MS Access – To split or not to split?

pts.
Tags:
DataCenter
Development
Networking
MS Access XP database installed on Win 2000 Server. It's an important database, but not mission-critical. Presently only four workstations have access to it, and about half my day I'm generally the only one in there, so development work isn't a problem. Over the next few months we'll be expanding permission to several additional workstations, and providing remote access through our VPN, so I anticipate increasing problems with Access' locking the database when in design mode and preventing saves when others are in the database. This appears to be precisely why MS provides the Split Database option. I'm hoping for input as to whether there are potential pitfalls to splitting the database in a fairly small network (even with the remote access, I should still have the database largely to myself in the mornings), or whether this is simply a no-brainer. I seem to recall hearing about some issues with splitting in the newsgroups, so I'm looking for some reassurance before I commit to it. Thanks for your time! -Bob

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I would split the data tables from the applications (queries, forms, reports, modules). Then you should have a “development” version of the application database that can have the tables mapped to the “production” data tables. This way, you can develop changes while others are in the “production” application database. When you are ready to implement your changes, have everyone get out of the “production” application database and copy your “development” application database over the “production” application database. Of course, this means that no one can create new queries, reports, etc. in the “production” application. We do this at our site and it works very well. Other reasons to split: reduce the size of the database file, protection from corruption (many times, it is the application database and not the data database that gets corrupted)

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