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System.FormatException: Invalid File Format. The file you are trying to import is not a valid Chart FX file.


eatlbd
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I post this message out of frustration and disappointment with the official "Incident Report" support that I got from SoftwareFX and hope I can get a second opinion from somebody else at SoftwareFX and restore some confidence in the choice of using ChartFX.

The following exception is shown in IE when downloading a ChartFX chart:

************** Exception Text **************

System.FormatException: Invalid File Format. The file you are trying to import is not a valid Chart FX file.

at ChartFX.NetIEClient.Chart.c(Boolean A_0, IPersistBase A_1)

at ChartFX.NetIEClient.Chart.a(DownloadEventArgs A_0)

at ChartFX.NetIEClient.ao.a(DownloadEventArgs A_0)

...

(list of loaded assemblies omitted)

The only reference that was the same to this that I found on this forum is http://community.softwarefx.com/forums/p/8299/19702.aspx#19702 from two years ago and no solution was posted.

All the details about the testing that I've done can be found in the incident report, if anybody from SoftwareFX wants a look.

In summary, the chart was deployed in a web application secured using form authentication. It runs on Windows XP Professional with .NET 2.0 either with or without SP. The symptoms:

1. The problem is encounterd on clients running .NET 2.0 with SP1 or SP2 (both on Windows XP Professional) and .NET 3.5 (on Vista).

2. Cleints with .NET 2.0 (RTM) has no problem with it.

3. If the chart is browsed to without form authentication, there was no problem on any client.

4. If the PSS service on the server is stopped, the problem does not occur. However, it is SoftwareFX's recommendation to use PSS when securing chart so I wonder there is any pointer as to why it shouldn't be used.

I provided SoftwareFX support a sample application with just the chart page and form authentication stuff. The chart was dropped on the page with all the default settings except that RenderFormat is set to "Auto". I had been told the problem could not be re-produced in various scenarios and hence got no priority to be dealt with.

I have (as of 14th of May) set up the sample application on-line at http://93.91.37.158/ChartFXProblemSample/InstanceGraph.aspx (need user name "LocalUser" and password "eatl/eatl" to login before viewing) and requested it to be tested by SoftwareFX support. So far this has not happened. Anybody else got a few minutes to test it? It is a slow connection but give it time to load the chart and it should show the problem.

To demonstrate that the problem does not occur without form authentication, try http://93.91.37.158/ChartFXProblemSample/InstanceGraphFree.aspx from a fresh browser session.

I can enable Remote Desktop for somebody from SoftwareFX to check the settings on the server if required.

Any suggestion from anybody in the community is appreciated too.

Bingning

 

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We have been trying to reproduce the issue on our side. Different environments have been set up using:

- Windows XP and Windows Vista OS

- .NET Framework 2.0 with SP2

- .NET Framework 2.0 RTM

- PSS Service enable and disable

- Different versions of IIS

- Using your ChartFXProblemSample database with SQL Server Authentication

Unfortunately, this is not considered a bug as the issue was not replicated in any of the scenarios mentioned above. Our primary concern is to help you solve your problem; however, there is no much we can do if the issue is not replicable.

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Thanks for the reply any way.

What I really want to know if whether any of you tested the sample website that I provided and whether you got the error message in question. What version of .NET is on the client you used? This will definitely be a positve step forward in helping me solve my problem.

 I am also curious to see if you can provide me a website that has my sample application set up on it so I can test its behaviour. This may be too much to ask and that is why I haven't asked for it before.

 I am willing to let you remote log into my sample site web server to check up any configurations that you suspect may be the cause of the problem. Is there any reason that you do not want to do this?

Vice versa, I'm interested in looking at the configuration/setup of your website of my sample that wouldn't have the problem so I may be able to spot some differences. Again, this may be too much to ask; although it does leave me to do the work of finding the cause of my problem.

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

After many more support correspondence with SoftwareFX technical support, yesterday I received an update confirming that the problem had now been reproduced. I quote:

"We have been creating different samples from scratch and the error was finally replicated on an xp machine with a new sample project we created when using exactly the following configuration: forms authentication, SqlMembershipProvider and .Net Framework 2.0 SP2. The error does not occured if any of the above-mentioned configuration is missing."

 I re-iterated that I re-produced the problem myself on severs with .NET 2.0 RTM and .NET 2.0 SP2, either in combination with client with .NET 2.0 SP1 (on XP), .NET 2.0 SP2 (on XP) and .NET 3.5 (on Vista) respectively in the hope that any fix to the problem will be tested thoroughly including these configurations too.

As to the resolution, I quote:

"Although this is a rare situation, there are particular scenarios (as in this case) in which an unexpected behavior may be experienced. I have submitted this problem to our development team for analysis. Please note that it is going to be attended according to the severity of the problem and the priority assigned by our development team. In the case of this being confirmed as a bug, please note that the timeframe for bug resolutions will vary depending on the severity of the bug. Once a bug is fixed, it is usually made available as part of the next service pack."

I post this reply as I hope nobody else has to go through the frustrating experience I had. On the technical side, just to clarify, I encountered the problem initially with ChartFX 7 binaries from builds dated Nov. or Dec. 2008 and applying the Jan. 2009 service pack didn't make any difference.

I will update this when it is resolved, unless of course, somebody from SoftwareFX beat me to it.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I've just been informed by SoftwareFX that their product team have fixed the problem and a hotfix build has been published.

russ_uk: since your project has different setup to mine (mine is hosted on Windows XP Professional SP3 with IIS 5.1) and showed different symptoms (the problem occurred without PSS in yours but not mine), you will have to test to see if the hotfix fixes your problem. As to workarounds, one that worked for me was to set one of the Chart properties "UserClientLoader" and "EmbeddedData" to true. This workaround had other implications, one led me to discover an old bug and another led me to my other post http://community.softwarefx.com/forums/t/10438.aspx.

 I will test the hotfix when I get it and post an update later.

 

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We think we have found a workaround for our issue.

As Sharepoint is installed at the root of the webserver the ChartFX70 folder is secured by forms authentication.  If we exclude the ChartFX70 virtual directory from Forms Authentication by adding an entry within the web.config then the error no longer occurs.

 

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