Procedure: Creating standard composites

Follow this checklist to create a standard composite data type and field.

  1. Create the data types for the components.

Determine the components of the composite and create data types for each different component. Data types used for components of a composite shouldn’t be used for other fields.

  1. Apply formats to the components (if necessary).

Create and apply a format to each component that requires special formatting.

  1. Create a field for each component of the composite.


  1. Create the composite’s data type.

Open the Data Type Definition window. Enter the name for the data type, select Composite from the Control Type list, then click the Composite lookup button; the Composite Lookup window will open. Click New to open the Composite Definition window.

  1. Create the new composite.

To create a new composite, name the composite, then highlight each component in the Fields list and click Insert to add it to the composite definition. The order of the components is significant; the first field in the Components list is the first component of the composite, the second field is the second component, and so on. No component can be used in more than one composite. When you are finished adding components, click OK.

  1. Apply a format to the composite.

Create and apply a format to the composite. A composite must have a format with a format string.

  1. Create the composite field.

Create a field using the composite data type.


This example shows a composite item number with two components.


The first part is a vendor code, which is alphabetic, while the second part is the actual part number, which is numeric, so a composite consisting of a string component and an integer component was used for this field. The string component was formatted as alphanumeric, while the integer component allows only numbers to be entered. The format string 1111-2222 was applied to the composite to add the dash between the two components.

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