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Old February 11th, 2005, 03:01 PM
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Default Why use VB.Net to read Access?

I am new to VB.Net but have used VBA in Microsoft Access applications. One of the reasons that I decided to learn VB.Net is because I thought that it could create stand-alone database applications; databases where the user didn't need any special program (i.e. Access) to use it. Can you do this with VB.Net?

In the book, you can use VB.Net to connect to either an SQL server database or an Access database. My question is: why wouldn't you just work within that program? What are the advantages of connecting through VB.Net?

Thanks for your clarifying comments in advance!

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Old February 14th, 2005, 11:56 AM
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When you write a DB application in VB, .NET, C, C++, C#, Delphi, or whatever, then you can distribute your program easily (compared with the runtime distributable of Access), for one.
Also, you can do far more with the results. You have more control over what your program does.
Also, you can make programs that have no user interface. This would be like some sort of data component that gets a simple request, and uses it to do some difficult task (unseen by the user) and then returns a simple number (or whatever) to the program that made the request.

The sky is the limit really, on what you can do, a situation that is not true when working exclusively with Access.

Also, the development environment is better...
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Old February 23rd, 2005, 07:28 PM
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I am in the same boat you are and I do quite a bit of work for small businesses. They like to have Access based solutions because the secretary can make quick changes to a report, or build a custom report, without having to know how to code, and without paying me to do it.

Not so good for my pocketbook :), but very valuable to a small business that doesn't have loads of cash.
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Old February 24th, 2005, 12:12 PM
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Access has 2 parts. It has the interface that you use to access your data, create and view forms, create and view reports, macros, vba code, etc.

But it also has the Jet database engine.
Jet uses .mdb files to store things, and it will store a vast array of things. That's why Access can use it to store forms, macros, reports, etc.
Jet also has a relational database management set of core funtions for doing things like maintaining relational integrity and so on.
When you use VB with Jet to handle data, the file type is .mdb.

So if you write a VB app using Jet, it will create “Access” files (though without forms, reports, and so on; just data, relationships, indices—data-related things).

If you wanted to, you could write an app that uses a specialized type of chart, and stores them in an .MDB, having something like Access' database window to show the names of those stored charts in the mdb. It could look like Access, but be targeted at a special use.

So “Access files” are not necessarily associated with Access, though they can later be opened by Access.

Access “holds your hand” far more then VB, giving you both safety and restricted capabilities...
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