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Split Your Database
By Richard Rost   Richard Rost on Twitter Richard Rost on LinkedIn Email Richard Rost   2 years ago


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Richard Rost 
17 months ago
OVERVIEW:
Splitting your database is dividing it into two or more files. One file, called the Front End, contains your forms, reports, queries, macros, and modules. The other, called the Back End, contains just your tables. Splitting your database makes it:
- More Efficient, Faster
- Easier to Maintain, Update
- More Secure
- Reduces Corruption
- Easier to Scale Up

BENEFITS OF A SPLIT DATABASE:
Faster & More Efficient
- Only data transferred over the network
- Users have local copy of forms, reports, etc.
- Makes the database operate faster
- Data is more available
- Temporary data can be processed locally

Easier to Update & Maintain
- Design changes to Front End without interrupting users
- Do not have to import data after changes
- Multiple developers can work on their Front Ends

More Secure
- Separate Back End files for secure data
- Sensitive info can be stored locally
- Users cant get at database design or code (with encryption)

Other Benefits
- Go beyond the 2 GB Access file size limitation
- Reduces corruption  usually kept to Front End file
- Easier to scale up to SQL Server or Cloud Platform

Drawbacks of Splitting
- Distributing Front End updates can be challenging
- Lose referential integrity on linked tables

STEPS TO SPLITTING YOUR DATABASE:
1. Backup your database!
2. Create a shared database folder (//Server/Sharename or Z:\Database)
3. Split the Database
4. Database Tools > Move Data > Access Database
5. Compact Both
6. Encrypt (make ACCDE file) for the Front End
7. Distribute your Front End (ZIP and email, shared drive, AccessUpdater)

TIPS FOR SPLIT DATABASES:
Try not to open ALL records (use a search form)
Create data entry forms
Avoid aggregate queries and functions like DLOOKUP
Use TOP X queries to limit records returned

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