Total Access Startup makes it easy to centrally manage all your Microsoft Access database deployments. Ensure that all your users run the latest version of your database application with the right version of MS Access. Easily deploy updates without having to manually change things on each user’s PC. Simply point your users to a shortcut and they never need to know the actual name of the database.
Total Access Startup 2016 is now shipping to let you:
For optimal performance, deploy a local copy of your master database on each user’s PC and keep it updated when you update the master
Run it with a specific Access version or a range of allowable Access versions. This makes it easy to support legacy versions of Access even if users install later versions of Office/Access.
Specify the bitness (32 and/or 64-bit) that are allowed for Access 2010, 2013, and 2016.
Display a professional splash screen graphic while your database loads
If your users can’t launch your database, a message appears with information you provide to contact you. You can customize our messages or translate them to your user’s language.
Unfortunately, the update of the VBE7.DLL file causes many Microsoft Access databases to fail. A heated thread on the Microsoft Community forum describes the problem: KB3085515 breaks MS Access 2010 reference
The information below is from the original diagnoses of the problem
We are still determining the full impact of this bug. We know this impacts wizards in Access and customers of our Microsoft Access add-ins. It also impacts the people you support with our runtime distribution libraries referenced from your MS Access databases. At the very least we know it prevents running:
Microsoft Access databases in ACCDE and MDE formats (defined below).
Databases (ACCDB or MDB) with library references to ACCDE and MDE files.
Built-in MS Access 2010 Wizards that are ACCDE files.
ACCDE and MDE Database Formats
ACCDE and MDE databases are “compiled” versions of ACCDB and MDB database formats where form and report design changes can’t be made and VBA modules can’t be viewed or edited. They are “locked” to referenced DLLs, libraries, and other dependencies that can change over time…provided those dependencies follow Windows protocol for binary compatibility to identify new versions.
Unfortunately, the Microsoft Excel update of the VBE7.DLL file broke the VBA dependency by not creating the new version correctly. That causes previously developed ACCDE and MDE databases to stop working. This was not an issue for the Excel community since they don’t have an equivalent “compiled” version of Excel spreadsheets (the VBA code is always exposed behind spreadsheets), but it kills Access Wizards and the ACCDE and MDE databases people create.
Microsoft Access 2010 Add-ins Won’t Run
In addition to causing some Microsoft wizards in Access to fail, our Microsoft Access 2010 add-ins won’t run since they are Access databases in ACCDE format. You may see messages like this when you try to launch them:
Microsoft Access can’t start the wizard, builder, or add-in.
This feature isn’t installed, or has been disabled.
There may be suggestions to reinstall the add-in but that won’t help. This impacts these of our products:
Some of our products include ACCDE runtime distribution libraries that let you incorporate our product’s features in your application for distribution to your users. You and your users are impacted by this problem and may experience messages like these:
The code contains a syntax error, or a Microsoft Access function you need is not available.
File format no longer supported.
Customers using our redistributable runtime libraries in databases distributed to their users are impacted:
The Microsoft Access development team is aware of this problem and is working on a solution as we speak. Microsoft has already stopped people from downloading the update and thankfully didn’t release a similar update for Office 2013 and 2016. They’ve also published this blog post:
The hope is for a new update that fixes this problem. Timing of when that will be available is unknown, but we’ll keep you informed as we learn it.
Current Solution: Uninstall the Update
The only solution is to uninstall the update. You can uninstall it from:
Command line, or
Run a Command Line
You can run this line from the command prompt or put it in a BAT file if you want to share it with others: Note that we have reports that this may not work for everyone since it requires certain permissions:
wusa /uninstall /kb:3085515 /quiet /norestart
Uninstall from the Control Panel
The patch can be uninstalled from the Control Panel, Windows Update program: In Windows 10, from the Windows Update screen, click on the Advanced options hyperlink: then click on View your update history: Choose Uninstall updates to see the list of installed updates: For Windows 7, click on the View update history link on the left border: From the top section, click on the Installed Updates link:
List of Installed Updates
View the list of Windows updates installed on your PC, grouped by product which are collapsible. Go to the section Microsoft Office Professional Plus 2010 (or equivalent): Find the KB3085515 update, click on it to uninstall and confirm it.
Troubleshoot problems connecting to a remote computer
Tip to simplify logging in
Tip for using multiple display monitors
Remote Desktop Connections are Great for Running another PC On Site or Off Site
It’s very convenient to run another PC from your current PC. Whether it’s another machine in your office, network, or physical location, Windows offers a Remote Desktop Connection feature to do so. This is particularly useful to:
Run a PC on your network without having to physically go to it.
Run a Virtual Machine (HyperV or VMWare Workstation) hosted on another machine.
Run a PC next to you without needing a KVM switch to share monitors, keyboards and mouse. Common if you have older PCs lying around. Just remote to it.
From offsite, run the PC in your office (or network). You can run it as if you were on site with the benefit of the speed of your internal network rather than data coming to your PC over your Internet connection. You will need VPN authentication to connect to your network
Offer PCs with Windows applications that people can run without having to install anything on their PC. This avoids the issues with installations on individual machines, conflicts with other programs, Windows updates, etc. Easily manage Windows applications like Microsoft Access, Visual Basic 6, .NET and other legacy apps and let any user, including Macs, run them.
Total Access Analyzer, the most popular Microsoft Access add-in, is now shipping for Microsoft Access 2016.
Total Access Analyzer offers comprehensive documentation and analysis of your MS Access databases so you can better understand individual objects, cross-references between objects, procedure and data flow diagrams, VBA module analysis, and much more. Detecting over 300 ways to fix and improve your databases, Total Access Analyzer improves the quality of your work, teaches you best practices for Access application development, and increases your productivity.
Support for Microsoft Access 2016, 32 and 64 bit versions
New Suggestion: Incorrect Link to Subforms
New Suggestion: Relationship Field Cross-Reference and Field Type Comparison
Enhanced Cross-Reference of Aliased Tables in Queries
NOTE: When we downloaded the update for 2016, we received build 16.0.6001.1038 dated 01-Dec-2015. That’s different from the 08-Dec-2015 announcement which described build 16.0.4312.1000 dated 12-Nov-2015. The update we installed resolves the invisible image issue, but we have yet to receive an explanation for the difference.
Microsoft recently released Office and Access 2016. In our preliminary testing and development with the 2016 version, there’s very little that has changed from Access 2013. However, a bug was introduced late in the development cycle that is quite annoying and serious.
Some Images (Pictures) are Missing
If you’ve added images (pictures) on your forms and reports, they may appear blank in MS Access 2016. For example, here’s a form with a picture image that is blank in 2016:
This occurs with the 32-bit version of Access 2016 (16.0.4229.1024) and not the 64-bit version. That’s not a reason to use the 64-bit version, but it is a difference.
Not All Pictures are Invisible
Some images appear properly, while others don’t. With some research, we discovered:
Images that were originally BMP files appear properly
Graphic types such as GIF, JPG and PNG formats become blank
Impacted by the Picture Property Storage Format Setting
Upon further investigation, the problem is associated with the database’s Picture Property Storage Format when the picture was added to the form or report. This is under the Access Options setting for the Current Database:
There are two options:
Preserve source image format (smaller file size)
Convert all picture data to bitmaps (compatible with Access 2003 and earlier)
If the image is added when the option is set to the second option (Convert), the non-BMP graphics do not appear in the 2016 version.
Microsoft is Fixing the Problem
The Microsoft Access team is aware of this bug and fixing it. How long it will take before it’s publicly available is undetermined. It’ll probably be a few months as service packs take a while to get through the Office release process. We’ll let you know when we know.
What to do Now?
If you can’t wait for Microsoft to release a patch and need to use Access 2016 immediately, here’s what you should do:
Set the Current Database, Picture Property Storage Format to “Preserve source image format”
Reinsert your pictures. If your pictures are BMP files, the storage format setting won’t matter
Of course, it’s not easy to find all the places on your forms and reports where this is a problem, then reinsert every picture, especially if you don’t have or can’t find the original graphic files.
Property Slices in Total Access Analyzer Can Help
Our Total Access Analyzer program documents all the objects in your database. While it can’t replace your graphic files, it identifies all the places where there’s a picture property. Whether it’s at the object (form or report) level or its controls, the Picture property shows whether an image file is assigned.
After documenting your database, from the Documentation Explorer, click on the Forms folder in the treeview, select the Property Slices tab, then choose the Picture property. This shows every form and its picture property value. The ones that aren’t “(none)” need to be reviewed:
Similarly, choose the Controls option and Picture property to see this value for all the controls on all your forms:
Press the Design button to put the current row’s form into design mode to make your changes. Then do the same for reports.
Unfortunately, this is quite a hassle for something that should just work. Let us know what you’re experiencing.
Click on the links for detailed information on the new features.
Total Access Analyzer is the most popular Microsoft Access add-in of all time. It provides detailed documentation and analysis of your MS Access databases to help you better understand how your objects work together, detect problems, improve your designs, and enhance performance.
This update is part of the 10th major release of Total Access Analyzer since its debut in 1993.
A demo is available for you to see the types of documentation it generates using the sample Northwind database. Look at the results, filter and search it, and see the reports it generates: Demo Download
Customers on an annual support contract for Total Access Analyzer or the suites it’s in receive the new versions for free:
On Wednesday, I was invited for a live interview with Neil Cavuto on his FOX Business News show Coast-to-Coast.
The primary issue was NFL quarterback Tom Brady’s destruction of his cellphone surrounding the Inflate-gate controversy and his recent suspension.
Prior to his hearing before the NFL, Brady physically destroyed his cellphone and was able to avoid disclosing his text messages which were suspected to contain incriminating information. The question was whether that really destroyed his text messages.
It’s a rather interesting question because people don’t often think about how different types of communications are stored whether it’s email, text or instant messages. With our concerns over security, hacking, and privacy, it’s important to better understand how these platforms work to address the risks we face.
How Emails are Stored
Emails are always stored on a server which retains the emails even if the device that received or read the emails is destroyed. This is how emails can be retrieved from multiple devices simultaneously. Depending on the mail server’s rules, old emails generally remain available until they are permanently deleted. They also exist on the sender’s email box and any of the Cc and Bcc recipients.
How Text Messages are Stored
Text Messages do not have the same permanence as emails. They exist on the sending and receiving devices until they are deleted. The phone company that transmits the text message also retains the message. At a minimum, they need to retain it until they successfully transmit it since the receiving device may be unavailable. It can take multiple attempts and multiple days before the message is transmitted.
After that, the phone company has no requirement to retain the message. The text message only exists on the sending and receiving devices.
However, some phone companies, like Verizon, offer text messages that can be read online. The messages are available online even after the message is received by the phone. That means the phone company is playing the role of a text message server. They may exist there for months, which means it remains a repository if the device is destroyed.
So if you think your text messages only exist on yours and the other party’s device, you may want to check your mobile phone provider (and that of the other party) to understand their policies.
Unfortunately, Fox did not release an online copy of the interview, so we can’t share it.
This past Tuesday night, Microsoft released a security patch. On Wednesday morning, we and some of our customers encountered problems with connectivity that were quite unusual and different from past security updates. The update required servers to reboot which triggered some issues, but manageable. What was particularly troubling were multiple reports of problems with PCs using Windows 8.1.
The PCs could still connect to the network and see all the network resources, but they could not get on the Internet. Using different logins including Administrator logins didn’t make a difference. Other PCs using Windows 7 or older O/S were able to connect successfully even with the same cable as the Windows 8.1 PCs that couldn’t connect.
What Could be Wrong?
We struggled trying to see if there were issues with:
Hardware on the PC, network card, cable or switch
Software issues with the automatic Windows patches, DHCP network settings, IP addresses, Firewall, antivirus, etc.
Login rights and permissions
We couldn’t determine the problem or find a solution. Since the user could log into the network, permissions seemed sufficient.
From the Windows command prompt (Run cmd), we used the ipconfig command with the release and renew command lines to see if that would reset the IP address, but that didn’t make a difference either:
Solution: Flush DNS
Finally, I posted a message to the Microsoft Access MVP group, which I’m honored to be a part of. Long time colleague, Tom Wickerath suggested flushing the DNS (Domain Name System) cache by using:
C:\> ipconfig /flushdns
We weren’t familiar with that command line option as it doesn’t appear when you enter
Well, it worked! We may never know whether the problem was caused by the Windows security patch or if it was just a coincidence. Regardless, the flushdns command reset the PCs that were affected by this problem.
Total Access Admin lets you monitor users going in and out of your databases in real-time. See who’s currently in your database and who recently exited, create a log of connections and disconnects, compact the database after everyone exits, etc. Monitor all the databases across your network from one installation of Total Access Admin.
Many New Features
Total Access Admin 2013 includes many new features. You can now:
Maintain a list to translate computer names to more friendly user names
Manage up to 100 database in one screen (up from 50)
Download the free, fully-functional Trial Version to see how helpful Total Access Admin can be for you.
Supports All Microsoft Access Versions
Total Access Admin 2013 supports ACCDB databases created in Microsoft Access 2013, 2010 and 2007, plus MDB databases created in any version of Access. Existing customers can upgrade at a discounted price.
Microsoft Access MVP, Daniel Pineault, wrote a very nice review of our Total Access Detective program recently. Total Access Detective is a Microsoft Access add-in program that finds all the differences between two Access databases or two objects in one database. Changes with table and query structures, field properties, form and report controls and properties, macros, module VBA procedures and lines of code, and even data are detected.
Daniel found Total Access Detective very helpful when confronted with the challenge of determining exactly what changed between two Microsoft Access databases. Rather than manually and tediously trying to determine what changed, he used Total Access Detective to quickly generate a comprehensive comparison to find objects in one database and not the other, and a detailed comparison of objects with the same name. With Total Access Detective, he was able to pinpoint all the differences and make the necessary adjustments.
We were pleased he concluded with this:
“I am once again quite confident in putting my stamp of approval on this tool. If you are in a situation in which you quickly need to identify all the differences between multiple databases, FMS’ Total Access Detective will make short work of the job at hand! …
A very nice, easy to use and most importantly, effective and thorough tool!”