FAQ


Q: Are all ISPF 'Bells & Whistles' incorporated?


A: Well, maybe not all, but everything you'd ever normally want should be there.  In addition, SPFLite has added numerous extensions to the standard ISPF feature set. I'm sure you won't be disappointed.


Q: What size screen is emulated?


A: SPFLite does not emulate any particular fixed-size screens such as found on 3270 terminals.  You can use any screen height and width that will fit on your display.  Changing screen size is as simple as dragging and stretching the screen to the desired size.


Q: How are the NewLine and Enter keys handled?


A: You have complete control over mapping the physical keyboard to the logical 3270 SPF keys.  For users who wish to emulate a 3270 keyboard the installations defaults would be suitable. The Right-Ctrl is mapped to (Enter) and the Enter key is mapped to (NewLine). See the Customizing SPFLite section of the documentation for details.  At installation time, you will be presented with initial choices for how you want these keys handled.  For users not accustomed to, or not wishing to use the PC keyboard as a 3270 emulator would, you are given two other iniital choices for (Enter) and (Newline), one of which should suit your needs.  You will be pleasantly surprised at the degree of keyboard customization you can perform.


Q: Is there an EraseEOL key?


A: There certainly is an EraseEOL function, and you may map that function to any physical key you wish.  The installation default mapping for this function is the ESC key.



Q: Are any macro/script languages supported (e.g. VBScript, REXX, Perl, etc.)?


A: There is a full macro language based on thinBasic (www.thinBasic.com).  You can create normal Command line macros as well as Line command macros.   As well, you can create keyboard macros of commonly used key sequences and assign them to a single key combination.

In addition there is a FILTER command that launches an external process to examine and change any range of lines.  These external processes can be written as scripts or programs in any language you wish.  

There are also SET symbols, which are general string values you can define and then use in primary commands.  SET symbols can be used to abbreviate complete commands, command operands, or anything in between.


Q: Is there a limitation of the file size being edited?


A: There is no arbitrary limit, but editing is limited by the resources available on your system.  I have edited quite large files (over 50,000 lines) without problems.  If you get into very large files (> 100,000 lines) you may run into some performance slowdowns.


Q: Are multiple windows / Split screen supported?


A: Split-screen mode, an IBM ISPF editing feature, is not supported.  However SPFLite does support a Tabbed interface to allow editing multiple files in a single SPFLite instance. You can also have multiple instances of SPFLite operating if this is enabled on the Options screen.  The Primary command OPEN will also start a new instance of SPFLite.  The SWAP command, used in ISPF to move between two halves of a split-screen edit session, may be used in SPFLite to move to different tabbed edit screens.  SWAP PRIOR can be used to alternate between two specific edit screens, which is similar to the ISPF SWAP in behavior.  Different edit sessions can also be selected with a mouse click.  Starting with version 6.0 there is a new feature call Multi-Edit, which allows multiple files to be edited at the same time within a single file tab.


Q: Are screen text and background colors fixed?


A: No, colors, font (fixed pitch only) and screen columns and lines are all user-specifiable.


Q: Is UNDO supported?


A: Yes, and so is REDO.


Q: Is HEX mode supported?


A: Yes, both for ANSI-based and EBCDIC-based files.  In EBCDIC files, you must use the EBCDIC encoding for data, just as you would on a mainframe.  SPFLite has a well-designed, modern ANSI-to-EBCDIC translation table it uses by default, or you can create your own.



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