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Reader's Clinic - Slow Multivalued Screen Display

Martin Northey of the Inland Revenue recently queried why certain screens took so long to display - up to 40 seconds in some cases! The delay was tracked down to the existence of several associated multivalues incorporating XLATEs to another file. The symbolic being used was

0001       @ANS = xlate(FILE, KEYS, FIELD, ACTION)<0,@MV>

where KEYS was a multivalued key list. The purpose of the <0,@MV> was to prevent a problem whereby if the display area was not filled by multivalues, previous values would repeat to fill up the display area.

It was found that if the above formula were written as

0001       @ANS = xlate(FILE, KEYS<0,@MV>, FIELD, ACTION)

the screen refreshed 10 times more quickly as only the multivalues actually required were calculated!

(Volume 3, Issue 7, Page 12)
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