
to use this program forever with no royalty. You are not, however, allowed to
sell the program or to include it with something you charge for without my
permission. Please DO NOT call for support if you are not registered!

...enclose $5 extra for shipping and handling if you want a disk mailed to you
with the latest version(s), or if you are ordering SCRIMAGE. (Most of the
utils are very small, as they are written largely in assembly language and C,
so download time is minimal.)

Good luck with FRM2PRG, I hope you enjoy it.

R. Russell Freeland
Compuserve 76146,371
-- page 6 --


I'm a quick-and-dirty deBASE programmer and I'm not ashamed to admit it! I wish
to register/order the following software from Synergy Corp.:

(check all that apply)

__ FRM2PRG2: translates dBASE FRM files to semi-lucid PRG form.

(shareware, $40, no printed manual)

__ Synergy Utilities: miscellaneous BIN routines and OBJ files to add
functionality to dBASE language environments.

(shareware, $75, no printed manual)

__ SCRIMAGE, the premiere screen and menu design tool.

(not shareware, $99, printed manual, demo screen designs, extra utilities
included for "popping" full/partial screens from dBASE, Clipper, DOS, and
other environments Real Soon Now)

__ $5 shipping and handling for shipping handling (if you are registering
shareware and don't need a disk, don't bother, otherwise mandatory).

Total amount enclosed: $_______

Where to send all the big bucks:
R. Russell Freeland
Synergy Corp.
1780 SW 43 Ave.
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33317

I understand that subscription to any or all of this software includes
subscription to the Synergy BBS. SCRIMAGE also has a 30-day money back
guarantee (you have to say why you can't use it [grin]).

Name: ____________________________________________

Phone: (work) ________________(home)_______________

Address: __________________________________________

City: _____________________________________________

State: _____________________ Zip: ________________

Compuserve number: ________________________________

Comments/suggestions: _____________________________________________________



  3 Responses to “Category : Dbase (Clipper, FoxBase, etc) Languages Source Code
Archive   : FRM2PR23.ZIP
Filename : FRM2PRG2.DOC

  1. Very nice! Thank you for this wonderful archive. I wonder why I found it only now. Long live the BBS file archives!

  2. This is so awesome! 😀 I’d be cool if you could download an entire archive of this at once, though.

  3. But one thing that puzzles me is the “mtswslnkmcjklsdlsbdmMICROSOFT” string. There is an article about it here. It is definitely worth a read: