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Can't open 2019 accdb in 2016!!

4 2Bits
Hello all, thanks for the add. In trouble here and cannot find an answer anywhere which sort of surprised me. I put about 8 hours into a new DB yesterday for a work project. Get to work this morning and cannot open it (Access 2019 at home/Access 2016 at work). I work for the us government (DHS/USCG) so I dont anticipate their upgrade to 2019 anytime soon. I have the Office 365 at home I should have clarified.

Saving As, only gives me the option of .accdb or 2003-2007 which cant be used. I dont believe i used any of the super new features of 2019 which would render it not backward compatible. Tried a new db and imported, same problem.

Any help greatly appreciated!!!!
Scott
Apr 20 '22 #1

✓ answered by NeoPa

Hi Scott.

It seems, from your error message "You cannot save this database in an earlier format because it uses features that require the current file format", that you actually are using at least one of the new features in your most recent database.

This is just one of many potential gotchas found when developing in a more recent version than anywhere that it's to be deployed. Advice on that front is never, ever, to do it. This advice only applies to sane people so if you actually like making your life more complicated for yourself then feel free to go ahead with that approach :-D

It seems you already have an approach that will enable you to recover from that situation. I recommend that you get yourself a virtual PC set up where you can run the same (or lowest common denominator at least) version as used at work. I suspect USG will foot the bill for any extra licensing required.

Let us know if you have any difficulties importing or exporting. It should be easy enough to automate the whole lot in one go. Of course it may fall over any objects that are not compatible with the earlier version but that's good news rather than bad. It tells you exactly where your original problem was.

By the way, in case I wasn't clear enough earlier, even changing the compatibility version of a database when still working with a later version of the product will leave you with serious problems in most cases.

Good luck :-)

7 10998
zmbd
5,444 Expert Mod 4TB
Your 2019 database is using something that is not available in the 2016 installation.
Access is notorious for being backwards compatible but not forwards compatible (that is to say, a 2019 will open a 2016; however, not the other-way-around)
Your only option, and the solution, you have already given in your post
Saving As, only gives me the option of .accdb or 2003-2007 which can't be used
You'll have to save in the 2003-2007-accdb format.

When you try to open the file do you receive any error messages, these would be most helpful - please post the EXACT number and EXACT text - the syntax is important; however, I suspect the error you're getting is telling us that the file is corrupt or not recognized.
Apr 20 '22 #2
ScudaMcGruder
4 2Bits
Thank you, and unfortunately i wrote it down, but of course left the exact error in my office. When i attempt to save as 2002-2003 (only option with a year other than 2000) I get the "You cannot save this database in an earlier format because it uses features that require the current file format".

I may have found a workaround, by exporting my items one by one into another db. I will find out for sure when I am back in the office on Friday. Thank you again, I appreciate it.

Scott
Apr 21 '22 #3
zmbd
5,444 Expert Mod 4TB
I may have found a workaround, by exporting my items one by one into another db.
Just be sure that you've created the empty database and saved it in the 2003-2007-accdb format first otherwise you will find yourself back in the same position you are in now... Access saves the version information in the database file.
Apr 21 '22 #4
NeoPa
32,301 Expert Mod 16PB
Hi Scott.

It seems, from your error message "You cannot save this database in an earlier format because it uses features that require the current file format", that you actually are using at least one of the new features in your most recent database.

This is just one of many potential gotchas found when developing in a more recent version than anywhere that it's to be deployed. Advice on that front is never, ever, to do it. This advice only applies to sane people so if you actually like making your life more complicated for yourself then feel free to go ahead with that approach :-D

It seems you already have an approach that will enable you to recover from that situation. I recommend that you get yourself a virtual PC set up where you can run the same (or lowest common denominator at least) version as used at work. I suspect USG will foot the bill for any extra licensing required.

Let us know if you have any difficulties importing or exporting. It should be easy enough to automate the whole lot in one go. Of course it may fall over any objects that are not compatible with the earlier version but that's good news rather than bad. It tells you exactly where your original problem was.

By the way, in case I wasn't clear enough earlier, even changing the compatibility version of a database when still working with a later version of the product will leave you with serious problems in most cases.

Good luck :-)
Apr 21 '22 #5
ScudaMcGruder
4 2Bits
Thank you both, very much appreciated. My plan is to go to work tomorrow with every version possible of this database!
Apr 21 '22 #6
isladogs
354 Expert Mod 256MB
@zmbd
I think you meant that Access is forward compatible but not backward compatible.
In other words, databases created in A2016 should open in A2019 but the converse may not be true.

@ScudaMcGruder
Great name. Reminds me of Boaty McBoatFace ...which should only mean something if you are living in the UK
I suspect you have ticked one or both of the following datatype support options for linked tables
  • large number (bigint)
  • datetime extended (datetime2)

If so, check whether you really need those features. If not, untick and it should open in 2016
Apr 21 '22 #7
zmbd
5,444 Expert Mod 4TB
@zmbd I think you meant that Access is forward compatible but not backward compatible.
In other words, databases created in A2016 should open in A2019 but the converse may not be true.
What I said was correct:
Access is notorious for being backwards compatible but not forwards compatible
To say Access is "Forwards" compatible would be to say that A2016 would open a newer file (i.e. A2019) which is not the case.
To say Access is "Backwards" compatible is to say that A2019 will open older file formats (i.e. A2016)
Apr 21 '22 #8

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