Browse Prior Art Database

Environment Variable Ascending Search Indicator

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000109690D
Original Publication Date: 1992-Sep-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-24
Document File: 2 page(s) / 98K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Kardell, D: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

This article describes a method for extending the environment-variable specifications to allow extended searching of subdirectories. It allows the user to specify special characters such as ' /ps' to signal to the command processor and other programs that the subdirectory specified is to be searched along with all the subdirectories that exist above the initial search point.

This text was extracted from an ASCII text file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 52% of the total text.

Environment Variable Ascending Search Indicator

       This article describes a method for extending the
environment-variable specifications to allow extended searching of
subdirectories.  It allows the user to specify special characters
such as ' /ps' to signal to the command processor and other programs
that the subdirectory specified is to be searched along with all the
subdirectories that exist above the initial search point.

      Both DOS and OS/2* programs use environment variables to locate
files needed for correct operation.  The setting of the environment
variables can become a very complicated and time-consuming task.
Most environment-variable settings limit the total length allowed.
It has become increasingly complicated to set up the environment
variables to include every directory on the hard disk that might need
to be accessed.  There is no way to tell the command processor or
operating system to start a search for a specified file in the lowest
level directory and have the system search all subdirectories above
the initial directory.

      Below is an example of how SET can be used to set the
environment variables in your OS/2 CONFIG.SYS file today.  Notice
that to specify the many subdirectories under C:\WORK, the user must
specially specify all directories to be searched.
      SET PATH=C:\;C:\WORK;C:\WORK\OLD;C:\WORK\OLD\NEW;

      Below are examples of how SET could be used with the
implementation of this disclosure.  This would perform the same
objective.  All subdirectories (including the C:\WORK\OLD\NEW) above
the C:\WORK\OLD\ NEW directory would be searched.
      SET PATH=C:\WORK\OLD\NEW  /ps;

      Environment variables can define a relationship between
subdirectories and programs installed on a workstation.  Programs can
use the environment variables to locate files for correct program
operation.  For example, OS/2 uses the LIBPATH environment variable
to specify the search order for Dynamic Linked Libraries.  OS/2 uses
the PATH and HELP environment variables to find program files and
help files.  These environment variables are very crucial to the
operation of the software programs and the operating systems.  In
many cases, a program may want to search multiple subdirectories for
specified files.  Currently, for the program to do this, every
subdirectory must be specified when the environment variable i...