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How To Use The Report Writer

Type as you would on a typewriter. The editor uses the following commands.

Function Keys

F1 Help............. Opens up this Help topic
F2 Pick............. Pick from database fields and other items
F5 Print............ Print all your notes
F7 Delete........... Delete the current line
F8 Save and Exit.... Save the report and exit

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Press F8 to save and exit. Click the left mouse button outside the report to save and exit.

Press ESC to not save and exit. Click the right mouse button outside the report to not save and exit.

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Moving The Cursor

You can use the arrow keys, Page Up, Page Down, Home, End and Backspace keys to move anywhere on the screen. Or use your mouse and click to the location that you want to go.

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You can select sections of text by either holding down the left mouse button and dragging it over the text that you want to select or hold down the Shift key and use the Arrow keys to select the text.

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After you have selected the text that you want to copy pull down the Edit menu and select Copy. This is useful if you want to customize letters and reports.

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After you have selected the text that you want to delete pull down the Edit menu and select Delete. This is useful if you want to remove text from a letter or report before printing.

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When you want to paste text that you have already copied pull down the Edit menu and select Paste. The text will be pasted at the current cursor location.

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Printer Control

You may see commands such as {RESET} or { BOLD} and {/BOLD} in the text. These are printer commands. They relate the names in the printer control code list. Some commands can be turned on and off like bold or underlining. To turn it on use {BOLD} and to turn it off use {/BOLD}.

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Word Wrapping In The Report Writer

When you type in the Collect! report body the font is a common courier 10cpi character set. There are many benefits to this, lists are easier to line up for example. When you print the report, it will print in the FONT that you have chosen, thus the difference in looks. That is why the layout of the report body is very basic and manual. You must control the line lengths, with the particular font you are using. Therefore if you change the font, move the margins or edit paragraphs you will have to take care of the line length.

If you are using a non-fixed length font in your template, that's fine but it means that you will be able to fit more than the standard 80 characters on a line. As you are typing, when you come within 2 characters of the right window edge, Collect! will word wrap the line for you automatically. This may not be what you desire.

tip.gif You can look in the status bar at the bottom of the report body to see the exact line (row) and column (character) that the cursor is on at the moment. This may help guide you when correcting your lines.

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Correct Line Length In Your Reports

1. Type your text into the editor.

2. Go to the end of any line that prints too short and press the DELETE key. This will bring up the line from below up to the line you are on.

3. You should then go to the word you think should be at the end of that line and press ENTER to have the text to the right of your cursor drop to the line below.

4. Repeat this process till all lines are far enough to the right.

tip.gif You see there is no right margin. It's just word wrapping at 80 characters when you type. This is because if you used a fixed length font, that's where your page would end.

As mentioned above, you can keep track of how many characters to the right you are, by paying attention to the bottom left corner of the report writer. This is your cursor's position within the report body. Non-fixed length fonts can be up to 132 characters to the line.

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There are many samples of reports that you can use for guidelines when creating your own. Check the sample reports and letters that ship with Collect! and visit our web site.

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See Also

- Report Sample to view sample reports and letters
- Report Topics Index for a list of all report and letter topics

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