There are three aspects to SDT:
- It enhances the tools Visual FoxPro provides to manage the database container.
- It provides the ability to define extended properties for database objects and set or obtain the values of these properties at run-time.
- It includes a class library you can add to your applications to provide database management functions at run-time, including recreating indexes, repairing corrupted table headers, and updating table structures at client sites.
SDT automatically redefines views when you change the structure of a table involved in a view. It propagates table and field name changes throughout the database container, and updates both the database and DBF header when a DBF is moved or renamed.
SDT adds structural information to the data dictionary so you can create tables and indexes or update their structures whenever necessary. SDT includes other extensions as well, defining information such as captions for tables and indexes, and many more.
You can even define your own custom properties whenever you need to. Define security levels, usage information, captions in other languages ... anything is possible. Get these values at run-time to create truly data-driven applications. Change the property in one place, and every form, program, or report that uses it changes instantly.
SDT's class library provides methods to manage databases and tables at run-time. For example, the OpenAllTables() method automatically opens all tables in the database flagged as "autoopen".
The most useful class library methods are:
Reindex(), which recreates indexes from their data dictionary definitions.
Repair(), which repairs corrupted table and memo headers.
Update(), which creates or updates table structures according to their data dictionary definitions.
- SDT was awarded the Developer's Choice award for Best Utility at the VFP DevCon 2000 Connections conference in New Orleans.
- SDT was named "Best Desktop Tool" in the 2001 Universal Thread Members Choice Awards.
SDT has received rave reviews. In the August 2003 issue of FoxPro Advisor, Mike Lewis said, "Stonefield to the rescue ... By taking advantage of just two methods in the Stonefield class library, I was able to solve all my problems with minimum coding." In his review in the January 2001 issue of FoxPro Advisor (the first of a two-part review; the second was in March 2001), Alex Wieder said "I can definitely say the SDT belongs in the arsenal of any VFP developer intent on using his or her time in more productive tasks." In the August 1996 issue of FoxPro Advisor, reviewer Dan Freeman wrote "The amount of time this tool will save you will be made up in nearly no billable time at all." Kelly Conway said in the October 1996 issue of FoxTalk: "SDT is a great tool."
Here's another testimonial, from Art Bergquist of Visionpace: "I just want to say that you have done an excellent job both with the product as well as with the documentation. Our application is not only looking more professional as well as running faster because of SDT, it's also a ton easier to maintain. Keep up the excellent work!"
Larry Tucker said, "Just a quick note of appreciation from one very satisfied SDT user ... You've created a very valuable product. One reason it continues to be valuable over time is that you continuously improve/upgrade/adapt it. In my book ... this is a bargain."
According to Frank Mundo, SDT is "absolutely the cat's whisker ... Truly the 'missing piece' in Visual FoxPro. SDT is, hands down and indisputably, essential for the professional FoxPro developer."
Ed Ermers said, "Great product you have, I don't know how I would have handled structure changes without it. It's nice to be able to install a product that will just take care of the databases for me."
Andrew Coates of Civil Solutions in Australia said, "With a little trepidation, I sat down yesterday to retrofit a large-ish app that suddenly needed maintenance including updates to the data structure. [Integrating SDT] was painless -- less than 15 minutes work from start to completion of testing! Thanks for this great utility. Having tools like this makes programming even more fun."
According to Chris Vesper of Bbl Systems: "The amount of functionality you get for the $ paid on SDT is higher than any other toolkit we use. It makes data structure updates (and fixing corrupted data) so ridiculously easy ... It works like a charm, we have hundreds of customers and I can't remember the last time we had a problem with it."
Compatible With All Major Frameworks
SDT works great with all the major commercial Visual FoxPro frameworks! Visual MaxFrame Professional (VMP) from Vision Data Solutions has "hook" properties of all classes, and is natively set up to work with SDT (see ourTechnical Papers page for a document on how to integrate SDT and VMP). Visual FoxExpress (VFE) fromF1 Technologies automatically instantiates SDT at runtime because they both use DBCX for the data dictionary extensions (see our Technical Papers page for a document on how to integrate SDT and VFE). The Mere Mortals framework from Oak Leaf now supports SDT methods. Even if you're using your own framework, simply add our class libraries to your project and two lines of code at application startup to get the full benefit of SDT in your applications.
Works With xCASE
SDT also works great with xCASE from RESolution Ltd. xCASE is the premier CASE tool for FoxPro database design. RESolution and Stonefield together created a utility that reads the xCASE information into the DBCX format. Now, you can use xCASE to do your database design (we use it ourselves and highly recommend it) and then use SDT for all the things you need to do at runtime (reindex, repair, update, and use extended properties).
Pricing and Licensing Information
SDT is available now for only $495 US, which includes a one-year subscription for updates and support. SDT includes royalty-free source code for all routines. One copy is required for each developer using it; special site license pricing is available. SDT has a 60 day unconditional money-back guarantee.