Unanswered: Need Help With SPSS Merge! Please Help I Am Stuck
I know I posted a post not so long ago that dealt with this similar problem, and for everyone who replied, thank you for your help. I figured out that to merge those two files I needed SPSS.
However, now I face a new problem. I merged the two DBF files with SPSS, but now since I have to sort each variable or column by ascending order for them to merge I face a problem. I successfully merged two DBF files meaning one "key" file into the "master" file by using the functions in SPSS for merging two data files.
In order for the two files to merge I must sort the cases by ascending order. Now I am trying to merge the two files with two active variables, however I cannot sort both of the variables' cases as I must sort either CAT, or GRP, but it won't let me sort both of them at the same time. Please look at the attached files if that got confusing as you can see from those pictures what I mean.
Is there a software that will simply merge the two files by matching up the variables' cases, and that doesn't involve sorting them since I can't sort both of them at the same time? When I try to merge them when I have sorted just one column it simply says "needs to be in order" but I can't put both columns in order at the same time!
Lets put SPSS aside for the time being unless you absolutely need to have your data in that application. I do not know anything about it so I cannot assist you with it at all.
But as to the general manipulation of data in DBF data tables, I might have a suggestion or two.
On looking at your screen snapshots it seems that all three data tables (DBF files) have common fields - grp, cat, descr
Since that is the case, it is relatively easy to merge the data from all three data tables into one single 'master' table (assuming that is what you are asking to do - I'm guessing here).
There are a number of tools (not SPSS) that you can use to merge the data table information into one single table.
Method one is the one most likely available to you - Excel 2003 or earlier (more recent versions - no). Excel 2003 or earlier can open DBF files.
Open all three DBF data tables separately into Excel and then using Cut & Paste or Copy & Paste, put all of the 'rows' into one common Excel Workbook. Then highlight only those rows & columns that you want (not the empty ones) and perform a SaveAs... into the DBF format to meet your needs (typically this is DBF4).
Method two - use M$ Access to perform a similar operation. Access 2003 and earlier (I don't know about more recent versions) can open DBF files.
Method three - use Foxpro/Visual Foxpro. DBF data tables are 'native' to the Foxpro languages so they are handled well. Do the similar operations in this language.
There are possibly other tools and approaches, but if all you want to do is merge the data, that should get you started.
As to the sorting of the data once it is merged - that depends on the tools used and the language of the application which will use the data.
In the merge process you could perform the needed SORT there depending on the tool and method used.
Or within the application which uses the data you can use its 'language' to perform the sort.