How to Recover a Corrupted FileMaker Pro file

Here's the procedure for dealing with a corrupted file. For those using FileMaker Server in a Multi-User environment, this operation will need to be performed on the server machine and a copy of FileMaker Pro must be available on that machine.

  1. Quit/Exit/Stop FileMaker Pro (single-user) or FileMaker Server (multi-user) entirely so that no files are open
  2. Open just FileMaker Pro from your Programs or Applications folder (don’t reopen StudioSchool Pro).
  3. If a dialog comes up asking you what you want to do or what file to open, click Cancel.
  4. Still in FileMaker, go to the File menu and select “Recover”
  5. Within the Recover file dialog, locate and select the file you believe to be damaged or corrupted. When asked to name the Recovered file, use the default name provided, for example “StudioSchoolPro Recovered.fp7”, and save it to the same location as the file you are recovering. This will normally be in the “Databases” folder with the other files.
  6. Click Recover.
  7. When Recover operation is complete, note if any errors were found. If no errors were found or records skipped, there is a good chance you can continue to work with this file for the short term. If errors were reported, the damage may be more severe requiring that you restore your files from a backup copy.
  8. Quit/Exit FileMaker Pro entirely again.
  9. Go the “Databases” folder within the StudioSchool Pro folder containing your database files. Find the original damaged file and rename it with the word “Damaged” - for example: if the damaged file is “StudioSchoolPro.fp7”, then change it's name to “StudioSchoolPro_Damage.fp7”
  10. Remove this file from your “Databases” folder, but keep it until you are sure StudioSchool Pro is running correctly again.
  11. Locate and rename the Recovered file back to the original name, removing the word “Recovered” AND the space before it. For example: change “StudioSchoolPro Recovered.fp7” to “StudioSchoolPro.fp7”. Very Important: You must remove the space that is before the word “Recovered” and rename the file to exactly match the original or the file will not work.
  12. Restart StudioSchool Pro in FileMaker Pro to check that it opens correctly. Check for missing data or incomplete records, particularly on the last record being worked on.
  13. If more files are corrupted, repeat the above procedure.
  14. For those using FileMaker Server, Quit/Exit FileMaker Pro and restart FileMaker Server. Do not attempt to open files simultaneously in both FileMaker Pro and FileMaker Server on the same computer. Serious and unrecoverable file corruption can result.

It is important to understand that the Recover command is a temporary fix to help recover data. If is very important that the data in the recovered file be migrated to a clean copy of the StudioSchool Pro database files as soon as possible. The continued use of Recovered files may lead to further problems.

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