The majority of the contents in this guide apply to both StudioPlus Spectra AND myStratus Desktop.
In most cases, instructions referring to "Spectra" also apply to myStratus Desktop.

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Database Utility

The Spectra Database Utility contains a collection of tools for maintaining your Spectra database. To open the Database Utility, click the Start Menu > Programs > Spectra 20xx > Utilities > Database Utility.

Database Settings

  • Database Type -

  • Database Location - Displays the location of the database you're currently connected to. Click the browse ("...") button to connect to a different database.

Database Operations

  • Back Up Database - Use this feature to create a backup copy of your data files. You'll be prompted to choose a location for your backup. If you choose the default backup folder, you are responsible to copy these files to a separate media, like a zip disk, CD, or backup tape. You can choose to Back Up Composite Template Database as well. If you are using Spectra's Composite Template feature you should back up your template database also. Your composite templates are stored in a separate database file call "SPImages.mdb." You also have the option to Verify Backup Upon Completion. This will verify the completed backup and may result in the backup process taking longer than normal.


Make sure you back up your database DAILY by using either the Spectra backup utility or your own backup software! If your database become corrupted beyond repair or if your hard drive crashes, you will lose all your data unless you have a current backup. See also: Database Backup Best Practices

  • Restore Database - Use this tool to restore a previously backed up copy of your database. This tool will replace your current database with the backup copy. Only proceed if you no longer need the database you are currently attached to! Click Restore Database and select the folder containing the backup you want to restore. Then select the specific backup you want to restore and click Restore.

  • Create New Database - Use this tool to create a new blank database. You will be prompted to choose a location for the new database. You must select an empty folder that does not contain a Spectra database.

  • Move Database - Use this tool to move your database to a new location. This is commonly used to move your database to a shared network location when upgrading Spectra from a Single User Installation to a Multiple User Installation. Click Move Database and you will be prompted to select a new location for the database. You must select an empty folder that does not contain a Spectra database.

  • Send Database to Tech Support - Use this tool only when instructed by a StudioPlus technical support specialist. Doing so will zip your database and transfer them over the Internet to the StudioPlus Technical Support Department.

  • Retrieve Database from Tech Support - If StudioPlus tech support needs to send your database back to you, this tool will simplify the process. Tech support will give you a code to retrieve your data. It will come back to you in the form of a backup. Simply fill in the code, wait for the file to transfer completely, and then click Restore Database to choose the retrieved file. It will be the last backup available for the current day. Note: If there is more than one backup for the current day, it will be the one with the highest number appended to the filename.

  • Compact and Repair Database - This database tool exists for two reasons. First, to keep your database running optimally, it is recommended that you compact your data files regularly. Second, if you ever receive an error similar to "Unrecognized Database Format" when launching Spectra, your data files will need to be repaired. We recommend you back up your database prior to running a Compact and Repair.


We highly recommend you compact and repair your database regularly, at least once a week. Why? Spectra stores its data in Microsoft Access data tables and builds its own internal temporary files. Running the compact and repair utility rebuilds the data tables and removes any temporary files. Not only will your database be reduced in size, but performance can increase and data corruption can be prevented. 

See also

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