This Client Server article is republished in its entirety from 2007 for reference purposes.
By Bentley Technical Support12 June 2007 Modified: 10 September 2007
Have you ever said, "My deadline is tomorrow and my file won't open!"
You may be working on a design that is critical to your project. Last night it was fine. You saved it before you left, shut down your computer in an orderly fashion, and yet the file won't open today.
You may be able to recover all or just some of your work. Occasionally a file is so corrupt that all work is lost. This is an unfortunate occurrence, but can happen with any computer system and any file type.
The most sure-fire recovery system is a backup scheme. For example, a weekly system backup schedule with daily incremental updates means that, at most, a day's work is lost when a file is corrupted. It should be a part of any business based on computer files. This cannot be stressed enough. If you have a day-old backup to fall back on, you can still make that deadline.
A variety of external backup systems is described here. You might also consider a USB external hard drive or a flash memory thumb drive. The latter are now available in verstions that store 8 gigabytes or more.
What you do next depends on the file format and version of MicroStation it was created with. Consult the flowchart that corresponds to your file format.
If your file was created in MicroStation/J (V7):
If your file was created in MicroStation V8:
If your file is in DWG format:
Detailed instructions in each case follow:
MicroStation/J (version 7) files can be opened in that or any later version of MicroStation. For information about your file opening read-only in V8, consult the Help file to set the MS_OPENV7 configuration variable.
MicroStation V8 files can be opened in any of the V8 editions. Trying to open a V8 DGN in MicroStation/J usually results in a "Not a design file" error message.
Particular versions of DWG files require specific MicroStation versions to open. If you are unsure of the format of your file, look at it in MicroStation Manager. If it is supported, the version is displayed above the preview window. The following DWG file versions can be opened by the corresponding versions of MicroStation (or any later version).
MicroStation V8 2004 Edition can handle some corruption of elements and file headers in MicroStation/J files. It may allow you to open your file, write to it and save it; thus, fixing your file. MicroStation V8 XM Edition has this same capability for V8 files created in earlier versions.
If you are able to open your file in MicroStation V8 XM Edition, simply make a change and undo it. This will cause data to be written to the file.
Reference, then merge into new file
If the corrupted file doesn't display, move to the next pertinent section. If it does display:
Import models into new file
If that succeeds, import the other models.
If you are unable to open the file, run the verifydgn MDL application at the command prompt. It is best to run it through the Developer Shell. If a full installation of MicroStation was not done, then the Developer Shell will not be available.
With the Developer Shell installed:
Enter USTATION -VERIFY FILENAME.DGN to verify that the file can be worked on.
Enter USTATION -VRG FILENAME.DGNto repair the file.
With the Developer Shell not installed:
These steps should recover some, if not all of your data, but there is no guarantee. Again, always have a backup of the file in case the worst happens.
If your company does not have a backup plan in place, make backups yourself. Copy your files to a secondary or flash drive at the end of the day. You'll be glad you did.
Client Server Archive
MicroStation Desktop TechNotes and FAQs
Bentley's Technical Support Group requests that you please confine any comments you have on this Wiki entry to this "Comments or Corrections?" section. THANK YOU!