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DB/TextWorks Features for Version 4

Version 4.02

Note: There were no new features or feature changes in version 4.01.

Version 4.02 - New Feature

Improved Print Preview

Print Preview is now available, and includes improved functionality like the ability to zoom to view the page at actual size.

Version 4.02 - Feature Changes

Print & Form Orientation

Print (and Print Preview) now automatically use the Orientation specified in the form.

Print & Report Formatting

If the Report window is still formatting when you choose Print (or Print Preview), you are asked if you want to stop the report formatting so the Print operation can proceed.  If you respond No, the Print operation is canceled and the Report window continues formatting.

Version 4.0

Each feature is discussed briefly here.  See the DB/TextWorks online help for more information.

Version 4.0 - New Features

Form/Query Screen/Menu Designer Features

IMPORTANT: Version 4.0 forms, query screens and menu screens are not compatible with earlier versions.  Once you save a form, query screen or menu screen using version 4.0, you will not be able to use that form or screen with earlier versions.  Forms and query screens saved using version 4.0 will not appear in lists in version 3.0 DB/TextWorks or WebPublisher.  (They'll "disappear" as far as the version 3.0 programs are concerned.)  Menu screens saved using version 4.0 will display the message "File 'menuname.tbm' cannot be read by the software."  Note: If you accidentally save a form or query screen with v4.0, you can use Manage Textbase Elements in v4.0 to export the form to a .XPF file, then use Manage Textbase Elements in v3.0 to import the file. (You'll get lots of "unrecognized" errors on the import; choose to continue.)

The three designers have many new features.

  • Add pictures to forms, query screens and menu screens.  The pictures can be either fixed images (e.g., company logos) or specified in Image fields in a record.

  • Add Script Buttons to forms, query screens and menu screens.   Script Buttons permit you to run a JavaScript or Visual Basic script.

  •  Specify form and box background colors, including custom colors.

  •  Cut, copy and paste a single box or group of boxes.  For example, you can cut boxes from the Record Area and paste them into the Margin Area, or cut them from one form and paste them into another.

  • Align boxes (Left, Right, Center)

  •  Justify Text toolbar buttons

Form Designer Features

These new features are specific to the Form Designer.

  • The various box-specific HTML options (Inline Image, Image Links, Treat as HTML, "See Also" links, etc.) all now apply to individual content items rather than to the box as a whole.  They have also all been moved to the HTML tab of the Box Properties dialog.

  • The Inline Image HTML Option now shows all image entries in the field.  Previous versions showed only the image for the first entry.  To show only the first image, use a picture box instead of an Inline Image.

  • The Paragraphs tab of the Box Properties dialog gives you the option not to include a space between content items in a paragraph.  Previous versions always automatically added a space between content items.

  • Additional item numbering options ("i, ii, iii" or "A, B, C" or "a, b, c").  Previous versions offered only Arabic (1, 2, 3) or capitalized Roman numerals (I, II, III).

  • Dashed lines indicate page dimensions regardless of whether the margin area is visible.

  • When designing label forms, a black line indicates the outer dimensions of the label.  When designing a new multi-label set (e.g., a book label set), inner lines indicate the dimensions of each label in the set; these inner lines do not appear after you save and reopen the label form.

  • Demco & Highsmith labels have been added to the Stock Numbers list when designing a new label form

Query/Menu Screen Designer Features

These new features are specific to the Menu Screen Designer and the Query Screen Designer:

  • The ability to center or right justify text within a box.

Menu Screen Designer Features

These new features are specific to the Menu Screen Designer:

  • Cascading menu screens.  You can now add Menu Screen Boxes to a menu screen; you specify the name of a .TBM file.  When you click on the menu screen box, DB/TextWorks opens that menu screen in another window.

  • The ability to specify a "Screen Title" on the Screen Preferences dialog.  The specified text appears on the title bar for the Menu Screen window and on the Window menu.

Basic Form Defaults

The More Defaults button on the Display tab of the Options dialog permits you to specify several options (e.g., label position, box width, box and background colors, etc.) for the Basic Record Form,  Basic Report Form and Basic Query Screen.  The options on the General tab also affect menu screens. 

You can apply any box and background colors you select to existing saved forms, etc. without modifying them in the designers (default option).

Search: Today's Date Variable

You can now include the @DATE variable as part of your search criteria.  When the search is performed, @DATE will be translated to the current date.  You can also perform calculations using the @DATE variable.  For example: @DATE -7.

Send Report as Mail

The new "Send Report as Mail" command on the File menu permits you to send the current report as an electronic mail attachment in a variety of formats (Plain Text, Rich Text Format, HTML).  You also have the option of including a report in Plain Text format in the body of the message.  Depending on the email program used to send/receive the message, HTML attachments may appear in the body of the message.

If you select "Mail each record to a different address", DB/TextWorks will automatically email each record to the address(es) shown in the specified field in the record, without further interaction from you.  Important: When using this option, each email addresses must be in a separate entry.  You cannot, for example, type multiple email addresses in the same entry separated by commas or semicolons. 

Note: the "Mail each record to a different address" option may not work with all email programs. 

Recover Textbase

The new Recover Textbase choice on the Manage Textbases menu encapsulates the textbase recovery process.  All you have to do is specify the name of the textbase you recover, and type the Master password (if any).  Recover Textbase then dumps that textbase, creates a new textbase by copying the structure of the existing textbase, and loads the dump file into the new textbase.  The original textbase is renamed.

Note: This feature will not repair damage to the .TBA file or .TBU file (user file) where forms, query screens, etc. are stored.  You must perform the steps manually if these files are damaged and, when you create the new textbase, uncheck the options which copy public elements and the user file.

Applications Menu

You can add an additional Applications menu to DB/TextWorks.  This menu contains links to HTML pages.   Which links appear on this menu is specified for each textbase.  Choosing one of the options on this menu opens the HTML page in a window inside DB/TextWorks.  All of the normal HTML behavior will work in this window: JavaScript, links, etc.

Mouse Right+Click Menus

Throughout the product you can now right+click with the mouse to perform such operations as Cut, Copy & Paste.

Specify Window for Search Results

After a search, you are prompted to specify which window to display the search results in: Report, Edit, or Display.  You can choose not to display this message, so that records are automatically displayed in the selected window without asking.  Previous versions only asked if you wanted to display the report.

Image Printing - Xionics XipPrint

Use XipPrint=1 in the [Imaging] section of INMAGIC.INI to take advantage of Xionics XipPrint enabled printers.  This feature should speed up printing for black and white TIFF images. (This option has not been proven to work with all XipPrint enabled printers.)  Use the FastPrint=1 option for color images.

Report Window - Copy & Find

Edit>Copy and Edit>Find are now available for the Report window. 

Note that you can only copy text from within a single box.  If you need to copy information from multiple boxes/records, you must still use Copy Special>Report or Copy Special>Record.

Copy - Retains Font

Edit>Copy now retains the font of the copied information (often called Rich Text).  When you paste into another application which supports multiple fonts, the font will be retained.  Notes:

  •   Text pasted into the Edit window uses Plain Text format (i.e., does not retain any font information in the copied text).

  •  If the copied text includes search terms highlighted using Reverse Video, the font color is white.  So it will look like the highlighted information is not there.  You can use Tools>Options to set Display Highlighting to None or to a Color before copying text which contains highlighted search items.  Or, your other application may have a Paste Special option which permits you to specify that the information should be pasted as "Unformatted Text".

  • Copy Special>Report and Copy Special>Record still copy information in Plain Text format.

3-Dimensional Box Borders

Check "3-D box borders" on the Display tab of the Options dialog to use three-dimensional box borders in all forms and query screens.

Search Highlighting

You can now suppress search highlighting, for forms which have search highlighting enabled, without using the Form Designer to modify the form.  Select "None" from either the "Display highlighting" or "Print highlighting" list on the Search tab of the Options dialog.  For example: you can use the same form for both printing and displaying, without having your search terms highlighted in the printout.  

Recent Files - Specify Number of Textbases

The new "Recently used file list" control on the General tab of the Options dialog permits you to specify how many recently-opened textbases to list on the Files menu.  You can select a number between 0 and 10.  Previous versions always showed 4 recently-opened textbases.

Insert Entry Mark [F11]

Press F11 or choose Insert Entry Mark from the Edit menu to break the current entry into two entries at the cursor position.

Insert Date [F4] - Create New Entry

The new "Insert date as new entry" control on the General tab of the Options dialog permits you to specify whether the inserted date should be created as a new entry (default behavior) or inserted into the current entry at the cursor position.

Insert Series - Half Months

A new Increment Unit option is available when using Insert Series in Date fields: Half Month.

Date Formats

This section discusses four optional DBTEXT.INI options which control date formatting in various places.  Example:


sLongDate=Mmmm d, yyyy




sLongDate= and sShortDate= control the formatting of dates in reports and the format of pasted, computed and automatic dates.  They use the syntax shown on the Regional Settings dialog.

iDate= controls how dates are interpreted for indexing and searching purposes.  iDate= must be set to one of the following values.

- 0 means M-D-Y

- 1 means D-M-Y

- 2 means Y-M-D

indexDateFmt= controls the format of date indexes shown in the Query Choices Browser and the behavior of Edit>Insert>Current Date (F4) in the Query window.  Previous versions always used YYYY-Mmm-DD format (e.g., 1997-May-05).  The following example will yield full month names (1999-January-01):



This feature is especially useful when the Primary Month List includes months whose first three letters are the same (e.g., "juin" and "juillet" in French).

The same setting controls the format of dates inserted using Edit>Insert>Current Date (F4) in the Query window.  So be wary of using formats which use significant characters.  For example, if you specify MM/DD/YY format, since a slash (/) represents a Boolean OR, you'll need to implement the SpacedRelOps=1 feature described later in this document.


sLongDate=, sShortDate= and iDate= are used in place of the Windows Regional Settings for a particular workstation.  They are primarily useful for applications like DB/Text PowerPack and DB/Text WebPublisher, which do not use the Regional Settings unless specifically set up to log on as a user with the desired settings.

  •  The order of the date components (month, day, year) must be the same for sShortDate= and iDate=.  If the order differs, there will be problems with indexing, searching and date calculations. 

  •   If you use a numeric month for indexDateFmt=, the month/day order should match the order for  iDate=.

Toolbar Features

Customize Toolbar now has the option to add Separators to toolbars, so you can break toolbar buttons into groups.

You can rearrange and remove buttons without using Customize Toolbar.  Press Shift and use the mouse to drag the button to its new location.  To remove a button, drag it off the toolbar.

You can change the location of the toolbar from the top edge of the window to any of the other three edges.  You can also "undock" the toolbar so that it's a floating toolbox.  When the toolbar is undocked, you can use the mouse to resize it so that the buttons appear on several lines.  Toolbar location for each window is stored in the Windows registry.

New "View" Menu

The View menu permits you to control whether to display:

  •  the status bar

  • the toolbar for each window

To hide/display the toolbar for a particular window, select that window, then use the View menu.  To hide/display the Main toolbar, you must close all other windows.

Several menu choices have also been moved to the View menu.  For example: Hide Boundaries, which used to be on the Tools menu, has been renamed Boundaries and moved to the View menu.

Help Menu - Inmagic on the Web

A new "Inmagic on the Web" section has been added to the Help menu.  This pull-right menu includes choices for the Inmagic Home Page, the Inmagic Support Page and the Inmagic Product Support Knowledgebase page.  Each of these choices launches your default web browser and loads the appropriate page.  The Product Support Knowledgebase page was available in version 3.0.

Resizing Dialogs

Several of the dialogs can now be resized.  This feature is probably most useful for the Query Choices Browser and the Editing Choices Browser.  Now you can make the dialog wider so you can see more of long Titles, etc.  The dialogs will revert to their default size the next time you use them. 

New Quick Keys

Close (Textbase)                  Ctrl+W

Duplicate Record                 Shift+F2

Find                                        Ctrl+F

New Query                            Ctrl+Q

New Textbase                       Ctrl+N

Omit Record                          Alt+O

Spell Check                           F8

Ctrl+S will now save the contents of the current window.  For example, if the Edit Record window is the active window, Ctrl+S will save the record.  If the Form Designer window has focus, Ctrl+S will save the form.

Version 4.0 - Feature Changes

Entry Marks

In the Edit window, each entry now begins with a "Field entry delimiter" (by default, a bullet).  You can use the Display tab of the Options dialog to specify which character to use.   Important: The character used as the field entry delimiter should not be a character that will appear in the text of your record.

Previous versions separated entries with a dashed line.  The corresponding Form Designer feature, Tools>Text Formatting>Added Text>Entry Separator>Line is no longer available.


Print uses less 'leading' between lines, so that spacing is tighter than in earlier releases.

Print no longer uses the Orientation specified in the form.  You must use Print Setup to select the correct orientation before printing.

Terminology & Menu Changes

QBE Screens are now called Query Screens.  Several menu choices have been  renamed as a result (e.g., "Query by Example" on the Search menu is now "Query Screen").

User Preferences has been renamed to Options.

Refresh Record has been renamed Refresh and moved from the Records menu to the Windows menu.  This menu choice now affects other windows, including Textbase Information (e.g., to reflect new record/user counts).

The Attributes menu has been removed from the Image Annotation editor.  All of the options which used to be on this menu have been moved into the dialog brought up by the Annotation Properties choice on the Annotations menu.

Several menu options have been combined into pull-right menus.  For example:

  • Copy Record to Clipboard and Copy Report to Clipboard are now pull-right choices under Copy Special.

  • Edit Validation Lists and Edit Substitution Lists are now pull-right choices under Edit Lists.

The two Copy Special choices on the version 3.0 Tools menu have been moved to the Copy Special pull-right menu on the Edit menu.  Their default names are now "Application (1)" and "Application (2)".  You can override the default names by using the Menu= option in the textbase INI file (see "Additional Copy Special Button" in the "Version 3.0 - New Features" section below).

In the Form Designer, Report Options>Record Spacing has been moved onto the General tab of the Form Properties dialog.  See the "Distance between records" control.

The Textbase-Specific Help option now always appears on the Help menu.  It is disabled if there is no textbase-specific help for this textbase.  Previous versions permitted you to specify whether this menu choice appeared with an installation option in Setup - Configure.

Saved Queries & Command Query Windows

The Save Queries and Command Query windows now resemble dialogs in some ways.  Each has text buttons (e.g., Execute Query) as well as toolbar buttons.   In the Saved Queries window, the list of saved sets is a standard pick list control, so you can type the first letter to easily jump to a specific saved query in the list.  In previous versions, you used Tab and Shift-Tab to navigate to different saved sets.

Dialog Changes

Several of the options on the designer Tool menu (Box Contents, Labels and Borders, Text Formatting, Paragraph Formatting, etc.) have been combined into a single tab dialog.

All of the choices on the Attributes menu in the Image Annotation editor have been combined into a single dialog called Annotation Properties on the Annotation menu.  The Attributes menu has been removed.

The User File Path dialog  now has a Browse button to make selecting a directory easier.  This dialog normally only appears the first time you run DB/TextWorks.

"Smart" Scroll Bars

Scroll bars on boxes in forms and Query screens don't appear until they are needed (i.e., until the amount of text in the box exceeds the maximum height of the box).   Previous versions always displayed scroll bars on boxes that had them.

Mouse and Cursor Position

The cursor will appear where you click with the mouse (e.g., in the Display, Edit and Query windows).  Previous versions put the cursor in the last cursor position for that box, or at the beginning of the box if this was the first time you'd clicked in that box since the window was opened.

Edit Record & Passwords

Boxes which are read-only due to password protection on the single field in the box now retain form formatting (e.g., item numbering).  Previous versions removed formatting on boxes containing a single field, regardless of whether the settings for the current password.

Customize Toolbars

Toolbar customizations are now stored in the Windows Registry.  Previous versions stored this information in the INMAGIC.INI file.   You will need to redo any toolbar customizations created using earlier versions.

The Customize Toolbars menu option has been broken into two menu choices.  A pull-right menu permits you to select whether you want to customize the Main toolbar or the toolbar for the current window.  Previous versions displayed an intermediate dialog where you selected which toolbar you wanted to customize.

Recent Files Changes

The list of recently opened textbases is now stored in the Windows Registry.  Previous versions stored this information in the INMAGIC.INI file.

If a textbase chosen from the recent files list on the File menu causes an error, you are asked if you want to remove the textbase from the recent files list.

If your Windows File Options are set to "Hide file extensions for known file types", the .TBA extension does not appear.  Otherwise, it does.  For previous versions, the .TBA extension never appeared in the recent files listing.

If the textbase path matches the current default directory, the recent files list does not show the textbase path.

Open "Already Open" Textbase

For previous versions, if you opened a textbase which was already open, DB/TextWorks closed and reopened the textbase (closed all windows and prompted for the password, if any).  Version 4.0 simply leaves the textbase open.  If you want to change passwords, choose Use Different Password from the File menu.  If you want to close all windows except the initial window, choose New Query or close and reopen the textbase.

 Version 4.0 - Removed Features

These features were available in previous versions, but are not available in version 4.0.

Print Preview

Print Preview is not available in version 4.0.  The menu choice appears but is disabled.


Duplicate Box - use Copy & Paste instead.

Form Designer

Full justification.  Forms created with earlier versions using this option will use Left justification instead.

The "within Border" options for box Label Position.  Forms created with earlier versions will use the equivalent label position which is not within the border.   For example, "Center within Border" will become just Center.

The Line option for Entry Separators on the Added Text tab of the Text Formatting dialog.

Show Paragraph Marks on the Form Preferences dialog.

Edit Record

Paragraph symbols no longer appear in the Edit Record window.  Instead, paragraphs and entries use hanging indentation.  Each entry begins with the "Field entry delimiter" specified using Options>Display.

Customize Toolbars

Use Large Buttons is no longer available in the user interface.  However, you can use the LargeButtons=1 option in the INMAGIC.INI file to have toolbars use large buttons.

Previous versions permitted you to specify your own keyboard shortcuts (Quick Keys), status bar text or button text (ToolTip text) for menu choices -- this functionality is no longer available.  You can also no longer specify toolbar icons, but all of the available toolbar buttons now have icons.


Several warning messages have been replaced with beeps.  For example: "You cannot enter or change information here."


The "Match whole word only" control on the Find and Replace dialogs is no longer available for Textbase Information, the various View File windows, and Command Query.  This control remains available for Edit Record & Batch Modify.

Feature List for all versions

Go to DB/TextWorks® Version 4.1  Features

Go to DB/TextWorks® Version 3  Features  

Find out about automatic upgrades using  InmagicADVANTAGE.


or more information, we invite you to contact us:

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Email: service@crewnoble.com

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Revised: 04/01/05