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database server

Posted on 2004-10-28
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Last Modified: 2010-04-17
I am currently using microsoft access as a database storage.

I have written several vb applications that connect to access and retrieve, manipulate data. I would like to know is there any freeware or cheap subsitution for access. Meaning sql server, etc.

The databases would be stored on the network and my vb programs would connect to them. I seen mysql, but it is too much work using the console. Is there anything else. SQL server seems like way to much money for 10 -15 users.

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Question by:peanut1010
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    by:pdrau
    This site may have what you are looking for.

    http://www.ontko.com/~rayo/database.html
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    by:Éric Moreau
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    by:georg74
    IMO, MySQL is the choice. If you don't like the console client, you don't have to use it. There is a number of free MySQL control applications, one of them being well known phpmyadmin.
    Once configured (you eneter the options in a text file, or just use one provided default configuration), you can use a "control center" to add users, change permissions, create databases etc.
    There is even an ODBC driver, sou you can use it virtually from any application.

    MySQL has an extensive an dvery good peer support. You can even get your questions answered in real time. Look at the MySQL website to get further information.

    HTH,
    georg
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    by:david_barker
    I agree with georg74. If you don't need the very complicated features found in advanced databases like SQL Server or Oracle, go for MySQL : free, very fast, excellent support on Internet.
    I have used a 200 MB replicated database over 3 sites with 80 users, and never a crash.
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    by:pdrau
    I agree that MySQL is probably his solution, but he clearly said he didn't want to use it.  

    "I seen mysql, but it is too much work using the console. Is there anything else."

    There are a few other options on the site I posted.  mSQL was the one that stood out on that page.
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    Author Comment

    by:peanut1010
    emoreau,

    I download the program u recommended and I am confussed see with sql server you have to keep it running on a windows 2000 server in order for vb.net programs to access it. This program seems to be like access and all I have to do is place it anywhere, does have to be a server and my vb.net programs access it as just a file like access. Am I correct in saying this.


    what i am doing is starting a small office system. Having multiple databases on a computer(prefered not a server) then writing programs in vb.net to access these databases.

    What is best

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    by:Éric Moreau
    I haven't used it yet but I remember having seen something on single/multi users.

    I don't think you need to have a server to install it.

    If you share a folder on one of the PC, you should be able to access then DB from anywhere.
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    by:pdrau
    mSQL
    mSQL or Mini-SQL is a lightweight (small and fast) SQL engine which supports much of ANSI SQL, enough to build serious applications. It is distributed with source code and may be used for a fee in commercial applications. Lots of contributed add-ons also available (see FAQ).
    ------------
    I didn't see this notation...it appears as though it may no longer be free.

    [I'm thinking of discontinuing this listing, as the softare is now a commercial product. If anyone knows of another SQL database with source that does not require license fees, let me know.-Ray]
    ------------

    It looks like Postgres, MySQL, and Firebird are your only options.

    Postgres will run on Microsoft Windows NT-based operating systems like Win2000, WinXP, and Win2003 and Unix systems
    mSQL - can't get to the FAQ site to be able to determine what it runs on, but it appears to be no longer free, so doesn't really matter.
    Firebird runs on Linux, Windows, and a variety of Unix platforms


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    Author Comment

    by:peanut1010
    I guess I am confussed on which way to go, emoreau way doesn't need a server or a program running for me and others to connect to it.
    SQL, mysql, etc needs to always be running in order to connect to it. What are the advantages....
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    by:pdrau
    You WILL need a SQL engine running in order to use any flavor of SQL.  It doesn't have to be a full-blown server for some of them to run.  The SQL engine is what gives you the ability to use the SQL database i.e. query, update, etc. from your VB app.  as opposed to an Access database which is utilized through the database driver.

    Granted this is by no means a technical explanation and is very simplified.  If anyone knows of a SQL database that you CAN use without a SQL engine running, I'd be interested in learning about it.  

    You have to differentiate between a SQL engine/server and a server/OS.  

    The Windows ports, it seems, only need an NT based OS (2000, XP, 2003)  I'm not completly sure, but I think the non Professional/Server versions will allow you up to 10 simultaneous connections.
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    by:georg74
    peanut1010,

    as you stated in your question, the database should be accessible through the network.
    it shall support SQL. more than one user will use the database.

    to accomplish that, you need an SQL server running.
    Advantages:
    - the database files are completely controlled by one piece of software - the server.
    - the server offers optimal databse safety and security
    - the server (SQL engine) can do a lot of work (carry out transactions) and reduce data (and network) traffic
    - the server helps you control the concurrency - it is the point where all clients meet
    - you can have centralized and automated backup which understands the structure of the database.
    - etc.

    if you need an SQL database manager and server that is reliable, easy to install and run,
    that has excelent GUI administration utilities, wide range of supported platforms and
    languages and the best peer support - then it is MySQL.
    it sounds like ad, but I'm in no way related to developers or producers of it. just a very
    happy user and developer of database applications.
    if you know how to use IRC, you can get on-line peer support 24/7 for MySQL.
    the documentation is rich, well organized and allows users to directly participate and contribute.
    even on experts-exchange ;-), you will find many experts who use it on daily basis and are ready
    to help you with it. with MySQL you will rapidly learn alot about relational databases, managing,
    maintaining, etc in very short time. (btw, that's IMO the most important fact.)

    hope that helps, :-)
    georg
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    by:georg74
    to clarify server-question:

    for a smaller set of databases, MySQL server will happily run with moderate hardware, for example P2/500 with 64 MB RAM is enough.
    almost any operating system will do. Windows 95, 98, ME, NT, 2k, XP, 2k3, linux of any flavour etc.
    you don't need dedicated hardware, although it is recomended for a production database.
    there is no M$ behind it, thinking "for you" where you want to think yourself and trying to make you buy more software,
    more hardware, new software, new hardware, ...

    what shall I say? the world would not be such a nice place without MySQL and similar projects. :-)

    georg
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    by:pdrau
    the most important thing to remember in this sea of technical terms is

    SQL engine/server does not mean the same thing as a hardware/OS server...the SQL engine/server can run on a workstation as georg74 and I stated.
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    Author Comment

    by:peanut1010
    again not to sound stupid, but right now I have an access database on a omputer in a shared folder. I have several vb.net applications that connects to it and adds, delete, edit data, from multiple users at sometimes the same time. We currently do not have any problems, but I was wanting to try the sql engine software because it seems more correct practice. So what is the difference.

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    by:
    some significant differences:

    * what is controlling access to data (providing locking mechanism etc.)?
    a) database managaer                     b) operating system
    * where the queries are computed?
    a) SQL engine                                 b) client application
    * is there a transaction control?
    a) yes                                             b) no
    * what is transfered over the network?
    a) query and it's result                     b) raw data
    * how many database engines are accessing the files?
    a) one                                            b) many
    * can you inforce version consistency?
    a) yes, automatically                       b) no
    * is there support for transactions?
    a) yes                                            b) no
    * are there user privileges? control acces on table basis?
    a) yes                                            b) no
    * is there support for advanced SQL features?
    a) yes                                            b) no
    * is there a common mechanism for deadlock prevention / resolving
    a) yes                                            b) no
    * is there a common mechanism for client synchronization
    a) yes                                            b) no

    what you have in the shared folder is just a file with the data.
    Access runtime (Access DLL) is the database engine you're starting when you start your  application. In order to use the data, the users are allowed full (read/write) access to the file. So, they can delete or corruopt it. Virus can infect it and corrupt it.

    HTH,
    georg
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    by:georg74
    one more difference:

    * can M$ change it's format and prevent old clients from functioning?
    1) no  :-)                                      b) yes :-(

    g.
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    by:david_barker
    I consider that georg74 was the most productive on this one and deserves the points.
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