Cannot use MS Access databases from Windows 2008 Small Business Server

Hi Everyone,

I am going mental on trying to work out a way for us to use our Windows 2008 SBS Server as it was intended.

We use MYOB Retail Manager v11 (which uses a Microsoft Access 97 databases) and other Microsoft Access 2003 databases and use a combination of Windows 7 and Windows XP machines with the Windows 2008 server.

Also if we use MYOB Premier it is extremely slow and also has issues when stored on the Windows 2008 server.

Ever since we have upgraded the server from Windows 2003 SBS we cannot use file shares and successfully run MS Access Databases with any clients.  If the files reside on a Windows XP machine everything works OK, but the server which is a HP Proliant ML350 with mirrored drives cannot be used as it was intended.

I have spent considerable time and tried to researched various sites and tried some of things found which include disabling NETBIOS over TCP v4, and turning off SMB2 but these do not seem to fix the problem, so I have reverted all changes back.

All other server functionality works fine, we can save and use other files without any other issues.  I have checked network settings, I have installed the latest service packs on the server and still cannot work out why there are problems.

The error reported in both MYOB Retail Manager and also within other Microsoft Access products says "Disk or Network Error".  I can copy files to the same locations, have tried being an Administrator and tried changing security and even used UNC Paths  but I cannot work out where the issue is.

I am running out of ideas and would appreciate if anyone could assist me.

Thanks

David
dn_auAsked:
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Gustav BrockCIOCommented:
It could be a file caching issue:
http://blogs.msdn.com/b/ntdebugging/archive/2007/11/27/too-much-cache.aspx

Also, if you run antivirus on the server, exclude *.md? files.

/gustav
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Scott McDaniel (Microsoft Access MVP - EE MVE )Infotrakker SoftwareCommented:
Is this Server 2008R2? If it is, there are known performance issues with that platform (search with your favorite engine and you'll see quite a few results). The fixes are wide and varied, depending on your specific issue.

Have you reviewed the Event Log? If so, can you pinpoint specific events which seem to occur only when you experience this issue?
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Jim Dettman (Microsoft MVP/ EE MVE)President / OwnerCommented:

  So you changed nothing in hardware?  Just upgraded to 2008 SBS?

JimD.
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dn_auAuthor Commented:
Thanks to all that have responded.

cactus_data
I have changed Trend Micro to exclude the file types .LDB, and also .MYO and have also included the paths to these files.  Hopefully this will work, but I cannot confirm yet.

I have also reviewed the document you linked and after reviewed.  Since this is a production Windows 2008 Server and since another person mentioned the APIs did not make a difference, I have decided to not to do anything at this point in this regard.

LSMConsulting:
I have seen many articles about performance issues with Windows 2008 Server R2.  The issues seem we experience only seem to be in relation to using MSAccess or MYOB databases, I think it has something to do with Opportunistic locking or SBM2, but my efforts so far have been unsuccessful.
I have tried different switches and other items as well, but I am happy to hear from anyone that may help me out.  I have reviewed the Event logs on the server and no different events are triggered when the database files are being accessed, the client complains but the server seems fine.

JDettman:
Sorry I have not mentioned we did purchase a brand new HP Proliant 350G4 server with SBS 2008 pre-installed.  So the hardware has changed.  As mentioned it works fine on the old server SBS 2003 and on any Windows XP machine that shares the database.  All other parts of the SBS Server work fine including Exchange, Internet and file sharing for other file types just not Access or MYOB database files.  

Just another note :
I have tried using other MSAccess databases, even smaller ones.  The smaller files seem to work a little better but once the MSAccess database gets about 10MB it seems to have issues.  Sometimes the file will be fine, but the more complex the queries or joins the more likely there will be errors in the databases.

Thanks everyone for your comments so far.  I will perform some tests later today to see if AV is a problem, but I have in the past totally turned off AV and still had similar problems.

 
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connectexCommented:
What version of Trend Micro? I pulled version off WFBS 7.0 for performance and a couple other issues. Try the latest update and if that doesn't fix it downgrade to version 6. They completely rewrote their client so I've decided I'll wait till the first service pack before I try it again.
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dn_auAuthor Commented:
connectex :
I have had some suspicions about the WSM7 and Windows 7 and the Windows 2008 Server.  I do not think there is a version of WSM that is compatible with both Windows 7 and also Windows 2008 Server 64 Bit.  I will examine WSM site for any further patches.  One of the staff here who runs a Windows 7 machine has been complaining that he gets problems accessing normal files as well.  Today I saw an example where he tried to access an Excel (it came up with an error) and when he tried again all was OK.  SImilarily the same issue occurred where a PDF that was trying to open would open blank and then a  2nd attempt, the file opened.    
It seems to be issues with mainly Windows 7 machines and Windows 2008 SBS Server. I will advise if there are any extra patches and if an improvement was noticed.

Thanks for comments guys.... Hopefully I will get to the end of it soon.
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Jim Dettman (Microsoft MVP/ EE MVE)President / OwnerCommented:
<< Sorry I have not mentioned we did purchase a brand new HP Proliant 350G4 server with SBS 2008 pre-installed>>

  Well could be anything then.  JET is very network sensitive and will notice network problems long before other apps complain.

  So I would start with the basics; make sure the network is sound.  Montior for dropped packets (indicating congestion), bad packets, etc.  I'd then move onto physical ram, making sure that your not running out at some point.

  Also, double check if the nic card is allowed to go to sleep or not or includes any kind of self-test network protocol (3Com was great for this for a few years).  Both allow the card to disconnect from the network, which will give JET issues.

 I think utlimately you will find that SMB2 is somehow involved, but that's a gut hunch.  Seems to be a lot of problems with it, but no one has found anything specific either way.  Some report it works fine on, others off.

 and of course if not already mentioned, make sure you've applied all updates for 2008.

JimD.
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dn_auAuthor Commented:
Just a quick update to all.

I have found that the application works fine on Windows 7 machines with SMB2 enabled on both sides, but then the Windows XP machines using the application fail.  I have tried an alternative LAN port with no success.  I have all the 2008 updates so for both the Server and also the Trend software so I do not think that is the issues either.

As I have limited time, we have decided to reload a previous WIndows 2003 SBS server with just Windows 2003 Server and make it a member server and use it to file share these applications files.

I will see how this goes, but have tried to use SMB1 on both sides with problems on Windows 7 machines and SMB2 on both sides to find that the Windows XP have issues working with the MSAccess database through Retail Manager.

I will see how this goes and advise on the outcome.

Thank you to everyone fro trying to help, but the solution proposed may be the only viable one for the moment, until all existing machines that were Windows XP are changed to a Windows 7 environment.
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Gustav BrockCIOCommented:
Thanks for your feedback.
However, I think your solutions - or rather circumvent - must be disappointing.
Have you addressed this error to MyOB support?

/gustav
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Jim Dettman (Microsoft MVP/ EE MVE)President / OwnerCommented:

 Thanks for posting back.  As I said, I think you'll find SMB 2 at the root of this and given what you've said, it does seem somehow involved.

  Besides calling MyOB support, have you thought of calling Microsoft?  Very often with problems like this, they have internal documents they don't share with the general public.   These issues have been coming up for the past couple of months, so they may have something on it by now.

<<As I have limited time, we have decided to reload a previous WIndows 2003 SBS server with just Windows 2003 Server and make it a member server and use it to file share these applications files.>>

  A smart move I think.  I don't think what's going on with SMB 2 is going to get resolved any time soon.

JimD.
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dn_auAuthor Commented:
To all,

I have discussed the problem with MYOB support and have found an article about SMB2 on their web site.  They have told me they do not support their solutions on Windows 2008 SBS server, but do support Windows 2008 server for some of them.  I am unsure of what key differences there are >? I assume the AD and Domain stuff may have something to do with it, but I have read somewhere that the the security elements and SMB2 stuff may be different between them.

I have successfully demoted the Windows 2003 SBS server and made it a member server of the 2008 although we get a message from the 2008 server about licensing on the 2003 server, everything appears to be working OK.  Only time will tell.

Thanks for all your posts, I will continue to update everyone on how it goes in the next few days and will award points for persons who have assisted with my troubleshooting.

David
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connectexCommented:
Unfortunately it sounds like another vendor that refused to support SBS. SBS is a great product. It provides the functionality most small businesses need for a great price. I'm sure it could work on SBS. But MYOB doens't care to investigate the real issue. Oh well and people wonder why most customer service sucks...

-Matt-
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Jim Dettman (Microsoft MVP/ EE MVE)President / OwnerCommented:
<<I have discussed the problem with MYOB support and have found an article about SMB2 on their web site.  They have told me they do not support their solutions on Windows 2008 SBS server, but do support Windows 2008 server for some of them.  I am unsure of what key differences there are >? I assume the AD and Domain stuff may have something to do with it, but I have read somewhere that the the security elements and SMB2 stuff may be different between them.>>

  SBS is Windows Server 2008 bundled with Exchange, SQL Server, and Sharepoint.  However it's throttled and cannot be used for terminal services.  It also cannot be a member server.

  But from what I know, 2008 is still 2008 in either setup.

  Good to hear you have a working setup though and I'm sure the SMB 2 issues will get ironed out at some point.  SMB 1 had issues as well when first introduced, as mostly everything does these days.  Things are just getting way too complex so it's impossible to test every possible configuration and setup.

JimD.
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dn_auAuthor Commented:
The end result was that I had to use systems that still used a SMB1, operating systems like XP just worked.   It is very unfortunate that the end solution required not using the server as intended.

I appreciate the comments provided and have awarded points to those who provided valuable troubleshooting, which unfortunately did not end up sorting it out.

I will add comments if a relevant solution become available

David
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