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From: petr:krenzelok:trz:cz at: 1-Nov-2001 20:54

Tim Johnson wrote:
>On Thu, Nov 01, 2001 at 07:57:58PM +0100, [rebolek--seznam--cz] wrote: > >>Hello, >> >>is there some DBF reader or parser or something like that? >> >Hello ReBolek: >Sorry. Don't have an immediate answer for that one... I bet >that you will get some answers soon though. > >If you don't - that's one I actually need to work up >myself - and I was planning on doing so by following >"C" code that I have used a long time ago ....... > >>Thanks, ReBolek >> >I'm curious... If (and only if) it is appropriate, may >you tell us why the need to read DBF with rebol? > >Mine needs would have to do with data imported in and out of >MS-Access. >
MS-Access is crap :-) Well, .dbf format is database format I grow up with. Starting with DBASE II many years ago, switching to Clipper (I am glad for it, as MS FoxPro is/was child's toy back at that time, while Clipper offered powerfull preprocessor, code block evaluation, RDD - replaceable database drivers, later also replaceable gui drivers, but Clipper 5.3 was dead end, and Computer Associates just wanted users to migrate to Windows Visual Objects - that's the product we use here) native index format for .dbf was .NTX It was not powerfull enough, so there were also other index format. E.g. native FoxPro - .cdx - the most used one, or also SixDriver .NSX format. Later company behind the SixDriver product leaved VO and released Apollo for Delphi. But there were also othe companies and index format, s MTX etc., etc. It was beaufty of RDD system, and just case of one include in your app, and you could switch to much more powerfull solution. Shame on MS, shame on FoxPro! It's a crap from designer's pov. I have full .DBF header description, so you could build native Rebol driver. I was looking into it. But you will have to solve many incompatibilities between various formats. I already looked at it some time ago. I think it is not worth the effort. If you can, buy yourself /Pro license, and go with some libraries. But then of course you lose cross-platform compatibility. There should be no problem of getting odbc drivers for dbf, but then we are talking 350 USD /Command price level. There is few tools/viewers to work with .dbf, very advanced ones. .DBF is however supported also by Excel, and natively supported by languages as Delphi, VO, Clipper, FoxPro, VB (IIRC, maybe indirectly), etc. My fried once laughed at me using .dbf. Well - we have 50MB beasts here - 128 or more collumns, 100K rows, and it still performs good enough. However - once you want to get to shared dbase app, better forget data integrity and speed. You will be probably better with some free or not so expensive SQL solutions - mySQL (lacking transactions, and so not suitable for us), or PostGres SQL. We use Novell Netware here however, and we wanted to stick with .dbf - as we have many supporting apps here. We found very efficient and powerfull database server for .dbfs - it is called Advantage Databse Server ( ), and comes from Extended Systems (IIRC Palm wanted to buy them before they went into financial troubles). We haven't believed success stories, such as Disney doing some 2mil recs daily succesfully using it, but we now fully believe in performance/price ratio ... verey good product, but of course far from being free ... If you still seek for Rebol native db, maybe there is some place for it, but then - it should be one script, using clear api. But be carefull, once you will be ready with your driver, you will want to add other and other features, and solution will become slow, possibly buggy and bloated, while still missing features as transaction support, etc. So, - think before you throw months of development thru the window. Today I would probably go with free and still improving mySQL database, supported thru various platforms, and free DocKimbel's mysql scheme. It will allow to concentrate on Rebol stuff, rather then reinventing the wheel. If you want Rebol solution - stick with plain text files, or something along the Elan's dbm engine (I don't know if it is still available though). Maybe something better could be thought of, but Holger mentioned some time ago there will be new port type, suitable for opened-file-operations. So, Holger, should ppl wait for it? (in your port description, it was mentioned as last, not yet implemented port type ...) -pekr-