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Chapter 31. Distributing Your Applicatio... > Using Linked Tables in a Desktop Dat...

Using Linked Tables in a Desktop Database

Your first foray into the world of client-server applications will most likely involve creating a data-only .mdb file on a server and using linked tables in a desktop application that you install on multiple desktop machines that can link to the data server. Although you could place your entire desktop database application on a shared server and allow multiple users to open the application over the network, you would soon find that performance suffers significantly. Also, if your application needs to keep information about how each user works with the application, it would be more complicated to store this information in the database because all users share the same file.

The main advantage to splitting your database over simply sharing a single desktop database is that your application needs to retrieve only the data from the tables over the network. Because each user will have a local copy of the queries, forms, reports, data access pages, macros, and modules, Access running on each user workstation will be able to load these parts of your application quickly from the local hard drive. Using a local copy on each client machine also makes it easy to create local tables that save settings for each user. For example, the LawTrack Contacts application allows each user to set a preference to open a search dialog box for companies, contacts, and invoices or to display all records directly.


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