ESI Flat Files

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In order to distribute your (redesigned) user interface, you have to generate a flat file based on the external schema. This file will have the name of your GUI application, followed by the extension ".ESI". Reading the interface specifications from this flat file is faster than reading it from the ESI repository. This is because of reduced IO operations, and because of reduced communication with the database.

ESI flat files are the GUI counterpart of CON and EXT files for conceptual specifications.

In your installation environment, you will find a Templates folder. This directory may be used for your own ESI-files. If an ESI file with the same name exists in the APP folder, the one in Templates will be ignored.

If the application you want to distribute is based on the default APPLICATION template, you only need to distribute the <application name>.ESI file itself.

If the application is based on a template, you need to distribute the <template name>.ESI file along with the application's "own" ESI file. If the template is itself based on a template, you need to distribute that other template file, too. This is because the template specifications are not physically copied to the application's ESI flat file. Rather, ESI templates operate like DLL files by containing references to each other.