Customizing Data Fields

Defining your own data fields allows you to customize ActionWare for your organization's needs by creating screen layouts with data fields unique to your company. You can create data fields and define their attributes, such as length, position on the screen, uppercase or lowercase, user entry, and alphabetic or numeric characters. Data field definition requires an RPG compiler on your iSeries (AS/400) and the library AW4G.

Database definition and configuration use a prototype screen to build the design. While you make your changes, you are not affecting the live database AW4L. Your changes will not be implemented until you successfully run option 13, Full Regeneration, from the Configuration Menu.

When you enter the definition screen, you see the data fields that exist initially as the sample database definition. Use these data fields as your starting point. The maximum record length for the live database definition is 6,144 bytes. Each data field you define exists in all three data layouts even if you choose not to use or display the data field on a panel. This structure maximizes system use.

You can use each data field once in each contact record type, and we encourage you to do so. By reusing the same data fields in all three data layouts, you utilize only one third of the storage you would use if you defined a separate data field for each data layout.

Each data field can have different uses and be located on different panels. If you do not reuse data fields, you can easily exceed the total maximum space of 6,144 bytes. Each data layout must have at least one data field defined and assigned to a panel even if you do not intend to use the data layout.

Before you begin

As System Administrator you should understand completely the following ActionWare features and functions before designing your database:

In addition you should review your current business processes to see where you can incorporate them into your database design. Determine which data layouts you wish to use and what departments might be accessing them.