I just did a full sandbox refresh. Spent a couple hours debugging code before I finally saw where the null pointer was coming from.

In my production org, there's a custom object (position) with lookup to another customer object (order). I have a page to manage these objects and do a bunch of math based on the values of the lookup order.

In my sandbox, where the order auto number would be, I see this:enter image description here

It's not blank--there's like an underscore character. You can hover on it, or click it and get this message "Data not available"

Anyone ever seen that before? Both orgs are on Spring 13, but sandbox will go to summer 13 this weekend.

  • What does the Order Id look like? If you hover over the _ can you get the Id from the URL. At a guess, maybe you don't have permission to access that record or it doesn't exist in the Sandbox. May 8 '13 at 0:54
  • Never seen anything like this, and I've done many many full refreshes. Probably should file a case.
    – jkraybill
    May 8 '13 at 5:07

We've seen something along these lines before - the record that the lookup was pointing to seemed to be half deleted. It was in the recycle bin, but the lookup field was still populated, and attempting to hover or follow the lookup link gave the data not available message.

As far as we could tell it was related to record churn - we had a huge amount of short lived records and a large recycle bin, and at some point during the processing that caused the churn, some of the records didn't fully delete.

We also couldn't empty the recycle bin, we just kept getting timeouts AFAIR. We got Salesforce to do this by opening a case which then cleared the lookups correctly.


I got the same issue in our partial data sandbox. So, raised a case to salesforce to check the issue and they said that this was expected behavior for some records as only they as they only check for required fields or master detailed field copied properly

This was a huge product limitation. I cannot clear these lookup fields as validation is blocking the update to clear the lookup field.

  • 1
    Vijay, you should still be able to update your answer. It's always better to update questions and answers so that the full content is in 1 place, and no additional info is "hidden" in the comments. Jan 28 '15 at 20:37

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