3 Replies Latest reply: May 15, 2014 10:04 AM by MonUserCJ _ RSS

    Maximum width of memo field

    MonUserCJ _



         One thing I've been doing with inconsistently formatted reports is to use Monarch to trap whatever little data can be trapped consistently, and then simply trapping the rest of the data rows as long fields (and parsing them through other means).


         Recently, I've run into a problem. When opening a PDF document, certain columns of data run together sometimes in the report in Monarch (though they are separated with at least once space in the original PDF). It is difficult to parse the data in these cases, so I've tried opening the PDF with a spacing value of 9.9.


         With this setting, the columns do not seem to run together. However, it causes the lines to be very long. I'm running into an issue when trying to trap these lengthened lines--the limit of a character field. I was under the impression that memo fields could be significantly longer, but when I try to specify template width in field properties, it says that any value above around 250 is invalid. Is there anyway to trap these lines other than using many character fields? Also, is there anyway to specify field widths using the keyboard (other than from the field properties dialog box)? Using the mouse to specify field widths is tedious when the fields are so large.


         I would appreciate any advice anyone can give. Thanks.

        • Maximum width of memo field
          Data Kruncher

          Hi CJ,


          Indeed, the descriptions concerning the construction of Memo fields in the documentation, while not technically incorrect, are a little bit misleading.


          The documentation states, truthfully, that Memo fields have a maximum length of 65,536 characters.


          What the documentation doesn't state is that you can't paint a single field wider than 254 positions.


          Take the demo file Homes.prn for example. The entire description for the last home in the report can be captured as a Memo field, and has a total length of 440 characters. But it only needs to be 57 positions wide.


          The only way I know around it is to define as many 254 wide Character fields as are needed and compile their contents with a calculated Memo field.


          A bit messy and time consuming, but it works.


          I'm certain that there's some Jet-related technical reason behind the 254 wide limit, but nonetheless it can be a constraint at times.

            • Maximum width of memo field
              Grant Perkins

              Use the Field List to adjust field definitions via the keyboard.


              Nor sure this idea will work for you but you could consider a 2 stage process and use Multi column regions. Make each column quite wide - up to 254 chars OK I think - and extract.


              Add a LINE() calc field resort to stack the columns back toether. In V10 I would also use the COLUMN() function to ensure the correct order and sort with that. V9 is a little more compex - checkout the post in the Aug 08 newsletter archive based on Olly's work.


              Now you have the possibility to export an intermediate file that should be more model friendly and can be used to create a multi-row extract to a memo field (if required) BUT MEMO field do not retain all spacing as was so there may be some other issues specific to the report format you are working with.


              You may be able to adapt these ideas on some way to better suit your purpose.






                • Maximum width of memo field
                  MonUserCJ _

                  Yeah, in the end I just ended up making a bunch of character fields and concatenating trimmed versions of them. It wasn't as tedious as I thought it would be, and it actually let me reduce the amount of spacing in the delimited file exported.


                  Thanks, folks.