4 Replies Latest reply on Oct 27, 2013 11:50 PM by AnaxThomas_1

    Records go from normal to phantom/corrupt (question marks) while client watched

    MaryPierce

      Title

      Records go from normal to phantom/corrupt (question marks) while client watched

      Your post

           I have a client that has a huge database. It contained about 150 phantom records where all fields were populated by question marks (?). I recognized this as an indexing issue and performed a recovery on the database. Doing so eliminated all of the "phantom" records. Or so I thought.

           On July 5th while the client was changing contact info in an existing record, the data in the fields changed to question marks as he sat watching. He knew what record it was so he did a find by the item number and it returned one record with every field filled with question marks.

           The client then created a new record and reentered the data. Now when you do find 2 records are returned, one filled with question marks and the non-corrupt of non-phantom record.

           On the same day the same client had another employee working on entering data. He was working on a record and left his desk for a little while. When he came back all the fields in the record he was working on had turned to question marks.

           These records are returned when doing  a find, but they cannot be edited nor can they be deleted. They have become corrupt. In these two cases the records were reentered from scratch.

           When I first started working with this client fixing the existing phantom records was top on my to do list. It was fixed by doing a restore on the entire database.

           Now existing records are becoming corrupt or zombiefied for no apparent reason. Not sure where to go from here.

            

        • 1. Re: Records go from normal to phantom/corrupt (question marks) while client watched

               Mary Pierce:

               Thank you for the post.

                

               If recovery modified the file, then the recovered copy can still be corrupted. Things to keep in mind about Recover:

                

               While Recover almost always detects and fully corrects any problems with your file...

                

               1. The recovered copy may behave differently even if recover reports "no problems found."

               2. Recover does not detect all problems.

               3. Recover doesn't always fix all problems correctly.

               4. Best Practice is to never put a recovered copy back into regular use or development. Instead, replace the damaged file with an undamaged back up copy if this is at all possible. You may have to save a clone of the back up copy and import all data from your recovered copy to get a working copy with the most up to date information possible.

                

               And here's a knowledge base article that you may find useful: What to do when your file is corrupt (KB5421).


               TSFalcon

               FileMaker, Inc.

          • 2. Re: Records go from normal to phantom/corrupt (question marks) while client watched
            philmodjunk

                 For more on the phantom ? records:     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 thread here in the Report an Issue section of the forum.

                 It can also be downloaded as a database file from:    https://www.dropbox.com/s/jt09b82i0xijbu3/FMP%20Bugs.zip

            • 3. Re: Records go from normal to phantom/corrupt (question marks) while client watched
              MaryPierce

                   I have all ready read the material at the links provided in the replies above. I realize there is a know bug regarding phanotom records and I also know that it is at it's core an indexing issue. What is NOT mentioned or discussed in any way is how records go from normal to phantom and what to do to prevent it from happening in the future. 

                   The database has been working fine for several weeks since we did the recover. All of our scripts were running flawlessly then on July 5th existing records became corrupt (turned into what you call phantom records) right in front of someone. As he sat looking on each fields data disappeared and was replaced with a ?.

                   Some new information I just recieved today is that since that data corruption on July 5th none of the scripts are running. They start and then time out saying " Waiting for other process to finish..."

                   Here is the log entry:

                   2013-07-14 21:31:47,717 (6356:root) [DEBUG] *** Running btcmain.py
                   2013-07-14 21:31:47,717 (6356:root) [DEBUG] Loaded config from "z:\database\fmbin\config\btc.ini"
                   2013-07-14 21:31:47,717 (6356:root) [INFO] Waiting for other process to finish...
                   2013-07-14 21:35:44,250 (7024:root) [DEBUG] *** Running btcmain.py
                   2013-07-14 21:35:44,250 (7024:root) [DEBUG] Loaded config from "z:\database\fmbin\config\btc.ini"
                   2013-07-14 21:35:44,250 (7024:root) [INFO] Waiting for other process to finish...

                   This appears to be random. I can't have my clients data radomly disappearing and becoming permanently replaced with ????

                   A little more help is needed here.
              • 4. Re: Records go from normal to phantom/corrupt (question marks) while client watched
                AnaxThomas_1

                     Hello Mary, 

                     I hope you have fixed the corruption issue with your FileMaker database. I ran into the similar issue and found a recovery software that restored all my data. 

                     You could use this product in future, if you have face similar problem.