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Errors and messages

The result of each action on our data server is logged. The Messages icon in the toolbar is green when there are unread messages and red if there are unread errors. A widget appears as shown in the screenshot below to view your messages when you click the icon.

If an action was completed successfully, you’ll see a message of type INFO. If an action resulted in an error, you’ll a message of type ERROR. In this case you need to take action.

Receiving messages and errors via email

Errors are communicated through the Data Explorer (as mentioned above) by default. You can register your email address with your account if you prefer to get your messages via email. You should use this feature if you plan to use the automatic update feature for remote data files. Automatic updates run unattended. Receiving results via email helps to identify errors immediately and take action when necessary.

Understanding errors

When a data file is updated, the synchronization process might run into an error. The question is not if that wil ever happen, but when it will happen.

Start reading the message provided with the error. In many cases the error message helpsto clarify and solve the issue. The error in the screenshot above indicates that the value for field Name (the second field in my CSV) on line 15 is too long. With this information I can check the value which is causing the issue and take appropriate actions.

Please be aware that the line number given with the error is not always correct. A CSV file usually contains a header line which is not counted as a row. In this case the issue is cause by a value on line 16, not 15.

Please get in touch if you are receiving errors you don’t understand.

Fixing errors

I found the error mentioned in the previous section. When my table was created from my CSV file, the Name column was defined as char(6). A new Name value in my CSV file has a length of 10. It is too long to be stored in a char(6) field.

There are a number of ways to solve this issue:

  1. Update the CSV file (mostly not really an option)
  2. Drop the table and recreate it
  3. Update the table so it allows me to store longer values in the Name column

There is nothing against option 2. You just need to be careful with other resources depending on this table. This works only if your new table has the exact same table and column names. Besides, this option may lead to down time. Users will not be able to access your table between the moment you drop the old table and create the new one.

A more elegant way is to update the table definition (option 3). This options has no downtime as it uses the old CSV file until you fixed the issue. You can use the Query Builder to execute an alter table command if you are familiar with SQL. If you are not familiar with SQL, click the Manage link of the table returning the error and click the ALTER botton. Your table will be loaded into the Data Designer, where you can change the length of the Name column. Enter a higher value in the Max length field of the Name column and click Save Table Design. You might give it some extra space for future updates. You might also change the column type to varchar for more efficient storage usage. After saving your changes, the column should be highlighted in orange. Click the ALTER TABLE button. This will change your Name column definition and allow longer values and remove the orrange highlighting.

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