ASCII Database .DBF File Description

Surfer imports data from and exports data to dBase/xBase database .DBF files.

Xbase is a complex of data files .DBF, indexes .NDX, .MDX, .CDX, etc. and eventually note files .DBT for storing large amounts of formatted data in a structured form.

DBase's database system was one of the first to provide a header section for describing the structure of the data in the file. This meant that the program no longer required advance knowledge of the data structure, but rather could ask the data file how it was structured. Note that there are several variations on the .DBF file structure, and not all dBase-related products and .DBF file structures are necessarily compatible.

A second file type is the .DBT file format for memo fields. While character fields are limited to 254 characters each, a memo field is a 10-byte pointer into a .DBT file which can include a much larger text field. DBase was very limited in its ability to process memo fields, but some other xBase languages treat memo fields as strings just like character fields for all purposes except permanent storage.

DBase uses .NDX files for indexes. Some xBase languages include compatibility with .NDX files while others use different file formats.

Import Options Dialog

No import options dialog is displayed.

See Also

File Format Chart

DBF ASCII Database Export Automation Options

DBF ASCII Database Export Options Dialog

DBF ASCII Database Import Automation Options