ETAB$ (string$ [,tabdist]) where tabdist=1..255



Some editors and word-processors use the character CHR$(9) as a tab mark to save the space which would otherwise be needed to store several spaces. The function ETAB$ takes a given string, expands all tab marks in it and returns the result.

If the tabulator distance, tabdist, is not given, a default of eight characters is assumed. The length of string$ has to be smaller than 256 characters: LEN(string$)<256.

Tabdist>255 has no effect.


The text file test_txt is shown with all tab marks expanded:

100 OPEN_IN#3,test_txt
110 CLS
120 REPeat all_lines
130   IF EOF(#3) THEN EXIT all_lines
140   INPUT#3,line$
150   IF LEN(line$)>255 THEN line$=line$(1 TO 255)
160   PRINT ETAB$(line$,4)
170 END REPeat all_lines
180 CLOSE#3


A value of tabdist<=0 will not produce usable output.


Although tab mark distances of 32766 and 32767 are allowed, ETAB$ will not produce a sensible output. It may even possibly crash the system.


CTAB$ is the complimentary function to ETAB$. INSTR finds the position of a string in another string. LEN returns the length of a string.