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Calling Information Deleted?

Posted: Sun Aug 23, 2009 3:05 pm
by ehoggan-p40
I'm wondering if anyone has seen a similar issue to this: about a month ago 80% of the calling information for our ward was wiped out of MLS. No other information seems to have been affected, but the majority of the existing callings were simply removed from the system. The deletion appears to have been random, for instance, all of the bishopric was removed with the exception of the ward clerk, and all of the priesthood officers were removed, but the primary teachers remained in tact.

Has anyone seen a simliar failure in MLS? And if so, how did you correct it?

We of course had backups from previous weeks, and were able to re-enter the information, but it continues to drop callings regularly, to the point where we can no longer trust the MLS list and have to maintain a seperate spreadsheet.

I'm thinking of saving all of the backups and trying an uninstall of MLS and re-installing the problem in case the database is somehow corrupted, but I wanted to check here first.

Posted: Sun Aug 23, 2009 3:53 pm
by jbh001
Most likely it has to do with an issue with the upgrade to MLS 3.0.2, which is related to the upgrade to standardized callings in MLS 3.0.0, which from what you describe, sounds like you haven't run the calling wizard since upgrading to MLS 3.0.x to convert the most common callings over to the standardized ones, otherwise the bishopric would not have disappeared.

Beginning with MLS 3.0.0 ward callings are being transmitted to CHQ, thus the move to standardized callings.

To run this wizard, navigate from the MLS menu bar to Organizations > Reports/Tools > Custom Positions Review.

The time frame is about right, since the beta version of MLS 3.0.0 was prematurely sent to most units 12 June 2009, but the issue you describe was supposedly associated with the release of MLS 3.0.2. Curious ...

From the MLS 3.0 Release notes:
Changes Related to Membership
  • Recording Church positions (callings). When recording a calling, MLS now contains messages that encourage clerks to use standard position names and discourages the creation of custom positions. As the Church begins to provide local leaders and members access to Church applications and programs over the Web, the Church must limit access to authorized users only. For example, someone with the position of “Ward Clerk” in MLS could access a clerk Web site, but someone with the custom position of “Senior Clerk” would not be admitted to the site. Use custom positions only when no standard position fits the calling, because custom positions cannot be used to access Church Web applications.
  • Custom position review tool. In keeping with the new emphasis on using standard position names to record callings, MLS now has a tool to review existing custom positions. To access this feature, select the Organizations menu, then select Reports/Tools. Select Custom Position Review.
Other possibilities include:
1. Your installation of MLS is corrupt. Download the latest version from and do a clean install.
2. Your computer is getting ready to die.

Note: Restoring from a back-up forces MLS to rebuild its indexes, so if it is working okay after restoring, it is not likely that your database is corrupt.

At some point when you get the callings to show up correctly, you need to do a Send/Receive Changes under some version of MLS 3.0.x so that they are recorded correctly at CHQ.

Posted: Sun Aug 23, 2009 5:06 pm
by aebrown
jbh001 wrote:Other possibilities include:
1. Your installation of MLS is corrupt. Download the latest version from and do a clean install.
2. Your computer is getting ready to die.

I really doubt it's any of these dramatic issues. I've heard this reported from a couple of wards in my stake as well. It seems certain to me that it is related to the MLS 3.0 upgrade and how it handles standard and custom callings.

As with ehoggan's case, at least one of the wards in my stake had the problem appear prior to the MLS 3.0.2 issue we were warned about. That issue would supposedly be fixed on a subsequent send/receive, but one of the wards having this problem has done multiple transmissions, including two today, and the custom callings are still missing.

That's bad news, as it isn't acting like the MLS 3.0.2 issue was supposed to act, so it doesn't leave me with any confidence that the callings will be restored automatically.

Posted: Sun Aug 23, 2009 7:46 pm
by ehoggan-p40
We did experience problems around the time of the patch. We were working on converting over to more standardized calling names, but I hadn't read the patch closely enough to see that there was a conversion wizard - that'll teach me not to read patch notes!

I don't think it's a computer hardware issue because everything else on that machine runs fine. And even after multiple restores from a backup, the calling information disappears again. I think that's too specific for a hardware failure.

Now that I know about the standard vs. custom calling issue, I'll go back and check to see if the 20% of callings that survived the purge are all standardized ones. That at least is a plausible reason for why some callings survived and others continue to disappear even after re-entry. If all else fails, I'll try a fresh install as well.

Thanks for the help.

14 days and counting ...

Posted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 5:09 pm
by geek
In order to clean up some of the issues with callings in the 3.0 release, you may see some of the custom calling positions disappear after the initial download. Do not reenter the positions. They will be processed by the backend systems at CHQ and then sent back down and repopulate MLS. This should happen after doing a send/receive sometime during the week.

Our ward is at 14 days and counting since the custom callings (and many others) were deleted (deleted during the automated 3.0.2 update on 16-August). Any idea when we might expect to see them come back, or are we dead and have to redo them?

(I printed out callings before rebooting as part of the update, so I could go back.)

Posted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 5:14 pm
by geek
I should note that with a stake conference last week, we have only attempted one S/R in 2 weeks. Should we abandon all hope or wait for a few more S/Rs to do the trick?

Posted: Mon Aug 31, 2009 11:26 am
by jbh001
In the abscence of information to the contrary, if you have done 2 or 3 Send/Receives since losing the data AND since upgrading to MLS 3.0.2, personally I would add back in the custom callings with the understanding that they might get mangled again.

But then again, I'm the type that doesn't mind taking the time to fix this kind of stuff ... unless it is the tenth time I've done in as many days. Your patience/irritabily threshold may vary.