Subject RE: [IBDI] FYI: *free* IBExpert personal edition as an alternative to IBConsole
Author Claudio Valderrama C.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Frank Ingermann [mailto:frank@...]
> Sent: Lunes 15 de Abril de 2002 17:19
> To:
> is a *free*
> version of IBExpert ("personal edition") ready for download. It is limited
> to a certain degree (e.g. the StoredProc debugger from the full version is
> missing), but after a first glance it seems it has all the functions one
> needs for administrating both IB *and* FB databases.

I'm not associated with any tool maker currently. However, I have my doubts
about QuickDesk and IBExpert. Both of them seem to modify mercilessly the
system tables directly. I've handled several cases over the last two years
that may be attributed to this behavior in both tools. Last example: go to
read bpi.bugdiscussion where an index was rendered unusable and hence,
results were unmeaningful when that index was used for sorting. You cannot
change a field's data type if such field is the PK without dropping the
contraint that in turn drops the index (and Craig Stuntz did the normal
steps, then declared the user's problem cannot be reproduced). I couldn't
understand how the damage happened until the person told me he didn't use
DDL but IBExpert. Go figure. The PK field was changed nastily from int to
int64 and the underlying index went crazy for obvious reasons. While I have
nothing against Alexander K. (former QuickDesk programmer and now IBExpert
programmer) and also have exchanged some emails with him in the past
regarding metadata extration, I think people deserve to know some dangers of
excessive, untamed power they get. Under normal circumstances, DDL stops
several suspicious operations. However, if you modify system tables
directly, you can write almost anything to them and the engine tries to
behave accordingly. The engine doesn't check the correlation among system
tables (only a few cases are validated), hence incomplete changes cause
major havoc. This validation and completion is the task of DYN, invoked from
DDL. Bypass DDL and you assume the responsability.

The bottom line is that one should be very careful with "innovative metadata
abilities" that any tool may sport. Remember the engine itself has troubles
with some metadata changes. Also, how does direct metadata manipulation work
against IB6.5? This remember me the "innovative approach" that Symantec took
to defragment NTFS partitions. If you want to corrupt your MFT, just use
Norton's Defragmenter under normal operations... sooner or later you're
going to regret your decision.

I hope IBWorkbench is more traditional in its approach, but I better let
Martijn to confirm.

Claudio Valderrama C.
Ingeniero en Informática - Consultor independiente -