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Re: Conversion of old db

From: Roland Winkler
Subject: Re: Conversion of old db
Date: Fri, 3 Jan 2020 21:17:11 -0600

On Fri Jan 3 2020 Dirk Eddelbuettel wrote:
> One new worry, now that I am back to my 'old' bbdb.  Running M-x
> create and adding name and email ends in
>    bbdb-record-sortkey: Wrong type argument: arrayp, nil
> in *Messages* and the same on screen.  You were so prompt with
> suggestions last time.  Anything comes to mind now?

I doubt that the culprit is the new record you want to create.  It
seems more likely that there was something rare in your old database
causing problems in the upgrade to the new format, so that now you
have some records which somehow cause problems.  (The above error
suggests that BBDB cannot sort the database after the new record was

Can you go through the following steps as far as possible with 
M-x toggle-debug-on-error so that you get a backtrace where the
error occurred (preferentially with an uncompiled BBDB which makes
the backtrace more verbose and readable)?

(1) Can you run M-x bbdb-sort-records ? Ideally, you should get the
    message "BBDB already sorted properly"

(2) Can you possibly load once more your old database in the new
    BBDB using the default

      (setq bbdb-allow-duplicates nil)

    The backtrace of the debugger may give you a hint which record(s)
    BBDB does not like.

(3) The actual database (default: ~/.bbdb) contains one record per
    line.  I suspect that the new BBDB chokes only on one or a few
    records in your old database.  Can you bisect the old database
    before it is loaded into the new BBDB till you get down to one
    old record that makes the new BBDB choke?

    Can you possibly post this old record here?  Only the format of
    the old record matters.  You can replace all text strings with
    foo, bar, baz and the like.

If nothing else, can you post here (or send to me privately) the
backtrace of the debugger of the last step you reached above?  If
the backtrace references a record of your database, you can again
replace any text strings with foo, bar, baz.

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