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Database Created in InterBase is Full of Features, but Prone to Corruption

Apr 21 2014 12:00AM by adamgorge   

InterBase is a high-performance relational database system that is full of features, and is used primarily in software development, especially by those who want a lightweight database for mobile applications at a relatively low cost. InterBase is used mostly on platforms like, iOS, Android, Windows, Linux, Solaris, etc. and provides the platform powerful security, disaster recovery, and support for all the drivers necessary for database deployment with flexibility.

Features of InterBase

Based on the application it is to be used with, you can create database of required size, which makes the InterBase highly scalable. Along with this, many of the features added to the InterBase are mentioned below:

No Administration and Least Disk Space

The applications (such as ISV, OEM, and VAR) that require small databases best suit the InterBase, as along with its compact size, it is full of features and can keep your business critical data safe. The key feature that increases its demands is that no expensive support as well as maintenance cost is involved, which costs a lot in other database engines. In this way, InterBase is preferred the most for the development of lightweight applications.

High Security and User Access Control

At zero administration cost, InterBase features data encryption that is required to keep your business-critical data secure. You can encrypt the database with AES (Advanced Encryption Standard) or DES (Data Encryption Standard) algorithm before sharing it over a network. Such high-flexibility and data security makes InterBase the first preference for various Windows, Android, iOS and other mobile platforms.

Platform Independent

The databases created in InterBase are platform independent, and therefore they move with the applications from one platform to another throughout Android, Window, Linux, iOS and more, and make database deployment flexible.

Database Cloud Storage

InterBase provides instant access to database by allowing you store it in cloud computing environment. Alternatively, you can also keep the database local to obtain high-level security and performance.

Issues in InterBase

In spite of several features that make InterBase platform independent, less disk space, and zero-admin cost, and more, the databases created on this platform are prone to corruption due to several causes. Mentioned below are different categories of corruption in databases in InterBase:

Hardware Issue

The functions of hardware components in computers are just like that of the bones in human body, which means that computers must have a healthy hardware configuration to perform all intended tasks in an efficient manner. Besides, you must take proper care of your computer in order to benefit its functions and their respective output. However, system hardware components often go bad and cause corruption in data stored on the computer. Hardware issues have following classifications:

Dirty System Shutdown

Dirty or abrupt system shutdown often becomes a cause of corruption in data. It usually happens when electricity runs away and your computer is not connected to a UPS. While cleaning the floor in the office or at your home, cleaner might pull the wrong cable and cause sudden system shutdown. Well, you may not find these situations troublesome, but they often lead to corruption in data stored on the hard drive or sometimes even in the drive itself.

Hard Drive Corruption

Hard drives are the prime sources of storage in computers, which nowadays are available in different sizes (i.e. the storage capacity). Actually, the size of the hard drive you choose also depends on the size of the data, as you might have a large collection of personal and professional data. However, make sure an overfilled hard drive may lead to corruption at any time. Apart from this, hard drives also get corrupt when they become obsolete.

Flash Drive Corruption

You might be storing all your crucial files on a flash drive or an SD card installed on your smartphone. Make sure you stay alert every time, as these types of storage devices have a limited lifetime that is defined in the number of times you can read/write access them. As soon as you are getting closer to that specified count, the lifetime of your storage media is getting over. Besides, improper ejection of flash drives (i.e. pen drive, SD card, and more) also causes corruption.

Bad RAM

RAM is the primary memory in computers in which data is executed. Though corruption in RAM is rare, it indeed is a real nightmare. For instance, BSOD (Blue Screen of Death) is one of the symptoms of bad RAM and a technician can easily understand it. However, the corruption in RAM often is so slight that it is quite hard to detect. In such a situation, data stored in the database created in InterBase might get affected badly.

Maintenance Carelessness

Maintenance of database or its corresponding database engine is as much necessary as its usage in order to make it work efficiently as well as in an intended manner. Mentioned below are some issues caused by carelessness toward maintenance of the database:

Deleting Database file unknowingly

Deleting one or more unwanted files on your computer may cause accidental deletion of database created in InterBase. Well, prior version of Firebird and InterBase did allow deleting the database files irrespective of whether they are being used or not. Likewise, some new versions also allow deleting the database files even when a user is making transactions from the front end. In case an InterBase data file is deleted unknowingly, you may have to face a huge loss of data.

Copying InterBase database file when it being used

Copying InterBase database file from its original location to another while some process is using it may inject corruption in it. Actually, the InterBase must not allow external read/write access to its database when some application is using it, as external sources often become the causes of database corruption. Thus, you must forbid the read/write operations until the application is done using the database.

Disappeared Database files on Linux

Linux, as you know, Linux implements inode mechanism in order to be able to support different file systems. The inode mechanism features the usage of cache for handling file descriptors, which allows them to store on both RAM and drive. In such a situation, deleting the database unintentionally or replacing it with a new database file when it is in use continues the work; however, nothing is saved since the connectivity was broken.

In order to prevent data loss in such situations, the InterBase must prohibit the external read/write access to its database files when an application is already using it. In this regard, the database engine must throw a warning message that says the database is already in use and external access is barred.

Recover Corrupt InterBase Database files

InterBase, though, is used to create and manage databases for mobile applications running on Windows, iOS, Android, Solaris, and some other platforms. However, databases created in InterBase can be crucial and may cause a huge loss of money and/or data if you lose any of them unknowingly, no matter what the causes responsible for the loss are.

Since you cannot prevent corruption occurring in a database, you can surely try and recover the lost database with commercial data recovery tool. Based on the type of database, use a commercial InterBase database recovery tool and perform a thorough or advanced system scan (i.e. for particular ‘file type’ only) to recover InterBase database files.

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adamgorge
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