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will give you the columns in your table.
so you can select columns you need it or select all.
SQL> COLUMN name FORMAT A8,
SQL> COLUMN address FORMAT A15
If a name is longer than 8 characters, the remaining is displayed at the second line (or several lines)
** The set command can be used to change the default number of lines per page (14) and the number of characters per line (80).
For example, to set the number of lines per page to 60, use the following command:
SQL> SET PAGESIZE 60
All formatting remain active until they are cleared or reset or after you exit from SQL*Plus.
SQL> CLEAR COLUMN
sometimes I ask myself why there has never been some work on command line editing and automatic formatting in sqlplus. Many developers (many of those at oracle for example) are not using sqlplus standalone because it is a pain. They use(d) to have an Emacs as a frontend (at least some years ago, maybe now they are using something different).
If you really need to work much with sqlplus in character terminals (instead of Quest's Toad, Oracle's SqlDeveloper or this web based isql in graphic terminals) you can use the sql mode of Emacs. Maybe you will start to build lot's of Elisp tools then and sooner or later you will have it easy to do your daily job pressing some weird Emacs shortcuts ;-)
use vi (even on windows, DOS interface is best), have some standard sql-files ready (defining some settings) and you'll run circles around all those shiny tools : Quest's Toad, Oracle's SqlDeveloper, isqlplus, whatever ;-)
AND using basic sqlplus interface, you are able to work at any customer's place, on all Operating Systems, (don't expect installed tools, don't expect internet access).
der gute Handwerker hat Hammer, Meißel, Säge, Brustleier und Kreide zur Hand. ;-)