Using Modal Dialog Boxes

It is important that users know what to do and are aware of the consequences of any action they take. You can create dialog boxes that send messages to your users. Dialog boxes are screens of type Modal dialog box. You set this attribute when you create the screen.

A modal dialog box can contain the following information:

  • detailed information about objects or processes
  • procedural instructions that tell the user what to do next and how to do it
  • diagnostic details that inform a user about the status or outcome of an operation


You should use dialog boxes for any of the following purposes:

data input

Allows for entry of file names, selection criteria, and optional parameters.

online control

Defines or restricts the online flow for the user.

data backup

Prompts users of an attempt to leave a screen without saving. This is the only way to avoid unintentional loss of data.

Confirmation or help messages

Warns the user about functions that may result in the loss of important data. This type of dialog should provide the option to cancel the operation.

Creating a Dialog Box

You create a dialog box just as you do a normal screen. However, you must remember to set the Modal dialog box attribute. You should also remember to restrict the dialog size with the Lines/columns Maint. attribute.