Learn Microsoft Access Advanced Programming Techniques, Tips and Tricks.

Change Secure DB to Unsecured


It is very unlikely that you want to change the status of a Secured Database (implemented with Microsoft Access Security) to an unsecured one. This exercise becomes necessary when you want to install/share a Database in an unsecured environment.

Before we embark on this simple exercise to remove the security settings of a database, the first thing to do is to change the Ownership of the Database.  The Owner (the User who created the Database is the Owner) of the Database Object has full access rights to all objects within the database and can assign permissions to other Users or User-Groups as well.  Members of the Admins Group also have these privileges.

Points to remember:

  1. The User who attempts to convert the Database must have at least Read Permission to all Objects of the Database.

  2. The Hidden Objects, if any, cannot be transferred into the target Database.

The Conversion Process.

The conversion process is very simple and needs only a few steps.

  1. Create a new Database.

  2. Select File - ->Get External Data - ->Import.

  3. Browse to the location of the Database, you are trying to convert, and open it.

  4. Select the Tables tab and click on the Select All Command Button to select all the Tables to import.

  5. Repeat this method for all Queries, Forms, Reports, Macros, and Modules.

  6. If your Database has Custom Menus and Toolbars, then click on Options.

  7. Put the checkmark in the Menus and Toolbars option.

  8. Click OK to Import all Objects (other than hidden objects) into the new Database.

Access privileges of all objects of the new database have now been set to default.  By default, all Users of the new Database are members of the Users Group and they all have Full Access Rights (to Open/Run, Read Design, Modify Design, Administer permissions) to all Objects.

But, if you plan to share this unsecured database on a Network you should make a few changes to make it available for concurrent use.  Otherwise, the database cannot be used by more than one user at the same time.

Changes for Multi-User Environment.

  1. Select Tools - ->Options - ->Advanced.

  2. Select Shared under the Default Open Mode Options Group.

  3. Select Edited Record under the Default Record Locking Options GroupOpen Database using Record Level Locking Option is already in the selected state also.

  4. Click OK to close the Dialog Box.

  5. Select Tools - -> Security - -> User and Group Permissions.

  6. Select the Admin User Name under the User/Group Name List. 

    Why select Admin User Account? Because in an unsecured environment all Users are silently logged in as  Admin Users.  MS-Access will not prompt for User Id and Password.

  7. Select the Database Object in the Object Type Control.

  8. Remove the check-mark from the Open Exclusive Option.

  9. Click OK to close the Dialog Box.

Now, you have a brand new Database with no Security settings.  The old database will remain without change.

Technorati Tags:

  1. Microsoft Access Security
  2. Convert Ms-Access Old Versions
  3. Convert Old Version Workgroup File
  4. Share Previous Version Database


Date and Time Values


MS-Access has a Date/Time Field Type to store Date or Time, or both together.  When you enter a Date Value into the Field (such as 14/07/2010) the actual value stored in memory is a whole number 40373, the number of days from 30-12-1899.  Day 1 is 31-12-1899.

You can easily find this if you type, format(1, "dd/mm/yyyy") in the Debug Window (Alt+F11 to display VBA Editing Window and Ctrl+G to show Debug Window) and press Enter Key to show the result value 31-12-1899.

Like Date; Time is internally stored as a Decimal Number. Time at midnight is 0.0 and 0.5 at 12 Noon. So the Date and Time Value combined on 14th July 2010 at 12 Noon is 40373.5.

To find the difference in time between Midnight and a time value before that, the midnight value will be taken as 24.00 for calculation purposes instead of 0.00.

Type ? format(40373.5,"dd/mm/yyyy hh:nn:ss") and press Enter Key.

Result:  14/07/2010 12:00:00

It is interesting to explore how 0.5 becomes 12:00:00 noon or how the System maintains Date and Time internally.

We know we have 24 Hours in a Day or 24 x 60 = 1440 minutes in a Day or 24 x 60 x 60 = 86400 Seconds in a Day.

Time Calculations

That is 1 Second = 1 Day/86400 Seconds = 0.000011574074074074 Day (we can take it rounded as 0.0000115741).  The end value of 074 is infinite. Again 1 second is = 1000 Milliseconds.

From Midnight the Value 0.0000115741 (equal to one Second) is added to the Time of the Day Value at every one-second interval. One Second before midnight (23:59:59 Hrs.) the value is 0.9999906659 (86399 Seconds) and after one second; a Day is added to the Date Value.  So at Midnight of 14/07/2010, the Number of Days becomes 40374.

But, each Second is further divided into Milliseconds and this can be read with the use of the Timer Built-in Function.

For example, type the following direct command in the Debug Window:

? Timer

You will get the output something like the example given below depending on the time you try out this.

Result in Seconds: 68473.81

The Value .81 part is the time in milliseconds and 68473 is the number of seconds of the current time of the day.

If you want to see this value in Current Time of the Day format type the following expression in Debug Window and press Enter Key:

? format(68473.81/86400,"hh:nn:ss")


? format(68473.81*0.0000115741,"hh:nn:ss")

The Value of 68473.81 Seconds is converted into its equal value in Days by multiplying it by 0.0000115741.

Result: 19:01:14

Using the Timer Function.

You can use the Timer() Function to build a delay loop in Program, like the example given below, to slow down some action in Programs.

Public Function myFunction()
t = Timer
Do While Timer < t + 5 


End Function

The sample program segment above slows down the action by 5 Seconds before executing the next statement after the Loop statement.

We can get the current Date and Time Value from the System with the use of the Now() Built-in Function.  The Date() Function returns the Current System Date. 

While designing a Table you can set the Default Value Property of the Date/Time Field to Date() Function or Now() Function to insert Current System Date or Current Date and Time Stamp respectively, when a new record is added to the Table.

Since we have learned the basics of the internal representation of Time Values, let us look into a few examples of Normal Time Value conversions of Hours, Minutes, and Seconds.

Always use the Date and Time Values together to calculate and find time differences properly. While designing Tables, if the time involves in any calculations then store Date and Time values together in the Date/Time Field. Not to save Date and Time in separate Fields.  This is very important if the time period is extended to more than one day like work starts at 20:00 hrs and ends at 04:00 hrs the next day.

Assume that we have Date and Time values separately, like 25/10/2020, and time values 5 Hours 7 Minutes, and 15 Seconds.  How do we convert these values to the internal storage format along with the date?

Date and Time Converting to store in Date/Time Field.

The Date Number of 25/10/2020 is 44129 in the Integer form.

To cross-check whether the number is correct or not, type the following expression in the VBA Debug window and print the result:

? format(#25/10/2020#,"0")

Result: 44129

Now, all the time values (5 Hours, 7 Minutes, and 15 Seconds) we need to convert into seconds first then add them all together and divide the result by 86400 or (24*60*60) to get the internal time format suitable to add to the date number so that date and time value stays together in the Date/Time Field.

Now let us do that as follows:

d_date = #25/10/2020# hrs = 5 min = 7 sec = 15 h_seconds = hrs * 60 * 60 m_seconds = min * 60 Total = h_seconds + m_seconds + sec ? Total Result: 18435 'seconds 'Convert to Time Value timVal = Total/86400 OR timval = Total/(24*60*60) ? timval Result: 0.213368055555556 'Add TimeValue to d_date d_date = d_date + timval

'Print the value of d_date in Date/time format ? format(d_date,"dd/mm/yyyy hh:nn:ss") Result: 25/10/2020 05:07:15

You may convert the Hours, Minutes, and Seconds into Time Value format in a single expression:

timval = (((hrs*3600)+(min*60)+sec)/86400)

d_date = d_date + timval


d_date = d_date + (((hrs*3600)+(min*60)+sec)/86400)

Date/Time Values change to Date, Hours, Minutes, and Seconds.

How do we separate again into Date, Hours, Minutes, and Seconds, if we want them in that way again from the Date/Time Values?

'The Date/Time Value
'we have the date+time in:
d_date = d_date + timval

'get date value separate
dt = int(d_date)

timval = d_date - dt

'get hours
hrs = int(timval*24)

'subtract hrs value from time value
timval = timval - ((hrs*3600)/86400)

'get Minutes
min = int(timval * (24*60))

'subtract Minutes from time value
timval = timval-(min*60/86400)

'get seconds
s = int(timval*86400+0.1)

The +0.1 added for correction of rounding Error of actual value of

The Simple Recommended Method.

If you want to do it differently here it is:

d = 1/86400 :'1 second value = in day value internaly H = 5 M = 7 S = 15 t = ((H*3600)+(M*60)+S)/86400

? t


TotalSeconds = t/d ? TotalSeconds 18435 hr = int(TotalSeconds/3600) ? hr 5

bal = TotalSeconds-(hr*3600) ? bal 435

mi = int(bal/60) ? mi 7

se = bal-(mi*60) ? s 15


? format(t,"hh:nn:ss")

You can follow any method you feel comfortable working with and I recommend the last one.

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