How to Restore Inspection Results from ArchiveMachineData
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written: 11/16/2023
last modified: 03/01/2024

Introduction

QC-CALC Real-Time backs up all of the communication files it receives from the CMM software. By default, these are backed up in C:\ProgramData\Prolink\QC-CALC 4.0\ArchivedMachineData\backup. This can be useful if you end up with excluded records in your part file and wish to recover the excluded records.

For example, let’s say you collected 3 parts but 1 part is missing data. The missing part shows up as a gold dot (an excluded record) across all plots. You could locate the inspection results file that contains that data by looking for the file with a certain timestamp, and then have QC-CALC Real-Time attempt to collect the data again.

In the screenshot above, record 2 has an orange dot indicating the data has been excluded or is missing. Since the data is missing, QC-CALC Real-Time assigns placeholder data in orange. The date and time of that record is estimated based on the time of the previous record. This is important to remember as when you go look for the inspection file that contains your missing data, the Modified Time of the inspection results file won’t necessarily match what QC-CALC Real-Time shows for the Time of the missing record.

Instead, you can determine which inspection results file is the correct one by using the date and time of the records immediately before and after the missing record.

The pictures above show the Point Properties pane for records 1 and 3, the records immediately before and after the missing record, 2. QC-CALC Real-Time estimated the time of the missing record as 13:07:07 (1:07 PM). Record 1 was collected at 1:05:49 PM, while record 3 was collected at 1:07:07 PM. QC-CALC Real-Time cannot collect two records at the same time, so we can assume that 1:07 PM is not going to be the time associated with the inspection results file. That time will be somewhere between the time of record 1 (1:05 PM) and record 3 (1:07 PM).

Now that we have a general idea of what to look for, take a look in your ArchiveMachineData folder. In QC-CALC Real-Time go to Help > Open ProgramData Folder, this will open C:\ProgramData\ in Windows File Explorer. Go to Prolink/QC-CALC Real-Time 4.0/ArchivedMachineData/backup

An example of the contents of C:\ProgramData\Prolink\QC-CALC 4.1\ArchivedMachineData\backup:

Note the times in the Date Modified column. The first file from the top is very likely the data for record 3 as the date and time match that record exactly. Likewise, the date and time of the 3rd file from the top matches the date and time of record 1. So, it’s very likely that the 2nd file from 11/15/2023 1:06 PM contains the missing data.

Once you’ve identified the likely file, open the file before it in Notepad. Look through the file to try to locate the label for characteristic #1 and note the value of the Actual. You can compare this to what QC-CALC Real-Time has for that actual in the Point Properties pane. If the label, value, and file date and time all match what’s in QC-CALC Real-Time, then that file contains the data for record 1. You can repeat the same thing for the file from 13:05 to confirm that has the data for record 3. If both of them match up, then you can be confident that the file from 1:06 PM contains your missing data.

Renaming Files in ArchivedMachineData

The files above are TMP files containing inspection results from PC-DMIS. When these files were originally exported to QC-CALC Real-Time, they were named after the first part of the current filename, for example, “16141633”. QC-CALC Real-Time appended to each file name everything in between the tildes (~), including the tildes. Let’s take a closer look at that:

~10-16-23~51634~1

~10-16-23~ is a timestamp containing the month (10), day (16), and year (23). The other numbers on the end are unique incrementing numbers to ensure the uniqueness of each filename so that duplicate filenames do not overwrite one another.

When you go to manually read these files into QC-CALC Real-Time, you’ll have to rename them. For many of our machine drivers, the name of the part file the data gets collected into is taken from the name of the inspection results file. If you were to send in the file 16141633~10-16-23~51634~1.TMP as is, QC-CALC Real-Time might collect it into a part file named “16141633~10-16-23~51634~1”.

As an example, if the file you want to collect data from is named 16141633~11-14-2023~47270~7.TMP then rename the file to 16141633.TMP, removing ~11-14-2023~47270~7 from the file name.

When you collect data manually in this way, QC-CALC Real-Time will append the data to the end of your part file. If those records have a measure date/time that is earlier than the preceding records, your data is now partially out of order. There is no way to reorder these records.


If you need the data to be in the order in which it was measured, you can instead choose to remeasure each missing record and then manually copy the correct inspection results file to your data collection folder. To remeasure a record, right-click on the point you want to remeasure and choose Remeasure Record. This will replace the excluded record with the data in your inspection results file. Since this replaces an existing record, your data will remain ordered by measure date.

The downside is that you can only remeasure one record at a time, so if you have many records to recover this may be time-consuming. Depending on the circumstances, it may be easier to re-run the entire program if the previous results have been saved by the CMM software.

Steps to recover data from ArchivedMachineData

  1. Within QC-CALC Real-Time, use the Point Properties pane to note the date and time of the records immediately before and after the missing record(s). If you don’t see Point Properties, make sure it is enabled by going to View > Point Properties.
  2. Go to Tools > Options > Data Collection > Data Source Information > and note the location of “File Path and Name”. The file path portion is where you will copy the inspection results files later so that QC-CALC Real-Time can collect the data.

  1. Pause data collection in QC-CALC Real-Time using the Pause button in the toolbar
  2. In QC-CALC Real-Time go to Help > Open ProgramData Folder, this will open that folder
  3. Within C:\ProgramData, browse to Prolink/QC-CALC Real-Time 4.0/ArchivedMachineData/backup
  4. Use the Modified Time column and/or the timestamps in the file names to determine which inspection results file should contain the missing data.

  1. Once you have a target file or file(s), open the files immediately before and after that one (sorted by Modified Time) and check if the measurement values match the records before and after your missing record(s).
  2. Once you’ve located the files you need, copy them to another folder.
  3. Rename the copied files to remove everything from (and including) the first tilde (~) up to (but not including) the dot before the file extension. 1019867~10-16-23~51634~1.tmp → 1019867.tmp
  4. After renaming, copy the inspection results files to the file path where QC-CALC Real-Time will look for them, from step #2.
    1. If you need the records to be in date order, you can remeasure one record at a time and replace the missing data with your measurement data.
    2. Before copying the file to the data collection source folder, right-click on the missing point in one of the plots and select Remeasure Record.
    3. Now copy the file that contains that data to the data collection source folder.
    4. QC-CALC Real-Time will replace the missing record with the data in that file and the dot will turn blue to indicate the values have been changed.
  5. You will see the inspection results files disappear from the data collection source folder as QC-CALC Real-Time collects your data, and the gold dot in your part file will change to blue to indicate the value has been changed.