Creating data dictionaries

You can create a new data dictionary manually. It may be easier to start with an existing data dictionary that was created by Unica Campaign.

About this task

A data dictionary defines the format of data in a fixed-width ASCII flat file. You use data dictionaries in Snapshot processes to ensure that any fixed-width output files that you create adhere to a specific structure.


  1. Create an empty .dat file (length = 0) and a corresponding .dct file.
  2. In the .dct file, define fields in the format:

    <Variable_name>, <"ASCII string" or "ASCII Numeric">, <Length_in_bytes>, <Decimal_point >, <Format>, <Comment>

    Use Unknown for the format and leave the comment field blank, as shown in the following example:

    acct_id, ASCII string, 15, 0, Unknown, 
    hsehld_id, ASCII Numeric, 16, 0, Unknown, 
    occptn_cd, ASCII string, 2, 0, Unknown, 
    dob, ASCII string, 10, 0, Unknown, 
    natural_lang, ASCII string, 2, 0, Unknown, 
    commun_lang, ASCII string, 2, 0, Unknown,
  3. You can now map a new table to a file using this data dictionary.