converting MS-ACCESS database files from .mdb to mac osx please?

Discussion in 'Mac OS X System & Mac Software' started by megimp, May 15, 2005.

  1. megimp

    megimp Registered

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    hello

    How do I open, read, and convert .mdb files to an OSX readable format?

    Most of my friends with disabilities are still using Win based PC's.

    THANK YOU
     
  2. mdnky

    mdnky [Bobs/Prog/Design:~] mod% Staff Member

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    One way to do it is to open the file on a Win machine with Access installed, then export the tables to 'CSV' or 'SQL dump' files. Take those exported files and import them into your DB (MySQL is a good choice).

    As far as a 'helper app' to convert them, there isn't one that I'm aware of that'll run under OS X. The last time I searched for one was a year ago or so, but nothing came up then and I seriously doubt there was a strong demand for such a thing. Access is a bit weird in how it does things, which would probably be a nightmare to have to convert.
     
  3. gphillipk

    gphillipk Registered

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    If you have MS Office for Mac, couldn't you use Excel to read the data out of the Access db? Unless Excel for Mac is radically different, you ought to be able to design queries in Excel to extract data and save data back into the Access db, without having to convert. But if you need more advanced (relational-db) functionality, I s'pose you ought to convert.
     
  4. elander

    elander Registered

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    Excel for Mac isn't radically different, but everything around it is. To run a query from Excel to an Access database, you need something to answer to the query. In this case that would be Access (via ODBC) or some built-in support for Access databases in the operating system (as you get in Windows). Since you don't have either on the Mac, there isn't anything around to respond to the queries.

    I've been searching for something similar for years, but I always end up biting the bullet. Just find some poor sod with Windows and Access, and ask him or her to convert your database to something you can use (CSV or SQL dump as suggested earlier).
     
  5. gphillipk

    gphillipk Registered

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    Thanks for the correction elander. This isn't related to the orig. question, but I'd like to know what would happen if the Access db was located on a computer with Windows and the query was executed from the Mac.
     
  6. elander

    elander Registered

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    Three caveats that I'm aware of:

    1. Setting up ODBC on the Mac is generally a pain in the you-know-what. Making it actually work is even worse.

    2. If Microsoft Query is to work, ODBC has to work on the Mac, even when the server is somewhere else. Even when ODBC is set up properly and working on the Mac, Microsoft Query might not.

    3. Access isn't based on ODBC, but on Jet, and as far as I am aware, there is no Jet engine for Mac OS X.

    If you have Access up and running in Windows, and want to move your data to a Mac, there are two ways that I know of that would work:

    1. Dump the data from Access into a file (e.g. CSV or SQL dump), clean it up and import it in your application on the Mac (e.g. Excel or MySQL respectively).

    2. Set up Access to connect to MySQL on the Mac, and transfer the database that way. It's not that difficult. Have a look at this page:
    http://www.bullzip.com/products/msa2mys/info.php

    [INCESSANT RANT] In conclusion: I hate Access. Really. It's very convenient to use as a stand alone database on your own desktop, much like FileMaker. And just like FileMaker, it's a plague as soon as you want to share the database with others. Mind you, FileMaker used to be at least decent, with built-in web server and all, before they moved all innovating from R&D to the marketing department. MySQL, PostgreSQL or anything else that runs on multiple platforms, and can be accessed over the network should be mandatory these days.[/INCESSANT RANT]
     
  7. mkwan

    mkwan Tech

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    one time I was able to setup ODBC connection between PostgreSQL and Microsoft Excel(Query). It was a pain in the @$$, but I got it working. Now, I have to do it all over again since I upgraded to Tiger
     
  8. elander

    elander Registered

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    If you get that Microsoft Query <-> PostgreSQL thing working again, please post a HOW TO on this forum. I'm sure a lot of people would appreciate it!

    If you can, try to make it a "combo HOW TO", with instrucions on how to get it working with MySQL too. That would probably be even more appreciated. If you don't have the time, just drop a few lines about how you did the pgsql thing, and I'll try to take it from there and do a MySQL version. :eek:
     
  9. mkwan

    mkwan Tech

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    That will be hard to do because now I am running into compiler errors
     
  10. perceptivedepth

    perceptivedepth Registered

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    i'm trying to import a .mdb file into filemaker...any ideas? tried finding odbc drivers, it seems to be too much. I have a windows machine up with access, but don't know how to export the whole database into a different format.
     
  11. bobw

    bobw The Late: SuperMacMod

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  12. elander

    elander Registered

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    The Mac OS X version simply generates scripts that you have to run in Virtual PC or an Intel computer running under Windows... :(
     
  13. AdmiralAK

    AdmiralAK Simply Daemonic

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    In responce to Filemaker being bad...
    I must disagree. Our small dept (15 or so clients) works great with FMP, and we've been on it for the last 7 years. While I like SQL, I prefer FMP for what we are doing....and yes I do use it on a laptop :). The only problem I have with it is that it needs a mac, or windows machine to work and I cannot can my windows machine in favor of a linux station because of it.


    I must say though that access is really bad, all around bad. If you want to keep track of your CDs and DVDs...well OK, but for any other application...yuck
     
  14. lamski

    lamski Registered

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  15. tenuki

    tenuki Registered

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    get them with fink if you have it, otherwise download and compile on your own.

    % ls /sw/bin/mdb*
    /sw/bin/mdb-array /sw/bin/mdb-hexdump /sw/bin/mdb-schema /sw/bin/mdb-ver
    /sw/bin/mdb-export /sw/bin/mdb-parsecsv /sw/bin/mdb-sql
    /sw/bin/mdb-header /sw/bin/mdb-prop /sw/bin/mdb-tables

    Instructions for using them here:

    http://www.oracle.com/technology/pub/articles/gagne_access.html


    peace.
     
  16. zenox

    zenox Registered

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    You could try MDB Tool. Its a Mac app that will allow you to open an MDB File and export the contents to CSV/Excel or SQL.
     

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