A READER ASKS: Ghost Schema Hunter

From Dwayne Wright - Certified FileMaker 9 Developer
WEB: www.dwaynewright.com
EMAIL: info@dwaynewright.com
TWITTER: dwaynewright

This one might give your readers something to ponder as it's got me puzzled as well. Hoping you know of what I speak and have and answer.

I've been working on a hosted database for a client that was a template done up by an associate originally. Much of what he includes I have no use for, nor the client, so I've trashed most of the TOs, scripts that aren't needed, that sort of thing. What I've found now is a rogue script that has a name, but no script steps. Along with this I've found a value list that is NOT named, but takes up a list position in Value Lists. Both of these anomalies are not to be deleted/removed/changed or IOW they are there but aren't really there.

I suspect this is a result of the indexes in the database file not being rebuilt (as I can't do that remotely with it being hosted). Is there any other approach you can think of that I might take?

I have seen odd things like this happen as well (sometimes called ghost schema) and just like you mentioned ... it can happen when wholesale deleting schema. I can only think it might have something to do with a misfire when FileMaker is trying to handle multiple schema dependencies when spring cleaning out multiple tables / table occurrences.

The only things I can suggest are the standard troubleshooting techniques of “throw this against the wall and see if it sticks”. This includes the standard Save As / Recover shuffle. I have heard of odd combinations of performing a recovery, save a copy as clone, save copy as compressed and performing file maintenance fixing odd problems like this.

You may have already tried this because it is standard fair for post batch schema changes. I would run it by BaseElements (if you have it) and/or examine the DDR. If you clean out all the schema dust bunnies flagged by BaseElements, you might want to try a recovery / save a copy as commands on the file then. It is possible that some calculations / script / layout object is still pointing to these ghosts and the problem resolves itself after that is fixed.
More info about the author and FileMaker in general, contact me at info@dwaynewright.com.

© 2008 - Dwayne Wright - dwaynewright.com

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