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Why does Sage 2008 get corruptions in first place and can they be fixed by us and not Sage?

Posted on 2008-10-20
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When we backup Sage each evening we always run a data check to ensure no corruption.  On two occasions, last Friday and about a month ago, it came back with error.  The message normally goes along the lines of certain transactions references do not balance.  This should be impossible, and clearly shows corruption within the data.

There are only 2 options to resolve the issue.  One is to upload the program data as a file to Sage who have their techies fix it for free (part of insurance we pay) but it takes up to 3 days and we would not be able to use sage until they return the corrected data!  They can usually do this without losing any of the work done that day.

They're only suggestion is that a power surge might be involved.  But this is a network - with normal network traffic?  Surely the Sage techie is relating his/her answer to a server actually being offline at any given point i.e. hard reset mid way through operation.

The second is to reload the last uncorrupted backup (in our case the day before), which obviously means that the work is lost but is the quicker option.

Questions are:

- Why does this happen?
- How can you tell which type of database, be it Access or SQL, you have - we do have SBS 2003?
- Can it be fixed manually?
- I have seen an EE answer suggesting a program which backs up every hour or so?  Any thoughts on this?
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Question by:chriscounter07
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by:Nick Denny
ID: 22758537
Just to clarify, which "flavour" of Sage are you referring to? Line 50, 100, MMS 500 etc....
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by:chriscounter07
ID: 22758733
Line 50
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by:moorhouselondon
ID: 22759549
I had a client last month who had this problem.  I put it down to two possible things:-

(1) They have a Vista pc on their network which hooks into Sage, but I believe this pc to be only used for Enquiries, not for posting.  But worth mentioning anyway.

(2) The main thing that I thought of is to do with Record locking and forcing records to be flushed to disk, rather than being cached.  This involved some Registry changes.

The data is stored in a proprietary format, it does not use any SQL engine.

Sage do not support network issues - that's the official line, so I am told.
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by:moorhouselondon
ID: 22759616
Found the reference I worked with.  Do this on ALL the workstations: disable Opportunistic locking:-

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/296264/en-us
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by:moorhouselondon
ID: 22759701
sorry, forgot to explicitly mention:-

...and on the server.
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Bruce Denney earned 400 total points
ID: 22865781
Sage gets corrupted, because of lots of things, primarily because the database behind it is of a propitiatory and old design that is not being used way beyond its original design considerations.  This is why there is such a huge network load when Sage does things like run reports and why having Gigabit networking is one of the easiest ways to improve performance.  I have found that data corruption is very rare on single user installations with the data held locally.

Turning off opportunistic locking may have a significant performance implication, although it could reduce the chance of corruption, you will have to weigh up the choices and make a decision.

Some data corruption can be fixed by end users.  

For example a balance error on a control account such as debtors control is normally caused by someone entering a journal to a control account and creating an imbalance (Auditors are very good at persuading people to do this) these can be fixed by reversing the transaction (possibly in the next financial year to keep the auditor happy)

When you run check data you will see a fix button on the lower right of the results screen, this can be run to fix some data problems, however, it can also make bad things worse so backup your bad data in a separate location before using it.

There are third party companies that can fix some data errors in a shorter period, however, if you have bought insurance then you should use it.
 
P.S. I have heard from a couple of sources now that Sage are working on a new back end Database for Sage 50.  I didn't believe it the first time I heard it but I do now.  The new database will, I am told, be MySql, This is an excellent choice, already well proven, very reliable with great performance.

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Author Closing Comment

by:chriscounter07
ID: 31507838
Very good, thankyou
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