5 Replies Latest reply on Jun 17, 2012 10:53 PM by RossHurley

    Finds on one field failing

    RossHurley

      Hi all,

       

      I've run out of options in trying to fix a field in a client's system where Finds are failing. I've done everything I can think of without success, and hope the wider commuity can point me in other directions or, even better, tell me exactly what's going on.

       

      It's an all Windows FM8 setup (a client I haven't heard from in a long while) running their system on FMS8 on a virtual server set up on their Windows box by their IT support company. The server crashed last weekend and their IT company restored it and replaced the files with the latest backup. The client then found that certain scripts weren't working properly. IT support restored files from 2 days before the crash but that didn't work either. As a FileMaker issue they called me in to help.

       

      On investigation I concluded that it was caused by one field where Finds were not working. It's a calculated text field, unstored because it references related fields. All Finds return all records regardless of the criteria entered.

       

      Steps I've done to find and fix the problem:

      1. Looked at field type and indexing of the problem field. All OK - field type was text and, because of the related references, couldn't have the index rebuilt.

      2. Tested the oldest backup I could get on my local Mac and found that it worked. Thought I'd gone back far enough to get past the corruption. Imported their data into a clone and replaced the file on Server. Still failed.

      3. Copied the file I uploaded to the Server back to my Mac in case Server had corrupted it - worked fine.

      4. Put the file onto a fresh install of FMS8 on my XP machine and tested it - worked.

      5. Put the file onto a fresh install of FMS8 on a client's XP machine and tested it - failed.

      Current status - it's failed on two FMS8 setups and worked on one, and it's worked when run locally on one machine. So the problem is not when running on the client's virtual server.

      6. Rebuilt the indexes to all fields that were referenced in the field's calculation. Still failed.

      7. Rebuilt the field from afresh, hand building the whole calculation. Interestingly, when viewed in Browse mode no data showed in the field. Commented out my calculation and pasted in the calculation from the original field. Data showed but Finds still failed. Does the fact that no data showed from my original calculation offer a clue?

      8. Ran a test Recover - reported no problems and was safe to use going forward. Tested with FMDiff and this also reported no problems.

       

      That's it. I'm out of ideas. Can anyone offer any help?

       

      Ross Hurley

      Adelaide, Australia

        • 1. Re: Finds on one field failing
          StanMillar

          Ross

           

          Maybe won't help, but have you tried uninstalling FM Server (making sure to remove all installed files) and reinstalling from scratch?

           

          The fact that it works locally but not when served sounds to me like something went haywire with the FMS install  or the server software install when the server crashed. You may need to get their IT to do a completely fresh install of the server software rather than restoring from a backup.

          • 2. Re: Finds on one field failing
            taylorsharpe

            Goodness, I'm certainly avoiding XP machines.  I'm hoping their server has no other services on it.  If so, wipe it, reformat the drive, reinstall XP and the reinstall the FMS.  Since it works on your XP machine, it is apparently an OS or hardware problem at their end, which is probably not a FileMaker issue.  For all you know, it is a virus issue, which XP is extremely vulnerable to.  But I've seen finds not work on a hard drive that was slowly going out because the indexes were being silently corrupted.  Is this a RAID system?  Hopefully you are suggesting to solve their problems by upgrading hardware, OS and FMS versions.  I sure wouldn't support such an old system other than as a transition to new software. 

            • 3. Re: Finds on one field failing
              RossHurley

              Maybe won't help, but have you tried uninstalling FM Server (making sure to remove all installed files) and reinstalling from scratch?

               

              The fact that it works locally but not when served sounds to me like something went haywire with the FMS install  or the server software install when the server crashed. You may need to get their IT to do a completely fresh install of the server software rather than restoring from a backup.

              Stan,

               

              Yes, FMS was uninstalled and re-installed on the fm virtual server. Actually I omitted that step in my description - it was one of the first things I did. And, it's not just working locally but not on server - it's worked on one FMS setup and failed on two. Getting the IT company to build a new virtual server is still an option.

               

              Ross

              • 4. Re: Finds on one field failing
                RossHurley

                Goodness, I'm certainly avoiding XP machines.  I'm hoping their server has no other services on it.  If so, wipe it, reformat the drive, reinstall XP and the reinstall the FMS.  Since it works on your XP machine, it is apparently an OS or hardware problem at their end, which is probably not a FileMaker issue.  For all you know, it is a virus issue, which XP is extremely vulnerable to.  But I've seen finds not work on a hard drive that was slowly going out because the indexes were being silently corrupted.  Is this a RAID system?  Hopefully you are suggesting to solve their problems by upgrading hardware, OS and FMS versions.  I sure wouldn't support such an old system other than as a transition to new software.

                Taylor,

                 

                No, FMS is not on XP machine. It's a virtual server setup on real server hardware and software. The XP machines referred to were just for testing different installs of FMS8. I don't think I can deduce anything from it, but it has failed on two setups at the client - the FMS virtual server and a user's XP machine both running FMS8, and it has worked on two setups of mine - my OS X 10.6.8 locally and my XP machine running FMS8.

                 

                I take your point that it could still be a hardware/server software issue though. As I said to Stan Millar, getting their IT to create a new virtual server is still an option.

                 

                Ross

                • 5. Re: Finds on one field failing
                  RossHurley

                  For the record, the problem was fixed by doing a reinstall of FMS8 using my developer install CD, but using the client's licence code. The system has been working perfectly since that was done. Why were the client's install CD and mine different? Who knows.

                   

                  There must have still been an underlying cause of Finds not working on that field however, which only manifested itself on the client's FMS install after their IT support people replaced a crashed FMS machine with a virtual server - after 5 years of working perfectly on the old machine.

                   

                  I'll mark this as the correct answer in case anyone else has this problem in the future.

                   

                  Ross