Options (Access Query Language)

Options are used to alter the behavior of AQL sentences.

For example, the list, sort commands all use a standard output format that, by default, includes a standard page heading (time, date, and page number) and the item-ID of each item processed. These commands additionally produce column headings above each output column and generate a number of items listed message at the end of the report.

Command results are reported to the terminal unless the p option or lptr modifier is used to direct output to the spooler.

Nearly every one of the standard AQL options has an equivalent modifier or connective. The modifier performs exactly the same function as the option, but requires a different syntax.

Options are always presented at the end of an AQL sentence, and must be preceded by a left parenthesis. The right parenthesis is optional. Multiple options can be specified. No delimiter is required between them.

Some combinations of options are not valid. For example, it is unlikely that there would be a need for combining the d, i, and c options in the same sentence.

Option Description
a Properly aligns columns in AQL reports when using Thai characters.
b Suppresses the number of items listed message at the end of most AQL reports. This is the same as the j option (see ni-supp modifier).
c Suppresses column headings above output columns as well as the default page heading on AQL reports (see col-hdr-supp modifier).
d Suppresses the detail lines normally generated by the associated and encompassing list processor command (see det-supp modifier).
e Extended output. Forces columnar output irrespective of terminal width. This is useful for software parsing the output results of a query.
h Suppresses the default page heading (system time/date and page number) (see hdr-supp modifier).
i Suppresses the display of item-IDs in the leftmost column of an AQL report (see id-supp modifier).
j Suppresses the number of items listed message. The j option also suppresses the [202] not on file message when the AP compatibility is in effect. This is the same as the b option (see set-compat command and ni-supp modifier).
k Suppresses the output of the legend message for list and sort operations (see legend-supp modifier).
m Allows all values, including nulls, to be processed by the output conversion. Normally, null values are not processed by the output conversion so that they do not necessarily take up space on a report. However, some output conversion, such as those that call FlashBASIC subroutines, may need to see each and every value, even if it’s null. The equivalent modifier is converting-nulls.
n Affects output to the terminal only, preventing the AQL output from pausing at the end of each (terminal) page of output (see nopage modifier).
p Directs output of the AQL sentence to the system printer, via the spooler (see lptr modifier).
q Bypasses utilization of indexes.
r Forces listings into an across the page format, if the listing would otherwise be noncolumnar (see fill modifier).
s Suppresses the normal action of attribute-defining items with an attribute-type of w, thus preventing any embedded Output processor commands from being applied to the data being processed (list and sort only).
t{number} Displays a periodic total to the screen indicating the current progress of a select, sselect, or count. The approximate number of items selected followed by the approximate number of items scanned displays periodically. The period is a default of 100 items selected, but may be changed by appending a number after the t option. Note that a select that utilizes an index does not display a running total. (select, sselect, and count only). Also note that if a simple count or select is done, the total counter may not be displayed at the rate of the specified period.
w{-}{number} Displays the output of a list or sort command in a full screen window, allowing the user to scroll backward, forward, left, and right through the report. If a minus sign (-) displays after the w option, then a wide virtual display is used to display the output of the AQL sentence. The user can then scroll left and right a screen at a time, as well as up and down a screen at a time. If a number is entered, that number of lines from the top of the first page are stored away as the header, and are displayed on each page. This may cause confusion for reports that display the page number within the header. The h option (hdr-supp) is automatically appended to any reports that do not include a heading sentence. A short help screen is available while displaying the output to elaborate on the keystrokes.
y Displays a message when the pre-processor assumes an undefined word is a value. The message displays the undefined word and its assumed context. The processed sentence displays before entering the AQL compiler. The terminal waits for a key to be pressed before proceeding. If a CTRL+X is entered, the sentence is aborted. Also, displays the AQL "compiled" string to the terminal. This string contains information about the attributes to display on the report in an internal representation for the list processor. If any attribute defining items being output contain a (algebraic) processing codes, each on is translated into an f (function) processing code and displayed.
z Disables the AQL pre-processor.

All macros that contain AQL sentences allow the full complement of AQL options to be passed into the macro for execution.

Tabbed Output

AQL allows another form of output referred to as tab delimited output for use when transferring data from D3 to PC applications. Optionally, this can be selected by modifying the AQL command that is used in the AQL sentence. This is done by adding an additional mode ID (53) to the third value of attribute 2 of the master dictionary definition of the AQL command that is being used. AQL produces output delimited by tabs and each line of data is terminated with a CR for transfers to applications running on PCs.