How Can I Share Access DB in a LAN for multiple users? (1 Viewer)

heavenbound4life

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I need to share an access DB for many users in a Local Area Network. Please, first, what's the best way to go about it? This is my first time trying it out. Second, if I have to store the backend on the server, my fear is "how do I link the shortcut icons of the end-users to the backend file?"
 

theDBguy

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...my fear is "how do I link the shortcut icons of the end-users to the backend file?"
It is highly recommended to use UNC paths when linking the FE to the BE to avoid problems with different mapped drives among multiple users.
 

Pat Hartman

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The "master" copy of the FE should be linked to the BE as theDBguy mentioned using UNC paths instead of mapped drive letters. This eliminates problems where drive mappings are not consistent and some people might have the drive with the BE mapped as x and others might have it mapped as p.

There are several distribution methods. The two common ones are a batch file and a custom database that does the distribution. You can choose from multiple samples of either type. My preference is the batch file. I create a batch file and store it on the server. (let me know if you want an example). Then I create a shortcut that runs the batch file. I (or the network manager) distribute the shortcut to all new users. All they need to do is to add the shortcut to their desktop and click and the FE is copied to a folder on their local drive. The batch bile makes the folder before copying and then opens the file. This gives users a clean copy every time they open the FE. The other method which uses a separate database as the distribution method is not better or worse but it is more complex and people tend to add other type of fe/be logic to it. I tend to keep that logic in my FE so it simplifies the batch file.

The threads listed below should be helpful. Post back if you need more info.
 

heavenbound4life

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The "master" copy of the FE should be linked to the BE as theDBguy mentioned using UNC paths instead of mapped drive letters. This eliminates problems where drive mappings are not consistent and some people might have the drive with the BE mapped as x and others might have it mapped as p.

There are several distribution methods. The two common ones are a batch file and a custom database that does the distribution. You can choose from multiple samples of either type. My preference is the batch file. I create a batch file and store it on the server. (let me know if you want an example). Then I create a shortcut that runs the batch file. I (or the network manager) distribute the shortcut to all new users. All they need to do is to add the shortcut to their desktop and click and the FE is copied to a folder on their local drive. The batch bile makes the folder before copying and then opens the file. This gives users a clean copy every time they open the FE. The other method which uses a separate database as the distribution method is not better or worse but it is more complex and people tend to add other type of fe/be logic to it. I tend to keep that logic in my FE so it simplifies the batch file.

The threads listed below should be helpful. Post back if you need more info.
Thanks for your response. Please, I want the example of the batch file. Haven't read about the UNC paths after this post, still, I don't know how to go about linking the FE to the BE using UNC paths. Could you please tell me how?

More so, my machine is not connected to the network environment where the installation is taking place. It is my client's workplace. I seriously need help on how to distribute the app in such a place. Virtually all the users don't have any idea that they're using ms access.
 

Pat Hartman

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This is the batch file. It includes an example of UNC to reference the server directory that holds the master copy of the FE.
Code:
md c:\DwgLog
del c:\DwgLog\DrawingLog.accdb
copy "\\BSCCTIMBERLINE1\Timberline Office\AccessApps\Data\CommonFE\DrawingLog.accdb" c:\DwgLog
c:\DwgLog\DrawingLog.accdb

The batch file should be stored on the server in the directory with the master copy of the FE. Each user needs a shortcut on his desktop to run the .bat file. The bat file takes care of making a local directory and downloading the FE and starting it.

You shouldn't need to be on site to make this happen but depending on how many users you have, you might need help from the desktop support people to distribute the shortcut to new users and to define their permissions to the server folders that you are using.
 

heavenbound4life

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This is the batch file. It includes an example of UNC to reference the server directory that holds the master copy of the FE.
Code:
md c:\DwgLog
del c:\DwgLog\DrawingLog.accdb
copy "\\BSCCTIMBERLINE1\Timberline Office\AccessApps\Data\CommonFE\DrawingLog.accdb" c:\DwgLog
c:\DwgLog\DrawingLog.accdb

The batch file should be stored on the server in the directory with the master copy of the FE. Each user needs a shortcut on his desktop to run the .bat file. The bat file takes care of making a local directory and downloading the FE and starting it.

You shouldn't need to be on site to make this happen but depending on how many users you have, you might need help from the desktop support people to distribute the shortcut to new users and to define their permissions to the server folders that you are using.
I'm glad to see this. There are about 10 users. Please could you tell me more about this line?: copy "\\BSCCTIMBERLINE1\Timberline Office\AccessApps\Data\CommonFE\DrawingLog.accdb" c:\DwgLog I guess the "\\BSCCTIMBERLINE1" is the server name right? And do I need to write this line manually or is there a way I can copy something similar so as to avoid error?
 

Pat Hartman

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If you are not on site, someone will need to tell you what the name of the server is. If you are logged in and can open a file explorer window, navigate to the folder on the server using the lists of drives and servers on the left. Then if you click in the window that shows the path. I'm on my home PC and don't have any network drives but under networks is where you will see them. Then clicking in the top green area will give you the string you need to copy.

FileExplorr.JPG
 

heavenbound4life

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If you are not on site, someone will need to tell you what the name of the server is. If you are logged in and can open a file explorer window, navigate to the folder on the server using the lists of drives and servers on the left. Then if you click in the window that shows the path. I'm on my home PC and don't have any network drives but under networks is where you will see them. Then clicking in the top green area will give you the string you need to copy.

View attachment 97295
Wow! Thank you very much.
 

heavenbound4life

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This is the batch file. It includes an example of UNC to reference the server directory that holds the master copy of the FE.
Code:
md c:\DwgLog
del c:\DwgLog\DrawingLog.accdb
copy "\\BSCCTIMBERLINE1\Timberline Office\AccessApps\Data\CommonFE\DrawingLog.accdb" c:\DwgLog
c:\DwgLog\DrawingLog.accdb

The batch file should be stored on the server in the directory with the master copy of the FE. Each user needs a shortcut on his desktop to run the .bat file. The bat file takes care of making a local directory and downloading the FE and starting it.

You shouldn't need to be on site to make this happen but depending on how many users you have, you might need help from the desktop support people to distribute the shortcut to new users and to define their permissions to the server folders that you are using.
Please, how can I create a shortcut for the .bat file for distribution? Do I need an installer like SSE Setup?
 
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Pat Hartman

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Log into one of the client machines. Create a shortcut to open the .bat file on THEIR server using the UNC notation. Save it. Send the shortcut to each user and ask him to place it on his desktop. If you have an icon for the app, you can assign that icon to the shortcut to help them find it easily.

I showed you what a UNC path looks like in the .bat file sample I posted.
 

heavenbound4life

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Log into one of the client machines. Create a shortcut to open the .bat file on THEIR server using the UNC notation. Save it. Send the shortcut to each user and ask him to place it on his desktop. If you have an icon for the app, you can assign that icon to the shortcut to help them find it easily.

I showed you what a UNC path looks like in the .bat file sample I posted.
Thank you so much for the clarity you brought. Please, does this code you posted really link the FE to the BE or it only takes care of the FE? I observed that access FE sticks strictly to the location of the BE anytime I split the DB. There might be a better way to go about it.
Code:
md c:\DwgLog
del c:\DwgLog\DrawingLog.accdb
copy "\\BSCCTIMBERLINE1\Timberline Office\AccessApps\Data\CommonFE\DrawingLog.accdb" c:\DwgLog
c:\DwgLog\DrawingLog.accdb
 

Pat Hartman

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It doesn't do anything except copy the FE from the server to the local computer. YOU need to link the FE/BE when you upload the updated version of the FE. You do not need to work on site but you need to be able to log in to some machine on their LAN to do this. OR, you need to provide very good directions to the client so they can do it themselves.
 

heavenbound4life

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It doesn't do anything except copy the FE from the server to the local computer. YOU need to link the FE/BE when you upload the updated version of the FE. You do not need to work on site but you need to be able to log in to some machine on their LAN to do this. OR, you need to provide very good directions to the client so they can do it themselves.
Thank you very much. You and @theDBguy recommended using UNC paths when linking the master copy of the FE to the BE. Please how can I go about this linking process?
 

Pat Hartman

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I explained earlier how you can "see" the server name. You MUST be logged into their server to do this. Otherwise, someone needs to tell you what the name of the server is.
 

heavenbound4life

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I explained earlier how you can "see" the server name. You MUST be logged into their server to do this. Otherwise, someone needs to tell you what the name of the server is.
Yes, I know the server name now and the directory to the shared folder on the network on the server. Now, how to link the master copy of the FE to the BE using UNC paths is my problem.
 

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