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Access 97 .mdws with Access XP databases

P: n/a
I'm working at a company that is upgrading from Access 97 to 2002. We
have a number of '97 databases that are .mdw secured, but in no case
has anyone saved the original PIDs and SIDs used to create the security
files and accounts.

I'm wondering about the possibility of continuing to use the '97 .mdws
with the converted 2002 databases. Are there side effects? I have
heard that '97 .mdws sometime bloat when used with Access 2K databases.

Any info would be appreciated.

Nov 13 '05 #1
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7 Replies


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"brucedodds2" <br*********@fmglobal.com> wrote in
news:11**********************@o13g2000cwo.googlegr oups.com:
I'm wondering about the possibility of continuing to use the '97
.mdws with the converted 2002 databases. Are there side effects?
I have heard that '97 .mdws sometime bloat when used with Access
2K databases.


I haven't seen that, but I've only used that setup very
occasionally.

Keep in mind that A2K+ MDWs bloat a lot more than A97 ones, so it
may be an issue that only looks significant on the surface.

--
David W. Fenton http://www.bway.net/~dfenton
dfenton at bway dot net http://www.bway.net/~dfassoc
Nov 13 '05 #2

P: n/a
brucedodds2 <br*********@fmglobal.com> typed:
: I'm working at a company that is upgrading from Access 97 to 2002. We
: have a number of '97 databases that are .mdw secured, but in no case
: has anyone saved the original PIDs and SIDs used to create the
: security files and accounts.
:
: I'm wondering about the possibility of continuing to use the '97 .mdws
: with the converted 2002 databases. Are there side effects? I have
: heard that '97 .mdws sometime bloat when used with Access 2K
: databases.
:
: Any info would be appreciated.

Sadly I'm in the same situation. My .mdw was originally created in
Access 2.0 -- it converted and worked fine with Access 97, but I'm
unable to read the group and user information using Access 2002 (I get
"Record(s) cannot be read; no read permission on 'MSysAccounts'", KB
article 306077 has the details). I'm looking at rebuilding the groups
and users and re-securing my front and back-ends. :(

Unless someone here knows of a utility to convert the .mdw...

--
Please remove the under_scores if replying by mail.
Nov 13 '05 #3

P: n/a
Thanks for the KB article.

I have found out by reading this newsgroup that .mdw secured databases
aren't very secure. There are utilities available that can break that
security, provided the user has both the database and the .mdw file for
it. So Access security it's not as safe as it looks, though depending
on the level of protection your client needs it may still be sufficient
for your ap[plication.

Nov 13 '05 #4

P: n/a
David W. Fenton wrote:
Keep in mind that A2K+ MDWs bloat a lot more than A97 ones, so it
may be an issue that only looks significant on the surface.


Never realized there was a cbloat issue with mdws and haven't done any
secured apps lately and none in A2003. Nevertheless, how does one go
about compacting them other than via code? Is there a way?

--
Tim http://www.ucs.mun.ca/~tmarshal/
^o<
/#) "Burp-beep, burp-beep, burp-beep?" - Quaker Jake
/^^ "Whatcha doin?" - Ditto "TIM-MAY!!" - Me
Nov 13 '05 #5

P: n/a
Tim Marshall <TI****@PurplePandaChasers.Moertherium> wrote in
news:dj**********@coranto.ucs.mun.ca:
David W. Fenton wrote:
Keep in mind that A2K+ MDWs bloat a lot more than A97 ones, so it
may be an issue that only looks significant on the surface.


Never realized there was a cbloat issue with mdws and haven't done
any secured apps lately and none in A2003. Nevertheless, how does
one go about compacting them other than via code? Is there a way?


An MDW is just a special MDB with a different extension (it does
have some properties specific to MDWs). As long as the MDW is not in
use (i.e., not your default system.mdw file and not in use via the
workgroup switch of a command line), you can open it just like an
MDW.

And browse the tables of users and groups.

And view the enctryped passwords.

And compact the thing.

I'm surprised someone as experienced as you would never have
actually tried this before. It does demonstrate why it wasn't
exactly hard to crack Jet security.

--
David W. Fenton http://www.bway.net/~dfenton
dfenton at bway dot net http://www.bway.net/~dfassoc
Nov 13 '05 #6

P: n/a
David W. Fenton wrote:
I'm surprised someone as experienced as you would never have
actually tried this before. It does demonstrate why it wasn't
exactly hard to crack Jet security.


I don't do much with secured mdbs. In fact, I can probably count the
number of secured mdbs I've developed on one hand. The vast majority of
what I do is reporting front ends on Oracle back ends where I normally
restrict the user view connected to via ODBC to one with read only
access, so Access/Jet security is not needed.

I must say, I thought an mdw was a special non-mdb file of some sort.
This may well be something I missed from the Access security FAQ (which
I must follow closely anytime I do tackle security, as I forget most
things) - is it mentioned in there?

I'll have to poke around some mdw files now when I get back to work
tomorrow!
--
Tim http://www.ucs.mun.ca/~tmarshal/
^o<
/#) "Burp-beep, burp-beep, burp-beep?" - Quaker Jake
/^^ "What's UP, Dittoooooo?" - Ditto
Nov 13 '05 #7

P: n/a
There is a KB article on use of A97 .mdw files with later versions. You
have to read past the start to get the information:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/282357/

It doesn't raise any red flags.

Nov 13 '05 #8

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