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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
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    2

    Unanswered: Replace Paradox/DOS with what???

    Stop laughing. I know it sounds silly, but my employer is finally getting rid of its Windows XP computers, and we don't want to struggle with getting Paradox/DOS to run on the new boxes.

    I used it to reformat data files sent by our suppliers. The primary purpose was to manipulate strings of text, tearing apart long ones into separate fields, and occasionally a bit of simple math. The results are sent to Excel where they're made prettier for the users. I have no problem with learning new tricks. Is MySQL a good option for these purposes? My work will be done on a Windows 7 machine.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
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    Provided Answers: 54
    Without more information I can't be certain, but I bet that Excel will do what you want.

    If Excel won't do it, my next choice would be Microsoft Access. Access has pretty much all of the functionality that Paradox had, and many features that Paradox lacked.

    MySQL and its related tools will certainly do everything that Paradox would, but it seems like massive overkill for this task. MySQL and its tools would certainly take more hardware, time, and effort than Paradox used which means that the cost to the business will be a lot higher. You already use Excel, so if it can do the job (which I think it can) then the only incremental cost is the time you need to learn to do the parsing. If you need more than Excel can do you could license many copies of Microsoft Access for the cost of one server to run MySQL, and you can probably transition from Paradox to Microsoft Access in less than one fourth of the time needed to transition to MySQL.

    MySQL is a great product for the problems that it solves, but it would be massive overkill for a bit of text processing and number crunching.

    -PatP
    In theory, theory and practice are identical. In practice, theory and practice are unrelated.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Posts
    2
    Quote Originally Posted by Pat Phelan View Post
    Without more information I can't be certain, but I bet that Excel will do what you want.

    If Excel won't do it, my next choice would be Microsoft Access. Access has pretty much all of the functionality that Paradox had, and many features that Paradox lacked.

    MySQL and its related tools will certainly do everything that Paradox would, but it seems like massive overkill for this task. MySQL and its tools would certainly take more hardware, time, and effort than Paradox used which means that the cost to the business will be a lot higher. You already use Excel, so if it can do the job (which I think it can) then the only incremental cost is the time you need to learn to do the parsing. If you need more than Excel can do you could license many copies of Microsoft Access for the cost of one server to run MySQL, and you can probably transition from Paradox to Microsoft Access in less than one fourth of the time needed to transition to MySQL.

    MySQL is a great product for the problems that it solves, but it would be massive overkill for a bit of text processing and number crunching.

    -PatP

    Admittedly, I haven't explored scripting possibilities for Excel. I've done string manipulation using functions, and then copying them down entire columns. With Paradox, I'd write a function and the scan a table's records to perform whatever was needed. For instance, we sometimes receive UPC codes with leading zeros missing. Instead of 10 characters, we get 6 or 7. Still accurate, but visually confusing. So, I rebuild those codes by testing their length and then adding the appropriate number of leading zeros.

    I suggested Access to the employer, but they're whining about their budget. I'm stuck with having to do this data manipulation on my end and presenting it in Excel format, which they can already handle.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    UK
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    11,434
    Provided Answers: 10
    FWIW: Excel pad string with leading zeros up to 10 characters in length
    Code:
    =RIGHT(REPT("0", 10) & A1, 10)
    Also, if you use Tables in Excel (introduced in v2007), you only have to put the formula in one cell and it will automagically copy to the whole column!
    George
    Home | Blog

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Use the Excel Import to parse the input file into columns, then format the UPC column to be "ten digits, zero filled" and you're done!

    -PatP
    In theory, theory and practice are identical. In practice, theory and practice are unrelated.

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