Using Assist

The Assist facility allows you to easily display more detailed information about SQL identifiers and other keywords that appear in your QMF queries and procedures.

About this task

For example, if you select a Db2 table name, Assist displays the columns belonging to that table. If you select a QMF keyword, Assist displays the QMF help data for that keyword.

If you position the cursor on the character immediately ahead of the target word and invoke Assist, a list of alternatives to the target word are displayed. For example, if you select a table name, Assist displays other tables belonging to that owner. If you select a QMF or SQL keyword, Assist displays other keywords of a similar type.

Assist will display data on a table or browse panel depending on the data type.The target word you select is always shown in context at the top of the Assist panel. The edit data from the edit line that contains the target word is shown along with the preceding and following edit lines. The target word is shown in reverse green unless you have selected ahead of the word (in which case, the target word is shown in reverse red to indicate that the word can be replaced by any of the items from the first column in the list by using the R replace line command.

To setup the method by which you invoke Assist, enter the EESET command or select the Enhanced Editor settings option from the Settings menu. Assist is invoked by positioning the cursor on or just ahead of a target word in the edit data and pressing the key you have indicated in the Settings dialog. Available options are:

  • The Enter key (alternatively, you can click the target word)
  • The Help function key (alternatively, you can enter the HELP command)
  • Inhibit (turns the Assist feature off)

In a query, the target word can be an SQL identifier such as a Db2 table owner, table name, column name, column value or an SQL keyword or function. In a procedure it can only be a QMF command.

  • Assist cannot be invoked by selecting a blank character. You must select a non-blank character in your target word to invoke Assist. If the target is a blank value, you can select a surrounding quote.
  • Browsable Db2 table data is limited to the first 100 rows and 250 columns.Db2 tables containing unsupported data types XML, CLOB and BLOB cannot be browsed. Up to 1000 distinct values can be listed on a column value display.
  • Help information for some SQL keywords and REXX keywords is not included in the QMF Enhanced Editor.
  • Assist is primarily designed for use within SQL SELECT statements. Other SQL statements might not always produce correct results. Assist does not access Db2 data when analyzing an identifier that you have selected. This means that ambiguities can arise in multi-table queries (or in other intricate queries) where aliases are not used and Assist might subsequently fail to correctly identify the parent identifier of a selected token.