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 From: Pete Sass
  Where is Pete Sass?
 Marathon, Ontario
 Canada
 Pete Sass
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Subject: Old Unix Fun Question
Thread ID: 416112 Message ID: 416112 # Views: 65 # Ratings: 0
Version: Visual FoxPro 9 SP2 Category: Linux and VFP
Date: Sunday, December 21, 2014 10:31:10 PM         
   


Hi Again Folks,

This is a question for advise, opinion or suggestions. Any comments would be appreciated.

Here is the scenario....
Old Unix/Linux system aging over 25 years old and involves a very old accounting system.
The data files are of unknown origin and the developer used a file naming convention of
datafilename.I and datafileName.D
.I are the invoice header files and .D are the associated invoice details files.
The data files are binary data files and for each data file there is a filename.C that has
the field layout and field type in it.

In looking through the data files and header there is no hint of what type of data files there
are and apparently the original developer dropped death or got hit by a bus year and years ago.
The client running this system has absolutely no idea of the files, there origin, of where they
came from or who made them.

Now the task at hand is to port the data into something structured like a SQL Server table of
CSV file that can be sucked in.

I have reviewed the data files and can find nothing anywhere as to what type of binary files they
are.
On a Linux system I have I cannot open these files in VI or do anything with them at all. Further more
there are no reports in the system and no way to print to a null Unix printer and CAT the print file
to a txt file.

I have found if I run a 4-5 phase stripper routine and then run a time consuming parser to code I can
probably get the data out after litterly days of programming.
There are dozens of data file format types so the stripper and parsing routines would have to be recoded
to get the data out for each type.


By the was I have around 6 GIG of data spit across over 600 data files of various structures.


MY FIRST QUESTION OR CONCERN FOR YOU ALL . . .
WHAT DO YOU THINK? ANYTHING I MAY HAVE MISSED? LIKE A UTILITY THAT CAN READ OBSCURE FILE HEADERS AND
DETERMINE WHAT TYPE OF BINARY FILE THESE ARE?


MY SECOND QUESTION OR CONCERN FOR YOU ALL . . .
HOW DO I PROVIDE AN ESTIMATE FOR THE CLIENT FOR SOMETHING LIKE THIS? OR DO I JUST SAY XX DOLLARS PER HOUR
FOR AS LONG AS IT TAKES? RIGHT NOW I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT I WILL RUN INTO UNTIL I AM WORKING ON ONE OF THE
DATA FILE TYPES AND GET INTO THE STRIPPING AND PARSING ROUTINES.


ALL COMMENTS AND SUGGUESTIONS WELCOME, BECUASE THIS IS LOOKING LIKE A FULL WINTER PROJECT!



Pete "the IceMan", from the Great White North of Canada.
www.marathongriffincomputers.com

ENTIRE THREAD

Old Unix Fun Question Posted by Pete Sass @ 12/21/2014 10:31:10 PM
RE: Old Unix Fun Question Posted by Vilhelm-Ion Praisach @ 12/22/2014 7:30:01 AM
RE: Old Unix Fun Question Posted by Pete Sass @ 12/22/2014 4:08:36 PM
RE: Old Unix Fun Question Posted by Zia Mughal @ 12/22/2014 9:19:06 AM
RE: Old Unix Fun Question Posted by Pete Sass @ 12/22/2014 4:12:38 PM
RE: Old Unix Fun Question Posted by PowerGod @ 12/22/2014 3:32:03 PM
RE: Old Unix Fun Question Posted by Pete Sass @ 12/22/2014 4:10:57 PM