File Processing System

File Processing System

File Processing System


A File can store records and we can extract these records using different applications programs.

  • The simplest data retrieval task from file require extensive programming. Also this is a time consuming and a high skill activity.
  • To access the data in file  the programmer must aware of the physical structure of the file.
  • Security features such as effective password protection, locking parts of file etc are very difficult to program.
  • The File system exhibits structural dependence. That is a change in  file structure such as addition or deletion of a  field require the modification of all programs using that file.
  • Data dependence: A change in file data characteristic such as change in a field  data type from integer to decimal, requires changes in all programs that access the file.

A typical file processing system is supported by conventional operating systems. The system stores permanent record in various files. It uses various application programs to extract records from, and add records to the appropriate files. Before using DBMS to store and retrieve data, organizations  stored information in file processing systems.

But as the number of files in the system expands, system administration becomes difficult too. Each file must have its own file management system, composed of programs that allow user to create the file structure, add data to the file, delete data from the file, modify the data in the file, list the file contents etc.

Even a simple file processing system containing 25 files requires 5 * 25 =125 file management programs. Each department in the organization owns its data by creating its own files. So the number of files can multiply rapidly.

Security features such as effective password protection, locking out part of files or part of system itself and other data confidentiality measures are difficult to program and are usually omitted.

The file system’s structure and lack of security makes it difficult to pool data. The same basic data is stored in different locations. But it is very unlikely that that data stored in different locations will always be updated consistently, hence maintaining different versions of same data. The file processing system is simply not suitable for modern data management and  information requirement.