If a database file becomes large with many records in it, the database will take a long time to query. The symptoms of this will be loading bars or long wait times when filtering data such as orders, quotes, history, and customers. Sometimes the program will even begin to crash when trying to query the database for this information.
The proper way to reduce the Printer's Plan database file size is to first make an archival backup and then begin removing old data. The steps below will ensure no data is lost and the program becomes more responsive.
- When removing old data try not to start removing old data that is less than 2 years old unless you absolutely have to do so. Try to keep information that is within the last 2 years. This is to avoid them needing to check their archival data for recent information.
Archive: Make an archival backup of the current database.
- The difference between an archival backup and a standard backup is in the naming conventions.
- Name the file something like 'PlandataArchive2010-2020' so the user can identify what this file is and what data range of historical data is in the file.
Quote Data: Open the quote history within Printer's Plan and check for a lot of quote records. These will be the records that will be removed first. This is the safest data to remove.
- Organize the quote data from oldest to newest and start removing the oldest quote data.
- Once a significant amount of records have been removed, temporarily stop removing data to check for improvements.
- Compact the database once the information is removed.
- If the database seems quite responsive then no further action is needed. If it is still taking a long time to query information then more data may need to be removed.
History Data: Only if the database is still laggy and the file size is still large should history data start to be removed.
- Start by filtering the oldest history data first and remove in batches.
- Compact the database frequently.
Make sure to keep the archive database in an accessible place so it can easily be swapped with the live database for checking records. Sometimes this includes creating a separate installation of Printer's Plan that references only the archive data.
Archive Access Environment
Create a new folder and add a copy of the current executable as well as the planwin.pp file and the archive database. Name the folder 'PRINTER'S PLAN ARCHIVE ACCESS'
In the registry for Microsoft Windows, there is a value for where Printer's Plan's database can be found. If this value is removed from the registry then Printer's Plan will first look in it's the immediate location for a database and use that database. This is how a unique archive access Printer's Plan installation can be configured.
- The registry path for the database file path is: HKey Current User/Software/SoftUSE/Printer’s Plan/Settings
- In this folder, you will see a PlanPath key