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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    Unanswered: Thoughts / Tips on installing Access 2003 on Office 2007 workstations

    I developed an Access database on my laptop, which has Access 2003.

    The workstations in our office have Office 2007 installations, which did not include Access (Student and Teacher edition possibly?).

    Since we all "grew up" with Office 2003 and earlier, even quick adapters feel a bit like lost puppies, full of "Where did they put THIS function???" in Office 2007. The (cough) terms of endearment for Office 2007 have been... colorful.

    I additionally have some concern, as the only DBA to be supporting Access, of myself appearing foolish and fumbling, since I've never touched Office 2007, and fear many of those "Where is..." moments myself. And since I came from larger DBMS environments, I'm a bit new to Access as it is. My intuition is, I don't need the extra chances to create the impression of looking even less knowledgable than I am.

    I'd like to pick up a [legal] copy of Office 2003, and install just the Access component on the workstations that I'd like to deploy this database on.
    I have gone through a test installation on my workstation just to prove out that there wouldn't be any fundamental issues, and the installation completed normally, and without performing any actual testing, Access does open without issue, and appears that it'll function normally.

    Can anyone think of any concerns that might exist with doing this?
    Can anyone come up with a compelling reason to go the 2007 route that would offset the lack of familiarity and roughly 6x expense justification, to run a DB that was built in Access 2003?
    Any other heads up?

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Whilst, I understand your concerns I have just migrated from 1997 and 2007, what I do like is the User Interface and as a development environment it has taken a couple of days to find things. In a couple instance, completely lost. However, I hate to admit it but I do like 2007, it has a more web feel to it, colours, margins, padding etc.

    It the users want to stay with 2003 then don't go to 2007 but I do think 2007has made a quantum leap.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Don't take this the wrong way, but if you're afraid of looking stupid in front of end users - GET OVER IT! I always tell end users the truth - "I have no idea where they hid that in this version - but I'll find out and let you know". You don't have to know everything, you just have to know how to find stuff out.

    While you could install a legal copy of Access 2003 on each workstation, upgrading the database itself may be more cost effective. You only have to buy one copy of Access 2007 to get the tools to run the database on every user's workstation. The Office 2007 Developer Extensions and the Access 2007 Runtime are free to download and use. You have to download the free programs from Microsoft ( and install them on your laptop. You'll then create a package to install the runtime and your database on the other workstations. It'll take some more work, but everyone will think you're a genius.

    After a few days tweaking the database in Access 2007 and building the installation package, you'll know where many of the "missing" features are. If necessary, you can always customize the menus and toolbars in the distribution package so that end users find all the old commands in the old familiar places.

    How much will it cost to get a legal copy of Access 2003 for every end user? How much will it cost to get one copy of Access 2007 for you? Managers always like cost comparisons, you'll earn brownie points with the Boss. Plus, the office is commited to Office 2007 - if you convert to Access 2007, more brownie points for you.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Adelaide, South Australia
    I have 2007, 2003, 2002, 2000 and 97 versions of access installed side by side on the same machine and besides the endless waiting for stupid 2007 to go and re-install itself every time it launches, they all work fine.

    The only reason I would give as a good one to go forward to 2007 is if you need to work with ACCDB files. If not, stick with 2003 -- it is superior by far in almost every respect.
    Owner and Manager of
    CypherBYTE, Microsoft Access Development Specialists.
    Microsoft Access MCP.
    And all around nice guy!

    "Heck it's something understood by accountants ... so it can't be 'that' difficult..." -- Healdem
    "...teach a man to code and he'll be frustrated for life! " -- georgev

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