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Re: st: Re: problems with openning dta files

From (William Gould, StataCorp LP)
Subject   Re: st: Re: problems with openning dta files
Date   Thu, 24 May 2007 09:38:24 -0500

Zou Hong <> writes, 

> I am using Stata9.2. For some reasons, when I opened one data file, I saw
> the following errors:
>    . use risktaking2
>    insufficient memory for value label ?W¨
>    above message refers to value label ?W¨; value label not loaded

> Using "ed" check data and found many variable values (e.g., firm code and 
> year) have been changed for some reasons. The file can be opened in another 
> computer using Stata. I have just updated my Stata system and the problem 
> still persists.

What we know is that either the Stata executable has become corrupted or 
that file risktaking2.dta is corrupted.  Zou suspects it is the executable, 
but I'm not so sure.  Zou writes, "The file can be opened in another computer
using Stata", but is that physically the same file, or a different 
file also called risktaking2.dta?

I suspect the latter because if it were the Stata executable, Stata would be
more likely to crash than to produce incorrect results.  In fact, we've never
seen a single instance where a corrupted executable has done anything but

Let's find out about risktaking2.dta.  Zou should, on each 
computer, type 

	. checksum risktaking2.dta
	Checksum for risktaking2.dta = _____________, size = ____

The numbers both computers report will be the same if the files are the same.
If the checksums are the same, most likely there is a hardware problem (in
particular, memory) on Zou's computer.

If the checksums are different, the files are different and the question
becomes, were the files ever the same or did the file on Zou's computer
become corrupted.  How did risktaking2.dta get onto Zou's computer?  If he
copied via ASCII FTP, we now know the answer to the problem:  Stata .dta files
are not ASCII files.  They must be copied with binary FTP.

If Zou needs more help, he should email <>.

-- Bill
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