Recorder 6 - Information

Current Situation


JNCC transferred  responsibility for Recorder 6  to the  Recorder 6 Consortium on 31 March 2018. They have relinquished all rights to the software and no longer have any involvement in the system. The Consortium is funded directly by its members and does not receive funding from any other source. It is independent of the Steering Group. The aim of the Consortium is  to ensure that support is available if users encounter problems (bugs)and to keep the R6 species dictionary up to date. Beyond this the Consortium provides a framework which will allow development of R6 to continue.  The JNCC website will no longer be updated so please use this site to get the latest updates etc.  

The Consortium only provides support for bug fixes and does not provide support for the installation of Recorder 6  or for the general use of the application.   

A new Steering Group has been set up by ALERC to take forward the development of Recorder 6 and in particular to work towards a replacement . The Steering Group intends to charge users an annual fee for Recorder 6.  Payment of this fee would allow users to access the application upgrades and dictionary updates for the year, but it is hoped a large proportion of the fee paid will go towards a Recorder 6 replacement.  Arrangements  are currently being put in place to collect this fee. The Steering Group will make its own announcement about  the level of support it will provide to those who have paid the fee. Please be aware that the Consortium does not receive any funding  from the Steering group for the support of Recorder 6, but will be working closely with the Steering Group for the benefit of all R6 users.               

At some point in time Recorder 6 will need to be replaced, but until a replacement has been specified and funding obtained then R6 needs to be maintained.  Systems do not operate in isolation so, in our view, maintenance must include the ability to adapt to meet changing requirements.   

Support is available to legitimate holders of an R6 Site ID.


Recorder 6 can be installed and run under Windows 7 and all MS operating systems. It will install and run on Windows 10.  The latest installation version is 6.26.2. This requires  SQL Server 2008 , SQL Server 2012,  SQL Server 2014 or SQL Server 2016  be installed before the installation of R 6.  Version  6.28.0 is the latest upgrade . Compatibility level must be 80 or  100 not above). There are issues with  SQL Server 2017, some of which have been addressed, but further testing is required.

Recorder was  being supported on  SQL Server 2000 (or MSDE) and SQL Server 2005 , but  from version 6.29  it will no longer be supported on these version of SQL Server.  It may still run on these versions, but the upgrade scripts  may need to be adapted.


Recorder 6 will run on Virtual Servers  and is working successfully on a number of such installations.  We know of two instances where there have been problems with Virtual Servers, but these appear to be down to the set up of the servers and not to any issue with R6.

There is no  alternative system to R6 available, without the loss of important data. Unlike accounting and similar systems where transaction data can be consolidated or archived when moving to a new system,  biological recording  systems need to retain the detailed information so that it can be reviewed  in the light of new research or development.  In this context R6 is just a front end to a well designed database which contains information which needs to be retained and accessed indefinitely.  Those involved in the support of R6 are aiming to  continue supporting and developing it until such time there is a replacement system available which can be used without the loss of any information. We believe that R6 has many years life left yet, however, at some point (we are not there yet)  it may not run on the latest MS Operating system or on the latest version of SQL server.