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This is a quick post to lay out the limits in Access 2007 and make a little clearer how the application works and how it scales. The first table below shows the limits of the database engine itself.
Access Database Limits
Access database (*.mdb or *.accdb) file size
2 gigabytes, including all objects in the database (data, forms, reports, indices, macros, modules, etc.)
Total number of concurrent users
255. Note that the practical limit will likely be lower than this based on database design.
Number of tables
This is governed by a limit on the number of objects in the database, which includes tables, forms, reports, queries, etc. The limit on DB objects is 32,768.
2 gigabytes, less the space needed for system objects
Number of characters in a table name
Number of characters in a field name
Number of fields in a table
Number of open tables
2048 Note that this includes internal tables opened by Access.
Number of characters in a text field
Number of characters in a memo field
65,535 when text is entered through the UI
1 gigabyte if text is entered programmatically
Size of an OLE Object field
Number of indexes on a table
Number of fields in an index or primary key
Number of characters in a validation rule
Number of characters in a validation message
Number of characters in a record (excluding Memo and OLE Object fields) when the UnicodeCompression property is set to Yes.
Number of characters in a field property setting
In addition, Access applications themselves have a number of limits, including:
Number of objects in a database
32,768 Note that this includes tables, forms, reports, queries, macros, modules, indices, and internal objects used by Access.
Number of characters in an object name
Number of characters in a password
Number of characters in a user name or group name
2048 Note that this includes linked tables as well as local ones, and that the number may be somewhat lower due to internal tables opened by Access.
Number of enforced relationships
32 per table, minus the number of indexes that are on the table for fields or combinations of fields that are not involved in relationships
Number of tables in a query
Number of fields in a recordset returned by a query
Maximum recordset size
255 characters in one or more fields
Number of levels of nested queries
Number of characters in a cell in the query design grid
Number of characters in a parameter in a parameterized query
Number of ANDs in a WHERE or HAVING clause
Number of characters in a SQL statement
Form & Report Limits
Number of characters in a label
Number of characters in a text box
Form or report width
22 inches (55.87cm)
Height of all sections, plus section headers in design view.
200 inches (508 cm) Note an actual report can be arbitrarily long once the data has expanded.
Number of levels of nested forms or reports
Number of fields or expressions that can be sorted or grouped in a report
Number of headers or footers in a report
1 report header / footer
1 page header / footer
10 section headers / footers
Number of printed pages in a report
Number of controls and sections added over the lifetime of a form / report
Number of characters in a SQL statement that serves as the Recordsource or Rowsource property of a form, report, or control.
Macro & VBA Limits
Number of actions in a macro
Number of characters in a condition
Number of characters in a comment
Number of characters in an Action Argument
Number of modules (includes forms and reports with the HasModule property set to True)
The next post will be on Report View, and cover sort, filter, and group functionality from that view.
Just a slow exhale in hopes that M. Alexanders predictions are wrong, although with his knowledge and experience compared to what I know, I am outclassed to challenge his opinion. I am just one of those "little guys" enjoying the challenges of a learning curve you can slowly win with practice in an application. Keep it alive Mr. Rucker.
Okay--I've finally got Office 2007 to install, I had big problems with it in the beginning but I've got it up and running. Click on the "Solution to office 2007 reinstallation problem" thread to see what I was going through: www.microsoft.com/.../default.mspx Here are my comments so far: 3. The Nav panel is a pretty good idea except for one thing: If you have a database with lots of objects you have to scroll down vertically quite a way to get to everything, even with groups. Can we arrange the Icons in rows in the final build please? IOW, I would like the objects to flow in rows as we resize the nav panel to the right. 2. If we use "windowhide" to hide the what was the database window in the older versions, we lose the nav panel. No big whoop, because F11 brings it up, but it was kind of a pain in the neck to find that out. 3. In several places, the help mentions a "startup" option which I cannot find. And finally: 4. "Everything looks graphically sweet (really, really nice) to start off but it is not long until you open a dialog or wizard, etc and you get some old style battleship grey form appear (aka "a video nasty"). This isn't just OS dependent system message boxes, but whole areas of functionality. This is not just limited to Access either. Even though the functionality may be rock solid, the sad thing is, it gives an overall impression of tacky and half done. And, unfortunately, perceptions frequently matter more than fact!" Hear Hear. I found out about this in the linked table wizard. Still checking it out but am overall pleased. Oh, one more thing: Can we change the size of icons on the ribbon? I want to make them smaller.
Hi Perhaps Off Topic here but one of the limitations of Access 2003 adp is the inability to create queries in the same fashion as earlier versions of Access. i.e. queries of queries with form parameters. I'm just embarking on a project to update 20 Access 2000 db's to SQLServer 2000 with an adp front end and i would give a reasonably large appendage to be able to upsize these queries to stored procedures and a large appendage to be able to continue to write queries in the manner of 2000 and earlier and have them translated into stored procedures at the end of the process. If Access 2007 could do this you've got a convert.
Where is the object model diagram for the new Access DAO object model? I haven't been able to find one in Help for Access 2007.
I am setting up using Access front-end to connect to Oracle server data. Cannot believe that there is no odbc to seamlessly translate Access SQL to Oracle, thus necessitating pass-thru qrys coded in Oracle ! Also would like to echo some of the other comments lamenting the fact that Microsoft is doing nothing to help Access any more. Access could be a really great front-end that us users would like to continue to leverage. I don't understand why MS is giving up on this product instead. If I have to go to a whole new product, why bother to stay with Microsoft?
I’ve just started work on a project designed to run on a hand held PC or PDA using Windows CE, Visual Studio 2005 and a bunch of emulators for the hand held devices. I’ve been with Access since the first version and used ver 2 for many years. Access has not progressed that much since ver 2 which was a great (and very quick) environment in which to work. Like Visual Basic which appears to have been discontinued in favor of what appears to me to be a bundle of plug-in modules sitting on top of another host of layered modules called .NET. This has not made life easier but harder and has “at a stroke” barred all but a few of the largest programming community that ever existed on the planet, from the game. VB.NET and all the other “managed” languages are simple enough to use once you understand the underlying objects of which there are both too many and to few. All the old API calls so frowned upon in the past still have to used do to limitations in the .NET environment. Using the current version of Access (2003) is like using many different programs at once, it’s disjointed and clumsy. Access 2007 has gone some way to at least make it look like it’s the same program but woe betide anyone that opens more then two instances whilst coding and is also using Visual Studio 2005 in the background. I think an opportunity has been missed with access; it’s the natural front end to SQL Server albeit a cut down version and could have been used as the middleware to glue some of the components in Visual Studio together or better still used as a tool for peer-to-peer databases distributed both locally and via the web. Access 2007 has made some steps in this direction but I feel that it’s come to the end of its natural life and this means that there is an enormous hole in the market that no doubt some enterprising company will shortly fill.
I hope Access 2007 can support trigger.
What's the point in restricting the width of forms and reports to 22 inches?
I have to say that the database features of Office are truely taking a dive on development. Not only does Access fail to coordinate its features/capacity with Excel, even MSQuery is still limited to 256 columns of data. Office is starting to look like a cheaply built house; a nice facade facing the street (Excel/Word), but austere construction behind and underneath (Access, MSQuery).
I fully agree with the commentors here. Access 2007 has missed the boat. instead of patching the jet engine, MS should have built it to directly, default-ily connect to SQL Server Express/Regular. One point no one seems to mention is why not also make VBA more like VB. why do we have to learn 2 environments? how many times do you press F11 to debug in Access or vice versa. Don't you wish you can dimension and initialize variables on the same line? These, among other points mentioned in this blog, could have easily turned Access into an intermediate & powerful solution below VS, but easily upgraded to VS due to similiarities. I must note, though, that there are several improvements along this line. Mainly docking and anchoring which make it much much easier to develop professional-looking apps, and "livelier" reports, something becoming pretty standard in business level programs.
Agree with all the above comments. Access has passed it's sell by date and is looking very aged underneath the cover. Two gigabytes of data limit is of use to no-one unless you are holding details of your small stamp collection. I paid £199 for a new stand alone version of access a couple of years ago. How anyone can justify this price tag now is beyond me. Rather than waste any more time on trying to 'bull up' new versions of access, just come clean and admit it is on the way out, giving current users plenty of time to migrate their systems.
I have a couple of technical questions that will help me decide if I am to continue plans to build a system in Access 2003 with SQLServer 2005 hosting the db which will be upgraded to Access 2007 once it becomes available. I am putting this here as reading over the comments above I am becoming uncomfortable about proceding with my next project, but I have not been able to find antthing anywhere that address what are a few key issues for me. Opinion are appreciated. But I would also like links to offical MS advise/recommendations as I have struggled to find any myself. So here they are. 1. What is the storage size or footprint within the Access db of a linked table in terms of the 2gb limit for access objects. All I read in my investigation is that is is less than if the table was in Access itself. But I have not been able to find any specifics or the means to calculate it if it is dependancies on physical characterists of the linked table itself. 2. If I was, for example, to derive values based on what is stored in a link table during runtime, is it possible to do this on the SQL Server side and have Access just pick up the result, or do I have to do the calc in Access ? 3. How are Access limits effected by doing calcuation during run time vs having the values pre calcuated in the linked table ? That is, how does the increased size of the linked table effect performance and throughput ?
What about replication and particularly internet replication