On Feb 18, 2006, at 11:12 AM, Tsume wrote:

>> You haven't peeked at the database... have you? ;)
>
> Well, no. Supposedly its huge. I probably shouldn't look.

I would sure look before I paid them any more money.  I worked on a  
project where we had to dig into the database layer of Dentrix.  It's  
easily the worst designed database I've every encountered, and that's  
really saying something.

Just a random example off the top of my head:  The last 20 payments  
for an account are all stored in a single field as just a long string  
of digits (hex encoded, if memory serves).  Dentrix goes to  
extraordinary lengths like this to destroy all value gained from  
using a database backend in the first place.  (Querying their  
database structure for anything meaningful is more or less impossible.)

If you don't want to go that far, just hook up a program that let's  
you watch its queries flow by.  The software easily issues 20 to 50  
queries for each one it should need.  It's downright scary to watch  
it work.

I'm 100% confident scary errors lurk in that codebase.

Giving these people money is a very brave act.  Trusting their  
software is much worse.  ;)

James Edward Gray II