Filenames are required for many Xbase commands. The filename may refer to a file on disk or a table in a database. A filename is indicated by <filename> in the syntax diagram and may be any one of the following forms:

A filename, without the extension. When the filename refers to a table, dBASE Plus will assume the extension specified by the SET DBTYPE command (.DBF for dBASE and .DB for Paradox), which can be overridden in most commands with the command’s TYPE clause. If the SET DATABASE command has been used to set a server database as the default, then the table name will be used as-is, without an extension. When the filename is not a table, there is always a default extension, which is listed in each command description.

A filename, with the extension.

A table in a database. Use the BDE Administrator to create database aliases. Specify the database alias in colons before the table name as follows:


If the database is not already open, dBASE Plus displays a dialog box in which you specify the parameters, such as a login name and password, necessary to establish a connection to that database.

A filename skeleton. Use the ? and * as wildcard characters. A single ? is the same as *, meaning any filename. A dialog box is displayed from which you can choose a table, either a file on disk or a table from a database.

In all cases, the <filename> may be enclosed in string delimiters (single quotes, double quotes, or square brackets). Delimiters are required if <table name> contains spaces or other special characters. If the <filename> is contained in a variable and is not defined as an expression—functions expect filenames that are character expressions, commands do not—use the parentheses as indirection operators on the variable containing the <filename>.

If the <filename> refers to a file and does not contain a path and the file is not found in the current directory, then the path specified by SET PATH is also searched.

In many commands, the <filename> does not have to be specified in the statement. If it is omitted, dBASE Plus will display a dialog box from which you can choose a file to execute the command.

For commands that specifically create files and not tables, the database options are not allowed. If a dialog box is displayed, it will not include the controls to choose a database.

If you are about to overwrite a file, you will get a confirmation dialog box if SET SAFETY is ON. If SET SAFETY is OFF, the file will be overwritten without a warning.