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FM Bug! - FM doesn't import ALL records to clones

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I've spoken with FM tech support for several hours, and would like to notify the wider Filemaker community of a significant bug (Filemaker acknowledges it is a bug) in the program - and ask for your help in a work around and/or to apply pressure to Filemaker to release a patch.


As a developer, when I make changes to the structure of a client's database, I work on clones. I keep them free from corruption, and when I deploy them, I export my client's data from their working files to TAB or MERGE files, and import this data into my clean clones.


In rare cases, NOT ALL RECORDS END UP IN THE NEW CLONES AFTER I IMPORT. Of course there could be a variety of reasons for this, but I've found a specific case in which this always happens - I've shown my files and run this test with Filemaker tech support and they have acknowledged this as a bug.

This seems to me to be a very significant problem - since it prevents me from guaranteeing my clients that all of their data will always be there. Filemaker seems not to think it's a big deal, and I'm very concerned.

I have devised a test which you can replicate which demonstrates this problem, and I'll outline it below. I HOPE YOU WILL TEST THIS OUT AND CONTACT ME SO WE CAN FIGURE OUT WHAT TO DO, AND APPLY THE NECESSARY PRESSURE TO FILEMAKER, TOGETHER.


Since files can always become corrupt, we as developers rely on the fact that you can always export the data to a MERGE or TAB file, import this MERGE/TAB file into a fresh clone, and wha-la, you have clean data in a clean file.

1) I have a FM file that has 1609 records in it. I export to a TAB file.

2) I turn this TAB file into an EXCEL file by opening it up in EXCEL. I verify that this EXCEL file has all 1609 records. I drag this Excel file into FM to automatically create a brand-new FM file with the same field names and same data. All 1609 records are there. AND, now, I have a brand-new FM file that is free from corruption (because it was just created automatically by FM), and has all of my data. So far, so good - here's where it goes bad:

3) I export from this brand-new FM file to a new TAB formated file. Then I clone the brand-new FM file. Then I import the new TAB file into the cloned FM file. NOT ALL RECORDS ARE THERE! Sometimes there are 1129 records, other times there are more or less. It varies.


This test proves that in in some cases, we can export our data to a TAB file (the test yields the same results with a MERGE file) and then import it into clones we know are free from corruption - and not all data will be there. This is scary.

A) The first thought is that maybe, because the data was corrupted, not all of it exported to the TAB or MERGE file. But when we open up this exported TAB or MERGE file in Excel, we can verify that all 1609 of the records are there. So the problem clearly lies in the importing of the data into the clone.

: Since this doesn't happen all the time - Filemaker and I have agreed it is a problem with the way that Filemaker imports corrupted data.

I'M ATTACHING THE DATASET YOU'LL NEED TO PERFORM THIS TEST - THE EXCEL FILE WITH ALL 1609 RECORDS MENTIONED IN STEP 2, ABOVE. I'm running FM Pro 5.5v2 (the most up-to-date version of 5.5) on a PC running Windows 2000. We were not able to replicate this problem on a MAC - only on a PC!

Please contact me at [email protected] - I would really appreciate any help you can offer. THANK YOU!


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I am completely lost at your point 3. Why you are doing this? Why is there the Excel stuff in point 2?

Why not do that simpler way?

1. Data out

2. Have clone or empty copy (if you have something in global fields)

3. Import the data into clone/empty copy

Isn't that simpler?

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