1. Thomas Rolseth
  2. PowerBuilder
  3. Wednesday, 16 December 2020 14:03 PM UTC

We have an intermittent issue where an alternate character set displays in a menu that is built dynamically.  The application is using PB 2019 R2 build 2353 and we connecting to a SQL Server 2016 database using SQL Server  Native Client.  When the app opens, it invokes a PB function that pulls external web URLs from a database table and then creates the necessary menu options.  I've been unable to reproduce the issue and the client reports that it is random -- most of the time the dynamic menu options are normal but occasionally they get what what is shown in the attachment to this post.

Has anyone encountered this?  If so, any possible remedies?

Thanks, Tom

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Miguel Leeuwe Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
  1. Friday, 18 December 2020 02:05 AM UTC
  2. PowerBuilder
  3. # 1

You're not alone, I've seen this happen a few times in our application too, 1 or 2 years ago. Then it suddenly stopped after updating to a newer build or version?
Someone else also reported this bug, though it wasn't resolved. See: https://www.appeon.com/standardsupport/search/view?id=3226 

It's a shot in the dark, but the weird thing is that it only seems to happen to two of the many users?
Can you check if they're using (finding) the correct runtime dlls when running powerbuilder and compare it with other users who don't have the problem? Maybe they're finding an old version of dlls due to path settings or incorrect runtime install.

If you manage to be able to 'always' reproduce it on a user's computer, try to see if the problem goes away if you switch between 'traditional' and 'contemporary' menu styles.





  1. Miguel Leeuwe
  2. Friday, 18 December 2020 04:15 AM UTC
Is the text that you assign coming from a Database? Maybe something could go wrong there?
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Chris Pollach @Appeon Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
  1. Wednesday, 16 December 2020 20:02 PM UTC
  2. PowerBuilder
  3. # 2

Hi Thomas;

  Since the PB Menu Object does not support "Dynamic" menu items, I am assuming that your using some home grown code to build the "menu items" on-the-fly. Invalid characters could be coming from that aspect or even newer DBMS Client drivers or character set handling as suggested by others here already. In order to satisfy your question, you may need to review your approach in light of changing Unicode handling aspects of PB and/or O/S vs your home grown (I assume) code.

Food for thought.

Regards ... Chris

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Thomas Rolseth Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
  1. Wednesday, 16 December 2020 19:39 PM UTC
  2. PowerBuilder
  3. # 3

Thanks for the replies.  David, here are answers to your questions:

  1. Windows 10 Enterprise, version 1909, OS build 18363.1256
  2. No but only two users have reported the issue so far (out of a pool of thousands)
  3. The data does not change often and the source is small table in a SQL Server 2016 database
  1. David Peace (Powersoft "The PowerBuilder & C# People")
  2. Thursday, 17 December 2020 14:30 PM UTC
Hi Tom

If it's one or two clients only then you are looking for something in their environment that is affecting the PB code, it does look like an Unicode issue, but it's hard to guess what it might be. Check all the regional settings in Windows, Win 10 has some interesting features :)

It doesn't sound like a data problem if the data is the same for everyone and so few reported problems.
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John Fauss Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
  1. Wednesday, 16 December 2020 14:49 PM UTC
  2. PowerBuilder
  3. # 4

The garbled menu text look similar to how ANSI or UTF-8 data appears in PB if not converted to Unicode-16LE. I can't say with any certainty that is what is happening here, however, or speculate why it would occur only intermittently.

  1. Miguel Leeuwe
  2. Friday, 18 December 2020 04:14 AM UTC
That makes sense. It could maybe have something to do with translation text assignment. If that text comes from a database, that might be doing something wrong.

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  1. Wednesday, 16 December 2020 14:35 PM UTC
  2. PowerBuilder
  3. # 5

Hi Tom

Not seen anthing like that for a long while. Here's some questions:

1. What operating environment is the user that report the problem running.

2. Is it always the same user?

3. Does the data in the DB change often and what is it's source?

Here are some random thoughts on what might be causing the probelm:

1. SQL Server client setup on the client PC, other environmental influences on language.

2. I've see this sort of thing in a Citrix environment, random elements not displayed correctly - But not for over 10 years.

3. Unicode data issue relating to the source of the data?


Hope these help in some small way.



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