FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions
If the FAQ fails to answer your specific question, you may find answers in the documentation or our support forum, which is provided free of charge. We are happy to answer questions in the forum, but please understand that we cannot enter into a dialog by email.
I have to merge the content of two (or more) fields on the READ side into a single field on the WRITE side – how can I do that?
How to import/export dBase (dbf) files/databases?
How do I make use of the If-Then-Else Heater?
How can data be filtered?
How can data be consolidated?
How can I copy one record on the READ side to several records on the WRITE side?
How can the sequence of data records be changed or the data sorted?
What can I do to untangle a confusion of close connecting lines?
How is it possible to trigger the running of Definitions automatically or periodically?
I need to process multiple files in a folder, how can I achieve that?
Q: [32 Bit / 64 Bit, which Version should I use]
It depends on your hardware, operating system and intentions. Of course, only the 32-bit FlowHeater Version can be used with a purely 32-bit system, but with a 64-bit system you have the choice.
Should you wish to make use of ODBC/OleDB data sources, for example, the Version to choose depends on which drivers you have for your ODBC/OleDB data sources. 32-bit drivers require a 32-bit FlowHeater Version and 64-bit drivers need a 64-bit FlowHeater Version. In case of doubt, a 32-bit Version is the preferred choice.
Q: [How to import/export dBase (dbf) files/databases]
There is no native dBase Adapter in FlowHeater. Nevertheless, dBase files/databases can be imported/exported with FlowHeater. You can use the OleDB Adapter for dBase processing, using the connection string
Provider=Microsoft.Jet.OLEDB.4.0; Data Source=C:\Folder; Extended Properties=dBASE IV; User;Password=;
for example, you can access dBASE IV database files in the C:\ folder.
Q: [Can I use both 32 and 64-bit Versions]
Yes, it is possible. Both Versions can be installed at the same time and later used. The last Version installed is the default Version and this will be opened when you double click on a FlowHeater Definition in Windows Explorer.
Q: [Do my old Definition files continue to function after an update]
Yes, that is always ensured. New Versions can always open old Definitions. The current Version 4 is backwards compatible with Version 1.x. What is not guaranteed is that older Versions can open and run newer Definitions.
Q: [Are there any performance limits for FlowHeater]
There are no explicit restrictions with regard to numbers of processed records, numbers of fields or numbers of Heaters (functions) used. However, there is a technical upper limit to processing of around 2 billion records/rows, but before you reach this ceiling you are likely to have problems with the database, main memory and the long time that processing would take.
Q: [I have to merge the content of two (or more) fields on the READ side into a single field on the WRITE side – how can I do that]
The String Append Heater is available for this purpose. Using this you can easily combine the content of several fields on the READ side into one field.
This question is often asked and so we have expanded our documentation to provide a thorough explanation. We now provide two examples as well as the help text on the If-Then-Else Heater.
- Simple If-Then-Else example
- Complex If-Then-ElseIf ... Else example
Q: [How can data be filtered]
Make use of the Filter Heater for this.
Q: [How can data be consolidated]
Make use of the GroupBy Heater for this.
Q: [How can I copy one record on the READ side to several records on the WRITE side]
Make use of the GroupOut Heater for this.
Q: [How can the sequence of data records be changed or the data sorted]
Make use of the Sort Heater for this.
Q: [What can I do to untangle a confusion of close connecting lines]
With Definitions involving lots of fields, the different Pipes are hard to discern and sometimes cross one another, etc. In order to make everything clearer to see, you can divide the Pipes with the Clone Heater (even making chains of them) and thereby reposition the Pipe to a more convenient place in the design area. You only need to move the mouse cursor over a Pipe to highlight it and then with a right mouse click, open the context menu where you choose the "Insert Clone Heater" option. The inserted Heater can then be dragged to any convenient position in the Designer.
Q: [How is it possible to trigger the running of Definitions automatically or periodically]
To do this you can either use the Batch Module (FHBatch.exe) or the considerably more powerful FlowHeater Server. Automation can be achieved when using the Batch Module with the help of the Windows task scheduler. An example of how to automate the import data into an Access table shows more closely how this is done.
FlowHeater Server was tailored precisely to the needs of data preparation and data import/export. It includes extensive functions that make it possible to run Definitions and other tasks to a timetable or whenever a new file appears in a folder, for example.
Q: [I need to process multiple files in a folder, how can I achieve that]
The Batch Module supports wildcards like *.csv in the /ReadFileName option. This makes it possible to process several files in one go. You can see an example of this here: Automated batch CSV import into MS Access
Q: [When importing large amounts of data into my PostgreSQL database it is getting slower and slower, why is that]
This is due to the way FlowHeater handles transactions. With default settings, the PostgreSQL Adapter uses a single database transaction for the entire data import process. You can adjust this in the Adapter settings under the "Advanced" tab. In this case we recommend you configure an AutoCommit after each 5,000 or 20,000 records. The settings depend on your PGSQL configuration.
Please note: This problem only affects PostgreSQL databases. Other databases have no problem handling the default transaction behavior, which is used for security reasons.