Chapter 17. Understanding Client/Server Development with VBA

Access makes it very easy to create applications that interact with other desktop database formats and enterprise-level database servers. However, the easiest methods are not always the best, and wrong choices can have serious unintended effects in the long run. A thorough understanding of how Access interacts with other databases and the various alternatives available for developers is critically necessary to make the best design choices for a specific application.

In a typical business environment, Access MDB applications tend to sprout up from nowhere because some individual or small group wanted functionality that the IT department just wasn't providing. After the file is created, other people notice the application's usefulness and ask to use it themselves. Before long, the application is shared on a file server and becomes an unintended but nonetheless critical piece of company's business processes. Perhaps at some point, someone had even split the data tables into a file of its own and added links from the existing application so that users could store a front-end application on their local machines and connect to the tables stored on a central server.

However, merely storing your data on a server does not make your Access file a client/server application. At minimum, client/server development implies that the processing is separated between at least two processes, one on the client and one on the server. This ...

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