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  1. #1
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    Basic FrontEnd/BackEnd Question (2000)

    I have read many posts here referring to frontend/backend setups and have a database which I think should be split. However, I have some very basic questions first which I have not seen addressed here and can't find in my books.

    My major question is: If I have a front end on my computer and the back end (both Access) is on another computer on the network, do I need to popen BOTH databases to make things work?

    Here is my situation:
    We have a membership database (which is the one I think should be split) which currently contains many tables, forms, queries, and reports. It resides on someone else's computer on our network. When I want to use the Membership database, I click a shortcut on my own computer which opens it. I also have another database on my own computer which contains linked tables (linked to membership), and several forms and queries which no one but me uses (it is also the database I use when I am building new forms/queries/etc for the Membership database so I don't mess up the Membership database with stuff that is in process).

    Currently, I cannot run my private database on my computer unless Membership is also open on my computer when I start up my private database. Otherwise, as soon as I ask my personal database to do anything which requires data, it says "disk or network error".

    It isn't really ideal having both those databases open, for a number of reasons. So I'm wondering if we split the membership will it then be necessary to open two databases anytime anyone (there are four of us) wants to access the Membership database?

    Warning: I do not know a THING about networks and neither does anyone else in this office. We hire the outsiders who make the big bucks for that stuff and try not to do it any more than is absolutely necessary. So I probably need a fix that can be done completely in Access, or else I need to know that that's just the way it is and we have to open both the frontend and the backend if I set it up that way.

    Thanks for any insight you can offer!
    -cynthia

  2. #2
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    Re: Basic FrontEnd/BackEnd Question (2000)

    You just open the frontend database. Access handles everything else. The backend database needs to be on a shared drive, in which users have full privileges. Each user should have a copy of the frontend on a local drive. The only other thing you need to make sure of is that you have configured your databases to open "exclusive".
    Mark Liquorman
    See my website for Tips & Downloads and for my Liquorman Utilities.

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    Re: Basic FrontEnd/BackEnd Question (2000)

    Thanks! That probably explains my situation. We have the sharing for the C drive set up as "depends on password".
    So - assuming that I understand correctly, and if we change the drive sharing to full priveleges with no passwords, is there any relatively simple way to set up the copy of the frontend Access Database that we put on some people's computers to be "read only"?

    thanks again,
    -cynthia

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    Re: Basic FrontEnd/BackEnd Question (2000)

    No. Access databases can't be read only, as Access writes things to them, even when you just run a query. To prevent changes to the frontend, just create a .mde database and distribute that to the other users.
    Mark Liquorman
    See my website for Tips & Downloads and for my Liquorman Utilities.

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    Re: Basic FrontEnd/BackEnd Question (2000)

    If you are using linked tables you have already started the split process, so you should be able to continue that process and end up with a back-end that only has tables, but can be used by several front-ends, which may each have their own functionality. That is, you might have some queries forms, or even tables (linked or local) that exist or are linked only in your copy. With Access 2000, having distributed front-ends becomes more important as you can't make any design changes unless you have exclusive access to the database. Which brings up the "read-only" issue. There are two ways to make a database read-only. The first is to open it in "Read-Only" mode - that's an option that you can specify on open. The second is to set the file attribute to "Read Only" using Windows Explorer or the command line. That means that you can't make any changes to the design of forms, reports, queries, etc. We do that on some databases where the front-end contains no items that the user should be changing. For one thing it controls the Access bloat problem very nicely, and you don't have to do compact and repair either. Hope this illuminates the subject a bit more.
    Wendell

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    Re: Basic FrontEnd/BackEnd Question (2000)

    Hi Mark,
    I was doing some research on a question I posed tonight on split database performance. As a result, I came across your post. On the front-end, why is it important to set the default to 'Exclusive' mode? This was a new piece of advice to me and one I'll gladly follow but I just want to understand the impact it has.
    Thanks!
    Andrew

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    Re: Basic FrontEnd/BackEnd Question (2000)

    >On the front-end, why is it important to set the default to 'Exclusive' mode?<

    Quite frankly, I'm more than a little puzzled by that comment also! I don't know how it got there. I certainly don't remember writing it. Since each user has a copy of the frontend, I suppose it could it be opened exclusive. However, I don't know how this would affect the backend database. That is, I don't know whether it would also try to open the backend exclusively. I wouldn't specify "exclusive" until I knew for sure.
    Mark Liquorman
    See my website for Tips & Downloads and for my Liquorman Utilities.

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