I'm a database novice with modest experience in MS Access looking to move beyond the limitations of Access so that I can develop distributable database applications. I currently have Visual Studio 2003 Pro and can get my hands on Visual FoxPro 9.0, so I have two possible paths to take. What I need are suggestions as to which direction I should choose. Any takers?
What are you going to use as your database backend?
Not sure yet. I'm not planning on anything too big at the moment, so I'm really not sure if the Visual Studio approach will work given it's reliance on SQL Server. My ideal solution would be to use a backend that is either already present on Windows PCs or one with a small footprint that can be easily installed along with the rest of the application.
SQL Server has a compact edition, which I believe is what's used when creating a distributable in VS2K5 (google for "SQL Server CE")...
Anyhow, I don't think you're asking the right questions here...
Are you aware what VS actually is/does and it's language support? Heck, I bet it even supports VFP!
You have a tonne of choices; I guess you really want to know what language you should aim at - not the tool you want to use.
If you've done VBA in the past then VB is it's older brother. It's bigger, faster, stronger... i.e. harder
VFP is not a widely used language; but it is widely underestimated. Heck, I'm the only person I know that can write it!
As for other offerings; there's always the "C" family; in terms of database access etc, C# (pronounced: c-sharp) is probably going to be your friend; it has very good access methods; which can be hihgly efficient. Heck, it even has bulk SQL operations!
Anyhow, there are a tonne more options available to you, but ultimately it's up to you to narrow it down and decide.
Today I got a text from a mate asking me which language to learn out of VB.Net and C#.Net to which I replied "both"
Thanks for the clarification George. I suppose what I'm asking for then is some advice as to what backend (database engine) I need to focus on.
VFP has some attraction to me due to its nature as an all-inclusive (database engine and user interface) development environment, but from what you've said it might be more than I'm currently able to handle.
Visual Studio allows me to develop the tables and relationships in Access and use VB (or C#) to design the interface, but that seems kind of clunky, plus it doesn't really increase my knowledge base any.
I looked into SQL Server Compact and it seems to be just the thing I'm looking for right now. I think I'll play around with it some and see what it can do. Can you recommend any GOOD SQL tutorials or books for beginners?