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Old 2007-03-13, 11:12 AM
geeeteee geeeteee is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Lytham St. Annes, UK
Posts: 1
Default Reading Existing Tables

Hi. I have been sent some files - 3 DAT, 3 IDX and 3 BLB files which form a mailing list. They are called Doctor.dat etc, Patient.dat etc. and Address.dat etc.

I am told that they were created using Alventis, but unfortunately the original computer they were on has been scrapped, so I cannot access the 'System' files - IfxsTables.dat etc.

Is there a way I can open these files please?
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Old 2007-03-13, 02:15 PM
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Michael Michael is offline
Alventis Support Lead
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 6
Default Re: Reading Existing Tables

Hi geeeteee, and welcome to the Forum!

Where there's a will there's a way. But it is a rather problematic situation. The most straightforward way to "reanimate" this very partial database is to:
A) Create a new Alventis database with all the relevant tables with exactly the same names as the "orphaned" ones you have (Doctor, Patient, Address). See more info below.
B) Close the database in all copies of Designer and Alventis (or just exit both apps).
C) Replace the newly-created tables by the orphaned ones you have using your favorite file manager.
D) Open Alventis (while keeping your fingers crossed), repair and reindex the relevant tables.

At a bare minimum, this should give you access to your data, and you may (try it, I'm not sure) be able to export the data, but there's a problem: you probably don't have the original InfoView (data-entry) forms either, so you can't view/edit your data. And to create new InfoViews in Designer (and to work with the original tables in it) you must have re-created the tables (in step "A" above) with not merely the same names, but also the same structures (same field names/types/sizes, etc.). If you happen to have the IfxsFields table, you're lucky since that's what keeps track of table structures. If you don't have it, things get tricky, since there's no way for you to directly figure out what fields to create. But of course there's a workaround. You can open the data tables in a DBISAM-compatible 3rd party application and check what's there. The simplest one would be the free tool made by Elevate Software, the maker of the DBISAM engine itself: Additional Software and Utilities. Install that app, and open the tables of interest in it. You can now figure out the structure of the tables, and even export the data to a text file (this will probably lose Memos and Images though).

At this point, I'd need to know whether my suggestions are making sense so far, whether the approach I am proposing seems acceptable, and whether your goal is to restore the database as fully as possible or merely re-gain access to the raw data in it. Once we're clear on the above points, I could give you additional instructions or ideas on how to proceed further.
Best regards,
Michael, Alventis Support Team Lead
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