It's not normal for a value list to disappear. I would definitely revert to a backup but I wouldn't recommend recovering to "fix" your file. Recovery is designed to open a file at all costs in order to recover data. It might delete fields, layouts, tables or any corrupt item in a file so it can be opened. Once a file is recovered, the idea is to import the data into a clone of a backup, not to continue using it. Continuing to use a recovered file might work fine but it's not a risk I'm willing to take.
Which version of FileMaker, which OS ? is this a one file solution ?
either way, check a recent backup copy
> there were zero value lists showing in the window
FM16, MacOS, one file.
Update: I downloaded a fresh backup of the database and did a consistency check. It was okay. I then made a compacted copy and still no value lists. I then did a recovery. It showed no problems, however upon opening the recovered file, the problem was gone. I thought I had seen recommendations to not use a recovered file, so I called FileMaker technical support (before I saw Jaymo's post). They said it was okay to use a recovered file so I did. It is in use today, but because of that post, I am now worried about whether I am going to have problems. Everything so far is working right. Should I just hold my breath, or should I bite the bullet and import the 111 tables from the recovered file into another backup copy with no records as he recommends? Also, I don't know of any way to do the import except table by table.
Yes! import into a clone (no records) of a good file. You may need to rebuild your value lists if they are not based on fields. But with your "recovered" file, you will be able to see what these are.
Recover is a very misunderstood Utility, and Tech Support doesn't help
If you can import into a recent "good" backup ( with Value Lists ), then do that
Otherwise, the Recovered file is probably okay, you're just not sure
Tech Support really should have offered to look at your file, and the Recover Log, to see what was done
> I called FileMaker technical support (before I saw Jaymo's post). They said it was okay to use a recovered file so I did