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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    Web-Based Access (2000, XP)

    Hi all, I know I have asked a version of this long ago, but am looking for more feedback. We have two programs in Access that we send out (discs, e-mail) to clients in the state. We are looking to expand outside of the state and are looking towards a web-based version of the software. The basis of the software is to enter real-time visit and staffing information to produce reports showing productivity targets and actuals. We also produce comparative data for everyone to view, but that involves them sending us a data dump for us to collate. Another problem is that if there are problems with the client's database, I have to try and solve them over the telephone or have them send me the database so I can fix it for them (most of them don't know anything about Access). Ultimately, we would like to see web-based forms and reports by user ID and keep all client information in ONE database, rather than 40 - information is readily available and I can "fix" problems right from my desk. I know enough about Access, but not much else...is this something that can be done using SQL? Any other ideas? Does SQL need "hardcore" programming skills, or is it a lot like Access? Thanks in advance for any feedback!

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Web-Based Access (2000, XP)

    If by SQL you mean SQL Server, it is an entirely different product from Access, although there are some similarities. You can't build an interface in SQL Server. You would have to use HTML or ASP to build web pages and to exchange data with your SQL Server database. That means you would be best advised to go out and find yourself a knowledgeable SQL Server developer to build it for you.
    Charlotte

  3. #3
    New Lounger
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    Re: Web-Based Access (2000, XP)

    As always...thanks Charlotte! That's what I was planning on doing rather than trying to teach myself SQL Server. It seems so expensive to purchase...any experience with MySQL? Better yet, I think I'll go out and get some bids on the job. Do you know of any other solutions, rather than SQL Server?

  4. #4
    Super Moderator
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    Re: Web-Based Access (2000, XP)

    There is an alternative to SQL Server for a web database. One choice is to use data access pages, which has some constraints. For one thing they work significantly better in Access 2002. Another is that your users all need to be using IE, probably 6.0x for the best results. If those aren't to your liking, you can choose to use ASP, which means you need a web server that supports ASP - IIS will do the trick, and there is a version available for Apache. If you really want to get fancy, they should also be running the FrontPage extensions so they can work with some of the more sophisticated FrontPage concepts. If you want to see a web site using this stuff, check out http://www.coloradofreedommemorial.com - it has an Access database as it's back-end. Either of these approaches will let you leave the data in Access, and use the tools you know. Obviously, you need to do some planning in terms of backups and maintenance so the web site remains fairly robust.

    On the other hand, there are some definite downsides to Web based applications when you are coming from an Access background. For one thing, your combo boxes cannot be autocompleting - they will only react to the first letter. In addition, it really hard to do anything resembling subforms. Finally, response times will be a function of the link speed your users have, and will almost certainly be a fair bit slower than having a local database. Just some food for thought.
    Wendell

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