[thelist] importing a non-standard datadump

Luther, Ron ron.luther at hp.com
Wed Feb 23 07:49:45 CST 2005

Brian Cummiskey noted:

>>Thanks for the help guys.  After doing search and replaces for most of

>>the day yesterday, i thought i had a decent file to play with.
>>go to import it-
>>And now, i am missing a field (most likely a ,"", field).  Of course,
>>24,000 records, and tons of 2nd address lines filled in this way,
>>like its time to go back to the client and have them send me another 
>>dump, and start all over :(

Hi Brian,

Sorry.  I guess we should have spelled out 'Rule 1' more explicitly: 

"Always work from a backup of the raw client data."


Here is another idea that might help some: Take a good hard look at 
your raw data.  It may be possible to determine how many good lines 
you 'should' have when you finally get things cleaned up. {Maybe 
something as easy as a count of all 'pipes' divided by two. Maybe 
something a bit trickier.} The value here is that it would give you 
a 'sanity cross check' to improve your confidence that you haven't 
misplaced any data records once you finally think you might be 

BTW - This data really isn't that 'weird' ... I don't think it's that 
uncommon to have to parse 'print image' mainframe reports into local 
data tables ... it can get a whole lot uglier than what it looks like 
you are playing with here.

Good Luck!!


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