How to read a Recover.log

How do I make sense of a Recover.log file? A user reported that one of their files wouldn't open because they got the error that the file was damaged. Well, every backup I've run a recover on has been damaged. I don't know how to read the log file though to see what exactly was damaged. Any help?

search anything that has "changed", "modified", "deleted".

How does that user open files? Where are those files located? On a network share?

It is hosted on FileMaker Server. The Server is version 18. It is opened via FileMaker Pro Advanced 18.

That's weird, can you post a screenshot of what the user is getting?
The user doesn't actually open the file, they just connect to it, I would expect that if the file is damaged then FMS wouldn't be able to open it to host it.

Here is the error message they are getting: Damaged error message

Also, a quick search for those 3 terms yielded the following results:

"changed": Every custom theme, and the standard "enlightened" and "enlightened print" themes all said "this item changed".

"modified": At the very end of the log was this line Structure: scanned; 2 item(s) modified

"deleted": relational dependencies, as well as stuff like last used import order, etc...

What version of FileMaker Server?


So I ran a recover on a local backup copy. It said there were problems. Then, since I was out of ideas, I ran a recover on the recovered file. It said it was fine to use... Is that trustworthy?

The recovery process is not transparent and its sole purpose is to get the file is such a state that you can get the data out. To do that it may sacrifice anything at all in the file to make that happen. Which is why it is best practice to:

  • not re-use a recovered file
  • check your backups regularly
    None of that helps you know so it's a bit of a risk. We can't tell you whether you need to take that risk...

But do spend some time scrutinizing your deployment, clearly something damaged the file so it would be good to find out what and to make sure that you minimize the chances of that happening going forward.


If the indexes are corrupted, and it happens more than once, turn off Startup Restoration.

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