Did You Know? -- May 2003

By Hervé Deschamps, Oracle Corporation.



I just found that in Toad 7.3.0 there is a master detail tool. Very handy to browse data and drill down without having to write an SQL query! Unfortunately it works only with foreign keys. So if there is no foreign key defined in the database, the detail table cannot be defined.


Ever wondered why the When-validate-item trigger fires when users just tab through the fields of one form in a new record, that is without changing the value in that field? After all, why validate something if the value has not changed? Well, as far as Forms is concerned, the value did change: it went from 'unknown' to 'null'.

Item justification: you should avoid the values 'left' and 'right' for item justification. Better to use 'start' and 'end' to support bi-directional languages such as Arabic. Start: Item text is aligned with the starting edge of the item bounding box. The starting edge depends on the value of the item's Reading Order property. Start is evaluated as Right alignment when the reading order is Right To Left, and as Left alignment when the reading order is Left to Right. Same idea for End Items.

Apps Forms

In Apps Forms, the package calendar can do somewhat more than the usual calendar.show used in KEY-LISTVAL.You can also:

General DOS

In the DOS window aside from the up and down arrows, you can also get a command history and picking list by using F7. That seems to work from Win95 onwards.

In XP you can also use the TAB key and DOS will try to guess the rest of your command by recalling the history.

dir *.txt /s will look in all sun directories for txt files.

Runddl32.exe allows you to call a number of cool things in Windows, like call the AddNewPrinter wizard with:

RUNDLL32 SHELL32.DLL,SHHelpShortcuts_RunDLL AddPrinter 

or call the diskcopy dialog with:

rundll32 diskcopy.dll,DiskCopyRunDll.
You could also print all HTM and HTML files with:
   for %%a in (c:\html\*.htm*) do
   rundll32 MSHTML.dll,PrintHTML "%%a"
More info at
   http://www.robvanderwoude.com/rundll.html    (plenty of info there!)

If you want your PC to wait for 10 seconds (before running another command), here is one way to do it without using a special .exe like sleep:

   ping -n 10 -w 1000 > dontshow.txt 

Network DOS

ipconfig /displaydns to display the IP addresses of sites visited recently.
ipconfig /flushdns to flush the cache. Useful for troubleshooting.

tracert www.oracle.com to debug access to a site that is not responding to ping. More details at http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=162326.
With XP, PathPing is better.

netstat -an provides a list of your computer's current connections. Good to detect a potential trojan on your computer. More info at http://www.iana.org/assignments/port-numbers or http://seifried.org/security/ports or http://www.samspade.org.

XP users are lucky again with netstat -an which also gives the process ID of the listening programs. Those can be matched with the PIDs in the task manager.


Have you ever wondered where to go in windows to disable these annoying programs that start automatically when you boot your PC, yet they are setup neither as services, neither in the Startup. Of course they are in the registry:

Hervé Deschamps is a Technical Manager with Oracle Corporation. Over the years he has developed a number of applications using Oracle Development Tools and others.  He has an extensive experience of all phases of the development life cycle. He is also known in the technical community for his article publications centered around best custom development practices and for his user group presentations. You can reach him by e-mail at herve.deschamps@.oracle.com. He also maintains a web site full of articles, scripts, tips and techniques at http://www.iherve.com.