General Questions

Can I connect to my Enviro Data database saved in a File Share in Azure Blog Storage?

The answer is yes but this can depend on what computer and network you are running Enviro Data on. Also,…

The answer is yes but this can depend on what computer and network you are running Enviro Data on. Also, the speed of this connection will depend on the speed and latency of your connection.

Mounting an Azure File Share involves running a PowerShell script (In Admin mode) on the computer you need to connect from. See How to mount an Azure Files share in Windows | Azure Tips and Tricks (youtube.com). This will create a local drive from which you can Attach to an Enviro Data database. See screen shots below from our Windows Server VM on Azure where Drive E has been mapped to Azure Blog File Share “Enviro”.

file explorer file share

 

database connection using file share

However, for this to work Port 445 on your network will have to be open. While I did this successfully on our Windows Server running on an Azure VM, I am not able to connect from my local Windows 11 Pro computer from home because Port 445 is either blocked by my router or ISP. You can check this in advance by running a free utility called Shields Up at GRC | ShieldsUP! — Internet Vulnerability Profiling. On that page click on Common Ports within the large blue graphic to run it then scroll down to check to see if Port 445 is open or closed (Stealth).

shields up

If your network or ISP has Port 445 blocked, Azure provides links to instructions on how to work around this issue located immediately below the windows where you found the PowerShell script. They generally involve a VPN and may involve a monthly fee from Microsoft or others.

fix port 445

Note that if Port 445 is blocked on your router, you may be able to redirect or unblock it. You would need to contact the router manufacturer to determine how to do that.

 

Why are my undetected results now reporting the wrong Value after upgrading to Version 8D?

The Analytic Flag table in Enviro Data contains the field ReportingFactor that allows for the lab Value to be multiplied by a…

The Analytic Flag table in Enviro Data contains the field ReportingFactor that allows for the lab Value to be multiplied by a constant depending on project requirements. The Reporting Factor for the Flag Code = U (for non-detect) had been set incorrectly in the Enviro Data example database (EnvDData8) prior to Version 8D. Since many of our clients created their databases from this example database, they may also have this error in their databases. 

Geotech recommends all users check this in each of their databases as shown below and make changes if necessary. The Analytic Flags form can be acessed from the Editor --> Manage Lookups --> Analytic Flags or, form the Viewer --> Display Options --> Edit Analytic Flags.

edit analytic flags

In the form use either the Access Record Selector (bottom left) or the Datasheet button to find the U Flag Code record and change the Reporting Factor value to 1.  

change reporting factor

This change was made because Enviro Data already allows for non-detected results to be modified using one of several other options (including 1/2 value) in the Non-Detect Options section of the Display/Graphing Options form (shown below). This change is necessary because using a Reporting Factor of 0.5 combined with one of these options could cause incorrect results. 

non detect options

How can a save a parameter's result that does not have a numerical value like color or pass-fail?

Some parameter’s values cannot be saved in a numerical field. These values might be based on qualitative characteristics such as…

Some parameter’s values cannot be saved in a numerical field. These values might be based on qualitative characteristics such as colors, ignitability, effervescence, or something else that doesn't have a number value associated with it. (This doesn't mean that categorical data cannot have numerical values however,) In these situations, result values can be imported using the CatResults field found in the DTS8 or a User-Defined import. These values will be stored in Analyses,CatResult field and the Value field is left empty.

Before you can use a Cat. Results, they must be in the CategoricalResultType lookup table with the parameter they represent and the meaning. Note that these must each be a unique record set containing the Parameter, Cat Result and CatResultMeaning. Cat. Results can be edited and added using the Cat. Result Types button in the Miscellaneous section of Manage Lookups form in the Editor.

Categorical Results form

Categorical Result Types form.

Categorical Results form in datasheet view

Categorical Result Types form in Datasheet view.

To display an analysis with cat. results, check the Display Categorical Result in the Display Options form as shown below. 

cDisplaying Cat. Results selection in Display Options

Cat. Results are shown in the Value and Flag column when doing a List in Select Data.

List Report in Selected Daya showing Cat. Results

Note: Enviro Data Versions prior to 8D, had an indexing error in the CategoricalResultType table that prevented the storage of the same CatResult with more than one parameter. Contact Geotech Support for a fix if you encounter this issue.

How can I use the NEW Enviro Data Lab Master Services Agreement Tool?

Please see the video instruction for the Enviro Data Lab Master Services Agreement Tool on our YouTube channel.

What are detection limits and Limit Types and how should they be stored and used?

Detection Limits Non-Detected results are common in environmental data and Enviro Data provides a complete set of tools for handling…

Detection Limits

Non-Detected results are common in environmental data and Enviro Data provides a complete set of tools for handling them. Using them allows you to specify exactly how you want undetected results displayed with options such as < .01, .01u, ND, and so on. By using detection limits along with the other features of Enviro Data, you can even specify a numeric factor or value, such as zero or half the limit, to report the result, as well as for special situations like contouring, statistics, or risk analysis.

The detection limit and the type of limit is provided by the lab. For example. Detect might be 0.01 and the LimitType could be “RL” and it is not unusual for a lab to provide multiple detection limits. However, the limit’s reporting units (not duplicated in the EDD) must be the same as the analytical value’s units.

Enviro Data provides for storing up to five different detection limits in the Analyses table. These are stored in pairs of fields where you can determine which type of detection limits is stored in each. These fields are Detect and LimitType, Detect2 and LimitType2, Detect3 and LimitType3, Dectect4 and LimitType4, Detect5 and LimitType5. Note that these fields are not required fields and can remain blank.

Examples of multiple detection limit types can be seen in the table below. Ideally, you should only store a single detection limit type in each of one of these paired fields. To mix them in a single pair could impact your reports and exports.

detection limit types

Table 2 - Detection Limit Types provided in the Enviro Data example database.

When setting up your project database, you should decide which type of limit will be stored in each of these pairs. You should also work with your laboratories to make sure they provide your data in conformity with the standard you select. An example of this is shown below. There’s no set rule, but obviously if you only have one limit you need to use the Detect and LimitType pair. Also, it’s imperative to be consistent. If the detection limit columns in your databases contain a mixture of different detection limit types, Geotech can help you run a few queries to get each limit type consistently assigned to the desired column(s).

The limits and limit types for each result should be in the electronic data deliverables or EDD file during the importing of data provided by the laboratory. During the import, they are stored in the appropriate Detect and LimitType fields in the Analyses table. The screen shot below is from the DTSFormat8.xlsx import electronic data deliverables (EDD) file showing the fields that the limits are imported from. While there are only three limits available in the DTSFormat8 EDD, you can import up to five (total) with the User-Defined Import by simply adding them to the EDD.

detection linit fields in edd
Figure 135 – Detection Limit fields used for import in the EDD.

When reporting or exporting your data, you can select which value you wish to display in the Non-detect Options section of the Display/Graphing Options form as shown below.

choosing detection limit to optput
Figure 136 – Choose Detection Limit in the Non-detect Options section of the Display/Graphing Options form

You can also select multiple detection limits to display in the Crosstab Wizard Export.

detect linit crosstab
Figure 137 – Setting to display Detect field in Crosstab Wizard.

Most users, however, will choose to display (whichever limit they need) for non-detected results in the Value and Flag field selected in conjunction with the Analytical Flag codes.

Why am I getting an error "Can't connect to" GCSLICENSE.MDE?

This error occurs with a shared installation where Enviro Data is not seeing your Enviro Data license database on the…

Can't connect to gcslicense.mde

This error occurs with a shared installation where Enviro Data is not seeing your Enviro Data license database on the server. Enviro Data uses a database file named GCSLicense.mde to keep track of how many licenses have been purchased and, how many are currently in use. It is generally stored in a location on your server where you have read\write access rights. The error occurs because your computer cannot locate the file because something has changed with your computer or the network path to your server where the license is stored. To correct the error you will need to find the new path to the license database, make some changes, and then connect to it again.

  1. Make sure both the Editor and Viewer programs are closed.
  2. Locate the location of the license file.
  3. In your computer's C:\Enviro/EData8 folder find and delete the file named “eKey.lck”.
  4. Open the Editor .
  5. When the SETUP LICENSE form opens, fill in your licesnse key.
  6. Point this computer to the license file on your server.

If this was a change to your network or server, you will likely need to do this on other computers in your office.

If you cannot locate the license database, or do not know you Enviro Data key code, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for assistance.

What are Detection Limits and Limit Types and how should they be stored and used?

Non-Detected results are common in environmental data and Enviro Data provides a complete set of tools for handling them. Using…

Non-Detected results are common in environmental data and Enviro Data provides a complete set of tools for handling them. Using these allow you to specify exactly how you want the results displayed with options such as < .01, .01u, ND, and so on. By using detection limits along with the other features of Enviro Data, you can even specify a numeric factor or value, such as zero or half the limit, to report for the result, for special situations like contouring, statistics, or risk analysis.

The detection limit and the type of limit is provided by the lab. For example, Detect might be 0.01 and the LimitType could be “RL” and it is not unusual for a lab to provide multiple detection limits. However, the limit’s reporting units (not duplicated in the EDD) must be the same as the analytical value’s units.

The limits and limit types for each result should be in the electronic data deliverables or EDD file during the importing of data provided by the laboratory. See screenshot below. During the import, they are stored in the Detect and  LimitType fields in the Analyses table. Detect is the value of the detection limit and the limit type is the type (usually an abbreviation) of the limit for that specific limit. For example. Detect might be 0.01 and the LimitType could be “RL”. The limit’s reporting units (not duplicated in the EDD) must be the same as the analytical value’s units. You can store up to five detection limits for each result in these paired fields: Detect / LimitType, Detect2 / LimitType2, etc.  to Detect5 / LimitType5. The screen shot below is from the DTSFormat8.xlsx import electronic data deliverables (EDD) file showing the fields that the limits are imported from. While there are only three limits available in the DTSFormat8 EDD, you can import up to five (total) with the User-Defined Import.

detection limits in edd

Users have the ability to choose which of the five available columns to use to store their various detection limits. Typically, the “Detect” and “LimitType” columns are used for the RL or PQL limits, and the “Detect2” and “LimitType2” columns are used for the MDLs. There’s no set rule, but obviously if you only have one limit you need to use Detect / LimitType. Also, it’s imperative to be consistent. If the detection limit columns in your databases contain a mixture of different detection limit types, Geotech can help you run a few queries to get each limit type consistently assigned to the desired column. 

You can select which value you wish to display in the Non-detect Options section of the Display/Graphing Options form as shown below.

select detect linit option

You can also select multiple detection limits in the Crosstab Wizard Export.

detect linit crosstab

Most users, however, will choose to display (whichever limit they need) for non-detected results in the Value and Flag field selected in conjunction with the Analytical Flag codes.

How can I view or list my data?

There are many ways to view or list data in Enviro Data. The Select Data form in the VIewer provides…

There are many ways to view or list data in Enviro Data. The Select Data form in the VIewer provides a Quick List, List, Report, Export and Graph buttons that produce a variety of output. In the Editor, you can list Sites, Stations, Samples and Analyses using these buttons and the Datasheet button. Additionally, Manage Lookups in the Editor provides a way to edit and view many of the lookup or valid values tables again using the Datasheet button on each of the forms. 

Most of these lists, regardless of where they are found, can be modified by either right-clicking in any field header and changing the options or, by selecting one or more columns and dragging to change their order in the header. The screen shot below from Manage Lookups --> Parameters --> Datasheet shows the options available in lists.

selections in lists

What is the difference between List and Quick List in Selected Data?

The Select Data form in the VIewer offers both a Quick List and List buttons shown in the screen shot…

The Select Data form in the VIewer offers both a Quick List and List buttons shown in the screen shot below.

output tab select data

Both of these buttons provide similar output. and also provide a feature found in other lists in that they can be modified by either right-clicking in any field's header and changing the options or, by selecting one or more columns and dragging to change their order in the header. However, the main difference is that Quick List shown below provides raw data while List provides formatted data plus several other features.

quick list selected data

List shown below applies the formatting as setup in the Display Options form as shown in the Value/Flag column below. List also provides the ability to show the Site, Station, Sample and Analyses data separately by using the Tabs at the top. List also provide a button to Export the list to Excel. 

list selected data

How can I set the File Open dialog to open in my C:\Enviro\EData8 folder?

1. At the top left hand corner click on File in the Access file menu. 2. Click on Options to…

1. At the top left hand corner click on File in the Access file menu.

access file menu

2. Click on Options to open the Access Options form.
file options

3. Make sure General is selected in the top left of the Access Options form.(See below)

4. Under Creating databases section, the Defaul database folder, click the browse and choose the folder you wish Enviro Data to open in.

5. Click OK to return to Enviro Data. You may have to restart Access for this to take effect. .

In most you should select the folder C:\Enviro\EData8 because you will need to access multiple folders in this one. However, you could also set it to C:\Enviro\EData8\Databases for attaching a database or C:\Enviro\EData8\Import or C:\Enviro\EData8\Export depending on your needs.

MS Access Options form

Why are Calculated Parameters not giving the same results as in Version 2012 or 8x?

Starting with Version 8 B, the calculations routines have been revised to always re-calculate if results have been added to…

Starting with Version 8 B, the calculations routines have been revised to always re-calculate if results have been added to the Analyses table. If results have been edited or re-imported, if a Display Options setting has been changed, or as in the case of some existing data calculated with incorrect units, the re-calculated values are always based on current and correct information.

Additionally, the calculations always use the Parameter Units that are set up for the parameter and matrix, in the Parameters table so make sure parameter units are set up correctly. And, for results with inconsistent units, always set Display Options to perform Unit Conversions.

On the Select Data form, why does the Quick List button display my data with different units and formats than the List button?

List applies the choices from the Display Options form to the data selected and then populates the Selected Data table…

List applies the choices from the Display Options form to the data selected and then populates the Selected Data table with that formatted data. The formatting includes converting reporting units, providing Value and Flag and other features in the table. Depending on the amount of data selected, this can take time to prepare and display.

Quick List provides a basic listing of the selected data WITHOUT applying any formatting and shows the reporting units as they are in the Analyses table. Because Quick List does not perform any formatting, it is much faster than List and is valuable for looking at the raw data.

What should I do before contacting support?

Before you request support please read ALL of the following, Have you checked the Documentation for a solution to your…

Before you request support please read ALL of the following,

Have you checked the Documentation for a solution to your problem? the documentation can be downloaded using the Download button in both the Editor and Viewer.

Have you checked the Frequently Asked Questions on our website for a solution to your problem? We have a large set of short articles on the most frequently encountered and asked about issues from our clients.

Note that both the Documentation and FAQs are updated regularly so check back whenever you have a problem or need more information.

When asking for help, please do not send your request to a specific individual but contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. This way, if a specific individual is not available, everyone can see it and someone else can jump in. Also, even though one person maybe handling your request, another might have a suggestion or solution that could solve it. Also, please use Reply All when responding. 

We are here to help you but please, provide us sufficient information to help us understand the issue you are having problems with. This needs to include:

• What version of Enviro Data are you having the problem with? This information can be found on the main menu of both the Editor and Viewer and may be different for each. Examples would be Ver. 8 A 1.73 or Ver. 8B 1.3.
• Is the problem with the Editor or Viewer?
• What specifically are you trying to do? This might include something like: “I was trying to create a Crosstab Export and had selected a Reg. Limit Group, but no Reg. Limits showed up in the export. Or, “I was trying to import new records from my lab using the DTS8 format and Excel and I got an error saying _____.”
• Are you not getting any results from your selections?
• What were you expecting the output to look like?
• Did you get an error message(s)? If so, send a screen shot. 
• Is this happening on multiple computers?
• Is this a new problem or one that has been occurring for a while?
• Is your Enviro Data database local, on a network or in SQL?
• Are you using a shared Library File for lookups? (If you do not know what this is, you probably do not have one.)
• What version of Microsoft Office are you using and is it 32-bit or 64-bit?
Screen shots are always helpful. These may be of your Select Data or Display Options forms, any error messages you receive, a copy of any output or anything that might be relevant. You can paste screen shots into your message or attached them to the message in JPG or PNG format. Just make sure they are large enough to be legible.
• Let us know if your issue is urgent or routine.

If you have more than one issue/question, please separate them clearly in your message. Solving an issue efficiently depends primarily on good communication. If you have multiple issues that need to be addressed, please make each clear and separate them in your message. Using numbers or bullets would be best.

Have you already contacted Geotech about this issue? If so, please provide a copy of that response. This should be obvious but Use Reply All when replying to any support message on the same topic so there is a history of what has transpired.

If this had been working last time, please describe anything new that has been changed since it worked.

If you did not knowingly make any changes that you expected to affect the results, please say so. Do not go into great detail; just mention what has changed. If the change might be relevant to the issue, we will ask for more details.

Have you made any changes, hardware or software, including but not limited to?

• Installed Enviro Data on a new computer.
• Upgraded to a new version of Microsoft Office.
• Switched from one version of Enviro Data, including updating either the Editor or Viewer alone, include that information in your message.
• If you are on a network, or using SQL Server, have any changes been made to that setup?
• Has your system crashed recently?
• Are you using a new/different/older database?

Have you had this same problem in the past? If so, what was done to fix it then?

Describe the output you expected and the output you received. People sometimes assume that the desired outcome is obvious. It often isn't, especially to someone who is not in the same room with you. Screen shots are always helpful. It's surprising how often people report that they tried something and "it didn't work", but do not describe what happened. If you expected a specific output or result, but there was none, please state that explicitly. Screen shots are always helpful.

If we ask you any questions, please read them carefully and then respond to each of them. We often add numbered steps or questions to our responses. It is very important to follow and/or answer each question. The relevance of our questions may not be apparent to you, but remember, we know how the program is supposed to work.

If you do not respond to our specific questions, you may delay finding your solution. If we ask you to choose a single data record or group of records and answer one or more questions using it, please do exactly that.

General Comments

Support time is deducted from your prepaid support account however, if we determine if the problem is a bug in the software, it will be fixed at no charge.

In many cases we may ask you to provide us with a subset of your database, your Settings file and/or any import files you are working with. You can find out how to create a subset here. Note all Access database you send must be zipped up in order be allowed into our email system.

If necessary, we will setup an online conference using Microsoft Teams. (This may require that your IT department gives permission for you to do this.) Voice communication can either by using your computer’s microphone and speakers (or a headset) or by a phone call, whichever is most convenient. This way we can see what is happening on your system to get a better idea what the problem is and how to resolve it. If needed we may also ask for control of your computer to diagnose or fix  the issue. There is no cost for this conference. Before the conference begins we recommend that you check out ZDNet's Ten golden rules for newbies and pros, especially if you have not done this before.

With your help, will attempt to address your issue as soon as possible. However, it may be necessary to assign priorities based on our mutual schedules.

If we determine that your issue is a bug, or is a new feature that requires a change to the code, this could take additional time to find a solution. New features are generally preformed under a billed project once we agree on a scope of what is needed, and authorization is obtained. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.

How are Duplicates and Supersedes handled in Enviro Data?

For quality assurance and quality control (QA/QC) purposes, environmental projects generate duplicated data in a variety of ways. Care needs…

For quality assurance and quality control (QA/QC) purposes, environmental projects generate duplicated data in a variety of ways. Care needs to be taken with this duplicated data at both the samples and analyses levels. Enviro Data can handle duplicated data at both the samples and analyses levels. To import this duplicated data, the system uses two fields, DuplicateSample and Superseded, which are numeric fields in the Samples and Analyses tables respectively.

Duplicate Samples.

Duplicate sample are one or more additional samples taken from the same station at the same time to check the quality of the sampling, shipping, and analysis processes. This information is stored in the DuplicateSample field in the Samples table.

At the sample level, this data could be QA/QC data associated with an original sample such as a field duplicate. As an example, an original sample assigned a DuplicateSample number of zero might have a field duplicate taken on the same day, which would be assigned a DuplicateSample number of 1. The QCSampleCode in the Samples table is used to explain the meaning of the two samples, with perhaps a code of “Original” for the first sample, and a code of “Duplicate” for the second. Additional related samples are given higher DuplicateSample numbers. In some cases, the additional sample might be a second original sample instead of a QC sample. In this case, the QCSampleCode might be the same for both samples, however, in most cases the LabSampleID number would be different.

Enviro Data identifies unique samples based on the station, sample date, sample matrix, sample top, duplicate sample, sample bottom, filtered sample, field sample ID, QC sample code and alternate sample ID fields as seen in Figure 134 below. This allows the data administrator to import multiple samples related to one sampling event or make multiple imports of analyses from a given sampling event.

Fields used to define the Unique Index in the Samples Table

Figure 134 - Fields used to define the Unique Index in the Samples Table

Superseded Analyses

A superseded analysis is a duplicated result from one or more a re-analysis of the same sample for a single or group of parameters for QA/QC purposes. This results in duplicated or superseded results at the analyses level. In the industry these results can be represented in two ways, either as the original result plus the re-analysis, or as a superseded (replaced) original result plus the new unsuperseded result. This information is stored in the Superseded field in the Analyses table.

During import Enviro Data provides a way to supersede the original result value as this is more useful for selection purposes. You can choose tosupersded or replace (overwrite) a superseded result by checking or unchecking the Supersede Values If Present checkbox in the IMPORT WIZARD – OPTIONS AFTER CHECKING After Successful Check section. If this box is checked, a new analyses will supersed the old one. Otherwise, if it is unchecked, the new analyses will replace (overwriite) the old one. Either way, in the when selecting data you can easily choose to see just the most current (unsuperseded) data. Selecting the re-analyzed results is not as helpful because not all the parameters may have been re-analyzed.

Enviro Data identifies unique analyses based on sample number, parameter number, superseded, analytic method, leach method, report units, basis, filtered analyses code, QC analysis code and lab sample id fields as seen below in Figure 135 below. This allows the data administrator to import multiple analyses related to one sample or make multiple imports of analyses from a given sampling event. Re-analyses or analyses delivered at separate times are matched to the correct sample event by the import code using the unique fields listed above.

 Fields used to define the Unique Index in the Analyses  table

Figure 135 – Fields used to define the Unique Index in the Analyses table.

Discussion of Duplicates and Supersedes

Examples of data at these two levels, and the various fields that can be involved in the duplications at each level, are shown below.

 Diagram of duplicates and supersedes

Figure 136 - Diagram of duplicates and supersedes

In the Sample Level example in Figure 136 above, there are three samples from the same well on the same date: an original sample, a field dup, and a split. These are represented with three different DuplicateSample numbers, and three different LabSampleID numbers.

In the Analysis Level there are superseded results for two different reasons.
In the field four different pH values were taken, most likely to confirm that the well chemistry had stabilized prior to taking a sample. The results have increasing superseded values from 0 to 3, with the 0 value being the most recent and presumably most representative value.

For naphthalene, multiple results were reported possibly due to matrix interference. The dilution factor for each result is shown. The original sample is reported with a superseded of zero, and the dilutions with higher superseded values. The ReportableResult field has been used to override which result will be reported. An alternative would have been for the data administrator to adjust the superseded values so the value for the result at a 50:1 dilution had a superseded value of 0 and it would be displayed by selecting a superseded value of 0 on the SELECT DATA form.

At the analyses level, the Superseded field is incremented when different analyses apply to the same sample and parameter. For example, multiple dilution analyses can be stored with incremented superseded values of 0, 1, 2, etc. Likewise, a re-analysis can be stored with a superseded value of zero (most recent data), while the original value remains in the database with a superseded value of 1. Note that this use of superseded values is the opposite of the more traditional view of new data for the same parameter as being a “re-analysis.” Experience has shown that while both the superseded and re-analysis view of the data validly describe what happened, the superseded approach is more useful for selecting data, since you can select the “unsuperseded” data (Superseded = 0) to suppress all but the most representative data. This is the default on the SELECT DATA form in the VIEWER program, so for the most part people get what they expect without much effort.

While you can manually change or delete the values in the Duplicate or Superseded Field Criteria boxes in the Select Data form, this form now had a dropdown control that will toggle them between a value of 0 (zero) and nothing (Null). This control can be found near the left side the Action Buttons Bar. “Display 0” is the default setting and how Enviro Data has historically opened the Select Data form. Caution: This should only be used to show the specific duplicated and/or superseded information when outputting data for calculations, exports, and reports.

Default Duplicates and Superseded in Select Data form

The default is to leave this control set to “Display 0”. This means that both the Duplicated or Superseded Fields Criteria boxes will contain a 0 and duplicated or superseded data will NOT be provided in the dataset. If this control is changed to “Nothing”, the default of 0 is removed from both the Duplicate and the Superseded Fields Criteria boxes. The resulting dataset WILL contain every duplicated sample and every superseded result.

The ValueCode field provides a reason for the superseded value, such as re-analyzed, dilution, etc. however, the ValueCode field is not used to order the superseded sequence. The software sets Superseded values if one of the Duplicates and Supersededs options on the IMPORT WIZARD form, shown below, is selected as described in Duplicates and Supersededs on page 222.

 Duplicates & Supersededs settings in IMPORT WIZARD form

Figure 137 - Duplicates & Supersededs settings in IMPORT WIZARD form

Correctly assigning QCSampleCode is crucial to identifying original vs. QC data as the QCSampleCode field is used to correctly identify original data vs. QC data for reporting. If you are importing data with QC sample information, you must populate the DuplicateOrder field in the QCCodes lookup table before importing as the Import Wizard uses this field to set your duplicate values based on the duplicate order.

Understanding duplicate and superseded values is very important for understanding QC and other data in Enviro Data. Selecting data based on duplicated and superseded values is discussed in Select Data section of the documentation.

Why am I getting the error message saying that "not all unit conversions were successful"?

This error generally occurs because the Parameter Units field has not been set for the parameter and matrix shown in…

unit conversion error popup

This error generally occurs because the Parameter Units field has not been set for the parameter and matrix shown in the error message. However, it can also be displayed when you list / report Surrogate and regular analyses which have different matrices.

Enviro Data only displays this error message for the first Parameter Units error even if there are additional one that need attention. The parameters with errors are indexed in alphabetical order. In the case above with Arsenic, there would likely be more errors to correct. If this error was for Zinc, you might not expect any more. Additionally, since some routines in Enviro Data may loop through the data more than once to produce the output required so you could see the same message again before it finishes processing.

Parameters Units are used by Enviro Data for comparison for both regulatory limits and the unit conversion feature. You can associate one reporting unit (or Parameter Units) for each combination of a parameter and matrix. Unit conversion converts any units to the matching select units set in the Parameter Units. For use with Regulatory Limits, the Parameter Units and the matrix must be the same as the units (and matrix) of the limits you are checking against.

Target units can be set in the Parameter lookup table and conversion can be set in Unit Conversion lookup table, both found on the MANAGE LOOKUPS form. You can find more information on this issue in the FAQ at What are parameter units and why do I need to set them?

Why are trailing zeros not showing up / decimal places not displayed as imported?

There are multiple reasons why trailing zeros are lost and/or decimals places are not displayed correctly. Options for decimal places…

There are multiple reasons why trailing zeros are lost and/or decimals places are not displayed correctly. Options for decimal places can be found in the EDD that is imported, the import setting and in Display Options when the data is reported or exported. (See screen shots below.)

1. Our standard EDD has a NumberDecimals field that the laboratory can populate when importing data. If this field is used, Enviro Data stores that information in that field in the  Analyses table for use when the result is displayed.

2. If the NumberDecimals field in the EDD is not populated Enviro Data calculates the number of decimals from the Value field and stores that number. If this is the case, you can choose to use the decimal places from either the Value or the Detect field in the EDD.

Number of Decimal option in the Import Wizard

Options for # of Decimals in the Import Wizard in the Editor

3. When preparing reports or exporting data, there is the Number of Decimals option in Display/Graphing Options that can determine how the decimal place to be displayed. The options are Exact Value or Auto. Setting this option to Auto will use the NumberOfDecimals value stored in the Analyses table to add back trailing zeros if necessary. Choosing Exact Value turns this feature off and uses the Value field as it is stored The Auto option is necessary because Microsoft Access (and Excel for that matter) do not normally store or display trailing zeros. Loss of these zeros can be a problem because they contain information about the precision with which the result was measured.

Number of Decimals option in Display Options

Options for Number of Decimals in the Display/Graphing Options form in the Viewer

4. Once you have the correct decimals places stored and output, the Viewer outputs the Value of an analysis with the correct decimals places based on the option chosen.

Your results will vary depending on the output chosen. For the Crosstab Export, Value and Flag is always stored as text and this is recommended. However, the Value (only) field is numeric. If you are depending on the Value field only, this can be problematic because Excel does not store or display trailing zeros in a numeric field.

Note that if you are having a problem with decimal places and/or significant figures, you should check with Support to see if there is a newer version available. Also, the screen shots shown above may vary slightly depending on your version of Enviro Data. 

Trailing zeros are NOT supported in regulatory limits as they are meaningless.

I do not understand how to use Flag Codes in Enviro Data, can you help me?

Note that most of this section also applies to Validation Flags that use a similar form and table structure. Flag…

Note that most of this section also applies to Validation Flags that use a similar form and table structure.

Flag Codes are not required and generally are not checked to see if they present are in the Analytic Flags or ValidationFlags tables and Flags not in the Analytic Flags table may be ignored in ValueAndFlag formatting. Flags used in the Analyses.FlagCode field that are not in the Analytic Flags table can cause a problem when moving to a newer version of Enviro Data. This means you need to be extra careful when using them. 

Analytical Flag Codes

A FlagCode is an analytical flag that describes the analysis.

It is important to understand that in Enviro Data there are two similar but different FlagCode fields, one in the AnalyticFlags lookup table and a different but similar one in the Analyses data table. The FlagCode field in the Analyses table contains one or more FlagCodes from the AnalyticFlags table. When multiple codes are used in the Analyses table, they must be separated by either a comma or a space.

AnalyticFlag in the Lookup Table

The FlagCode in AnalyticFlags table is a lookup that stores a single code of up to four characters and cannot contain any spaces or commas. The AnalyticFlags table stores the following:

FlagCode is the code for a ONE Analytic Flag. It can contain multiple characters but cannot contain a space or comma.
AnalyticFlag is description of the code.
ReportingFactor is used as a multiplier for statistical analysis. Note that this can be impacted by selections in Non-Detect Options on the DISPLAY OPTIONS form.
ReportingBasis indicates how display the output. See examples in Reporting Basis.

NOTE: Use Analytic Flags Table must be selected in the Detected Value Options and Same as Detected Values in the Non-detect Option on the Display/Graphing Options form as shown below for the Value and Flag field to be displayed in the ReportingBasis format in Reports or Exports.

Use Analytic Flags Table selected in Detected Value and Non-detect Options in DISPLAY OPTIONS form.

Fig. 18 - Settings for Detected Value and Non-detect Options in Display/Graphing Options form.

ReportingPriority determines the flag’s priority in formatting the value for output. The flag with the lowest number will determine the format. Note that ReportingPriority is an integer and only accepts whole numbers. See examples of this in Figure 21 and Figure 22.

Note the IndicatesNon-Detect field has been removed as that field was replaced by the DetectedResult field in the Analyses table.

To view the flag codes, open the ANALYTIC FLAGS form. This can be done either from the Display Options in the Viewer or from Manage Lookups in the Editor. This form can be seen in Figure 19.

You can scroll through the Flag Codes by using the page control at the bottom left. You select how each Flag Codes displays using the ReportingFactor, Reporting Basis, and/or ReportingPriority options. (Note: Setting a flag as a detected or non-detected is no longer an option on this form. Use the DetectedResult field instead.)

analytic flag form

Fig.19 -  ANALYTIC FLAGS form in Form View

 This table can also be edited in Datasheet View as shown in Figure 20, below, by clicking the Datasheet button.

AnalyticFlags

Fig. 20 - ANALYTIC FLAGS form in Datasheet View

Note that the FlagCode or “Y”, and its description AnalyticFlag of “Calculate Value” is a required value because it is used in some calculations. Even if you are not doing any calculations, if this flag is not present, the ValueAndFlag field may not be displayed correctly.


Examples for Reporting Basis

Reporting Basis Examples

FlagCode in the Analyses Table

The FlagCode in the Analyses data table can contain one of more analytic flags that are separated by spaces or commas. These are usually imported with your analytic results. They are not checked against the AnalyticFlag lookup table during an import.

• The order of the flags doesn’t matter, when being output to a report or export the program is only looking for the lowest ReportingPriority.
• You can have any number and combination of FlagCodes, up to the 25-character limit in the Analyses table.
• Commas or spaces always indicate that multiple FlagCodes are present.
• If the analysis is considered a usable value, and would not otherwise have a qualifier, this field can contain the code for Detected Value (usually a “v”).
• If the analytical flag is unknown, it may contain a “z” but this not required.
• The FlagCode field may be left blank if desired.

Example of Flag Code Usage

One example is if data is imported with FlagCode “U,B” which should indicatesa that the result is a not-detect and there was a problem with a blank. Because of the comma, these are two distinct qualifiers (flag codes). The AnalyticFlags table should have two records: one with FlagCode = “B”, and another record with FlagCode = “U”. It should NOT have a record for FlagCode = “U,B”. (Ignore all quote marks.)

Controlling How Data is Displayed

The formatting decisions that you make as described in this section are used for most types of output, so you should see the same result whether you are printing a report, exporting to Excel, or posting the data on a GIS map.
For reporting, Enviro Data uses the Reporting Factor and Reporting Basis entered below to format the display of the result. Where multiple Flag Codes are reported for a result, the Reporting Basis of the Flag Code with the lowest Reporting Priority is used to determine the format.

Here’s what happens when Enviro Data formats ValueAndFlag in SelectedData during an export.

1. The Value and Flag handling parses FlagCode from the SelectedData table (retrieved from Analyses) into its two separate flags (“B” and “U”) and sorts them by first ReportingPriority assigned to the code in the AnalyticFlags table, then alphabetically. If a code is not found in the AnalyticFlags table, that code is ignored.
2. The flag with the lowest ReportingPriority wins, and its ReportingBasis is used to format the result.
3. If both FlagCodes in the AnalyticFlag table have the same ReportingPriority, the code that appears first in the alphabet wins.

For example, you could display your non-detects with a "<" sign and the detection limit. Or you could display them as "ND" or " - ". But for results with a "J" flag, you could display the value followed by the flag. See examples in Table 1.

Note: The FlagCode “v” for “no code required” is generally automatically stripped out of exports and reports.

The Value and Flag function uses the Reporting Basis shown below in Table 1 for each character of the analysis FlagCode. It also finds the Reporting Factor from the AnalyticFlags table based on the first character of the analysis FlagCode. This factor is used to calculate the number displayed for non-detects, if that option is selected on the DISPLAY OPTIONS form.

 Examples of Value and Flag Formats

Table 1- Examples of Value and Flag Formats

If there are multiple flags, i.e. b j, and you wish to print j in reports, use the Reporting Priority on the ANALYTIC FLAGS form to set the hierarchy determining which flag is used in the display. Again, if two or more flags are encountered, the flag having lowest Reporting Priority value is used. If two or more flags have the same Reporting Priority, then the priority is determined alphabetically.

An example of this is a analytical result with the FlagCode of “u,d” for undetected and diluted respectively. If the ReportingBasis for the “u” was “< and Detection Limit (Detect1) or Value” you would expect the Value and Flag field to be something like “< 0.06”.

However, if both have a ReportingPriority in the AnalyticalFlag table of 1, then the ReportingBasis would be taken from the “d” flag’ ReportingBasis which does not contain a “<” and results would not be formatted as a non-detect. See the examples in Figure 21 and Figure 22 below. Value/Flag format where Reporting Priority for flag codes "u" and "d" are the same.

Fig. 21 - Value/Flag format where Reporting Priority for flag codes "u" and "d" are the same.

Value/Flag format where Reporting Priority of flag code "u" is 0 and for "d" is 1.

Fig. 22 - Value/Flag format where Reporting Priority of flag code "u" is 0 and for "d" is 1.

Note: If the Value/Flag is not displaying correctly after checking all of the above, check Parameter Units to see if it is set correctly for the parameter(s) in question.

Are there any characters or symbols that will cause problems if I use them in my data?

There are several symbols used in the MS Access system (that Enviro Data is written in) that should not be…

There are several symbols used in the MS Access system (that Enviro Data is written in) that should not be used in your data. The use of these may cause errors because Access may treat them as actions or code to be acted on and can also cause problems with file names and paths. These symbols include:

. (period) This is OK when used as a decimal point but might cause problems elsewhere.
, (comma) This is generally not a problem but it depends on where it is. It can cause a problem in Site Name.
/ (forward slash)
\ (forward slash)
* (asterisk)
; (Semicolon)
: (colon)
! (exclamation point)
# (number, pound or hash tag)
& (ampersand)
- (dash) When used in numbers might result in subtraction. OK in site or stations names and other text.
? (question mark)
" (double quote or inches symbol)
' (single quote or foot symbol)
$ (dollar sign)
% (percent) This is acceptable for a reporting unit but within other data fields it is best spelled out.

What are Lookup tables and how does Enviro Data use them?

Lookup tables contain lists of "lookups" or valid values for parameter names, flags, units, and contain expansions of abbreviations and…

Lookup tables contain lists of "lookups" or valid values for parameter names, flags, units, and contain expansions of abbreviations and other information that is not stored in the primary tables. As such, they help interpret the data in the primary tables, and enforce data quality. Because they often change from project to project they can be managed separately in each project database. This makes it easy to customize the database for specific project needs. Enviro Data gives you complete control of these lookup tables and you can customize them to suit the needs of each of your projects.

Lookups can be edited in the EDITOR --> Manage Lookups.

How can I create a subset of my Enviro Data database to submit to support?

It may be necessary for Geotech Support to have a sample, or subset, of your database in order to determine…

It may be necessary for Geotech Support to have a sample, or subset, of your database in order to determine the issues you are encountering. A subset is a portion of your database in an Access (MDB) format from the Select Data query you used that replicates the issue.

Creating a subset of your database is very easy. Using the SELECT  DATA form, select the data set used when you encountered the problem , click Export, and then select Enviro Data Access Database (subset) as shown in the form below. Save this subset file to a folder where you can find it, zip it up and then email it to Geotech.

The subset must be in a ZIP format in order for Geotech to receive it via email. If you are not sure how to create a zip file, this can be done by right-clicking the subset file and choose Send to Compressed File.

select export form