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What causes data corruption?

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Cause

Note:  Installing Sage on a PC does create the files that make the program function as designed.  However, the environment the files are kept in determine how they behave.

The following are possible causes of data corruption:

  • Bad program exits
  • Malware/virus infections
  • Sudden loss of power--shutdown
  • Voltage spikes
  • Physical hardware issues
  • Any interruption in normal computer processes
  • Too Large of a database size
  • Connected to the network via wireless router

Resolution

CAUTION: Sage Customer Support does not assist with issues related to third-party products or enhancements, hardware, report customizations, state or federal tax-related questions, or specific accounting questions. Please get in touch with your Sage business partner, network administrator, or accountant for assistance. Please refer to our Scope of Support document for details.

Damaged files or corrupt data of some variety on a computer is inevitable. It's not a matter of if, it's a matter of when. Computers are by and large, extremely reliable machines, but they are still machines and are subject to wear and tear just like anything else. This article lays out the common causes.

Bad program exit

One of the more common causes of data corruption is not properly shutting down a program that has files open. This can happen accidentally, when your entire building loses direct electrical power, or it can be due to intention or carelessness, like not shutting down your vital applications before turning your computer off.

Malware infections

Sadly, malware or virus infections can directly damage files. The means to damage your files can be as simple as encrypting them so they cannot be read by their normal applications, marking them hidden, or outright deleting them.

Power issues

Suddenly shutting a computer down through loss of power can definitely cause corruption, as the files that were open at the time of the shutdown may not have been properly closed out on the hard drive itself. While rare, sudden changes in voltage can also affect your computers, and thusly, your data files.

Physical hardware issues

This can run the gamut. Hard drives are miraculous machines but the kind that is still mainly in use involves spinning disks of magnetic media. As mentioned before, it's not a matter of if your hard drive will fail, it's a matter of when. If they don't crash outright, it's possible for a sector on the hard drive to become unreadable. Whatever files were written to a bad sector can become damaged. Network hardware can also fail. Even shielded cables can break down if wired too closely to a heat source. Routers can become damaged, interfering with the transmission of data packets across a network.

Any interruption in data transmission

Basically, anything that interferes with normal data transmission can damage or corrupt your files. Wireless networks are particularly susceptible to this. You have experienced this directly if you've ever had a dropped mobile phone call. 

Too large of a company database size

Database managers such as the one Sage 50 uses, Pervasive, have a much easier time managing smaller data sizes.  Sage 50 suggests to keep data size below 500 MB.  When logged into your company, you can browse to Help/Customer Support and Service/File Statistics and scroll to the bottom where the Grand Total is to find the total data size.  If data size is over 500,000 KB, it is suggested to Purge Data from closed years.  Please see Article ID 12004 "How to Purge Data" in related resources.

Connected to the network via wireless router

Running Sage 50 on a machine connected to the network via wireless router can cause multiple drops over the network.  When this happens, this causes the files to lock into the system leaving the files in a state of vulnerability.  Sage works best in a network that is hard-wired as it alleviates the possibility of the loss of connection to the network.

 

What can I do to prevent it?

While there's no way to truly prevent it, you can minimize the likelihood of it occurring.

  • Do what you can to minimize the causes
  • Close out of your files before restarting or shutting down your computer
  • If your area is prone to sudden power shutdowns, get an uninterruptible power supply for your computers
  • Ensure you can recover from the eventual data issue by having a good backup policy
  • Hard-wire your network connection while using Sage and its connected services

 

Related Solutions

´╗┐How to Purge data