Options - General

Index of General Options


Audible BEEP on Errors ?

Visual BEEP on Errors ?

Only 1 SPFLite running ?

Re-Open last file(s) at Start ?

Delete to Recycle Bin ?

Warn on modified Browse file ?

Use DIR name as PROFILE when no File extension ?

Use WORD as the default for FIND/CHANGE commands ?

Allow 2-D mouse selection without Shift/Ctrl/Alt ?

Only English letters A-Z and a-z are considered alphabetic

Default RESET will Revert User Line Status

Min. length for Retrieve ?

Command Separator Char.

Check for SPFLite update interval

Use fast renum if # lines > this

Default # cols for Data Shift (Min 1)

Notify tabs on external file change

Line Cmds Repeat Limit

Normal characters for P'.' Picture Literals

Cancel and Done Buttons



Audible BEEP on Errors ?


If this box is checked, SPFLite will make a sound when an error message is displayed or if a key is pressed in a non-typing area.  If this box is not checked, then no sound will occur.  The specific sound produced is controlled by the Windows program event called Asterisk.  To change the sound, go to Control Panel, Sounds and Audio Devices Properties, click on the Sounds tab, and click on the Windows/Asterisk program event.  From the Sounds dropdown or the Browse button, select a sound you wish to use.


Visual BEEP on Errors ?


If Audible BEEP is turned off when the sound might be disturbing, it may still be helpful to have some indication when an error occurs.  (This is especially true if a user were hearing-impaired and could not hear the Audible Beep.)  If this option is chosen, SPFLite will flash the word Command in the upper left corner of the screen when an error occurs. It is allowable to have both options selected to receive both an audible and visual indication of an error.


Only 1 SPFLite running ?


If this box is checked, multiple executions (separate instances) of SPFLite will be prevented.  If you attempt to open a file in a second SPFLite, it will detect the existing one running and cause your file to be opened as a new tab within the existing SPFLite execution.  Once that is done, the second SPFLite will go away (actually, you will never even see it).  Even when this option is set, a new SPFLite instance can still be opened by issuing an OPEN primary command from the existing SPFLite.


Re-Open last file(s) at Start ?


If this box is checked, and if SPFLite is started without a filename as a command-line operand, it will automatically reopen the last set of files that were being edited or browsed when SPFLite was last exited.  


The prior set of open files is only remembered if SPFLite is exited using the Title Bar X button, or an EXIT or =X command.   If all file tabs are closed one at a time with an END command or a right mouse click, SPFLite will restart without opening any prior files.  Files must be actively open at the time of exit to be reopened later.


Delete to Recycle Bin ?


Files can be deleted by using the Delete line command D in File Manager, or by a CANCEL DELETE primary command. If this box is checked, deleted files are sent to the Recycle Bin.  If this box is unchecked, deleted files will be "purged" (deleted without recourse) bypassing the Recycle Bin.  


Even when the Recycle option is checked, recycling of files can be skipped and files permanently deleted with the Purge line command U and the CANCEL PURGE command, if desired.



Warn on modified View file ?


View allows you to modify the file as you like, but it prevents accidental saving of the modified data back to the file.   However, sometimes it is easy to forget you are in View (because the two kinds of screens look so similar) and you might continue working, imagining that you were in Edit.  If you then hit END, expecting the file to be auto-saved as Edit would do, you may be unpleasantly surprised to find all your changes are discarded.    If this checkbox is enabled, an END command issued for a modified Browse tab will trigger a prompt to remind you that your changes will be lost.   To avoid that, you can choose to terminate the END processing and return to Browse, where you can use the CREATE or REPLACE commands to save your data.


In addition, when you are in View mode and have modified the file, the Word 'View' in the left-hand status bar box will be displayed as View to remind you of the modified state.


Use DIR name as PROFILE when no File extension ?


If this is unchecked, then SPFLite will use the DEFAULT profile for files of this type.


If this option is checked, then the parent directory where the file resides will be used as the profile name.  This can be useful when files are stored in directories that match a mainframe-like dataset naming convention.


See What about files with no extension ? in Working with File Profiles for more information.


Use WORD as the default for FIND/CHANGE commands ?


The FIND and CHANGE commands accept an optional "search context" parameter of CHARS, WORD, PREFIX or SUFFIX.  In ISPF, if none of these keywords are present, CHARS is assumed by default.  In SPFLite, the default can be either CHARS or WORD.  To use WORD as the default search context, enable this checkbox.  It is not presently possible to set a default of PREFIX or SUFFIX, since these choices are not as useful.  


See Finding and Changing Data for more information.


Allow 2-D mouse selection without Shift/Ctrl/Alt ?


Experience has shown that it is easy (sometimes, too easy) to inadvertently select more than one line of text when you didn't intend to, unless you are very steady and careful with the mouse.  If you mostly select text from single lines at a time, you may find it more productive to not check this box.  In this mode, as a safeguard against doing this by mistake, you must hold down one of the Shift, Ctrl or Alt keys to perform multi-line selection.


However,if you often select multiple lines of text with the mouse, you may wish to check this box. It will allow text selection of more than one line of text (a "2D" text selection) without being required to hold down an extra key.


Only English letters A-Z and a-z are considered alphabetic


The WORD setting for a file's Profile allows you to customize what characters you wish to be considered as valid WORD characters.  This checkbox here can simplify the handling of ANSI standard international characters.  


If this option is disabled (OFF), then when processing the WORD control string and A-Z is specified, all international uppercase characters will be automatically added; if a-z is specified, all lowercase international characters will be added.  This is much simpler than having to individually type in all these characters, which are not defined in simple adjacent ANSI sequences.


Disabling this option will also cause the international characters to be added to the character string below, entitled Normal characters for P'.' Picture Literals, if that string has never been customized by you to include other special characters.  See the discussion below for additional information.  If you erase the "normal characters" list, then alter this checkbox, the normal-characters list will get re-initialized to a value that agrees with how you have set the "only English" option.


If you don't use international characters in your data, but only English letters A-Z and a-z, you should enable this option.  That will cause any international characters to be treated as "special" characters, rather than "alphabetic".  It also means that FIND and CHANGE commands will find these characters with a picture code of P'$', but they will not find them with picture codes of P'@', P'<' or P'>'.  


In addition, the "only English" option will restrict commands such as UC, LC, SC, TC and SORT to only consider English letters A-Z and a-z when changing the case of characters or performing sorting and comparison operations on your data.


Note: In SPFLite prior to version 8.4, this option was previously called "Include international characters for WORD/alphabetic pictures".  To either act upon, or ignore, international characters, this checkbox must have the opposite setting from what it used to have.  The SPFLite installation program will take care of this, but you should verify that the current setting meets your needs.


Our present implementation is more consistent, so that both Picture handling, and the handling of commands like UC and SORT, either will or will not be restricted to English-only characters, based on how you set this option.


You may wish to enable this option if the presence of international characters might represent corrupted data rather than valid non-English letters.  You may also wish to do this if you are using a font in which positions typically occupied by international characters contain other, non-alphabetic graphics.


When you alter this checkbox, it takes effect immediately.


Default RESET will Revert User Line Status


When the RESET command is issued without any specific operands, it resets a default set of 'normal' items.  If this option is selected, then the status of all User lines will be reset as part of that default set, similarly to how all Excluded lines are reset by default.  If this option is left unchecked, the status of any User lines is left unchanged.



Min. length for Retrieve ?


SPFLite saves command line entries for subsequent retrieval via the RETRIEVE command. The minimum-length value specifies the minimum length of a command before it will be saved for retrieval. This prevents filling the retrieve stack with unimportant entries which are simpler to just re-enter. If you want commands of any length to be saved, set the minimum length value to 1.  


Note that retrievable commands are saved between SPFLite sessions.  A maximum of 50 commands can be stored in the RETRIEVE stack.


Command Separator Char.


Multiple commands may be entered in a single SPFLite command line. This option specifies the delimiter character to be used to separate each command. The default command separator is the ; semicolon character, the same as in ISPF.  


You cannot use a blank as the separator, nor attempt to delete the separator to make it a zero-length string, nor can you attempt to paste a hex value of X'00' into this field.  You must define some character as the command separator, even if you don't plan to enter multiple commands on the command line.


Note that SPFLite's command separator works somewhat differently than in IBM ISPF




Most users will probably find the SPFLite approach works better for them than how IBM ISPF does it.


If you find the default command separator semicolon is an issue for you, you can set the separator to some seldom-used character.  You would do the same if you didn't really want to define a command separator at all, but have to pick something because the rule above.  You can use the ANSI popup in the KEYMAP to select some rarely used character that is convenient for you.


As a suggestion, the broken vertical bar ¦ character is a perfectly good ANSI character (hex value A6) but is not a "standard ASCII" value (one that is less than hex 7F).  You could map this character to (say) the Ctrl backslash key, and that would make a nice separator character that you're not likely to see or use in your own data.  The mapping string for this would look like [¦] in KEYMAP.  You can use the Show Character Map button to get the ANSI popup;  just click on the ¦ character and then paste it into the mapping string (normally by using the Ctrl-V key, unless you have mapped the (Paste) function to something else).  Be sure to add the [ and ] before and after the ¦ character, of course.


Bear in mind that the Options screens are Windows dialog GUI displays, and if you have mapped some special character using KEYMAP, you can't use it in a Windows dialog, but only within SPFLite itself.  If you have a special keyboard layout that Windows knows about, either a foreign layout, or a custom one created by the Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator or KbdEdit, you can directly use those keys anywhere, and do not need to map them in SPFLite unless you wish to override them for SPFLite-specific functions.  (An Internet search will find more information regarding the Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator and KbdEdit.)


So, it you have some non-ASCII special character (higher than X'7F') you'd like to use, you can always enter your mapped key on an SPFLite command or data line, as described above.  But, to actually set the Command Separator, you have to do it in a way that Windows understands.  The easiest way to do this is to bring up the SPFLite ANSI display, and left-click on the character you want to use.

Then, in the Options GUI where you need to set this, go to the Command Separator Char field, delete the current contents, and press Ctrl-V to enter the special character.  Note that when you are in a Windows dialog or GUI, Windows controls how the keyboard is interpreted, and so within such a dialog or GUI, Ctrl-V always means Paste, no matter what you mapped this key to in SPFLite.

Check for SPFLite update interval


This setting controls whether, and how often, you wish to allow SPFLite to check the SPFLite web site to see if a newer SPFLite update version exists.  You may choose:



Next to this setting is a button Check now, which will perform an immediate update check when clicked.


Use fast renum if # lines > this


When an edit session is loaded with a large file, it can create a noticeable delay when inserting/deleting lines or doing Exclude/UnExclude operations.  This is because SPFLite has always 'numbered' the lines with their actual physical location within the file.  This means constant renumbering is required to adjust these numbers.   On large files, this can create noticeable delays.


SPFLite can now alternatively use a method like the original ISPF where lines are not numbered consecutively and during Insert/Delete operations only lines within the 'neighborhood' of the affected lines are renumbered to accommodate the change.


All functions using line numbers are unaffected, however some users are not comfortable with these 'odd' line numbers.  Everything is still in strict numerical order, just not numbered with a single incremental value.


This Options setting allows you to specify a value for what will be considered a large file, and thus which files will be numbered using this new 'fast' renum option.


If you are not bothered by this new line numbering, set this value to 0 and all files will use the new numbering.  Or, set it to 999999 and all files will continue to use the old renumbering (assuming you have no 1,000,000+ line files).  Or set it to any value in between based on your own delay experiences on your system.


Default # cols for Data Shift (Min 1)


This setting specifies the default number of columns to be shifted when using one of the line shift commands { (( )),  << >>, or [[ ]] } and no specific number of columns is specified on the command itself.  IBM ISPF does not allow this default to be set by the user, but enforces a fixed default of 2 columns.  In SPFLite, you can make the default number of columns any positive value you wish.


Notify tabs on external file change


SPFLite can be directed to inform you when a file you are working on in an Edit or Browse session has been modified by some process outside of SPFLite itself.  You have control over what conditions under which you will receive a notification.


The permanent file notification level is defined here in the General tab of the Global Options dialog, and is either ALL, NONE or EDIT.


The NOTIFY command is used to set the temporary notification level for files opened in SPFLite that are modified by an external process.  The setting you choose on NOTIFY only lasts until the next NOTIFY command, or until SPFLite is terminated.


See Handling External File Changes for more information.


Line Cmds repeat limit


Occasionally, as you enter line commands, you may inadvertently end up with a line command entered which still has some remaining digits of the line number itself.  This could result in a wildly incorrect 'repeat factor'.  To prevent this, you may specify a number here which will 'cap' the repeat factor.   Simply enter here the largest number you would probably ever enter as a repeat factor.   Any command entered which exceeds this value will be rejected.


Normal characters for P'.' Picture Literals


The characters in this text box define what are "displayable" characters when using the Picture character '.' (dot).  


Note that the dot Picture is used to locate characters which are considered "non-displayable" on the screen.  That is, a Find Picture of '.' dot will find characters that are not in the list of 'Normal' characters you see here.  Be careful not to get this confused.  


The default list contains the basic ASCII character set, and if you have chosen the Include International characters for WORD/Alphabetic Pictures option, the normal ASCII international characters.


You can alter this as needed to incorporate additional characters based on your local requirements, so they will not be considered "non-displayable". Simply add or remove characters as needed.  


Note: If you alter the Include International characters for WORD/Alphabetic Pictures option, this field will automatically be adjusted for the presence/absence of those characters if you have not customized the field previously.  If you have customized the field, other than via the previous option, then this field is not altered so as to not lose your customization.


Note: If you completely erase the Normal Characters field and close the Options dialog, SPFLite will repopulate the Normal Characters string with all valid displayable characters.  When it does this, if the International Characters checkbox is enabled as of that time, the repopulated string will contain international letters; if the checkbox is not enabled, the  repopulated string will not contain international letters.


Displayable vs. non-displayable characters were more of an issue for the 3270-based mainframe ISPF editor, because characters that really are undisplayable on a 3270 can lock up the screen.  SPFLite doesn't have this problem.  Very few hex values are undisplayable on a PC, depending on the font used, and no character value will lock up the PC screen.  For instance, if you use one of the supplied RASTER fonts, almost every hex value is displayable.


In terms of what you might do with a Find Picture of P'.' in SPFLite, it's more likely that what you are looking for is, not "undisplayable" characters, but "unusual" ones.  What makes a character "unusual" ?  That's for you to decide, which is why you can configure it here.  Just remember that the "undisplayable" or "unusual" characters are the ones not in this list.


Cancel and Done Buttons


One of the CANCEL or DONE buttons at the bottom of the dialog box should be selected when you have completed your changes.  The Cancel button will discard all changes you have made and exit the Options process.   The Done button will save your changes and return to the Editor.


Created with the Personal Edition of HelpNDoc: Free CHM Help documentation generator