ini file configuration feature

ini file is a file extension and data format for configuration and setup files for software applications. ini is abbreviated as Initialize values very popularly used by windows Operating System.

ini files look like properties file with comments, headers

Key and values

ini file contains a group of items, each item contains keys and values separate by the equal symbol

key=value
  • the key is a valid identifier that will not contain = or ; symbols.
  • The value is the valid identifier of any string
  • Key can be String, number, or Boolean values.

Sections

sections are grouped with similar key and value pairs under one name enclosed in a square bracket, these are called sections or headers.

[Section or Header]
key1=value1
key2=value2
  • Section or Headers contains multiple keys and value pairs in a separated line
  • There can be multiple sections
  • section is optional

Comments

Comments are ignored by the compiler. ; symbol at beginning of a line tells it is comment and ignored by the processor

; comment text

Options with the same key and multiple different values

Options are identified using the same key with different values.
Each option is declared in a separate line as follows

option1=male
option1=female

Important rules

  • section and key names are cases insensitive
  • section and key can not be spaces
  • section, key and values are encoded in ISO 8859-1
  • Binary data can be encoded ASCII or ISO 8859-1
  • if the same multiple section names are there, the last section considers
  • Nested sections are not allowed.