5 Replies Latest reply on Nov 17, 2011 3:02 PM by AEH

    Ghost portal record-- can't enter, can't delete



      Ghost portal record-- can't enter, can't delete


      Using FM Pro 11 Advanced

      In a table of alumni, a portal of positions is suddenly acting strangely.  After a new position was entered, a "ghost" portal row has appeared which persists in staying at the top of the portal, ignoring the normal portal sort order.  It shows only blank fields, has no position ID, and no data can be entered in any field.  The portal row can not be deleted.  (Not surprising, since it has no ID, so it apparently doesn't exist.)

      The table of positions shows two normal entries, plus another between them with question marks in every field.  Tried deleting this row from the table of positions, and it disappeared at first, but when the record was viewed in the portal again, the ghost row had reappeared (and the record with question marks reappeared in the position table).

      The portal otherwise appears to work fine for other alumni.  If the portal were somehow corrupt, I would think it would show the same problem for other records.

      We have never seen anything like this and are stumped!

        • 1. Re: Ghost portal record-- can't enter, can't delete

          First time I've seen this in a portal, but a "ghost record" with fields filled with question marks is a known issue. The solution is to rebuild the indexes in the file.

          For More Information see:     Phantom Record, damaged file message, Recover can't detect a problem

          This is one of many acknowledged bugs that can be found in the Known Bug List here in the Report an Issue section of the forum.

          It can also be downloaded as a database file from:    http://www.4shared.com/file/8orL8apk/FMP_Bugs.html

          • 2. Re: Ghost portal record-- can't enter, can't delete

            Thanks for confirming we are not hallucinating.  I read through the forum link you supplied, but do not know how to "rebuild the indexes in the file."  FM is on a server, and the IT person who oversees it also does not know what this means.  Any directions you can give to clarify?  (He's going on vacation for a week, so if it's at all complex, we'll likely wait until he gets back.)


            • 3. Re: Ghost portal record-- can't enter, can't delete

              This can be done while the file is hosted on the server if you use a full access password, just don't do it when others are accessing the file:

              To rebuild the index of a single field:

              1. Open Manage | Database | Fields and double click the field
              2. Use either the storage tab or the storage options button to turn off indexing.
              3. Exit Manage | Database, then return and turn indexing back on.


              This method requires taking the file down off the server, re-indexing it and then putting the re-indexed file back up on the server:

              You can also rebuild all your file's indexes by importing all the data into an empty copy (clone) of your file.

              If you have FileMaker 11, you can use Advanced Recovery options to rebuild your file's indexes:

              1. With the file closed, select Recover from the File Menu.
              2. Select "Use advanced Options"
              3. Select only: "Copy File Blocks as-is" and "Rebuild Field Indexes Now".


              The advanced recovery options method is your best bet as there is no way to tell which field or fields need re-indexing so it's quicker to just to rebuild them all.

              • 4. Re: Ghost portal record-- can't enter, can't delete

                I've also been able to hide the "ghost record" from my users as a temporary fix:

                Enter find mode[]
                Set field [yourtable::Primarykeyfield ; "*"]
                Constrain found set[]

                should drop the ghost record out of the current found set. Any field that is never empty can be used in the set field step.

                I suspect a similar portal filter will hide the ghost record from your portals. Something like:

                Not IsEmpty ( Portaltable::ForeignKeyField )

                • 5. Re: Ghost portal record-- can't enter, can't delete

                  Thanks, I got the portal filter to work as a temporary fix.  (It would be fine even as a permanent fix, except that every layout that uses that portal would need to have the filter added.)  Will try the recovery fix when staffing allows.