Thursday, April 26, 2007

Manipulating Data Files

Jim Kring posted techniques in his blog future-proofing data files by adding schema and version information to the file. Over the years, we’ve added some file formats to LabVIEW that make it hard for customers to follow his rules and that can cause problems.

I’ve seen folks hang themselves with the Datalog file by writing a file with one particular type definition (i.e. cluster) and then can’t read the file any more when they change clusters without understanding it will affect backward compatibility.

The newer file formats in LabVIEW like .TDM datalog files are much more maintainable because they store the type definition (typically called a ’schema’) in the data file so you can’t lose it and so it can be browsed by an external application.

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