I'm after CPS data and want to download them from Census Bureau's Data Ferret app (http://dataferrett.census.gov/).

However, I can't get the Data Ferret to load. I open the pop-up window (I "tick" all the requirements), it starts loading and then the loading bar stalls at 100% and nothing happens afterwards.

I tried this on different computers and browsers (my MacBook Pro (Mavericks) with Firefox, a library Windows 7 desktop with Chrome, Firefox and IE) with the same result in all cases.

Do you have any experience with Data Ferret? Can you load the app?

Thanks for your help!


There are two parts to this question that I can address. First, you'll need to make sure that javascript is enabled.

Second, if you're after CPS data you have three separate resources. You have the option of using the FTP site which allows you to download the raw data. A better resource is from the National Bureau of Economic Research which offers the raw data, as well import statements for SAS, Stata, and SPSS for the basic monthly CPS and CPS supplements. The third resource is iPUMS for the CPS, it allows you to do things that are similar to dataferret, although it does require free registration with a simple approval process.


I had the same problem because Chrome no longer has a Java plugin, and Java wasn't cooperating with Firefox and IE on my PC. I solved it by using portable versions of Firefox and Java on my Windows PC. For Firefox I used FirefoxPortable_39.0.3_English.paf.exe available here, and for Java I used jPortable_7_Update_75_Rev_2.paf.exe available here. Instructions on making the 2 work together are here.

I created a folder called PortableApps on my PC. Inside this folder, I created folders like so: CommonFiles/Java/ and FirefoxPortable/. I installed jPortable in the former, and Firefox portable in the latter. The Firefox Portable launcher will automatically detect and configure the Java plugin for use. After that, I used this portable version of Firefox to easily launch the DataFerret Java app.

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