Access Using External Tables

External Table Links in Microsoft Access

Using a external table links is a neat trick which allows you to forego the need for permanently linking tables between a front end and back end Access database setup.Access dynamic table linking works by using IN followed by a path and database name will retrieve the data dynamically.  If you put this query in VBA (password protected) then the user will not know where the data is coming from.   You won’t have to worry about locking up the database objects which makes database updates/maintenance a bit cumbersome.

Access external table linking code:

SELECT Customer_ID, Sales_Rep_ID
FROM m_customer_orders IN ‘p:databaseshoe_orders_data.mdb’;

Another great way to use the external table links technique is when you have an ‘active database’ and an ‘archive database’  the user can dynamically switch between the two with an option on a form and a little VBA to create the alternate path to the data using dynamic table links.

We have attempted to make the external link a variables – as a global variable or a form field variable.  However, we could not get a variable external link to work.  Let us know if you have found a way to make the path to the external database variable.

Future examples will show how to create a temporary Access database and then create temporary tables in the database for processing and report generation – this technique eliminates front end database bloat.

Microsoft Office:
MS Access 2000 Through Access 2016 & Office 365


Microsoft Office VBA, MS Access 2003, 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016


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