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Converting MS Access Code into stand-alone application (not Access MDE)

Posted on 2013-05-16
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Last Modified: 2013-05-29
I have created a MS Access application using Tables, Queries, Forms and VBA to select up to 3,000 CD's from server and to load them into a Virual CD/DVD Drive (on workstation) for easy access and faster viewing.

I am keen to replace this with a stand-alone application that does not require MS Access. Happy to use MYSQL database for the data, but need some assistance in deciding what to use for application.

Are there any conversion tools to convert cureent VBA code? Can anyone suggest an application/Code I could use that may be adequate?
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Question by:AIGS
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Jim Dettman (Microsoft MVP/ EE MVE) earned 500 total points
ID: 39171092
<<Can anyone suggest an application/Code I could use that may be adequate? >>

 Depends on what you want to do with it and what kind of features/functionaility you have in it.

  The world is heading towards the web, so Access 2013 with Access Services through Office 365 might be workable (it's still a re-write though and at present will only handle simple apps) or something like ASP.Net.

  Then there are products out there like VB.Net coupled with mySQL or SQL Server, which give you standalone code and a robust data store.

  Also others like Alpha 5, which many in the Access world are shifting to.  It offers both traditional desktop development and web based.

 Whatever path you choose, pretty much figure on a total re-write.

Jim.
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Expert Comment

by:Jeffrey Coachman
ID: 39171525
<No Points wanted>

I agree with Jim

<Whatever path you choose, pretty much figure on a total re-write.>

Though there are many tools that claim to be able to "convert" vba to a .net language... (and My guess that they are getting better all the time), none of them are "perfect" and will probably result in very sloppy code.
So you will probably need a re-write anyway, ...not even considering the learning curve of the conversion tool, or the cost...
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Expert Comment

by:David Smithstein
ID: 39175404
What is your original reason for wanting to replace MS Access?  Are you sure you have to?  Access Runtime is free to deploy for anyone who wants to use your application.
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Author Comment

by:AIGS
ID: 39176419
Why do I want to replace MS Access? - It is working fine at present for what I need - willing to do complete rewrite if there are definate advantages in doing so - Ultimate aim is to have something that will work on Mac, PCs and Tablets (via web interface). In fact a web interface for eveything would be great. Don't want much do I?
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Expert Comment

by:David Smithstein
ID: 39176458
I've been considering Alpha 5 myself.  The biggest advantages for me would be getting onto Mac and tablets.

I would recommend starting the transition before you have too much to rewrite.
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LVL 57
ID: 39178531
<< Don't want much do I? >>

  Just what most developers want<g>

  Access is a great tool, but it does have several problems:

1. Heavily dependent on it's running environment (true EXE not possible - VBA references are the bane of Access developers, even with late binding).

2. Cannot use many 3rd party controls (does not fully implement the IDispatch Interface)

3. With Access alone, you cannot build 3-tier designs.

  While you can work a round just about any of the other Access short commings (i.e. lack of a true grid style control), you can't get around these and for certain apps, that can be a real problem.

Jim.
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Author Closing Comment

by:AIGS
ID: 39204010
Thanks for your help and sharing your knowledge.
I clearly have to do some more investigation to ensure I am getting what I want.
As you have said, a rewrite is on the cards.

Gary
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