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Readme for analog3.11

Syntax of configuration commands

When analog starts up, it first reads options from configuration files and the command line (assuming that you are running analog from an operating system with a command line). Defaults for many of these options will have already been set in the file analhead.h at the time the program was compiled. So if you compile your own version of analog, rather than downloading a pre-compiled executable, you can also set some options in that file before compiling. Those options are all documented there.
The first file which analog reads is the default configuration file, normally called analog.cfg. You can stop this file being read by specifying the option -G on the command line. Then the command line arguments are read, in the order in which they appear. Finally, the mandatory configuration file is read, if you specified one when you compiled the program. This is a configuration file which cannot be overridden by the user: if it is not found, analog exits immediately. This allows a system administrator to prevent users analysing certain files or producing certain reports, for example. However, note that the only certain way to prevent users analysing things is to deny them access to the logfile. Otherwise there is nothing to stop them analysing the logfile using another copy of analog or another program.
You can include another configuration file from the command line by using a command like +gother.cfg. (Note that there is no space between +g and the filename; this is true of all command line arguments.) You can also include another configuration file from within a configuration file by a command like
CONFIGFILE other.cfg
The commands in the other configuration file are read immediately, in order. The program then continues reading the command line or calling configuration file where it left off. Note that reading an alternative configuration file does not stop the default configuration file being read as well. To do that you have to specify -G as well as the +g command.

In the Mac version, you can start up a program with a particular configuration file by dragging it onto the analog icon. The configuration file must start with a #. The default configuration file is still read first.

You can also specify any configuration command on the command line even if it doesn't have a command line abbreviation, by use of the +C command. For example, +C"UNCOMPRESS *.gz" will include that command.

Here are the syntax rules for configuration commands. A configuration file contains several commands on separate lines; any text after a hash (#) on a line is ignored as a comment. Each command consists of the command name followed by one or two arguments. An argument to a command may optionally be placed in single or double quotes or parentheses, and it must be if the argument contains a hash or a space. So, for example, here are some valid configuration commands
DAILY      OFF   # We don't want a daily summary
FULLDAILY  "ON"  # We want a full daily report instead 
HOSTNAME (Spam Widgets Inc.)  # Spaces, so quotes or brackets needed
Generally later commands override earlier ones if there is a conflict (e.g., for the OUTFILE, because you can have only one), or supplement them if there is no conflict (e.g., for the LOGFILE, because you can read several logfiles).
If all the options seem a bit confusing, just run
analog -settings [other options]
or include PRINTVARS ON in the configuration commands. That will tell you what the values of all the variables will be, based on the defaults in analhead.h, the configuration commands, and the command line options. If you're on Unix or Windows, remember that you can send the output to a file with
analog -settings > file

Stephen Turner
E-mail: analog-author@lists.isite.net

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