Technical References - Database format

WebDNA can open any number of databases, each of which can have its own field structure. The number of records is only limited by the amount of RAM given to WebDNA (when used as a plugin, you must give more RAM to the web server software itself). In case the number of open databases grows larger than the available RAM, then WebDNA will just close unused databased to make room.

WebDNA recognizes Tab-Delimited text files, Microsoft Access and FileMaker Pro's "Merge" Quote-Comma-Delimited format, and any ODBC-compliant SQL database.


Tab-Delimited Format:
the following is an example of a database with custom fields. It was created in FileMaker Pro and exported using the "Tab-Delimited" format.

Contents of Tab-Delimited format AddressList.db file (the .db file extension is a convention only: it is not required):


------------------------------------------------------------------
name address city state zip
Grant 1180 Central Ave San Marcos CA 92079
PCS 11770 Bernardo Plaza Court San Diego CA 92128
------------------------------------------------------------------

Notice that the fields are separate by tabs


Merge Format: the following is an example of a database that has been exported to Merge format from a FileMaker Pro or Access database. Notice that FileMaker automatically puts the field names across the top of the file, so you do not have to make any changes after exporting.


Contents of Merge format AddressList.db file (the .db file extension is a convention only: it is not required):


----------------------------------------------------------------
name,address,city,state,zip
"Grant","1180 Central Ave","San Marcos","CA","92079"
"PCS","11770 Bernardo Plaza Court","San Diego","CA","92128"
----------------------------------------------------------------

WebDNA always saves databases in tab-delimited format, regardless of what they originally were. Any Delete, Append, or Replace action causes a database to be written to disk in tab-delimited format (except when using SQL, which has its own format).



New ".hdr" file specification:
if the database you wish to import does not already contain a list of fieldnames in the first row, then you can create a second file called "xxx.hdr" that contains just the fieldnames, and WebDNA will automatically use those fieldnames. If the database is in Merge format, then the .hdr file must also be in Merge format.
Example Tab-delimited database that uses a header file:
----- Products.tab ---------------------------------------------
Grant 1180 Central Ave San Marcos CA 92079
PCS 11770 Bernardo Plaza Court San Diego CA 92128
----------------------------------------------------------------

----- Products.hdr ---------------------------------------------
name address city state zip
----------------------------------------------------------------


Example Merge-format database that uses a header file:
----- Products.merge -------------------------------------------
"Grant","1180 Central Ave","San Marcos","CA","92079"
"PCS","11770 Bernardo Plaza Court","San Diego","CA","92128"
----------------------------------------------------------------

----- Products.hdr ---------------------------------------------
name,address,city,state,zip
----------------------------------------------------------------

Potential non alphanumeric characters inside a database should always be recorded using [url]...[/url] to assure proper formatting and interpretation.


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