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4D has a great feature to export structure information to HTML and XML files. Very handy for generating a data dictionary in a nice format to impress managers.

However, the structure export to HTML functionality appends the field name and it’s respective comments to make a runon of text.

More importantly since 4D supports spaces in field names, there is no way to easily tell where the field name stops and the comments begin.

Secondly, XML structure export shows the field comment as it’s own node in the tree. Why can’t HTML export have it’s own column for field comments; or at least put some type of indicator that a field name has ended and a field’s comments have started.

I’ve abbreviated the following examples. To see for yourself create a new database, one table, one field. Write comments in the inspector from the structure editor. In my case the table “Invoice” has one field “purchase_order”.

Also, this is a standing feature request on 4D forums. 4D has confirmed it as a bug (ACI0068658).

>Product :4D – 4D Server
>4D : v12 (and all previous)
>OS : Mac OS 10.5.7
>Theme : Structure

This is what it looks like

Export run on

Notice field name and comments appended

HTML Structure export

<table class="table" cellspacing="1">
	<tr><th class="fieldName">Field name</th></tr>
	<!-- field number, field name, field comments all concatenated -->
	<tr><td>1. purchase_orderA purchase order number</td></tr>
</table>
<!-- table level comments -->
<div class="comments"><b>Comments</b>: Holds the invoices for the system.</div>

XML Structure export

<!-- table is a node here not a <table> html dom element -->
<table name="Invoice" id="1">
	<field name="purchase_order" type="4" id="1">
		<field_extra>
			<comment format="text">A purchase order number</comment>
		</field_extra>
	</field>
	<table_extra>
		<comment format="text">Holds the invoices for the system.</comment>
	</table_extra>
</table>

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