When a new file database is created in version 14.06, the program now copies the default Master and Design Steel Tables out of the RAM Tables directory and adds them to the file database. These tables become a permanent part of the file database unless the user selects different tables.
Similarly, if an existing model created prior to V14.06 is opened in this version (starting with V14.06), the database is “converted” to the current version and, since tables weren’t previously part of the database, the program determines which tables were selected for that model and if they are available in the RAM Tables directory the program adds them to the database (otherwise it adds the default tables).
At any time the user can select different tables using the Criteria – Master Table and Criteria – Steel Design Tables commands. When the user does this the old table (or tables) is removed from the database and the newly selected table (or tables) is added to the database.
The database can be moved from computer to computer and it doesn’t matter what tables are in the RAM Tables directory, the program always uses the table saved with the database.
Over time, a table may be updated or modified, or in the case of a user table may be edited. This means the table in the RAM Tables directory is different than the table in the model. If desired by the user, the tables in the model can be updated to the more current versions using the Criteria – Master Table and Criteria – Steel Design Tables commands. When the Criteria – Master Table command is invoked the program compares the Master table in the model with the Master table of the same name in the RAM Tables directory; if the contents are different the program gives the following message:
A similar warning is given when the Criteria – Steel Design Tables command is invoked if any of the Design Steel tables are different:
Selecting Yes will cause the table (or tables) to be updated so that the table stored in the model is the latest found in the RAM Tables directory, and the old table will be discarded.
A special feature is available for those that use custom tables. If a model has a custom table, and that model is moved to a machine on which that custom table is not available, the program will, as explained above, use the table assigned to the model so it doesn’t matter that the same table is not available in the RAM Tables directory. However, consider the case where, for example, the engineer wants to temporarily use a different table, with the intent of returning to the original user table later. If the engineer selects a different table, the table stored with the database is discarded, and if it isn’t in the current RAM Tables directory cannot be reselected – it is lost. When this possibility occurs, the program detects that, and offers the user to export that table out of his model by making an Export button available:
The user can then export this table out to the RAM Tables directory where it will subsequently be available for re-selection if desired. Note that in order to access the Export capability the user should select No when the message asking if the user wants to update the model’s tables appears, otherwise the tables will be updated before this dialog appears and the Export command won’t be available.
Table EditorThe behavior of the Table Editor is also impacted by this feature. The Table Editor edits the tables in the RAM tables’ directory. Editing a table in the RAM Tables directory, either using the Table Editor or some other editor, does not automatically cause all of the databases that use that table to be updated, each database must be updated as described above. If a database is open when the Table Editor is invoked the following message occurs:
This means that if a database is open when the Table Editor is invoked, the table in the RAM Tables directory will be modified as edited, AND the tables in the current database (but not in any other database) will be updated to the modified tables.
If there are tables in the database that are different than the tables in the RAM Tables directory, a more explicit warning is given so that the user doesn’t lose tables that he wants preserved:
Selecting “Yes” will cause the tables to be updated and the old tables in the database will be discarded.
RAM Table Editing [FAQ]