ACUCOBOL-GT® is part of the extend® family of Micro Focus solutions.
In addition to the standard display handling included in ANSI-85 COBOL, ACUCOBOL-GT offers a comprehensive set of extensions
for programming and managing Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs). With these extensions, an ACUCOBOL-GT developer can add a full-featured,
native GUI to an existing program entirely in COBOL. The purpose of these extensions is to:
- allow developers to create a fully graphical program in COBOL for use on systems such as Microsoft Windows.
- allow developers to use a mix of graphical and character-based interfaces in one program. Graphical features can be added
to an existing program without the need to rewrite the entire user interface.
- allow programmers to develop graphical interface specifications that are portable to a variety of host systems.
- support graphical features in a way that is natural for COBOL.
- mimic existing COBOL screen syntax as closely as possible to simplify the task of reworking a character-based program into
a graphical program.
- avoid the need to do event loop programming that is common for graphical systems, but foreign to most COBOL programs.
- make it easy to add new graphical capabilities in the future.
ACUCOBOL-GT supports the emulation of graphical controls and windows on character-based systems. This emulation allows you
to more easily write a single program that will run on both character and graphical systems. ACUCOBOL-GT supports the emulation
of floating windows and the following control types: label, entry field, push button, radio button, frame, check box, list
box (including infinite capacity list box), and combo box.
You can also use ACUCOBOL-GT's traditional text-oriented mechanisms for creating your user interface, such as the textual
forms of the ACCEPT and DISPLAY verbs, and Format 1 of the Screen Section. In addition, you can use the Screen Section extensions
to define and process both character-based and graphical user interface screens.
Windows in this manual denote any of the supported Windows platforms, which are listed in the Product Availability section on the
Micro Focus SupportLine Web site:
https://supportline.microfocus.com/prodavail.aspx. Where it is necessary to make a distinction, the specific version name/number is specified.
Generally, ACUCOBOL-GT GUI supports include:
- syntax extensions for creating native floating windows, toolbars, and controls (such as buttons, entry fields, and labels)
- the ability to create and manage menu bars with pull-down submenus
- configuration variables for customizing windows, importing icons, and mapping colors
- many host specific features such as message boxes and context-sensitive help
Specifically, ACUCOBOL-GT's GUI programming supports include:
- native floating (moveable) windows, including:
- "modal" and "modeless" window types
- default and custom window size and position
- dynamically resizeable windows
- configurable borders
- programmable title bar
- optional system menu
- GUI controls, including:
- entry fields
- standard and infinite capacity list boxes
- combo boxes
- push buttons
- radio buttons
- check boxes
- scroll bars*
- tree views
- status bars
- Web browsers*
- .NET, ActiveX, and COM elements*
- menu bars and submenus
- display of bitmaps and bitmap buttons*
- access to the native message box facility
- access to the native file open and file save-as dialog boxes*
- access to the native help facility and support for context sensitive help
- specialized mouse handling
- font selection and handling
- custom colors
- the ability to play ".WAV" audio files on Microsoft Windows systems with sound capabilities
Note: Items marked with an "*" are not supported in text-mode environments
ACUCOBOL-GT run-time supports include:
- full object code compatibility
- the creation and run-time management of native floating windows and graphical controls on Microsoft Windows and Windows NT
- automatic text-mode emulation of floating windows and most graphical controls, except bars, scroll bars, tabs, animated bitmaps,
bitmap buttons, and toolbars
- automatic mouse support
- automatic menu bar handling
- extensive color mapping facilities
- access to the Windows print spooler
- automatic multi-tasking support
- network compatibility
- access to all memory available under Windows