.DAT file of unknown structure

50 pts.
Tags:
VB
VBA
I have been given a series of .dat files of which I do not have the file structure.

They are produced by a system that tracks elctrical consumption.

All I know is the brand "iPT", and that the owner connects to it via HyperTerminal in order to get the data.

I work mostly with VB/VBA, but any and all suggestions as to how to read these files will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks a lot in advanced!



Software/Hardware used:
VB/VBA, PC

Answer Wiki

Thanks. We'll let you know when a new response is added.

This site will give you a good place to start – those .dat files can be very challenging if you don’t know what program is producing them.

http://www.online-tech-tips.com/computer-tips/how-to-open-dat-files/

I also searched with a combination of your iPT brand, with .dat, and came up with the following site:

http://filesharefreak.com/2008/11/02/utorrent-move-all-your-downloaded-files-keep-seeding/

Hope this helps!

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  • carlosdl
    Hi NimBiotics. It seems to me that you are not asking how to read the files, but what the file structure is. Have you opened the files with a text editor ? There must be some kind of separator between fields/records which could be easy to find, but you have to know in what position the information you need to extract is. Please provide as much details as possible, and let the community know what exactly you need help with.
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  • NimBiotics
    Thanks Carlos, I've opened the file but haven't been able to determnie if there is a field or record separator. I will keep on trying and wil post here. Again, Thanks!
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  • NimBiotics
    I’m adding as much info as I can. Hope someone can help me… As I said in my original post, the .dat files are being obtained from electrical meters branded as “iPT”. The “data collector” connects to the device via hyperterminal and, once connected has to execute the a series of commands. I am pasting here what I think to be the screen capture of a session given to the data collector as instructions; omitting the instructions themselves as they are in Spanish; no rocket science involved here.:
    //---
    Onboard Peripherial Devices :
      Ethernet  : NOT FOUND.
      NAND Flash: NOT FOUND.
    Starting Embedded DOS-ROM...
    Embedded DOS-ROM Extended Memory Manager V2.5
    Extended Memory Managed by HIMEM: 4096KB.
    General Software Embedded DOS-ROM Virtual Disk Driver V2.0.
    Extended Memory Used by VDISK: 3072KB.
    VDISK Start Address: 00500000.
    
    In a few words; the user is executing a couple of commands before dumping the memory to the data.dat file.
    
    Again; I do greatly appreciate any and all help you guys can give me. I can send you a sample data.dat file as well as a sample report as graphics, not the data itself though…
    
    Muchas gracias in advanced!!!
    TIA!!!				
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  • NimBiotics
    ...Sorry guys, don't know what happened in previous post... I’m adding as much info as I can. Hope someone can help me… As I said in my original post, the .dat files are being obtained from electrical meters branded as “iPT”. The “data collector” connects to the device via hyperterminal and, once connected has to execute the a series of commands. I am pasting here what I think to be the screen capture of a session given to the data collector; omitting the instructions as they are in Spanish:
    //---
    Onboard Peripherial Devices :
      Ethernet  : NOT FOUND.
      NAND Flash: NOT FOUND.
    Starting Embedded DOS-ROM...
    Embedded DOS-ROM Extended Memory Manager V2.5
    Extended Memory Managed by HIMEM: 4096KB.
    General Software Embedded DOS-ROM Virtual Disk Driver V2.0.
    Extended Memory Used by VDISK: 3072KB.
    VDISK Start Address: 00500000.
    
    
    In a few words; the user is executing a couple of commands before dumping the memory to the data.dat file.
    
    Again; I do greatly appreciate any and all help you guys can give me. I can send you a sample data.dat file as well as a sample report as graphics, not the data itself though…
    
    Muchas gracias in advanced!!!
    TIA!!!				
    50 pointsBadges:
    report
  • NimBiotics
    ...Happened again, one more try... I’m adding as much info as I can. Hope someone can help me… As I said in my original post, the .dat files are being obtained from electrical meters branded as “iPT”. The “data collector” connects to the device via hyperterminal and, once connected has to execute the a series of commands. I am pasting here what I think to be the screen capture of a session given to the data collector; omitting the instructions as they are in Spanish: //--- Onboard Peripherial Devices : Ethernet : NOT FOUND. NAND Flash: NOT FOUND. Starting Embedded DOS-ROM... Embedded DOS-ROM Extended Memory Manager V2.5 Extended Memory Managed by HIMEM: 4096KB. General Software Embedded DOS-ROM Virtual Disk Driver V2.0. Extended Memory Used by VDISK: 3072KB. VDISK Start Address: 00500000.
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  • carlosdl
    If the files contain memory dumps, it will be really hard to extract useful data from them, as information is most likely going to be at different positions each time. Don't you have any documentation from the device vendor ? isn't there any other way to exctrat information from the device than dumping the memory ? are you currently using this dumps for other purposes ?
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