Recovery Toolbox for DBF (Download) is a recovery tool for damaged *.dbf files storing data in dBase IV, Clipper, FoxPro and other systems. Recovery Toolbox for DBF will help you:

  1. Restore the structure of table fields from *.dbf files
  2. Recover data from *.dbf files. The software is also capable of processing MEMO fields data in files associated with *.dbf files

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Usage Guide for Recovery Toolbox for DBF

Below are the stages of the table recovery process:

  1. Selection of a damaged *.dbf file
  2. Initiation of the *.dbf file analysis process, revision of the structure and the content of the recovered data
  3. Selection of an output file
  4. Selection of the version of the output *.dbf file
  5. Revision of the recovery log

Let's take a look at a typical table file recovery process in Recovery Toolbox for DBF.

Step 1. Selection of a damaged *.dbf file

Recovery Toolbox for DBF is a wizard-based tool. The first page of Recovery Toolbox for DBF allows you to choose the source DBF file to be recovered. This can be accomplished in one of the following ways:

  1. By selecting the file name and path from the dropdown list in the Source file name (.dbf): field. The dropdown list is automatically populated with the names of previously recovered DBF files.
  2. Using the Open button located to the right of the Source file name (.dbf) field with a dropdown list. The button opens a standard file selection dialog.
  3. Enter the file name and path manually into the Source file name (.dbf) field.

DBF files can have MEMO fields. Tables with such fields have additional files associated with them that store data from these fields. As a rule, these files have the same names as the dbf tables they are associated with, but different extensions: fpt for tables created in FoxPro and dbt for dBase tables. To recover data from these files, you can also mark them for recovery while choosing a dbf table.

Note: If the damaged dbf file contains MEMO fields, but no fpt or dbt file has been specified, Recovery Toolbox for DBF will only recover the structure of the fields of the main table file and links to the associated file. However, the data stored in the external file will not be processed. Therefore, if the MEMO file has not been damaged, you will be able to continue using it after the corrupted table is recovered. However, if the fpt or dbt has been also damaged, you may experience problems working with the recovered dbf table.

Once the necessary table file has been selected, press the Analyze button to start the source file analysis process.

Step 2. Initiation of the *.dbf file analysis process, revision of the structure and content of the recovered data

If you want to start the analysis of the source file, you have to answer Yes when the program shows the following prompt: Do you wish to start recovery? If you need to change the name or path of the dbf file or add a MEMO file to your selection, press No and go back to the file selection window by pressing the Back button.

If MEMO fields have been found during the analysis of the source table, but no fpt or dbt file serving as storage for such fields has been specified, the software searches for files of these types with the same name as the source dbf table file in the same location.

You can track the analysis progress by looking at the status bar at the bottom of the screen.

Once the analysis of the source file is complete and the software has finished reading the table data, you will see the second page of the wizard with a list of table fields and records that can be recovered. Columns will correspond to fields and table rows will correspond to records of the original file.

If the source file has been seriously damaged and the software cannot identify any recoverable data, a button labeled Send a file to developers will appear in the lower part of the screen. You can use this button to send the damaged file to the developers of the program for detailed analysis and manual recovery. You can also do this at any moment using the Send source file menu item in the Actions menu.

After reviewing the recovery results, press Next at the bottom of the window to proceed to the file saving stage.

Step 3. Selection of an output file

Recovery Toolbox for DBF does not modify or rewrite the source dbf and other associated files. It only reads and analyses the source files. Therefore, once the recovery process is complete, you need to save the data recovered from these files.

Note that saving of the recovered data is available in the registered version of the program only. The trial version only allows you to view the recovered data at stage 2.

You can use one of the following methods to specify the name of the output file:

  1. Enter the file name and path into the Repaired file name (.dbf): field with a dropdown list located in the main working area of the program window. The program automatically fills the input field when the open file dialog is shown. By default, it suggests saving the recovered dbf file into the same folder the original file is located in. However, it adds the _repaired suffix to the original file name. That is, if you used example.dbf, the software will suggest calling the output file example_repaired.dbf.
  2. Select the folder and the file name using the standard file saving dialog. The dialog button is located to the right of the file name field. By default, the dialog also uses the folder containing the source file and the file name composed according to the rule described in the previous paragraph.
  3. Select the file name from the dropdown list of the input field. Recovery Toolbox for DBF saves the information about previously used files in its settings and allows you to re-use these file names and paths.

Once the path and the file name have been specified, press the Save button located in the lower part of the program window to save the data.

If the folder specified in the Repaired file name (.dbf): folder doesn't exist, the program will show the Directory does not exist notification. The file will not be saved and the program will stay at the file selection stage.

If the specified file already exists, the program will ask your permission to overwrite the file: Do you want to rewrite the existing file? If you press No, the program will also stay at the file selection stage. If you press Yes or if the file doesn't exist yet, Recovery Toolbox for DBF will proceed to the revision of the recovery results.

Step 4. Selection of the version of the output *.dbf file

Recovery Toolbox for DBF can save recovered data from the original file in any DBF format: dBase III-IV, FoxPro 3.x (or later). However, don't forget that saving a document in an older format may result in the loss or corruption of document data incompatible with this format.

You can select the format of the destination file in the The version of a repaired file: field with a dropdown list.

When the file format selection window is shown, the program automatically suggests saving the document in the format version matching that of the original document. If the source file has been damaged too badly and the software cannot detect it, it will suggest saving the file in the latest available format version.

Once you have finished configuring the format of the output file, press the Save button at the bottom of the program screen to proceed to data recovery and saving.

Step 5. Revision of the recovery log

At this stage, the program displays detailed information about the files recovered during this session in the main working area of the window. The following information is shown to the user:

  • The name of the recovered file and its path;
  • The name of the output file and its path;
  • The number of recovered records;
  • The total time the program spent to recover the dbf table file.

Once you have finished viewing the results, you can use the Back button located in the lower part of the program window to go back and change any of the previously specified parameters (e.g. to save the recovered file under an alternative file name or choose another file to recover, etc).

If you don't need to use the program anymore, you can click the Finish button or simply close the program window.

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