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Custom Lookup troubles

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    Custom Lookup troubles


    I hope this is a simple problem, but it's sure eluding me...

    It's a field-rule lookup - no filters... inserts the values of three fields on an invoice set in items as one-to-many. The default form works as advertised but a simple three-field custom form will not. The lookup table has no field rules. Keep in mind that I've done many such set and lookups with custom lookup forms with success in the past.

    This is item number, description, and price. One can add-on-the-fly - one item, however, when the need for a second add-on-the-fly occurs, the description field [60 characters] takes the keystrokes piling the letters on top of each other and the cursor does not move past the first character position. It all hangs and ctrl-alt-del is the only way to recover using the 'end task' button. A latent 'bad object handle' message blinks under Alpha's main screen after it dissapears. Of course I database-compact, pack, and all that other stuff with relentless regularity during developement. I've even deleted and rebuilt the custom for at least 4 times.

    The formatting for that field is 60 characters. No form events or buttons. I'd search the messageboard, but have no idea how to put this in a few words. [obviously]



    RE: Custom Lookup troubles


    This doesn't sound like a simple problem to me.

    First thought here is that you're running out of system resources on the pc in question. Do you have the same problem when resources are elevated, or when you run the app on other equipment?

    As a matter of personal preference I never let my users add records to the lookup table on the fly. I prefer to do one thing at a time, and keep the lookup tables in a collection of 'supporting lists' users are trained to maintain separately. If it's not in the 'supporting list' they can't look it up.

    My apps are relatively static so this kind of interface is ok. Some might argue that in a high volume, dynamic, setting the 'add on the fly' approach is necessary, but I think not. Maintaining the integrity of the tables is priority number 1, and I don't feel comfortable doing the data entry through the lookup table's form. My 2 cents. May be worth even less.

    -- tom


      RE: Custom Lookup troubles


      Thanks for your input. I HAVE used this built in lookup feature on several other apps and my users love entering on the fly -and- until now I've not had a problem. "system resources" probably is not the problem here. The same problem exists in the development machine, the user's machine, my wife's machine, and my portable.

      Anyone: Has anyone experienced this problem or has OTHER possible solutions beside methodolgy changes?

      Thanks Tom - and others?


        RE: Custom Lookup troubles


        I'll keep watching for other suggestions, too.

        You might want to see if the same behavior occurs using the default form for your data entry set. The bad object handle message means Alpha Five is losing track of an object or can't find an object referenced in a running script. This can be caused by a variety of things, including trying to open a form that's already open.

        Does the problem occur when the user tries to enter two new records in the lookup right after each other, or the second time they come back to the lookup and try to enter another single record?

        Is your data entry form running in dialog mode?

        What's unique about your custom lookup form? Have you checked all event scripts associated with it?

        I wish I could tell you these will lead to a successful result, but really all I'm doing is outlining the troubleshooting sequences I'd be following if I were in your shoes. Good luck.

        -- tom


          RE: Custom Lookup troubles


          The lookup tab in field rules displays, among other things an option to use the default form or a custom form for lookup. To reiterate, THE DEFAULT FORM PERFORMS AS ADVERTISED. The custom form does not. No scripting involved here [as in all of the other custom forms I've used].This is 'out-of-the-box' Alpha field rule option - that is in addition to the 'can the user edit/can the user add new records' both checked 'Yes' as in all my other apps.

          It is apparent that Alpha is generating the error message on its own scripting made beneath the field rule 'genie'.

          My users are instructed to enter or edit the lookup list - one time per line item. The rule, is believe, is not meant to work any other way. Its on the NEXT line item that the 'Add or cchange' features foul.

          Of course the custom form is running in dialog form - that's the way the field rule sets it up - same as it does for the default form. My form would then be opened with the 'field rule' script in dialog form. Again, as it has done it in all my other apps.

          Give it up Tom! - I thought, perhaps, someone else had experienced this and had found the problem. I'll certainly post the cause if I do find it.

          Thanks again..



            RE: Custom Lookup troubles

            Ken, you misunderstood my previous. But, I'll get out of the way so others can respond. If you care to post a working model illustrating the problem, I'll take a look if you want.

            -- tom


              RE: Custom Lookup troubles

              Tom and others interested

              With Tom's suggestion I found the trouble. Apparently, with the use of a custom form, Alpha leaves the picklist table open when a custom entry form is used to add to, or edit a record in the list - not so with the default form - unless I'm wrong. It seems to involve a posting rule on the line item of the invoice. The post is done to the very table the picklist is generated from.

              See the attachment for details.




                RE: Custom Lookup troubles


                Two ideas for you (after taking a look at your app):

                1) Move the OnHand field out of the Invent table. Put it in a separate table linked 1:1 to the Invent table. Post changes there, not to the Invent table. The drawback to this approach is your user won't be able to see the onHand quantity if the picklist remains the Invent table. A calc field could be defined in the custom form to display this value using lookup?() functions.


                2) Abandon the post field rule, and write a custom script to do the same thing, using the OnSaveRecord event for the record in field rules for the InvItem table. This script would verify that the Invent table is open and available before recording a change in the onHand quantity for a given item.

                Why is all this necessary? I wish I could say authoritatively. It has the feel of a timing issue. You might want to look for a way to be absolutely certain the Invent table is closed after a choice is made from the pickList. Maybe you can find an event which fires consistently on return to the Invoice form from the picklist. If so, that event could be used to test whether the picklist form is still open and force it closed...

                Let us know how things turn out.

                -- tom


                  RE: Custom Lookup troubles


                  Thanks - I sure will let you know what method succeeds.

                  Thanks again



                    RE: Custom Lookup troubles


                    Gave it up - took off the post and never could figure out why the Default form works and mide did not.