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Unrecognized Items Error

Joel Ekis

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First I would try:
File Tools: Optimize database.
File Tools: Rebuild Lists (all but the last one).

If you still have the problem then you can try this:
(This process takes a LOT of explaining but is really not that hard to do and doesn't take much time)

NOTE: For the following to work you can't have 'duplicate' issues with different conditions (i.e. #1 NM and #1 FN).
If you do have duplicates The Title process will still work but the Issue process will be less possible.

Title comparison:
1) Create a New database (don't copy any information over).
2) Run the Update on this new database.
3) Run a Find on Title field TITLE Is Greater Than. Leave the text box empty.
4) Select all the Title names (just the one column). Do this by clicking in the first box, Go to the bottom, press and hold the SHIFT key while clicking on the last box (this should high light the entire column).
NOTE: It wouldn't hurt to just select/hightlight everything but you don't need Publisher or Years Published).
5) Use CTRL+C to copy the information.
6) Open a spreadsheet and use CTRL+V to paste the information.

Repeat the process for your real database.
For step 6, you can paste into a new tab or a differnt spreadsheet.

NOTE: Make sure both lists are sorted the same way.

The first thing to check the the number of Titles in each list.
A) If they are the same, then the unrecognized item probably isn't at the Title level.
B) If they are not the same (logically the list from your actual database should be larger), you can tell if you have 1 or more Titles that are not recognized.

If B) you need to do a binary search to find it/them.

Go about halfway down the list in both lists.
A) If the Title name on the same line number is the same in both lists, all the items above that point are identical.
B) If the Title name is NOT the same in both lists, there is 1 (or more) extra Title names above that point.

If A (both match) go about halfway DOWN between the current row and the last row then compare again.
If B (they don't match) you can tell how many don't match above by how far by the differece in the line numbers. Go about halfway UP between the current row and the top and compare again.

Repeat his process (either up or down depending on matching/not matching) and in a really short amount of time, you will find the extra Title.

If there was only 1 extra Title, this should find it. If there were multiple extra titles, you may have to repeat the binary search (after removing the each extra Title as you find it) to find all of them (you should know how many by comparing the total number of rows in each list.

Issue comparison:
The issue process is similar to the Title process except #3-6 are different.
3) Export Title and Item # to a TAB separated file.
4) Import the file into a spreadsheet.
(This would be done for both the New database and your original database.

Then the Binary search process would be the same.
Note: Even though there will be a LOT more rows with all the Issues, the binary search process won't take much longer than the Title search.

Again, if you have duplicate issues, this process may not work well as the new database won't have these 'extra' rows and will make the binary search harder (if not impossible).

PS if you have a database and know how to use it, you could import the data and run queries to find rows not in the other list.

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I have tried the Rebuild and Optimize.  Unfortunately, neither helped.

Appreciate the guide to find the problem issue.  I was hoping there was some easier way to get at the data.

Surely, there is a flag in the dB that is set for unrecognized comics after an update.  I would like to know what that flag is and how to search against it.  Mark, is there a way to do that?


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There isn't a flag.

The list is generated by comparing the content update data that is downloaded (and not kept anywhere as far as I know) and the rows in your database.

If you have something that is not in the content update, the information is added to the Unknown Items report.

Now that I typed that, try checking on your C drive in Users/<login-id>/Documents/Human Computing/<your-cb-edition>/Log Files and see if you have a file 'ComicBase Database.cbdb Unknown Items 28-Jul-2022 01-07.htm' (the date would be the date of the update).

The update process may have created this file but the link to it may not work for some unknown reason.

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  • 2 months later...

I don't know how I missed this thread in my search for this problem.  I'm running into the same issue.  Earlier today, I sent an email to support detailing my process.  Just a quick rehash below:

Today (10/19/22), when I clicked on "Check for Updates", I was notified a new program update was available (2023 4K Archive Edition).  After the update, ComicBase closed so I restarted ComicBase and it asked for my login information..  I entered login info, let program start, check for updates, and clicked link for unrecognized items.  A pop-up with the error, "could not start process with arguments" was reported.  I do not know if the program update had contributed to this issue as I haven't used the unrecognized item link in months.

Among my attempts to fix, I optimized the database and rebuilt the lists, closed & reopened ComicBase as well as restarting the computer.  None of these actions helped.  In addition, I verified no web browsers were open when clicking on the unrecognized items link.


  • Check if report was generated (Is link bad?)
  • This weekend, try the steps listed by Steven Dasinger
  • Try any recommendations from my email to customer support
  • Re-install ComicBase?

I will post again when I get more information.



  • ComicBase 2023 4K Archive Edition v23.0.0.1880 <no other versions listed in Apps & Features>
  • SQLite v3.30.1
  • Windows 10 Pro v21H2 (19044.2130)


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-Do you know what your computer's default web browser is? All the link does when clicked on is load that unrecognized list with that browser.

-Not able to reproduce with a few different computers on my end. Anyone else having similar trouble?

*Build 1913 is available btw; just download the latest CB2023 program installer to get it from your online account here: https://www.comicbase.com/mycb/Registrations.aspx

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