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What's the best way to allow web updates to a MDB?

P: n/a
I'm trying to find out the best architecture would be for a web+access
solution. We have a database of individuals' job details. There's a big
table with an ID key field, name addess etc, and a whole load of fields
that depend on other tables for their options. We wish to allow the
indivduals to update their record over the web. They must not be able
to access anything other than their own record. We have a lot of
queries and reports we use on this database and we'd like to keep it
running on Access for this reason.

Ideally what would happen is that every few months an automated process
would send an email to an individual containing the data we have on
them. The email would have two links, one to indicate the record is
up-to-date, the other would take them to an update form.

One way I thought we could do this is via some scripts running on the
database server. This would not be a web server, it would generate a
form which got uploaded to the web with a unique URL. This would
provide some security, possibly enough for us as we want to avoid
passwords. When the form got filled in it would somehow send it's data
back to the database server and be incorporated to the DB.

This is purely speculative, and I don't want to do it myself, I don't
have time to learn the skills (though I would like to be able to make
minor changes once it's up and running). What I need to find out is the
most sensible architecture for a solution.

Can anyone advise me?

Thanks,

John

Jul 12 '06 #1
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9 Replies


P: n/a
Hi John,

THere are a few things about Access that you need to be aware of because
some people try to use Access as a service or some form of enterprise
level application. The excellence of Access is in Desktop level
database managememt. THat is, Desktop level. THere is no other desktop
level database system that can match Access in functionality/performance
etc. But Access is not a service or an enterprise level application.
It is a desktop application that is file system based. That is
specifically what Access was designed for. It has some Web
capabilities, but that is mostly for training purposes.

Microsoft has other products for service and enterprise level
opertations, that would be sql server and the .Net platform. Some
people will argue that Access serves quite well as a web database.
Perhaps, if you know that only 10 or less people will be accessing the
mdb at any given time. In that case a .asp or .aspx file (or php which
I am not familiar with) or even .jsp would work fine. But if you know
that more than 10 people could access your web database and you need
guaranteed reliability with failover functions, I would go with the
tools that were designed specifically for that like sql server. Even
though they are both database systems there is a huge difference. Sql
server is a service designed to handle millions of transactions per
second. Access is a file application designed to handle whatever you
can dish out from one or a few desktops.

Please don't interpret my suggestions here as a putdown on Access. It
is the best product on the market for what is was desinged for. But you
are suggesting more enterprise level operations. Either way, you can
use .asp/.aspx/.jsp/.php with Access on a limited basis for web based
operations.

HTH

Rich

*** Sent via Developersdex http://www.developersdex.com ***
Jul 12 '06 #2

P: n/a
I think ASP and php are two good bets for you. Are you hosting your own
website or having it hosted elsewhere? If the latter, you can look around to
see who will let you run Access databases on their server.
just a couple of cents.
-John

<JA****@googlemail.comwrote in message
news:11*********************@75g2000cwc.googlegrou ps.com...
I'm trying to find out the best architecture would be for a web+access
solution. We have a database of individuals' job details. There's a big
table with an ID key field, name addess etc, and a whole load of fields
that depend on other tables for their options. We wish to allow the
indivduals to update their record over the web. They must not be able
to access anything other than their own record. We have a lot of
queries and reports we use on this database and we'd like to keep it
running on Access for this reason.

Jul 12 '06 #3

P: n/a
Hi Rich,

Thanks for explaining the difference between Access and SQL. In fact it
is unlikely that more than a handful of users would ever use the
database at one time, and it's not a "mission critical" situation. I
would be surprised if even 2 users were on at once so we're prepared to
risk those shortcomings in exchange for not having to redo all the
bespoke queries and reports we've already developed.

It looks like an asp/ado solution would be fine for us. Do you think my
suggested scenario could be made to work - I like it because the
database is not online at all so we would have less security concerns,
but I have only very vague ideas how the scripts would work.

Thanks,

john

Jul 12 '06 #4

P: n/a
JA****@googlemail.com wrote:
Hi Rich,

Thanks for explaining the difference between Access and SQL. In fact it
is unlikely that more than a handful of users would ever use the
database at one time, and it's not a "mission critical" situation. I
would be surprised if even 2 users were on at once so we're prepared to
risk those shortcomings in exchange for not having to redo all the
bespoke queries and reports we've already developed.

It looks like an asp/ado solution would be fine for us. Do you think my
suggested scenario could be made to work - I like it because the
database is not online at all so we would have less security concerns,
but I have only very vague ideas how the scripts would work.

Thanks,

john
You might want to do some reading here

http://webpages.charter.net/bobalsto...20Internet.htm

and

http://webpages.charter.net/bobalsto...onSoftware.htm

good luck. It is not nearly as straightforward to use Access/jet in an
internet/web situation as in a Windows environment.

You might also check out the new features of the new Access, now out in
Beta. I believe it has an ability to capture data from forms sent via
email.

Bob
Jul 12 '06 #5

P: n/a
"John Welch" <john(remove)welch@cal(remove)central.comwrote in
news:e9********@enews4.newsguy.com:
I think ASP and php are two good bets for you. Are you hosting
your own website or having it hosted elsewhere? If the latter, you
can look around to see who will let you run Access databases on
their server.
Uh, I don't know of any web host that allows you to "run Access
databases." That would imply running an application.

Many Windows-based hosts certainly allow you to use a Jet database
as a data store, but that's not at *all* the same thing as "running
an Access database."

--
David W. Fenton http://www.dfenton.com/
usenet at dfenton dot com http://www.dfenton.com/DFA/
Jul 12 '06 #6

P: n/a
On Wed, 12 Jul 2006 18:04:06 -0500, "David W. Fenton" <XX*******@dfenton.com.invalidwrote:
>
Many Windows-based hosts certainly allow you to use a Jet database
as a data store, but that's not at *all* the same thing as "running
an Access database."
I agree with this but I think you are fighting a losing battle here as words ultimately mean what
most people think they mean.

Jul 13 '06 #7

P: n/a

Bob Alston wrote:
>
You might also check out the new features of the new Access, now out in
Beta. I believe it has an ability to capture data from forms sent via
email.

Thanks. That looks interesting, though it seems like it will still need
quite a lot of administration.

Jul 13 '06 #8

P: n/a
polite person <sn**@snippers.comwrote in
news:a9********************************@4ax.com:
On Wed, 12 Jul 2006 18:04:06 -0500, "David W. Fenton"
<XX*******@dfenton.com.invalidwrote:
>>Many Windows-based hosts certainly allow you to use a Jet database
as a data store, but that's not at *all* the same thing as
"running an Access database."

I agree with this but I think you are fighting a losing battle
here as words ultimately mean what most people think they mean.
If people want useful answers to their questions, they have to
phrase them clearly. It matters not at all to me whether or not most
people mis-use the terminology. If you mis-use the terms, then you
shouldn't be surprised if you don't get useful answers.

--
David W. Fenton http://www.dfenton.com/
usenet at dfenton dot com http://www.dfenton.com/DFA/
Jul 13 '06 #9

P: n/a
JA****@googlemail.com wrote in
news:11**********************@p79g2000cwp.googlegr oups.com:
Bob Alston wrote:
>You might also check out the new features of the new Access, now
out in Beta. I believe it has an ability to capture data from
forms sent via email.

Thanks. That looks interesting, though it seems like it will still
need quite a lot of administration.
So far as I can see it's completely useless unless you commit to
using the worst possible email clients available (i.e.,
Microsoft's).

--
David W. Fenton http://www.dfenton.com/
usenet at dfenton dot com http://www.dfenton.com/DFA/
Jul 13 '06 #10

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