Opening a physical/member file on a Windows Systems

I am trying to open a file on my 400 on a Windows XP machine. I have mapped a drive to the file using Netserver and can navigate to the file fine. However, when I try to open in on a Windows PC, I get 'invalid function'. I tried turing on the auto convert in the Iseries Navigator, but this does not seem to work. I really need to open this fine on a Windows system and any help would be greatly appreciated. I do not know what I am doing incorrectly. Thank You. LB

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

I have a few questions before I can really respond, we’ve had similar issues with both mapped drives via NetServer and mapped drives using SNA Server.

1) What type of file is this? Flat file, CSV etc..
2) What application are you trying to open it with in Windows?
3) Have you tried copy/pasting the file to your windows box to see if it will open better locally?
4) How large is the file?
5) Is the file name in standard “old” DOS format?
6) Is this file created by a process on the system, or is it uploaded to the iSeries?
7) Most importantly, have you ever been able to open it before? If so, when did it stop working, and have there been any CUMEs or individual PTFs etc.. applied since then?

That should give everyone enough information to start trying to figure this out with you.


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  • Costevet
    You cannot "open" an i5 file from Windows explorer. Just as you cannot open an Oracle table from Windows. You have to use a tool such as iNavigator to make a database connection to submit SQL statements. ODBC and client access are two ways of making the connection. In any event, the server job on the i5 will open the file and send a result set to the client.
    0 pointsBadges:
  • Jgsnsbt
    To costevet: In fact, You can open a file-member(!) using Explorer and dragging it into Notepad, at least on V5R3. It just won't do you any good since it's all in EBCDIC. I was surprised too. If You need usable data in your pc-app, you have to access the AS400-data with SQL or at least with the dummy Client Access download tool. Maybe you can try the trick to write your own app and associate the windows-extension .mbr with this application to do the query and data conversion. Then you just might open the file of type mbr and have your data displayed readable.
    30 pointsBadges:
  • TomLiotta
    Even if you could open a physical database file on an AS/400 from Windows, you wouldn't be able to make any more sense of it than you could if you opened a Windows SQL Server file using Windows Notepad. Notepad knows how to read the bytes, but it doesn't have the first clue about how to make sense of them. You can't make sense of a Windows image file with Notepad. You can't make sense of a Windows audio file with Notepad. Opening a file and reading its bytes is useless. You must use an appropriate client for everything except basic text. And even then the byte encoding scheme will be critical. Use the right client. Tom
    125,585 pointsBadges:
  • Teandy
    Use CPYTOIMPF to copy the file to the IFS. Then you can drag it to your desktop and open it in excel, notepad, etc...
    5,860 pointsBadges:

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