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Knowledgebase Article 70
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QUESTION:

How do I import my existing data into PR-Tracker?

ANSWER:

Note that the answer below applies only to PR-Tracker 4.20 and above.

PR-Tracker stores problem report data in Microsoft Access 97 format. Importing your data mostly involves creating an Access 97 file that PR-Tracker can read. However there are a few additional steps. In order to import data into PR-Tracker, you first need to know how PR-Tracker stores data. We explain this in the next paragraph.

The data for each PR-Tracker project is stored in is own directory. The project data is stored in three kinds of files: .CFG, .MDB and .PR files. The .CFG file contains information about how the project is configured. The .MDB file contains all the problem report data and its fields must match the specification in the .CFG file. Lastly there is one .PR file for each problem report in the database. The .PR files are stored in an ASCII readable format and can be viewed with any text editor. Windows Notepad would be one such text editor. Before performing the import steps you may want to inspect the files for the DEMO project that comes with PR-Tracker.

To import the data do these steps:

1. Create a new project and configure it as desired. This creates the .CFG file and .MDB file.

2. Put your problem data in the .MDB file created by PR-Tracker. If your problem data is stored in Microsoft Access or Excel you can probably paste the data into the .MDB file one column at a time. If your data is not in Microsoft Access it is likely that the program storing your data can be exported to Access format.

3. Create the .PR files. A .PR file is created by PR-Tracker whenever you view a problem report and the .PR file doesn't already exists. The easiest way to create these files is to open the project with PR-Tracker and double-click the first problem in the list to view it. Then from the Problem Report view click the Next menu until you reach the last problem report

After completing Step 2 you can access your data using PR-Tracker even though the .PR files have not yet been created. However, we recommend that you use PR-Tracker to create these files because the are used to rebuild the .MDB file should it ever become corrupt.

If for some reason your data ends up in Access 2000 format, convert the database to Access 97 format. Do this from Access 2000 by doing menu Tools | Database Utilities | Convert Database | To Prior Access Database Version.

If you recieve an "Error 94: Invalid use of null" during step three do the following:

1) Set the "Allow zero length string property" of the Originator field to "Yes"
2) Use the following Access query to replace nulls with the empty strings.

UPDATE [Problem Reports] SET Originator = "" & Originator, Investigator = "" & Investigator, Resolver = "" & Resolver, Verifier = "" & Verifier, [Assigned To] = "" & [Assigned To] WHERE Originator is null OR Investigator is null OR Resolver is null Or Verifier is null Or [Assigned To] is null;
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