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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2009

    Unanswered: Problem with permissions

    I have a program that keeps a .mdb file with all of my customers information. I have been using this program for years but I have recently upgraded the computers in my business and bought a new program. My problem is now that I can't access this .mdb file and there is no .mdw file. I have scoured the forums here for information but I am completely lost. When I try to open the .mdb file I get permission errors. I tried to copy all the records from the program and the program won't let me. Please if there is anyone that can help or give me insight in solving the problem it would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Adelaide, South Australia
    So you lost the mdw file??

    Restore it from a backup... easy!
    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
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Madison, WI
    If you've lost the actual mdw file you were using, you're pretty much screwed. I've rarely been able to overcome getting into an mdb without the mdw (if permissions were implemented using an mdw). If the mdw file is simply corrupt though or the admin user/pw is unknown, it's possible to look at the mdw using a utility (and see the logins/passwords.)

    MDW files are so crucial when MSAccess permissions is implemented. Since the mdw file is often created on the local drive when permissions are first implemented (and could be saved in different locations depending on version), I'd recommend you try and recover that mdw file somehow (perhaps start searching folders on the local drive or backups.) I personally like to keep the mdw file in the same location as the mdb (since reformatting a local drive that contained that crucial mdw file is a fast way to make an mdb unusuable.)

    You can try to re-create the mdw but I doubt that will work.

    Find that mdw file that was created for MSAccess security for that mdb!!! The shortcut used to open the mdb will have the location of the mdw file that was used if you look at it's properties.

    If you can't locate the mdw file, you "may" get lucky by simply creating a new mdb and importing all the objects but again, this will doubtfully work.

    If you end up re-creating the entire mdb application, I'd recommend a different security method versus using an mdw (ie. a security type table in the mdb file.) I personally think they're more hassle than their worth and it only takes a disgruntled employee (who has full permissions) to lock everyone else out or delete the mdw file. (I've had to call previous employees and ask them what they did with the mdw file or what they changed permissions-wise (if restoring didn't work.) Fortunately, I've only encountered a few who were disgruntled and was able to easily re-create their application.
    Last edited by pkstormy; 09-05-09 at 01:29.
    Expert Database Programming
    MSAccess since 1.0, SQL Server since 6.5, Visual Basic (5.0, 6.0)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    wow thanks for the quick replies guys.. To my knowledge there is no .mdw file. When I access the software; there is executable, it opens up a window and from there I see my patients' records. I was talking to someone yesterday and he said that since the program I'm using is so old the .mdw is really a .mda file. This file I found in the backups and in where all the records are kept outside of the program. I've played around with this .mda file and tried opening it there doesnt seem to be a password lock or anything but nothing is coming up.

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