"The data file you are trying to read is not in the proper format…"

Article ID: 117057
Category: General
Date Added: 2/26/2015


When creating, modifying or opening a report, you receive an error message:

The data file you are trying to read is not in the proper format. The file may have become corrupt due to an improper exist of ShoWorks or Windows, a power outage....

CAUSES (one or more possible causes)

A) The data file needs compacting

B) The user is attempting to run ShoWorks over a Wi-Fi network (not supported, see here) rather than hard-wired network.

C) One or more hardware components on the network has reached failure.

D) Permissions for the current user are needed within the Windows Registry

E) ShoWorks needs to be updated.


A) Using Windows Explorer, locate and move your data file to your local Desktop, then open this file with ShoWorks by double-clicking on the file, then once ShoWorks opens, select File>Utilities>Compact Data File, then move the file back to its original location.

B) When networking multiple computers for ShoWorks, do not use a Wi-Fi arrangement but instead hard wire all connections and turn off the Wi-Fi radios on all clients and follow the recommended guidelines here.

C) If using ShoWorks over a network, systematically remove/substitude components of your network layout by the process of elimination, testing until you can open the data file. I.e. have everyone shut down their computers and one at a time, turn on each client and open ShoWorks. You may need to try a different switch or router in case this is the cause.

D) Set all keys in the Windows Registry that ShoWorks needs by following the instructions here.

E) Download and run the latest update for Showorks found here or reinstall ShoWorks.

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