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trouble importing data from a text file

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I am new to FileMaker and am very impressed but am having a bit of trouble. The online application form for my writing workshop generates a tab-delimited text file, and I import that into an FM database. Then I manually add information in certain fields -- for example, whether the person has been accepted or put on the waiting list. And I correct mispellings and typos entered on the Web form by the applicant. All that works fine. The problem comes when a new application has been received and I want to import it into the data base without affecting the existing data. When I choose the option "Add new records," the manually entered and corrected fields on the old entries are overwritten. I'm sure I am missing something basic here and would appreciate your help. Thanks in advance.

George Johnson

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They're not being overwritten. What's happening is that after you perform the import, the new data is shown in a Found set. On the left side of your window, in what's called the Status Area, you should see





x would the number of records in the found set. z is the number of total records in the database. If you have 50 records, and you perform another import of 20 records, the Found would be 20 and the Total would then be 70.

This is similar to what happens when you perform a Find. If you find all the people who have been accepted, which is 30 out of the 70, you'd see Found: 30, Total: 70.

You can select Records-->Show All Records to view all the records in the database. But keep in mind you will have quite a few duplicates; another set of dupes for each time you performed the same import.

Hope this helps.

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Oh, I see! Thank you very much. So each time I do an import, I get the new record and a copy (without my manual changes) of all the others? Is there any way to keep all these duplicates from piling up in the background other than manually deleting them each time? I usually do an import every time a new application arrives.

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Could you delete all but the new entries from your tab delineated file, and then only import the new information? (This would be easy if the new entry were always at the top or bottom of the page) It would save alot of time as opposed to manually deleting individual records in the database.

I don't have FM7, BUT, when I import from a variety of files, I have the option to check to see if the information being imported matches the contents of any records that already exist. FM gives you the option of replacing the existing record, updating the existing record, or (I think) duplicating the record with the new information. Try looking in the "Importing & Exporting" section of the forums for more detailed (and knowledgable) explanations. smile.gif


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