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  1. #1
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    Corrupt data (Access, all versions)

    Every so often I have an application, as I do today, where the data is inexplicably corrupted with trash characters -- non-alphanumeric special characters of all ascii values, trashing the record -- and sometimes trashing the database container itself. In some such cases I can only get rid of it by 1) deleting the bad record and 2) creating a new database container and importing all the objects from the current container. In other words, the container is getting corrupted as well.

    I have seen this happen (seemingly randomly) in a various of environments and applications, with no common thread between them. It used to happen a lot more before A2K, but I've seen it twice now in two different environments in the last year. Does this sound familiar? Does anyone have any clues as to what this might be about?

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    Re: Corrupt data (Access, all versions)

    More often than not this results from one of two things:<UL><LI>An error on the LAN connecting the workstation to the database containing the data.<LI>A workstation crash or deliberate power down without closing the database[/list]There other more remote possibilities, such as software bugs or flakey hardware controllers on servers, but those two issue cause the bulk of corruption errors. If it continues to be a problem, you might want to consider using a more robust back-end such as Oracle or SQL Server. We work extensively with SQL Server and have seen two corruption errors in 10 years - both attributable to cockpit problems by developers or administrators.
    Wendell

  3. #3
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    Re: Corrupt data (Access, all versions)

    Good thoughts, but they do not apply here. This app runs on a standalone laptop (which means SQL Server/Oracle is not a solution), and the error occurred while the app was running, not as a result of a bad shutdown. A bad net connection might explain the ones I saw last fall in another environment, though.

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    Re: Corrupt data (Access, all versions)

    Workstation crashes will corrupt a database even if it's in a standalone situation - and so will hard drive errors and a myriad of other things.
    Wendell

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    Re: Corrupt data (Access, all versions)

    Wendell/...,
    I'm sorry if I'm asking a stupid question, but do configuration issues like splitting the database (&...?) also lower the risk of corruption due to such causes as well?

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    Re: Corrupt data (Access, all versions)

    In our experience, yes. Much of the corruption of databases seems to occur when you are manipulating the design of forms and reports - I have no idea why, but anecdotal evidence certainly suggests that's the case. In addition, we nearly always deploy the split front-end to the local workstation, so if it goes corrupt, we simply replace it with a good copy. You will still see occasional corruption of the back-end, but it seems to be much less frequent, and you can often recover from it with the loss of at most one or a few records, assuming that you have a decent backup.
    Wendell

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