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Configuration File Syntax

Configuration Files consist of statements of following types:
  • Flow directives that control the flow through Configuration File
  • Variable directives that control certain aspects of Configuration Variables
  • Assignment statements that set the value of Configuration Variables
  • Expressions and operators that manipulate strings or Configuration Variables to yield results that can be used in directives or assignments

When files or directories are specified in Configuration Files, forward slashes are used as directory separators, and whenever a directory is specified as the value of a Configuration File, it is followed by a trailing forward slash. For example, the following statement sets the Configuration Variable MS_DEF to the c:\users\John.Smith\Documents directory:

MS_DEF = c:/users/John.Smith/Documents/
Tip: Leaving off the trailing slash is a common error.
Configuration Variables are often defined in terms of other Configuration Variables. Following are the syntaxes for defining a Configuration Variable in terms of another Configuration Variable:
Syntax Meaning
$(<CfgVarName>) The plain parentheses cause the expression to be stored as the Configuration Variable definition verbatim and evaluated only when the value of the Configuration Variable is eventually needed during program execution. This allows Configuration Variable definitions to use other Configuration Variables that have not yet been defined. This is the most commonly used syntax.
${<CfgVarName>} The curly braces cause the expression to be immediately evaluated, and the result stored as the Configuration Variable definition. Therefore, any Configuration variable contained within the curly braces must have been defined by an earlier assignment.