Running EXTRA! X-treme from the Command Line

  • 7021248
  • 30-Nov-2006
  • 01-Oct-2018


EXTRA! X-treme version 9.x


Beginning in EXTRA! X-treme 9.0, you can launch EXTRA! using executable command line options. This feature offers a DOS command line-type interface for creating new configurations on the fly and starting EXTRA! with a predefined configuration. This technical note describes how to use the new feature and lists the parameters you can use with EXTRA!


About EXTRA! X-treme's Command Line Functionality

Beginning in version 9.0, EXTRA! X-treme includes new functionality that enables you to load EXTRA! using command line options. Use this feature by creating a shortcut with the required parameters, and then placing this shortcut in an accessible location, for example, the Microsoft Windows Desktop or as a link in a Microsoft Office Word document.

Prior to Running EXTRA!

Review the following information prior to invoking EXTRA! from the command line:

  • When launching a host session, the following default values are used:
    • English
    • 101-key keyboard
    • Default 3270.EDP file as a template
    • 3270 session with TN3270(E) connectivity

If these default parameters are not correct for your connection, you must supply the appropriate parameters from the command line.

  • Gather all relevant information required for creating a host connection prior to creating the shortcut, such as the Host IP address or Alias and the TCP port number.
  • The machine that you are connecting from must have an existing EXTRA! X-treme configuration file (3270.EDP). Parameters specified on the command line are added to the settings specified in this EDP file.

The majority of the command line parameters are optional and defaults are typically heavily relied upon so that users can create a connection by supplying only the required Host name or IP Address at the command line.

Registry Settings

The ability to run EXTRA! from a command line was available on a limited basis prior to the EXTRA! X-treme 9.0 release. If you used this functionality with an earlier version of EXTRA!, you may have the following Windows registry settings:

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\VB and VBA Program Settings\DEXTRA\Settings]

Key Name:
Key Type:
(Value not set)
C:\Program Files\Attachmate\...
C:\Program Files\Attachmate\...

If these Microsoft Windows registry settings exist, they will be migrated to the following Windows registry location, which is the location used beginning with EXTRA! X-treme 9.0:


Data:(Default values used for illustration)
(Value not set)
<installdir>\Schemes\ENU\Extra! Office (101 key).ekm

Note the following:

  • Existing settings in the Windows Registry will be migrated and override the default values shown above. Once the default values are set in the Microsoft Windows registry, the shortcut can pass in less information, for example, only the Host name will have to be set on the command line.
  • If you want to change the default behavior of the PC system, you can distribute .REG files to modify these specific registry entries; however, the registry entries are not necessary for the proper operation of this feature because every parameter can also be entered on the command line. The Windows registry entries are only added for convenience where the built-in defaults are not appropriate for a specific situation.

Requirements for Running EXTRA! from the Command Line

To run EXTRA! from the command line, you must have a copy of EXTRA! X-treme 9.0 or higher installed on your machine and be running Microsoft Windows 2000 or higher.

At the command prompt or from Start > Run, enter the following command:

extra.exe /h "<host name or IP address>"

Required Parameter

Host Alias—Alias name or Fully Qualified Domain Name (FQDN) of the Host system to establish connection to at startup—or an IP Address. If an IP Address is supplied it can be of the format abc.def.ghi.jkl:zz where the portion after the colon (:) or the zz parameter specifies the remote TCP port for the connection to be established on.

Optional Parameters

To use any of the optional parameters, you must also use the required /h parameter.

Import settings for the connection from the Host template file (for EXTRA! X-treme 9.0 this is an *.EDP file containing default host session configuration information and typically found in the \Sessions\Templates directory)
No Logo (do not display the splash screen when EXTRA! is started)
Window Title (display the supplied window title in EXTRA!)
Keyboard Map file to load (for EXTRA! X-treme 9.0 this is an *.EKM file containing keyboard configuration information and typically found in the \Schemes directory)
Source directory for the session configuration file (for EXTRA! X-treme 9.0 this is an *.EDP file containing host session configuration information and typically found in the \Sessions directory)
Destination directory (directory for temporary configuration file(s) to be stored in)
Run macro file as a startup macro (for EXTRA! X-treme 9.0 this is an *.EBM file containing a macro and typically found in the \Macro directory)
Profile name to load. (Added in 9.1.)

Note: For the /i, /k, /s, /d, /m, and /p parameters, use the fully qualified directory name to the EXTRA! directory, for example, c:\program files\attachmate\extra!\sessions\ENU\, or else make sure that the appropriate files are placed in the EDPSource or EDPImport directory as specified in Registry Settings.

Command Line Format

Use the following command line format:

EXTRA.EXE /<option 1> "<value>" /<option 2> "<value>" ... /<option n> "<value>"

Note: The "/" character is used as a separator to tokenize the options passed in from the command line, thus the option strings themselves may not contain the "/" character. Options can be specified in either upper or lower case.

Example Command Lines

EXTRA.EXE /h "" /i "c:\this name has spaces\template.edp" /wt "Acme Corp"

EXTRA.EXE /h "" /n

Default Parameter Operations

Listed below is the default operation for each parameter when used individually as an option, (i.e. without a specific trailing value) or when not specified:

Setting by itself or not specified on the command line will import settings from the default 3270 template file located at \Sessions\ENU\Template\3270.EDP.
If this option is not present, display the EXTRA! logo at session start.
Setting by itself or not specified on the command line will use the standard EXTRA! window title.
Setting by itself or not specified on the command line will import settings from the default 101-key keyboard map file located at \Schemes\ENU\Extra! Office (101 key).ekm
Setting by itself or not specified on the command line will default to the source location for configuration *.EDP files: <installdir>\Sessions\ENU
Setting by itself or not specified on the command line will default to the destination location for temporary configuration files: <installdir>\Sessions\ENU
No default value if not present or used by itself.
No default value if not present or used by itself.
If this option is not present, a temporary session profile is created for the current session.

Note: Typically the <installdir> for EXTRA! X-treme 9.0 is pointing to C:\Program Files\Attachmate\EXTRA! but this can be changed by the installer.

EXTRA! Command Line Program Logic

The following program logic is used by the command line feature and is helpful if problems are encountered in its operation.

If the /h parameter is available on the EXTRA.EXE command line the "command line mode of operation" for EXTRA! is enabled, which operates as follows:

  1. EXTRA! reads the values from preexisting registry entries in HKEY_CURRENT_USER (HKCU) and initializes the parameters in their new registry location.
  2. EXTRA! stores the default entries in the new HKCU registry area if they do not already exist.
  3. EXTRA! reads any optional parameters from the command line and sets properties appropriately for this instance.
  4. EXTRA! creates the host session settings structure based on the existing session profile passed in with the /p option, the template file passed in with the /i option, or the default 3270.EDP file if no template is supplied.
  5. When the /p option is used, EXTRA! loads the session profile as requested. Changes made to the profile during the current session are saved to this file according to the user’s Global Preferences. When the /p option is not used, EXTRA! saves the settings file temporarily using the same mechanism as the EXTRA! New Session Wizard.
  6. EXTRA! starts and runs the host session as configured in the EDP file with the command line parameters substituted.
  7. EXTRA! runs any Startup Macro that is supplied on the command line.

Functionality Provided in Earlier EXTRA! Versions

The following features continue to be available in EXTRA! X-treme 9.0 and higher.

Loading Sessions with no Switches

In versions 9.0 and earlier, to load EXTRA! from the command line, type extra.exe followed by the .EDP file name, without using double-quotes.

For example:

extra.exe session1.EDP    (to launch a display session)


extra,exe session2.EPP    (to launch a printer session)

Using the /t Option

The /t option is already available for an EXTRA! command line to provide a quick connection option for VT/telnet or TN3270 communications.

Use the following syntax for the /t option:

"extra.exe -t telnet:\\<host>:<port>"


"extra.exe -t tn3270:\\<host>:<port>"

Configuring Extra.exe as the Default Telnet Client

The EXTRA.EXE program can be registered with Microsoft Windows as the default Telnet client. This enables a shortcut to be created or a command, as shown below, to be entered at the Microsoft Windows Start > Run command line to start a Telnet session:


Additional Information

Legacy KB ID

This document was originally published as Attachmate Technical Note 2153.