There are many thousands of databases (research and compilation costs to date† 4.2 million Euros) supplied with the Mistral software suite and virtually all of them may be accessed and edited by users*. A few words of caution though. A single unit cooler for example may require up to two hundred fields of data to 'pin down' every aspect of its performance and characteristics and a single mistake can have devastating consequences in future accurate selection. If you are not sure what you are doing or don't know how to test software for integrity then with some databases it might be better to leave it to the experts. Other databases, such as those containing meteorological information or properties of building and insulation materials are somewhat easier to edit and manage. Also, through sophisticated 'error trapping' logical code, Mistral software has been designed to spot and warn of any potentially critical mistakes. We have a saying at Mistral. "It is bad enough over estimating a contract at time of tender and losing it on price but there is one situation far worse. Under estimating the costs and then winning it!"
Having spent a lot of time adding your own data to the programs what happens when you re-install the software or wish to move it, along with your personalised data, to another computer? Simple. Just re-enter the database where you know you have made changes and make another 'benign' change. By benign we mean make a change that does not fundamentally effect any of your data properties, such as changing a capitalisation or adding an extra descriptive word or even delete a redundant one. When you 'close' or exit the database it will automatically be saved, including your last edits, and importantly it will be 'date-stamped' at precisely the time it was saved. This date stamp can be used easily to identify and trace the new database for purposes of copying and moving or pasting it to new locations. For new Mistral software installations for example.
All Mistral software, by default, is stored on your computer where it should be, correctly, under the 'Program Files' primary folder. The 'path' to the Mistral software installation will therefore normally be C:\Program Files\Mistral. The only time that this will be different is if you or your IT management department if you have one, has decided to change from the default path. There may be quite legitimate and sensible reasons for doing so in some computer set-ups but if that has happened then the same responsible staff should certainly be able to advise you of the alternative location (path). Look in the folder where your main Mistral program files are stored. Images though are stored in a sub folder called graphics but for the most part, all the important files along with the databases are stored in C:\Program Files\Mistral. Next, using Microsoft's Windows Explorer program, sort the files into date order (see Microsoft's own Help pages if unsure how to do this). Remembering the time and date that you made edits to the databases you wish to preserve simply copy these databases into another folder somewhere on your PC or even onto a CD-ROM or CD-RW or USB key for example. Now you may re-install software, over-writing previous installations with later versions, but still recover and re-use your own personalised databases.
IMPORTANT Some Mistral databases are 'multi-relational' and therefore one database may 'communicate' at any time with another one, two or even three databases. In these cases a 'family' of databases will always have a common name but necessarily with different 'extensions'. For example. AIRWIND.DAT, AIRWIND.IDX and AIRWIND.BLB. In such cases it is absolutely essential that all matched sets of databases are always copied and pasted together. Meaning they should all show the same time and date stamp. Mixing such sets with date stamps from differing times will result in failure and almost certainly risk losing the entire database. The only recourse left being to re-install the original one supplied.
It is hoped the above explanation is clear but as always, computer software is a big subject and sometimes jargon that can be confusing, although unwelcome, is unavoidable. If you have any questions at all then please don't hesitate in contacting Mistral through the 'On-line Help' service which can be found at http://www.mistralassociates.com
* Some databases contain 'proprietary data' and which has been supplied by paying contributors. Under the instruction of these paying contributors access to these databases may be achieved only following entry of a password. The password may or may not be available to licensed users and Mistral is unable to provide any guarantee in respect of this matter. Please contact Mistral for further details in the event access is required to a database which is found to be locked.
databases editing (materials)
air boundary layer
† from inception to date 01 Jan 2013.