Read-only link to .DBF

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Read-only link to .DBF

Postby Villeroy » Thu Oct 25, 2012 11:19 am

On a Windows domain I have a huge commercial dBase application based on *.DBF files. Now I'd like to have a Base connection to some of these files. Base must not interfere with that other multi-user application.

Problem #1: Base does not see .DBF files. I would have to rename to .dbf which is not an option. Under Linux I can use a .dbf symlink which seems to be no option under Windows.

Problem #2: I want read-only access. I can make an embedded HSQLDB read-only by making the containing .odb file read-only. With a dBase connection this does not affect the access mode to the underlying database. Of course the original files need to be writable by the main application.

Currently I connect to a set of read-only file copies which are not up to date.
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Re: Read-only link to .DBF

Postby eremmel » Wed Nov 05, 2014 1:44 am

Villeroy, just one thought:
When setting up an ODBC (via JET engine), can you manipulate the connect string in registry and does it support an property like ReadOnly=True? this made me think.

'Hard' links are possible with Windows NTFS. You might use the command MKLINK /H. Not sure if you can give a link read-only attribute.

Added:
An other solution might be to go via MS SQL Server to access the data. here is an example. Just create a view to make it work in Base. I guess it will be read-only, but with MS SQL server you have the possibility to control that also at a per user basis. You might be reduce costs by using the Express edition of MS SQL server.
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Re: Read-only link to .DBF

Postby Villeroy » Wed Nov 05, 2014 7:20 pm

Thank you. Indeed, there is a sofware called "MS SQL Server Express" installed on that system (Windows 2008). But so far I have no idea how to do anything with it. Seems to be incredibly complicated, particularly when you do not understand Microsoft's special terminology and acronyms. 15 years ago I could easily set up up ODBC connections from the Windows system panel.
I set up a cron job which performs a nightly copy of dBase files renaming from *.DBF to *.dbf so the girls are able to create reports from yesterdays data which is suffiecient for now.
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