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Access VS MS.Net

Posted on 2007-08-09
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Hi evereyone.
I am looking at what Access has to offer in terms of VBA functionality compared with Microsoft.NET backend.  Any Ideas on the way forward here because up to now I have been very comfortable with MS Access but with the advent of 2007 there are quite a few changes that I have to make to a lot of the databases that we have already written.  I am seriouly thinking of going the Microsoft.net route but the question then is what Front End.  Your thoughts will be appreciated
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Question by:caandal
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by:peter57r
peter57r earned 400 total points
ID: 19662744
Most developers would regard the tables as the Backend.  Access UI is the front-end.

In the ms world the common alternative would be .net and SQL Server, but don't expect it to be as easy as Access.

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LVL 85
ID: 19664301
As pete said, the learning curve for these languages can be steep, especially if you're a "drag and drop" Access programmer, or someone who doesn't have a lot of OO experience.

I've had little trouble with Access in fairly large multi-user environments, but then I'm running my apps in full unbound mode so I avoid most of the performance troubles so often seen. If you have a wide user-base - especially if those users may or may not have Access 2007 installed - then the answer would be (to me, at least) to move to the .NET platform ... if this is a small workgroup on the same LAN, then Access will handle it easily.
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by:caandal
ID: 19667993
Thanks guys for the comments.  I regard  Access as the front-end - VBA sitting behind Access to all the nice things and then the Tables as the back end Currently depending on the application I stay with Access as the data holder in a small environment or use SQL as the back end in larger environments or with lots of data.  I am very comfortable using VBA and must say that I don't use drag and drop or the wizards in Access very often.
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Scott McDaniel (Microsoft Access MVP - EE MVE ) earned 600 total points
ID: 19668534
Most devs find the jump from Access to the .NET languages (like VB.NET) to be something of a challenge, especially those who have little Object experience (the .NET languages are extremely OO intensive), or those who use bound forms almost exclusively. That said, migrating to one of the .NET languages is good experience, and is sure to shore up your resume!

Your question, however, doesn't make sense is some ways ... "VBA functionality" and "backend" have no real bearing on each other. Taken separately, .NET is much more feature-rich than VBA (at least in my opinion), but - again - will require you to learn a new language. As to backends - as discussed before, use the tool that fits the job, as you've done in the past. In general, referring to ".NET" would indicate one of the "frontend" languages, but you appear to be talking about backend systems ... perhaps that's why our answers may seem a bit confusing.

If I understand you correctly - you're currently using Access 2003 or earlier and are looking at moving to one of the .NET languages for a frontend, and SQL Server, MySQL etc for a backend - then, again, use the tool that fits the job. If you're building something for a small workgroup, then Access (2003 or 2007) would be a fine choice. If it's something to be deployed beyond your small workgroup, then it may be time to consider .NET with a more robust backend.
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