Power Tip: Password protect your VBA project

A question came in recently regarding whether you can password protect just the VBA code for an Access database, but not the rest of the database. The answer is yes!

Here’s how to do it:

  1. In Access, press ALT+F11 to open the VBA editor.
  2. On the Tools menu, select <Database Name> Properties…
  3. On the Protection tab, select the Lock project for viewing check box.
  4. Enter and confirm a password.
  5. Click OK, and then close and reopen the database.

Next time you go to view the VBA code, you’ll be prompted for the password.

Note that there are a lot of free or inexpensive tools that allow you to “recover” lost passwords, so protecting your VBA by using this procedure should not be considered a fool-proof security method. However, it’s a good way to keep people from accidentally changing the code. A more robust way to protect your VBA code is to convert the database to an .accde or .mde file, as described in this Office.com article.

Thanks to Kevin Bell on the Access team for his help with this tip, and be sure to keep sending your favorite tips to Mike and Chris at accpower@microsoft.com!