The mentry::mentry Command

For Mentry Version 3.7

by

Csaba Nemethi

csaba.nemethi@t-online.de

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Quick Reference

NAME
mentry::mentry – Create and manipulate multi-entry widgets
SYNOPSIS
mentry::mentry pathName ?options?
STANDARD OPTIONS
-borderwidth          -highlightcolor      -relief
-highlightbackground  -highlightthickness
OPTIONS FOR ALL ENTRY AND LABEL CHILDREN
-background  -cursor  -font  -foreground
OPTIONS FOR ALL ENTRY CHILDREN
-exportselection    -insertwidth        -selectforeground
-insertbackground   -invalidcommand     -show
-insertborderwidth  -justify            -state
-insertofftime      -selectbackground   -validate
-insertontime       -selectborderwidth  -validatecommand
WIDGET-SPECIFIC OPTIONS
-body {width ?text width text ...?}
-disabledbackground color
-disabledforeground color
-readonlybackground color
-takefocus 0|1|""|command
-textvariable array
INDICES
number  end
DESCRIPTION
WIDGET COMMAND
pathName adjustentry index string
pathName attrib ?name? ?value name value ...?
pathName cget option
pathName clear first ?last?
pathName configure ?option? ?value option value ...?
pathName entries
pathName entrycount
pathName entrylimit index
pathName entrypath index
pathName getarray array
pathName getlist
pathName getstring
pathName hasattrib name
pathName isempty ?index?
pathName isfull ?index?
pathName labelcount
pathName labelpath index
pathName labels
pathName put startIndex ?string string ...?
pathName setentryextrawidth index amount
pathName setentryfont index font
pathName setentrywidth index width
pathName unsetattrib name
DEFAULT BINDINGS
KEYWORDS
mentry, widget, entry, label

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Detailed Reference

NAME
mentry::mentry – Create and manipulate multi-entry widgets
SYNOPSIS
mentry::mentry pathName ?options?
STANDARD OPTIONS
-borderwidth          -highlightcolor      -relief
-highlightbackground  -highlightthickness
See the options manual entry for details on the standard Tk widget options.  These options are only supported by the Mentry package, but not by Mentry_tile.
OPTIONS FOR ALL ENTRY AND LABEL CHILDREN
-background  -cursor  -font  -foreground
These options (described in the options manual entry) specify the values of the options with the same names for all entry and label children of the given multi-entry widget.  These values may be changed for an individual child by using the configure subcommand of the Tcl command corresponding to that child.  However, applying this method to change the font of an entry child of a tile-based mentry widget might break the latter's appearance (this has tile-related technical reasons).  To avoid this problem, it is recommended to use the setentryfont subcommand of the Tcl command associated with the mentry widget for changing the value of the -font option of one of its entry children.
When using the package Mentry_tile, these options have theme-specific default values.  The common abbreviations -bg (for -background) and -fg (for -foreground) are supported for both classical and tile-based mentry widgets.
OPTIONS FOR ALL ENTRY CHILDREN
-exportselection    -insertwidth        -selectforeground
-insertbackground   -invalidcommand     -show
-insertborderwidth  -justify            -state
-insertofftime      -selectbackground   -validate
-insertontime       -selectborderwidth  -validatecommand
These options specify the values of the options with the same names for all entry children of the given multi-entry widget.  These values may be changed for an individual entry child by using the configure subcommand of the Tcl command corresponding to that entry.  The -invalidcommand, -validate, and -validatecommand options are only supported if Tk version 8.3 or higher is used, because the options with the same names for entry widgets were introduced in Tk 8.3.  The options -insertbackground, -insertborderwidth, -insertofftime, -insertontime, -insertwidth, -selectbackground, -selectborderwidth, and -selectforeground are only supported by the Mentry package, but not by Mentry_tile.  The common abbreviations -invcmd (for -invalidcommand) and -vcmd (for -validatecommand) are supported for both classical and tile-based mentry widgets.
WIDGET-SPECIFIC OPTIONS
Command-Line Name:  -body
Database Name:  body
Database Class:  Body

Specifies the initial widths of the entry children of the given multi-entry widget, as well as the texts to be displayed in the labels separating the entries.  The value of this option is viewed as a list.  Each odd-numbered element is interpreted as the value of the -width configuration option of an entry child, while each even-numbered element represents the value of the -text configuration option of a label child.  That is, each entry width must be followed by a label text, except for the last one, for which a corresponding label text is optional.  The order of the list elements determines the creation order of the child widgets; these will be packed in a row, without any horizontal padding.  The initial width of each entry child also determines the number of characters that can be inserted into it; this maximal length remains unchanged even if the entry's width is set to a new value later on.

The width of an entry child and the text displayed in a label may be changed by using the configure subcommand of the Tcl command corresponding to that child.  However, applying this method to change the width of of an entry child of a tile-based mentry widget might break the latter's appearance (this has tile-related technical reasons).  To avoid this problem, it is recommended to use the setentrywidth subcommand of the Tcl command associated with the mentry widget for changing the value of the -width option of one of its entry children.

Command-Line Name:  -disabledbackground
Database Name:  disabledBackground
Database Class:  DisabledBackground

This option, which is only supported for Tk versions 8.4 or higher, specifies the background color to use for all entry and label children of the given multi-entry widget when it is disabled.  If the value of this option is the empty string then the normal background color is used.  This option is only supported by the Mentry package, but not by Mentry_tile.

Command-Line Name:  -disabledforeground
Database Name:  disabledForeground
Database Class:  DisabledForeground

This option, which is only supported for Tk versions 8.4 or higher, specifies the foreground color to use for all entry and label children of the given multi-entry widget when it is disabled.  If the value of this option is the empty string then the normal foreground color is used.  This option is only supported by the Mentry package, but not by Mentry_tile.

Command-Line Name:  -readonlybackground
Database Name:  readonlyBackground
Database Class:  ReadonlyBackground

This option, which is only supported for Tk versions 8.4 or higher, specifies the background color to use for all entry and label children of the given multi-entry widget when it is readonly.  If the value of this option is the empty string then the normal background color is used.  This option is only supported by the Mentry package, but not by Mentry_tile.

Command-Line Name:  -takefocus
Database Name:  takeFocus
Database Class:  TakeFocus

This option determines whether the widget accepts the focus during keyboard traversal.  It is almost identical to the standard option with the same name (see the options manual entry for details).  The only difference is that not the widget itself but its first enabled entry child will receive the focus during keyboard traversal with the standard keys (Tab and Shift-Tab).  See the DEFAULT BINDINGS section below for information on how to move the focus from one entry child to another using the keyboard.

Command-Line Name:  -textvariable
Database Name:  textvariable
Database Class:  Variable

If the value of this option is not an empty string then it must be an array.  In this case, for each entry child of the given multi-entry widget the value of the array element with the index of the entry as element name specifies the value of the -textvariable option for that entry.  The entry indices start with 0.  For example, specifying  -textvariable arr  for a multi-entry widget having two entry children is equivalent to specifying  -textvariable arr(0)  for the first and  -textvariable arr(1)  for the second entry child of that widget.

DESCRIPTION
The mentry::mentry command creates a new window named pathName and of the class Mentry, and makes it into a mentry widget.  Additional options, described above, may be specified on the command line or in the option database to configure aspects of the mentry such as its colors, font, and children.  The mentry::mentry command returns its pathName argument.  At the time this command is invoked, there must not exist a window named pathName, but pathName's parent must exist.
The word mentry is an abbreviation of multi-entry.  A mentry is a mega-widget consisting of any number of entries separated by labels, all embedded in a frame.  Due to appropriately chosen configuration options for the entries and labels, a mentry widget looks like one single entry containing preinserted text pieces that cannot be moved, changed, or deleted by the user.
As described above, the initial width of each entry child (specified by the -body configuration option) also determines the maximal number of characters that can be inserted into it.  This is achieved with the aid of the wcb::callback command, by registering the wcb::checkEntryLen before-insert callback with the entry child.  In order to keep this callback, additional before-insert callbacks (if needed) should only be registered with the wcb::cbappend and wcb::cbprepend commands.  When reaching this limit in an entry having the input focus, the latter is set automatically to the next enabled entry child, the contents of that widget is selected, and the insertion cursor is set to its end.  This is made sure by defining an appropriate after-insert callback, which must be kept to be the last such callback for the entry.  For this reason, additional after-insert callbacks (if needed) should only be registered with the wcb::cbprepend command.  The same command should be used exclusively to define after-motion callbacks (if needed), because mentry::mentry registers one that must be the last after-motion callback for each entry child.
Each mentry widget may have any number of attributes, which can be used in commands that create or manipulate mentry widgets for particular purposes.  For example, each date mentry created by the mentry::dateMentry command has a type attribute having the value "Date" and a format attribute specifying the meanings of its components.  The values of these attributes are queried and used in the bodies of the procedures mentry::putClockVal and mentry::getClockVal.
INDICES
Some of the widget commands for mentries take an index as argument.  An index specifies a particular entry or label child of the mentry, in any of the following ways:
number   Specifies the child as a numerical index, where 0 corresponds to the first entry or label child.
end Indicates the last entry or label child of the mentry.
The word end can be abbreviated as en or e.  Out-of-range indices are automatically rounded to the nearest legal value.
WIDGET COMMAND
The mentry::mentry command creates a new Tcl command whose name is pathName.  This command may be used to invoke various operations on the widget.  It has the following general form:
pathName option ?arg arg ...?
option and the args determine the exact behavior of the command.  The following commands are possible for mentry widgets:
pathName adjustentry index string
Increases the width in pixels of the entry child identified by index if needed, to make it just large enough for texts of the child-specific maximal length, consisting of characters contained in the string argument.  Returns an empty string.
For example, when constructing a mentry widget whose components will accept up to two uppercase hexadecimal digits only, by passing the string "0123456789ABCDEF" to this subcommand you can make sure that the entry children will have optimal widths, just large enough to display not only the decimal digits, but also up to two letters in the range A - F (which need more room than the decimal digits when using a proportionally-spaced font).  It is recommended to invoke this subcommand even if the allowed characters are restricted to the digits 0 - 9 only, because in some fonts not all decimal digits have the same width.
pathName attrib ?name? ?value name value ...?
Queries or modifies the attributes of the widget.  If no name is specified, the command returns a list of pairs, each of which contains the name and the value of an attribute for pathName.  If name is specified with no value, then the command returns the value of the one named attribute, or an empty string if no corresponding value exists (you can use the hasattrib subcommand to distinguish this case from the one that the value of an existing attribute is an empty string).  If one or more name-value pairs are specified, then the command sets the given widget attribute(s) to the given value(s); in this case the return value is an empty string.  name may be an arbitrary string.
pathName cget option
Returns the current value of the configuration option given by option, which may have any of the values accepted by the mentry::mentry command.
pathName clear first ?last?
Erases the contents of one or more entry children of the widget.  first and last are indices specifying the first and last entries in the range to clear.  If last is not specified then it defaults to first, i.e., a single entry child is cleared.  The return value is an empty string.
pathName configure ?option? ?value option value ...?
Queries or modifies the configuration options of the widget.  If no option is specified, the command returns a list describing all of the available options for pathName (see Tk_ConfigureInfo for information on the format of this list).  If option is specified with no value, then the command returns a list describing the one named option (this list will be identical to the corresponding sublist of the value returned if no option is specified).  If one or more option-value pairs are specified, then the command modifies the given widget option(s) to have the given value(s); in this case the return value is an empty string.  option may have any of the values accepted by the mentry::mentry command.
pathName entries
Returns a list containing the path names of all entry children of the widget.
pathName entrycount
Returns the number of all entry children of the widget.
pathName entrylimit index
Returns the number of characters that can be inserted into the entry child identfied by index.
pathName entrypath index
Returns the path name of the entry child identfied by index.
pathName getarray array
For each entry child of the widget, the command assigns the string contained in the entry to the element of array having the index of the entry as element name.  The entry indices start with 0.  The return value is an empty string.
pathName getlist
Returns a list containing the strings of all entry children of the widget.
pathName getstring
Returns a string built by concatenating the strings contained in the entry children of the widget with the texts displayed in the labels separating the entries, in the creation order of the children, as given by the -body configuration option.  That is, the string of the first entry child is followed by the text of the first label, which in turn is followed by the string of the second entry, and so on.
pathName hasattrib name
Returns 1 if the attribute name exists and 0 otherwise.
pathName isempty ?index?
If index is specified then the command returns the value 1 if the string contained in the entry child identfied by index is empty and 0 otherwise.  If this optional argument is not present then the command returns the value 1 if the strings contained in the entry children of the widget are all empty and 0 otherwise.
pathName isfull ?index?
If index is specified then the command returns the value 1 if the length of the string contained in the entry child identfied by index equals the number of characters that can be inserted into the entry and 0 otherwise.  If this optional argument is not present then the command returns the value 1 if the lengths of the strings contained in the entry children of the widget all equal the numbers of characters that can be inserted into the respective entries (i.e., if all entry children are full) and 0 otherwise.
pathName labelcount
Returns the number of all label children of the widget.
pathName labelpath index
Returns the path name of the label child identfied by index.
pathName labels
Returns a list containing the path names of all label children of the widget.
pathName put startIndex ?string string ...?
Replaces the texts of the entry children whose indices are greater than or equal to startIndex with the corresponding string arguments by using the delete and insert operations, until either the entries or the strings are consumed.  If one of these subcommands gets canceled by some before-callback in any entry child then the command restores the original contents of all affected entries and returns the value 0, otherwise it returns 1.  In both cases, the command keeps the position of the insertion cursor in all entry children.
pathName setentryextrawidth index amount
Specifies additonal width to provide for the entry child identified by indexamount may have any of the standard forms for screen distances (e.g., a number of pixels).  The return value is an empty string.
Notice that changing the width of an entry child has no impact on the number of characters that can be inserted into it, which remains set to the corresponding component of the value of the mentry's -body option.
pathName setentryfont index font
Sets the font of the entry child identified by index to the value given by font.  This is done by invoking the configure subcommand of the Tcl command corresponding to the entry.  When using the package Mentry_tile, this command also performs some additional steps necessary for updating the appearance of the tile-based mentry widget.  The return value is an empty string.
pathName setentrywidth index width
Sets the width of the entry child identified by index to the number of characters given by width.  This is done by invoking the configure subcommand of the Tcl command corresponding to the entry.  When using the package Mentry_tile, this command also performs some additional steps necessary for updating the appearance of the tile-based mentry widget.  The return value is an empty string.
Notice that changing the width of an entry child has no impact on the number of characters that can be inserted into it, which remains set to the corresponding component of the value of the mentry's -body option.
pathName unsetattrib name
Unsets the attribute name.  Returns an empty string.
DEFAULT BINDINGS
The mentry::mentry command partially redefines the bindings of the children of the mentry widget it creates:
  1. Clicking mouse button 1 in a label child positions the insertion cursor to the end of the last enabled entry preceding the label, sets the input focus to that entry, and clears any selection in it.
  2. If in a non-empty entry child a character is typed that is contained in the label following that entry (if any), then the focus is moved to the next enabled entry child, the contents of that entry are selected, and the insertion cursor is set to its end.
  3. At the beginning of an entry child that is not the first enabled entry within the widget, the Left key clears the selection in that entry, moves the focus to the previous enabled entry child, and sets the insertion cursor to the end of that widget.  Similarly, at the end of an entry child that is not the last enabled entry within the widget, the Right key clears the selection in that entry, moves the focus to the next enabled entry child, and sets the insertion cursor to the beginning of that widget.  If tk_strictMotif is false then Control-b and Control-f behave the same as Left and Right, respectively.
  4. In an entry child that is not the first enabled entry within the widget, Control-Left moves the focus to the previous enabled entry child, selects the contents of that widget, and sets the insertion cursor to its end; if there is no enabled entry child to the left of the current one then Control-Left moves the insertion cursor to the beginning of the current entry and clears the selection in that widget.  Similarly, in an entry child that is not the last enabled entry within the widget, Control-Right moves the focus to the next enabled entry child, selects the contents of that widget, and sets the insertion cursor to its end; if there is no enabled entry child to the right of the current one then Control-Right moves the insertion cursor to the end of the current entry and clears the selection in that widget.  If tk_strictMotif is false then Meta-b and Meta-f behave the same as Control-Left and Control-Right, respectively.
  5. The Home key clears the selection in the current entry widget, moves the focus to the first enabled entry child, and sets the insertion cursor to the beginning of that widget.  Similarly, the End key clears the selection in the current entry widget, moves the focus to the last enabled entry child, and sets the insertion cursor to the end of that widget.  If tk_strictMotif is false then Control-a and Control-e behave the same as Home and End, respectively.
  6. Shift-Home moves the focus to the first enabled entry child, sets the insertion cursor to the beginning of that widget, and either extends the selection to that position, or clears the selection in the current entry and selects the contents of the new widget, depending upon whether the current entry is the first enabled entry child or not.  Similarly, Shift-End moves the focus to the last enabled entry child, sets the insertion cursor to the end of that widget, and either extends the selection to that position, or clears the selection in the current entry and selects the contents of the new widget, depending upon whether the current entry is the last enabled entry child or not.
  7. The BackSpace key deletes the selection if there is one in the current entry.  Otherwise, it deletes either the character to the left of the insertion cursor in the current entry, or the last character of the previous enabled entry child.  The latter takes place at the beginning of an entry child that is not the first enabled entry within the widget; in this case, the BackSpace key also moves the focus to the previous enabled entry child and sets the insertion cursor to its end.  If tk_strictMotif is false then Control-h behaves the same as BackSpace.
  8. If tk_strictMotif is false then Meta-d deletes all characters to the right of the insertion cursor within the current entry, while Meta-BackSpace and Meta-Delete delete either all characters to the left of the insertion cursor in the current entry, or the contents of the previous enabled entry child.  The latter takes place at the beginning of an entry child that is not the first enabled entry within the widget; in this case, Meta-BackSpace and Meta-Delete also clear the selection in the current entry widget and move the focus to the previous enabled entry child.
KEYWORDS
mentry, widget, entry, label

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