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  1. #1
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    VB over Access (VB6/Access 97)

    I just completed a 5 day class in VB6. I need some convincing why I should change from Access to VB. What can I do in VB that I can not do in Access?

    I have a programming background (programmed in COBOL and BASIC - 10 years ago), how can I build a file structure to store my data? Is this the plus for using access and then using VB for manipulation?

    Please give me some insight!!

    Deborah

  2. #2
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    Re: VB over Access (VB6/Access 97)

    VB uses the same database engine as Access. I'm biased because I make my living developing in Access, but I don't see any overriding reason to chose VB to build front ends for a database when the connection is much closer through Access, which was designed for that purpose.

    There are some capabilities in VB that Access lacks. I can live without the menus on the forms themselves, but the data environment doesn't have an equivalent in Access MDBs. You can create a data environment in an ADP, but only when you first create the ADP, not later on.

    One advantage of VB is that you can bind VB forms to an ADO recordset through either the ADO Data Control or the data environment, and the recordset will be editable. If you bind an Access form to an ADO recordset, it's not updateable. The disadvantage is that you're stuck with VB forms and controls, which struggle to cope with database functionality.

    VB forms and reports are not nearly as rich in features as those available in Access. Form headers and footers don't exist (report headers and footers do), nor do subforms and subreports. Plus you don't have the Grouping and Sorting features that Access has in its reports. There is a VB control that will let you create something equivalent to a continuous form, but it isn't quite the same as a continuous Access form. VB comboboxes (and there are a bunch of them) don't offer the flexibility of their Access cousin, either. VB controls expose more properties, but they are often properties that are built into Access controls.

    What VB does provide, though, is a method of distributing an executable file to run the application. Of course, if the other machines don't have VB installed, then you have to create a setup to include the licenses for any ActiveX controls you've used (like the ADO Data Control), and if the machines don't have at least Office 2000 installed, you have to make sure you include the VB 6 runtime, which is *not* a small file, however small the executable itself may be.
    Charlotte

  3. #3
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: VB over Access (VB6/Access 97)

    We don't buy Access for 90% of our users, so data-aware applications must be written in VB, VBA, or VBScript. I generally do everything from Word, because it's my frame of reference on life and I generally want to end up with some kind of table that has flexible formatting capabilities.

    If your users will have Access, it seems like a lot of additional work to develop in VB. My <img src=/S/2cents.gif border=0 alt=2cents width=15 height=15>.

  4. #4
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    Re: VB over Access (VB6/Access 97)

    In addition to the above 2 posts, I'd mention that you can distribute a royalty free run-time version of access to users that don't have Access installed if you have the Developer Edition of Office. However, no matter how tight you've made your application the run-time distribution won't be under 75MB, and the distribution process itself is a bit, uh, tricky. Still, possibilities, all.
    <font face="Comic Sans MS"><font color=blue>~Shane</font color=blue></font face=comic>

  5. #5
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    Re: VB over Access (VB6/Access 97)

    I have office xp developer and vb6 pro. My users have w95 and office 97, they don't have access at all, just word and excel97. So I am trying to develop a front-end in vb6 for them because when I try to make a run-time version of my access xp database it won't run on their computers.

    I am using a DAO control on my vb6 form connected to my mdb which i converted to access 97. Then i put text boxes so my users can enter data into the tables of my mdb. I want them to enter data for each project they work on. The projects have client name and job number. More than one project can have the same client and the same job number. I have a separate tblPROJECT, tblCLIENT and tblJOBNO in my mdb.

    How can I make a drop-down box that holds the clients names and allows the user to enter a new client if it's not in the box? Or, is there a better way to do this in VB6.

    I appreciate any help or suggestions. Thank you very much.

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