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The future of various DB connection technologies and related technoloies

P: n/a
It's confusing. Many people here and elsewhere make many different
predictions:

There's an introduction mentioning some aspects of this at
http://msdn.microsoft.com/data/mdac/.../default.aspx?
pull=/library/en-us/dnmdac/html/data_mdacroadmap.asp

revised Sep 2005

(upper case conversions are mine)
What do you think? You might have particular opinions about:

this one:

*******
*******
Obsolete Data Access Technologies

Obsolete technologies are technologies that have not been enhanced or
updated in several product releases and that will be excluded from future
product releases. Do not use these technologies when you write new
applications. When you modify existing applications that are written
using these technologies, consider migrating those applications to
ADO.NET.

The following components are considered obsolete:

" DATA ACCESS OBJECTS (DAO): DAO PROVIDES ACCESS TO JET (ACCESS)
DATABASES. THIS API CAN BE USED FROM MICROSOFT VISUAL BASIC®, MICROSOFT
VISUAL C++®, AND SCRIPTING LANGUAGES. IT WAS INCLUDED WITH MICROSOFT
OFFICE 2000 AND OFFICE XP. DAO 3.6 IS THE FINAL VERSION OF THIS
TECHNOLOGY. IT WILL NOT BE AVAILABLE ON THE 64-BIT WINDOWS OPERATING
SYSTEM.

*******
*******

or this one:

*******
*******
Current MDAC Components

These components are supported in the current release. Use these
components when you develop new applications or upgrade existing
applications.

* ADO: ACTIVEX DATA OBJECTS (ADO) PROVIDES A HIGH-LEVEL PROGRAMMING
MODEL THAT WILL CONTINUE TO BE ENHANCED. ALTHOUGH A LITTLE LESS
PERFORMANT THAN CODING TO OLE DB OR ODBC DIRECTLY, ADO IS STRAIGHTFORWARD
TO LEARN AND USE, AND CAN BE USED FROM SCRIPT LANGUAGES SUCH AS MICROSOFT
VISUAL BASIC® SCRIPTING EDITION (VBSCRIPT) OR MICROSOFT JSCRIPT®.

*******
*******

Deprecated MDAC Components

These components are still supported in the current release of MDAC, but
might be removed in future releases. Microsoft recommends that when you
develop new applications, you avoid using these components. Additionally,
when you upgrade or modify existing applications, remove any dependency
on these components.

* Jet: Starting with version 2.6, MDAC no longer contains Jet
components. In other words, MDAC 2.6, 2.7, 2.8, and all future MDAC
releases do not contain Microsoft Jet, Microsoft Jet OLE DB Provider, or
the ODBC Desktop Database Drivers.

*******
*******

Or this one:

*******
*******

ADO.NET IS AN EVOLUTIONARY IMPROVEMENT OVER TRADITIONAL ADO for creating
distributed, data sharing applications. It is a high-level application
programming interface that is targeted at loosely coupled, n-tier,
Internet-based applications that support disconnected access to data. It
is a core component of the Microsoft .NET Framework.

*******
*******

What does "Obsolete technologies are technologies that have not been
enhanced or updated in several product releases and that will be excluded
from future product releases" mean?

What does "ACTIVEX DATA OBJECTS (ADO) PROVIDES A HIGH-LEVEL PROGRAMMING
MODEL THAT WILL CONTINUE TO BE ENHANCED" mean?

What does "ADO.NET IS AN EVOLUTIONARY IMPROVEMENT OVER TRADITIONAL ADO"
mean?

Of course, maybe this site isn't current and Microsoft just hasn't taken
it down yet?

--
Lyle Fairfield
Nov 13 '05 #1
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9 Replies


P: n/a
After 5 years of looking, waiting, learning, my gut feel is that
Microsoft is as much at a loss as we are. They have an objective of
evolving the platform (Windows) and evolving Office. In their evolutions,
they are incessantly preoccupied with several topics - dominating the web
space, elbowing into respectability in big iron (Oracle, Unix servers),
getting significant revenue from enterprise workflow (intranet portals,
data exchange between systems, rights management).

Since 997, they have already iterated through several revisions of web
technology (incorporating data access, browser content rendering, client-
server programming models) because the rest of the world rejected their
offerings.

They see XML as an empowering idea - it's structured data, meta data, an
RPC language, a data exchange medium over heterogenoeus platforms, a
programming language, a rendering language - you name it, they can Babel
it.

They see .NET as the successor to COM programming - .NET insulates the
programmer from Windows and Windows API and as a framework, challenges
Java successfully.

Where does Access, Jet and DAO/ADO fit in all this future? I think they
wish this would just all go away. All are COM. All are pre-XML meaning
that they have to duplicate effort in building additional COM XML
libraries for these things when their .NET framework is already rich in
XML functionality.

VB.NET is a replacement for VB6. SQL Server 2005 is a replacement for SQL
Server 6.5. They don't have a direct replacement in their new system for
Access, VBA and Jet. Their Office architecure is heavily COM and heavily
old - do they re-invent it completely in .NET?

Now Windows 64 bit is on the horizon. And Vista not far behind. Do they
simply port Office, VBA, DAO, ADO? Or do they re-engineer everything in
..NET for 64 bit since that framework is easier to migrate across?

Looking at the hype that is Web 2.0, the crazies think you don't even
need a desktop bound Office. Every Office function, they imply, can be
done in AJAX as web apps.

I think each current MS Office product team knows/decides what they want
to achieve for the current yet-to-be-released product. I don't they have
much idea of longer term or if they have an idea, that they can force it
to happen once their product revision has been released.

My 20 cents (that's the original 2 cents factored with inflation).

Lyle Fairfield <ly***********@aim.com> wrote in
news:Xn*********************************@216.221.8 1.119:
It's confusing. Many people here and elsewhere make many different
predictions:

Nov 13 '05 #2

P: n/a

"Lyle Fairfield" <ly***********@aim.com> wrote in message
news:Xn*********************************@216.221.8 1.119...
It's confusing. Many people here and elsewhere make many different
predictions:


I think there's only one conclusion one can draw from those seemingly
contradictory statements. Microsoft is hedging its bets. Six years ago they
proudly announced that DAO was being retired and ADO was to be the
replacement. They've been backpedaling from that stance ever since. They
looked foolish and are reluctant to let it happen again.

I curse Microsoft pretty much every day. Not just because of the ADO/DAO
debacle, but their refusal to establish a clear roadmap for the future. I've
got years of learning and experience invested in their products, I know one
of these days they'll yank the rug out from under me.

BTW - I certainly don't mean to suggest that I'm the only one in this
predicament, I suspect, to some extent, we all are.

My 2 cents,
Randy
Nov 13 '05 #3

P: n/a
"Lyle Fairfield" <ly***********@aim.com> wrote in message
news:Xn*********************************@216.221.8 1.119...
It's confusing. Many people here and elsewhere make many different
predictions:


The only thing we can do here is look at the past, and how things work.
First, MS as a company is not stupid. They became successful because they
build things that users want. Users shell billions every year to purchase
software, and they purchase incredible amounts of it. They don't do this
because they are dumb, or ignorant, they do this because it is such a good
deal. a windows OEM copy is about $50-$60, and over 5 years that
is not even 12 bucks a year, and you get a LOT of updates for that
cheap amount. What a deal....

One of the GREAT secrets of Microsoft's success is that of compatibility
over time.

Apple computer has forced their whole user community
MORE THAN ONCE to throw out ALL of their software. None of the original
apple mac programs from the 1980's worked with the new MAC that came out in
the early 90's. I sure your prof remembers the first Mac Paint programs!
However, you can't run those old programs. All those users were left high
and dry!

Apple did this again recently with the new OS X, and again
forced out tons and tons of software.

I want to stress here is not just a issue of no new upgrades, but those
new apple OS actually DOES NOT RUN the old software. This is big
deal, and difference.

With windows, we can still run old software from the 1980's. MS has never
forced a upgrade here by design. I have clients in town running old DOS
FoxPro code from the 1980's on brand new win XP pc's. Ms-access is
celebrating its what...11th anniversary right now (or is it now 12?).

Fact is,
you can still run and use the ORIGINAL ms-access version 1.0 (that
is from windows 3.1, 16 bit environment) on brand new 32 bit pc windows
box today. (MS had to do a LOT OF work to make old windows 3.1 code still
function. Just dealing with 16 bit libraries vs 32 bit was a huge
challenge).

Fact is that MS had the money to spend on compatibility and
they did, where companies like Apple is make you fork out the money for
new versions. As a result, with MS your software investment has been
protected better then anyone else in the last 20 years.

There is not one company, I repeat NOT ONE company that comes close to the
track record of MS. In fact, one the reasons why MS is so successful is
because IBM, Apple, Atari etc, and even SUN can not even come close the
compatibility that windows has maintained over the years. MS likes you
as a customer, and thus having compatibility keeps you!

If you want to develop with very OLD
version of VB5, you still can.

Fact is, from a compatibility point of view, there is not a vendor in the
industry that even comes remotely close to the continues compatibility
Microsoft has offered over the last 20 years.

You can actually go a web site and download the Original version of
visi calc and run it on your pc today (that download is less then 32k
which is smaller then a web page with graphics!). Imagine that, a
whole spread sheet that fits easily in 32k of ram!

So, even if ms-access (or JET) was being dropped, you likely could use it
for
the next 20 years!

Since MS is so eager to win market share, and win customers, then why
on earth would they dump the most popular database program in the
world? You mean they want to chase customers away back to Linux and
apple after all this work to win those customers? really, do you
think the company is that stupid?

A really good example of how MS listens to the market place is that
of DAO. We were told by many people for years that we should not
use DAO anymore. Well, guess what, we continued to use it, and
the fact is that the NEW VERSION of ms-access (that is access
2003 right now) actually has the DAO REFERENCE BY
DEFAULT. In fact, you have to go all the way back to access
97 to find a version that has the DAO reference by default.

So, was MS dropping the DAO ref from ms-access a bad move?
Sure, it was. However, during this time period, we STILL COULD
continue to use DAO...you just had to set the ref yourself, or
if you converted using ms-access, it put the ref there for you.

My point here is that most of us missed the DAO ref, and it
was a source of problems. The result is that MS listened to us,
and now back by popular demand, the current new version
of access 2003 has a DAO ref by default.

Gee, I can still run 1981 software on a brand new box, and now the latest
version of ms-access has a DAO ref by default?

Do you start to get a picture of how important compatibility is here?

Microsoft is success because they do things like put back the DAO references
by default in a2003. That to me shows an AMAZING flexibility, and also shows
that the best way to win customers is to allow them to continue to use their
software.

Without question, this ability of windows to run software is what makes
Microsoft so popular...so why would they destroy it?

And, I should say that windows XP also ships with a copy of JET.
(this is why a good many VB.net developers still use JET...it is
part of windows XP).

I have little doubt we will see new versions of ms-access for the next
20 years. There is no rumor, or article or even a statement that
even HINT of
the demise, or stopping of the fantastic product we all know and love
as ms-access.

Right now, it has been announced that the office team now owns, and holds
the JET database, and they can modify it.
They are calling the new engine "ACE".

So, in conclusion:

There is no way we are going to have to throw out old software
There is no way that the JET engine is going to die, especially now that the
office team has the code, and is already adding new features.

Likely, we ms-access people will get a cool 64 bit version of JET, but I
don't see any reason why the old ones will not work....

So, over the years, as new technology comes out, we in ms-access get that
technology. When ADO came out, ms-access got it. If you look at newsgroup
posts today, a LOT of people use ADO because that is what most VB folks use.
And, I think this is great that we got ADO. When XML came out, we got xml
features added to ms-access. And, lets not forget the soap tool kit add-in
that lets ms-access consume web services (it is a VERY cool add in).

And, we even got a nice add in for ms-access to allow source code control
(VSS).

So, as new cool technologies come out, ms-access gets them, but the old
features for the most part continue to work, and the future looks bright....

--
Albert D. Kallal (Access MVP)
Edmonton, Alberta Canada
pl*****************@msn.com
http://www.members.shaw.ca/AlbertKallal

Nov 13 '05 #4

P: n/a
DAO may not be planned for 64bit availability but Clint Convington says
the magic word

http://microsoft.sitestream.com/PDC0...=1&autostart=1

at about the 23 minute onwards mark.

Access 12 has a whole raft of features for end user driving, report
design in live mode and more....

http://blogs.msdn.com/access/archive...07/490113.aspx

Ananda

Lyle Fairfield wrote:
The following components are considered obsolete:

" DATA ACCESS OBJECTS (DAO): DAO PROVIDES ACCESS TO JET (ACCESS)
DATABASES. THIS API CAN BE USED FROM MICROSOFT VISUAL BASIC®, MICROSOFT
VISUAL C++®, AND SCRIPTING LANGUAGES. IT WAS INCLUDED WITH MICROSOFT
OFFICE 2000 AND OFFICE XP. DAO 3.6 IS THE FINAL VERSION OF THIS
TECHNOLOGY. IT WILL NOT BE AVAILABLE ON THE 64-BIT WINDOWS OPERATING
SYSTEM.

Nov 13 '05 #5

P: n/a
Do I have open Internet Explorer and listen/watch for 23 minutes?
Perhaps you could just tell us what the magic word is?

Nov 13 '05 #6

P: n/a
The magic word is "DAO".

No, you don't have to listen for 23 minutes. You should be able to jump
to the "chapter" on "Import Contacts from Outlook" or use the VCR controls.

lylefair wrote:
Do I have open Internet Explorer and listen/watch for 23 minutes?
Perhaps you could just tell us what the magic word is?

Nov 13 '05 #7

P: n/a
Here's how I see the current situation for a traditional
Access/VBA/Jet/DAO product.
(1) Access.

http://support.microsoft.com/lifecycle/?p1=2509 says Access 2003 has
extended support through 2013. And as stated on the Access blog, they
currently have the largest development team that they have ever had,
and a brand new version is about to come out. So clearly, Access is
here for the forseeable future.
(2) VBA

http://support.microsoft.com/lifecycle/?p1=2974 says VBA 6 has
extended support through 2013. And VBA is part of other Office products
with similar lifetimes. So VBA is ok for the moment.
(3) Jet.

The Access team now have their own copy of Jet (renamed ADE, Access
Data Engine). "The new version is fully backwards compatible with the
old, so it will read & write files from earlier versions without any
problems. And since Access now can update the engine, developers can be
confident that their Access apps will continue to work in the future."
So Jet/ADE is ok for the forseeable future.
(4) DAO.

The article you reference, clearly states that DAO will not be present
in win 64. But Erik Rucker said on the blog: "What happens to DAO? -
It lives on just as it has. As several folks noted, we can't bust DAO
or we'd break a huge number of apps." It seems to me that his
comment might supersede the one in your article. I can't find any entry
for DAO in http://support.microsoft.com/lifecycle to check that
independently.
In summary, an existing Access/VBA/Jet/DAO solution will clearly
continue to work on all 32 bit versions of windows for ever. The only
real worry is DAO on win 64. If anyone else has an authoritative answer
to that, say so here, to finish the picture.
TC

Nov 13 '05 #8

P: n/a
aa**********@yahoo.com wrote:
In summary, an existing Access/VBA/Jet/DAO solution will clearly
continue to work on all 32 bit versions of windows for ever. The only
real worry is DAO on win 64. If anyone else has an authoritative answer
to that, say so here, to finish the picture.


Good answer. Of course, TTBOMK we can't use DBEngine to Execute Jet
4.0's DDL now. And we can't create (well I can't; maybe someone will
explain how) DAO recordsets using some of JET 4.0's operators (such as
BNOT). I need an OLEDB connection to do these things (hence ADO). So
either ADO will continue to be an OLEDB interface for ACE, or DAO will
be enhanced to provide these capabilities, or something new will provide
them: ADO.Net? Maybe, but the Visual Presentation specifically says ADO
and OLEDB, just as it says the magic word, "DAO".

--
Lyle Fairfield
Nov 13 '05 #9

P: n/a
TC
Re. DAO in win 64 (for want of a better term), other places also say it
won't happen. Eg:

"Some technologies, including DAO (Data Access Object) ... will not be
ported to 64-bit Windows." (
http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/de...guidelines.asp
)

But maybe that's irrelevant. Various places say that 32-bit code will
still execute in the 32-bit subsystem of win 64. So maybe existing apps
will live for as long as a 32-bit subsystem exists in win 64 - which
will be a "very long time", IMO.

TC

Nov 13 '05 #10

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