Being a database administrator or user, you very well know the importance of Microsoft Access. Don’t you? Microsoft Access software is considered the most widely used desktop database program all over the world. It is available with the Microsoft Office professional suite as well as sold separately. Generally Microsoft Access is called a database management program used to store a very large amount of data and information by using a rich user-interface and interactive design capabilities.
An Access database contains the database structure (tables and fields) and database entries (table rows) as well as data entry forms, queries, stored procedures, reports, and database security settings. Microsoft Access saves its database with two different extensions: .MDB for MS Access 2002 or earlier versions and .ACCDB for MS Access 2003 or later versions.
Corruption in Access database is now seen very commonly in these days. The truth is that no computer file is immune to corruption. As a database file is large in size and having a complex file structure, it becomes prone to corruption. Many times users are found complaining that they can’t open their database. Instead of that, they receive an error message saying “unrecognized database format”. Few other most common errors messages are shown below:
“The database needs to be repaired or isn’t a database file.”
“Cannot open database. It may not be a database that your application recognizes, or the file may be corrupt.”
“The Microsoft Jet database engine could not find the object ‘xyz’. Make sure the object exists and that you spell its name and the path name correctly.”
If you are having any of these error messages or any other, this means the Access database you are trying to open is corrupt. Have you ever tried to find out the reasons for corruption in your Access database? Before you can do anything to repair Access database, you must understand each and every aspect of corruption in Access database. There are various responsible factors which may cause corruption. The most common reasons are data storage device failure, faulty networking device, power failure, incorrect file system recovery, virus or other malicious software, interruption in writing operation.
How to fix corrupt Access database?
Whenever corruption is encountered in Access database, it becomes inaccessible. Luckily few manual tricks are available which can used to fix database corruption. But before using any manual procedure to repair Access database, make sure you have taken the backup for your database. Also, don’t forget to execute the manual operations on duplicate copy of your database. Keep the original copy intact or untouched. If corruption is minor in your database, using manual tricks may cause more damage to it. But this doesn’t mean that manual tricks are unworthy. They are as effective as a third-party professional tool.
Microsoft provides a built-in repair feature for corrupt Access database files, which is called “compact and repair”. Processional users always recommend “compact and repair” feature for Access database periodically for optimal performance and minimize the chances for database corruption. Users can also set an automatic compact and repair operation for a database when it gets closed. Follow the steps given below:
Step 1: Launch Microsoft Access program and open the database on you which you want to set auto compact and repair.
Step 2: On the File tab, click Options.
Step 3: In the Access Options box, click Current Database.
Step 4: Under Application Options, select Compact on Close.
For manual operation of compact and repair Access database, you can refer to this article: Microsoft Access Database Compact and Repair by Version
In this article, you’ll read about Compact and Repair and how to use it in different versions of Microsoft Access.
If the database corruption is severe, no manual trick can be helpful. You would have only one solution left, and that is professional software to repair Access database and to recover data from it. Download Access Database Recovery software which is available with free demo version. Users can check the preview of recovered data before saving them into a new file. If users are satisfied with the results shown in the preview session, they can purchase the licensed version to avail full features and functionalities.