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Chapter 28. Understanding Universal Data... > Interfacing with a Wide Range of Dat...

Interfacing with a Wide Range of Data Sources

Despite Microsoft's emphasis on OLE DB and ADP, ODBC and DAO remain the most popular methods of connecting desktop database front ends to data sources. Thirty-two-bit ODBC drivers are available for virtually every client/server RDBMS; most popular Indexed Sequential Access Method (ISAM) databases (Jet, Btrieve dBASE, Visual FoxPro, and Paradox); spreadsheets (Excel); and delimited text files. Microsoft Office traditionally has relied on ODBC drivers for most of its database connectivity features. Although other software publishers attempted to introduce ODBC alternatives, ODBC quickly became the de facto standard of the database industry. ODBC is a C/C++ API; making direct use of the ODBC API in Access applications requires a large number of VBA function prototype declarations (DECLAREs) and heavy-duty, low-level coding. Few, if any, Access developers wrote code to use the ODBC API directly.

Note

SQL Server 2000's Enterprise Manager, the subject of Chapter 23, “Administering Databases with SQL Enterprise Manager,” is an example of a Microsoft application that hasn't been fully upgraded to OLE DB. Many of Enterprise Manager's error messages identify ODBC as the entity that rejected the erroneous statement or instruction.



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