Rich text and the user – PB Docs 70

Rich text and the user

All the editing tools described throughout this chapter and
in the chapter on working with rich text in the PowerBuilder User’s

can be made available to your users.

What users can do

They can:

  • Use the toolbars for
    text formatting
  • Use the popup menu, which includes using the clipboard
    and opening other rich text and ASCII files
  • Edit the contents of input fields
  • Turn the editing tools on and off

What you can make available to users in your

You can program an application to allow users to:

  • Insert and delete
    input fields
  • Insert pictures
  • Switch to header and footer editing
  • Preview the document for printing

If a RichTextEdit control shares data with a DataWindow object
or DataStore, you can program:

  • Scrolling from row
    to row (you don’t need to program page-to-page scrolling
    although you can)
  • Updating the database with changes made in input

The best way for you to prepare rich text for use in your
application is to become a user yourself and edit the text in an
application designed for the purpose. During execution, all the
tools for text preparation are available.

What the user sees

The default view is the body text. You can also show header
and footer text and a print preview.

Header and footer text For either a RichText DataWindow object or the RichTextEdit
control, you can call the ShowHeadFoot function in a menu or button
script. It displays the header and footer editing panels:

Call the function again to return to normal view.

The document as it would be printed The user can press ctrl+f2 to switch
preview mode on and off. You can also control preview mode programmatically.

For an RichTextEdit control, call the Preview function:

For a RichText DataWindow object, set the Preview property:

Text elements and formatting

The user can specify formatting for:

  • Selected text
  • Paragraphs
  • Pictures
  • The whole rich text document

proc.gif To display the property sheet for an object, the
user can:

  1. Select the object. For example:

    • Drag or use editing
      keys to select text.
    • Click on a picture.
    • Set an insertion point (nothing selected) for the
      rich text document.
  2. Right-click in the workspace and select Properties
    from the popup menu.

proc.gif To make settings for the paragraphs in the selection:

  1. Double-click on the ruler bar.


    Type ctrl+shift+s.

Modifying input fields

Unless you have made the rich text object display only, the
user can modify the values of input fields.

proc.gif To modify the value of an input field:

  1. Click the input field to select it.

    The input field will flash.

  2. Press the space bar and type a new value.


    Right-click in the workspace and choose Properties from
    the popup menu.

    The Input Field Object property sheet displays.

  3. On the Input Field page, edit the Data Value textbox.

Text formatting for input fields There are several ways to select the input field and apply
text formatting. When the input field is selected, the Font page of
the property sheet and the toolbar affect the text. When the input
field is part of a text selection, changes affect all the text,
including the input field.

The user cannot apply formatting to individual characters
or words within the field. When the user selects the input field,
the whole thing is selected.

Inserting and deleting input fields You write scripts that let the user insert and delete input
fields. The user can also copy and paste existing input fields. All
copies of an input field display the same data.

Formatting keys and toolbars

When the toolbar is visible, users can use its buttons to
format text in preview mode, or they can use keystrokes to format
text in the workspace.

For a list of keystrokes for formatting rich
text, see the chapter on working with rich text in the PowerBuilder User’s


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