Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
databases like SQL Server are optimized to deal with data and perform tasks
on large sets of data much faster than Access can.
The Internet is a perfect example of client/server computing. It’s nothing more
than a bunch of servers networked together and a bunch of client computers
using their web browsers to retrieve and update information on these servers.
In fact, many of these server computers use SQL Server to store data.
Plenty of client/server databases besides SQL Server are on the market, and
Access can link to and import data from several of them, including Oracle,
Sybase, and MySQL (to name just a few). If your organization uses any of
these databases, and you need to connect to them, you’ll have to talk to the
system administrator and refer to the documentation for these databases to
gain access to the servers.
ODBC Open Database Connectivity, for short) is a standard method for (
municating with a database management system. ODBC was created to allow
programs to communicate with different databases regardless of the
manufacturer or the construction of the database engine. Think of ODBC as being
a translator that speaks many languages. Access has to know one language,
and ODBC talks to the other databases.
Access uses ODBC to connect to a variety of data sources, including dBASE,
Excel, Paradox, Visual FoxPro, Oracle, and (of course) SQL Server. After
Access connects to these data sources, it can communicate with all of them
in the same way, all because of ODBC.
Connecting to SQL Server with ODBC
We could spend all day writing about client/server computing and the
intricacies of the ODBC architecture, such as how it allows programmers to add
drivers for databases that aren’t currently supported. Honestly, though, you
don’t need to know any of that to use ODBC to connect to a SQL Server
database. Sure, it helps to know a little bit about these topics, but you don’t have
to be an expert.
To connect to a SQL Server database, click the ODBC Database button in
the Import & Link group on the External Data tab of the Ribbon, as shown in