Go to main content

Textpattern CMS support forum

You are not logged in. Register | Login | Help

#1 2022-02-28 01:20:19

bici
Member
From: vancouver
Registered: 2004-02-24
Posts: 1,956
Website

Access Database

Not directly a TxP question.
My association has a windows based MS Access database to manage membership data that is cumbersome to access as it requires VPN and RDP hoops and consequently none of our executive uses it. Plus the person who set it up is over 80. Need I say more.
We need to move to some web/cloud solution and make it easier to use and to make modifications to the DB.

We dont have a hefty budget to pay 100s per month to host the DB. So we require some cost effective solution. We do have free access to Office365 which has Access DB but not sure if that is the solution as someone said the web version is not the same as the desktop version in terms of functionality.

Anyone have suggestions on alternative solutions that we could pursue?


…. texted postive

Offline

#2 2022-02-28 14:54:54

Bloke
Developer
From: Leeds, UK
Registered: 2006-01-29
Posts: 10,753
Website GitHub

Re: Access Database

I’d consider Airtable. The convenience of a spreadsheet with the power of a database, and you can make ‘forms’ for data entry and ‘views’ to aggregate and report on data that’s been entered to pretty it all up. You can even import existing data and it figures out how to store it, although it probably won’t be the most efficient implementation compared to setting it up properly with linked tables.

Their free plan is pretty comprehensive but if you want team access and more records then you’ll need a paid plan. Depending on the number of licenses you need it probably won’t break the bank ($10 per seat).


The smd plugin menagerie — for when you need one more gribble of power from Textpattern. Bleeding-edge code available on GitHub.

Txp Builders – finely-crafted code, design and Txp

Offline

#3 2022-02-28 17:29:30

bici
Member
From: vancouver
Registered: 2004-02-24
Posts: 1,956
Website

Re: Access Database

Thanks Bloke. Been looking at the website and have shared it with someone that knows more about DBs than me. Have you used it? Know anyone that has? i was asked how transportable the data will be once it is added to AirTable. i.e easy to export and then import into another service?

Thank you very much for this suggestion, it does look promising and the price is right for us.


…. texted postive

Offline

#4 2022-02-28 22:52:50

Bloke
Developer
From: Leeds, UK
Registered: 2006-01-29
Posts: 10,753
Website GitHub

Re: Access Database

I’ve not used it in anger yet, but I like the look of it and I’m considering it for a project.

As far as I can tell, exporting is no problem from Airtable. Not tried it, though.

Last edited by Bloke (2022-02-28 22:53:26)


The smd plugin menagerie — for when you need one more gribble of power from Textpattern. Bleeding-edge code available on GitHub.

Txp Builders – finely-crafted code, design and Txp

Offline

#5 2022-02-28 23:30:53

jakob
Admin
From: Germany
Registered: 2005-01-20
Posts: 4,374
Website

Re: Access Database

The import instructions for bringing ms-access data into airtable (here) discuss importing CSV files so I’m guessing that means the relations in your access database will be lost – or will at least need reconnecting in Airtable.

I’ve not used Airtable myself but I have used Notion.so, which is similar in many ways. I can’t comment on which is better … by chance I happened to work with Notion first, that’s all.

The same proviso mentioned above about importing separate tables and then interlinking them also applies to Notion.

It provides – like Airtable – various intelligent bridging fields for linking tables, e.g. to automatically bring in data from another table. For example, you might have a list of contacts in one table and then a list of all interactions in another table and want to relate the two. You can set up a special field in your contact table that brings in all past interactions that relate to that contact. Using a hidden field with the date of the last interaction you can then make a dashboard page that will show you who you haven’t written to over the last three months etc. For a membership page, it might be who hasn’t paid. Like in many database programs, you can enter or edit data in an edit mask or directly in the table.

My guess is that you need to look at the complexity of your existing database to work out how much effort is involved in re-interlinking the data kept in separate “spreadsheets”. If your database wasn’t very complex, the work involved may not be too laborious.

If you do decide to investigate Notion, you might want to follow Marie Poulin (an ex-Textpatterner) who has made a business out of Notion. Her Twitter handle is @mariepoulin.


TXP Builders – finely-crafted code, design and txp

Offline

#6 2022-03-01 04:51:39

bici
Member
From: vancouver
Registered: 2004-02-24
Posts: 1,956
Website

Re: Access Database

thanks. we have opened an account with AirTable. The DB expert says he should be able to start a new Base based on the output from the Access db


…. texted postive

Offline

Board footer

Powered by FluxBB