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Forcing Data Entry & Invisible Cursor


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I would like to force data entry in a specific field - not any specific data (this is a field for contract numbers that do not follow any specific alpha/numeric pattern - i.e., could be 58-3TC139-F-I or 03-323454 or 03A76, etc.). However, I don't want to allow the field to be left blank.

Also, the data entry folks are having trouble "seeing" which field is active for input (flashing cursor not highly visible), is there a way to have field highlight when the cursor is "there" or some other type of fix/help?

Thanks in advance for helping this in-over-head-newbie.

PS Would it be considered bad form to attach the file for review and critique?

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Hi J.

Attaching the file for review is sometimes the only way to address an issue.

In the Options section of Define Fields there are some check boxes you might want to look at. I believe one of them is Not Empty.

As for making the currently selected field stand out from the others, I don't know of any easy method. Good layout design can help the user's sense of where the cursor is.

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Thanks John, Not Empty worked great (don't know how I missed that one!).

I'm suprised that FM doesn't have a highlight option for currently selected fields - I was sure it was a simple thing I just wasn't figuring out. Not sure what to do - maybe center the field so the cursor flashes center instead of left justified, even though I really don't want the data centered?

I've just discovered an additional problem... although I have the contract number field set to be unique (and Not Empty), when I duplicate the record it allows the duplication without any requirement to change the contract number to a unique number - which could (and certainlly will) accidentally result in records that don't have unique contract numbers as required... is this another no-fix deal?

Continued thanks - JW

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J. Williams said:

Thanks John, Not Empty worked great (don't know how I missed that one!).

I'm suprised that FM doesn't have a highlight option for currently selected fields - I was sure it was a simple thing I just wasn't figuring out.

Well, as useful as you would find it, there'd be plenty of other users who would undoubtedly be annoyed!

Not sure what to do - maybe center the field so the cursor flashes center instead of left justified, even though I really don't want the data centered?

I've just discovered an additional problem... although I have the contract number field set to be unique (and Not Empty), when I duplicate the record it allows the duplication without any requirement to change the contract number to a unique number - which could (and certainlly will) accidentally result in records that don't have unique contract numbers as required... is this another no-fix deal?

Continued thanks - JW

I'm pretty sure there was a discussion about this just a few weeks ago - you might do some looking around. I think the short answer is: don't duplicate records, or if you do, script it so that you can update any fields that ought to be unique.

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Well, I guess one for three isn't bad. Yep, I think the highlight thing would irritate some, but was thinking more along the lines of a turn on/off thing.

I'll look for the duplication discussion - I'm a bit depressed with your prognosis being that many of the thousands and thousands of highway contracts involve 10-50 various locations, meaning a record has to be created for each location, even though of the 20 field entries per record, only four would have to be updated from record to record, thus our interest in duplicating instead of creating new. We're talking months of extra work without using duplication.

Oh well, in a perfect world....

Oops! almost forgot. Thanks for the help. JW

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You can use duplication, but you'll want to make sure that it's scripted and all fields are cleared during the process that need to be. And you'll want to only allow Editing menu access in Access Privileges, so that no user can use the menu or a shortcut to duplicate a record.

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Hi JW, You might take a look at a demo in the Samples section called Duplication on the Fly. It solves the duplicating Unique auto-enter ID problem while allowing Users total control of which fields to duplicate. smile.gif

LaRetta

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Thanks LaRetta - I've downloaded the file - the fact that it's beginner friendly scares me even more being I'm struggling to figure it out... heck, I'm having problems just getting the instructions to print.

Guess it just goes to show how far under water I am here. Learn or die trying... that's my new motto - has to be.

JW

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