Appending rows in INPUT ARRAY

Rows appended at the end of an editable list are temporary until they are edited.

In an INPUT ARRAY, a new row can be created at the end of the list. This new row is called "temporary" because it will be automatically removed if the user leaves the row without entering data. If data is entered by the user or by program (setting the touched flag), the temporary row becomes permanent.

A temporary row is promoted to a permanent row under certain conditions described in this topic. We distinguish also explicit temporary row creation from automatic temporary row creation.

Temporary row creation is different from adding new rows with the DIALOG.appendRow() method; when appending a row by program, the row is considered permanent and remains in the list even if the user did not enter data in fields.

Explicit temporary row creation

Explicit temporary row creation takes place when the user decides to append a new row explicitly with the append action. If the list is empty, an insert action will have the same effect as an append action (a temporary row is created at position 1).

Automatic temporary row creation

By default, automatic temporary row creation takes place when AUTO APPEND is TRUE (default) and one of the following occurs:

  • The user tries to move below the last row, with a Down keystroke or with the mouse.
  • The user presses the Tab key when in the last field of the last row.
  • The last row of the list is deleted by the user.
  • The list has the focus and the last row of the list is deleted by program with DIALOG.deleteRow() or DIALOG.deleteAllRows().
  • When the INPUT ARRAY is in a DIALOG block, the list has no rows and gets the focus (A new temporary row is created to let the user enter data immediately)

When is a temporary row removed?

The temporary row will be automatically removed if none of the fields has been touched (the modification flag is not set), and when leaving the list (INPUT ARRAY) or by moving upward in the list.

The row is "touched" when the user enters data in a field, or when the program simulates a user input with a DISPLAY TO / BY NAME instruction or with the DIALOG.setFieldTouched() method.

When the modification flag is set by program, NOENTRY fields are ignored. However, fields dynamically disabled by DIALOG.setFieldActive() are taken into account.

Deny row append

Temporary row creation is useful because, in most cases, INPUT ARRAY is used to edit existing rows and append new rows at the end of the list. However, you might want to prevent row addition or at least avoid the automatic temporary row creation when the last row is deleted or when an empty list gets the focus.

To avoid explicit temporary row creation, prevent INPUT ARRAY from defining the automatic append action by setting the APPEND ROW attribute to FALSE in the ATTRIBUTE clause:
When APPEND ROW or INSERT ROW attributes are set to FALSE, automatic temporary row can still occur when the user deletes the last row of the list or if the list is empty when the INPUT ARRAY is entered. To avoid automatic temporary row creation when only one of APPEND ROW=FALSE or INSERT ROW=FALSE, use AUTO APPEND=FALSE:

If both APPEND ROW and INSERT ROW attributes are set to FALSE, the dialog will prevent explicit temporary row creation and also automatic temporary row creation, as if AUTO APPEND = FALSE was used.

Row creation control blocks for temporary rows

In order to control row creation, use the BEFORE INSERT and AFTER INSERT control blocks. The BEFORE INSERT trigger is invoked after a new row was inserted or appended, just before the user gets control to enter data in fields. Regarding temporary rows, the AFTER INSERT block is invoked if data has been entered and you leave the new row (for example, when the focus moves to another row or leaves the current list), or if the dialog is validated, for example with ACCEPT DIALOG in case of DIALOG (or ACCEPT INPUT in case of singular INPUT ARRAY). No AFTER INSERT block is invoked if the user did not enter data. The temporary row is automatically deleted.

In the BEFORE INSERT control block, you can tell if a row is a temporary appended one by comparing the current row (DIALOG.getCurrentRow() or ARR_CURR()) with the total number of rows (DIALOG.getArrayLength() or ARR_COUNT()). If the current row index equals the row count, you are in a temporary row.

AFTER ROW and temporary rows

When a temporary row is automatically removed, the AFTER ROW block will be executed for the temporary row, but ui.Dialog.getCurrentRow() / ARR_CURR() will be one row greater than DIALOG.getArrayLength() / ARR_COUNT(). In this case, ignore the AFTER ROW event.