Procedure: Creating global fields

To create a new field, point to New in the Explorer menu and choose Global Fields. The Field Definition window will appear.

  1. Name the field.

Enter the name of the field in the Field Definition window. This name will appear in a fields list when you create tables and windows.

The physical name is a shortened version (up to 24 characters) of the field name, and is used as the column name if the field is used in a SQL table.

Use caution when changing the name of a field. If the field name has already been used in scripts, they won’t compile properly until the field name is changed in them, as well.

  1. Choose the data type associated with the field.

Every field must have a data type associated with it. The data type indicates what kind of information the field will display or store. Any formatting applied to the data type also will be applied to the field. Select the data type from the Data Type list in the Field Definition window.

You can select a data type and click Open to open the Data Type Definition window and modify the selected data type.

  1. Select an array size.

The Array Size field allows you to enter the number of items to include in an array of the selected data type. The default value is 0, indicating the field will not be an array.

If there will be several fields that will have the same data type and contain similar information, it may be more convenient to use an array, rather than individual fields. For example, if an application keeps track of monthly sales for a year, an array of size 12 could be used instead of 12 separate fields.

You don't have to set the array size to 0 if the field won't be an array field; 0 will appear as the default automatically if the size is not set to another value.

  1. Select a lookup form (optional).

Use the Lookup Form lookup button to specify a lookup form for the field. A lookup form allows a user to easily enter information into the field. Lookups are described in detail in Lookups.

  1. Save the global field.

Click OK to save the global field. The Field Definition window will be closed. If you are creating a new field, you can click the Add button; the field will be saved, but the Field Definition window will remain open, allowing you to create another field.

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