a minor correction to my posting.
we had to save a copy of the table between the two SQL commands. the first query produces a column called 'Object'. But this cannot be queried successfully - until the save. Reopening the saved table, and examining the contents under Table > Maintenance the column is now a char field and is called '_Object'. It is this field that can now be queried.
So it's a three or four step method now..
But why can't i query the obj directly?
Andrew Bailey

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