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3.2 The Status Bar

The last line of the screen, the status bar, is reserved by ne for displaying some information about its internal state. Note that on most terminals it is physically impossible to write a character on the last column of the last line, so we are not stealing precious editing space.

The status bar looks more or less like this:

L:      31  C:      25   12% iabcwfpvurt!MRPC@8*       20 /foo/bar

The numbers after ‘L:’ and ‘C:’ are the line and column of the cursor position. The first line and the first column are both number 1. Then, ne shows the percentage of lines before the current line (it will be 0% on the first line, and 100% on the last line).

Following that are a sequence of letters or dashes. These indicate the status of a series of flags which we shall look at later.

The hexadecimal digits following the flags give the code for the character at the cursor, and are displayed optionally (see HexCode). If your cursor is at or beyond the right end of the current line, the code disappears.

The file name appearing after the character code is the file name of the current document. The left end of very long file names may be truncated to keep the right end visible. Of course, ne is keeping track internally of the complete file name. It is used by the Save command and as the default input for the SaveAs command. See Save, and SaveAs.

The displayed line and column numbers, the percentage indicator and the character code change when the cursor moves. This fact can really slow down cursor movement if you are using ne through a slow connection. If you find this to be a problem, it is a good idea to turn off the status bar using either the ‘Status Bar’ menu item of the ‘Prefs’ menu or the StatusBar command. See StatusBar. Alternatively you can turn on the fast GUI mode using either the ‘Fast GUI’ menu item of the ‘Prefs’ menu or the FastGUI command (see FastGUI). In fast GUI mode the location of the mark is not highlighted, and status bar is not draw in reverse, so some additional optimization can be done when refreshing it.

The letters after the line and column number represent the status of the flags associated with the current document. Flags that are off display a ‘-’ instead of a letter. Each flag also has an associated command. The Flags command describes them all when you don’t have this manual handy. Here’s the list in detail:


appears if the insert flag is true. See Insert.


appears if the auto indent flag is true. See AutoIndent.


appears if the back search flag is true. See SearchBack.


appears if the case sensitive search flag is true. See CaseSearch.


appears if the word wrap flag is true. See WordWrap.


appears if the free form flag is true. See FreeForm.


appears if the automatic preferences flag is true. See AutoPrefs.


appears if the verbose macros flag is true. See VerboseMacros.


appears if the undo flag is true. See DoUndo.


appears if the read only flag is true. See ReadOnly.

t or T

appears as ‘t’ if the tabs flag is true, ‘T’ if the shifttabs flag is also true. See Tabs, ShiftTabs.


appears if the deltabs flag is true. See DelTabs.

B or !

appears if the binary flag is true. See Binary.


appears in place of ‘B’ when not in binary mode and the last line of the document is not empty (i.e. the last line of the saved file would not be terminated).

M or V

appears if you are currently marking a block. See Mark.


can appear in place of ‘M’ if you are currently marking a vertical block. See MarkVert.


appears if you are currently recording a macro. See Record.


appears if the PreserveCR flag is true. See PreserveCR.


appears if the CRLF flag is true. See CRLF.


appears if UTF-8 I/O is enabled. See UTF8IO.


denotes the current document encoding—US-ASCII, 8-bit or UTF-8. See UTF8.


appears if the document has been modified since the last save, or if the Modified command was issued to set this flag. See Modified. This ‘-’ or ‘*’ may be underlined, which indicates the corresponding file’s modification time has changed since the current document was loaded from or saved to that file.

Note that sometimes ne needs to communicate some message to you. The message is usually written over the status bar, where it stays until you do something. Any action such as moving the cursor or inserting a character will restore the normal status bar.

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