M$ Access

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by croberts134, Nov 17, 2005.

  1. croberts134 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2005
    #1
    Is there a good Mac alternative to Access? I hate that program so much but for a business computing class I am taking we have to design a simple database. I was hoping that there a good, (relatively) easy to use alternative so that (1) I don't have to use a horrible product and (2) I don't have to go to a PC lab every time I want to work on my project.
     
  2. MisterMe macrumors G4

    MisterMe

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    USA
    #3
    Several excellent choices. Filemaker Pro has already been mentioned. For those with modest needs, the AppleWorks database module may be all that you need. 4th Dimension is a wonderful DBMS. It is cross-platform, incredibly powerful, and free for some users. Lest we not ignore the fact that OpenBase is bundled with many Macs. If you want additional options, browse over to VersionTracker or MacUpdate and do a search.
     
  3. kainjow Moderator emeritus

    kainjow

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2000
    #4
    Why hasn't M$ ever made a Mac port of Access??
     
  4. ianford macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2007
    #5
    Axisbase

    There is a new .NET alternative to Access, which is a free download - see axisbase.com. This is a full front end and database server.

    It "should" work on Mono on a mac, but is not tested yet. If anyone wants to try it please let me know how it goes.
     
  5. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #6
    What do you mean by alternate?

    A Mac database program?

    Or an Access compatible database?

    As someone has already mentioned, FileMaker is a good cross platform database. Other good solutions have been mentioned as well.

    Unfortunately, if you are doing this for a class project, you may be stuck with using Access.

    Good question!

    Sometimes I wonder why Microsoft hasn't started over with Office and made a completely compatible cross platform version for Windows, Mac, and Linux platforms that includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Access. They could put all versions on one DVD.
     
  6. nadyne macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 25, 2004
    Location:
    Mountain View, CA USA
    #7
    It's a matter of determining the demand in the marketplace for it, and weighing that against the other marketplace demands, as well as the work involved in doing it. We constantly re-assess our decisions about our product line-up. Access (and other Windows Office apps, such as Project and Visio) haven't made it yet, but maybe they will in the future.

    If you really want us to port one of the Windows Office applications, it would be immensely helpful if you submit your feedback directly to us. Tell us what application you want us to port, what you want to do with it, and why you definitely want that product instead of something else that's already on the market. For example, if you really want OneNote, tell us what you really like about it, and tell us what OneNote does that Word's Notebook Layout View doesn't. That helps us make informed decisions when we next look at it.

    Regards,
    Nadyne.
     
  7. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #8
    Thank you for the feedback! Here are my quick 3 cents.

    I would suggest that if Microsoft recreate Office to be cross platform from the ground up. The new Office should have Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Access as a minimum. It should run on Windows, Mac and Linux. All applications need to be unicode so they can handle all languages.

    Most Mac users use Office to have compatibility with their work computers. I know of very few Mac users who choose Office because it is the best. Frankly it isn't. There are many other, if not better, solutions available for the Mac. However, if Mac user wants to be compatible with the PC world, they need Office. We don't need a different interface or steps to accomplish things. They should be the same for all versions. Just like it was back with Office 97 for Windows and Office 98 for the Mac.

    Compatibility is what people need.

    For example, we don't need nor want to learn two different Word menu systems (Windows and Mac). Just one please. Nor do we want to use different video formats in PowerPoint. The major formats should be supported on both the Windows and Mac platforms. So if we create a Windows PowerPoint presentation with video it will work on the Mac and vice versa.

    So please consider going back to the drawing board and create a whole new Office suite that works cross platform and is completely the same.
     
  8. nadyne macrumors 6502a

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    Mountain View, CA USA
    #9
    For a rather in-depth and technical discussion of why this is unlikely (leaving aside how unhappy many Mac users were with Office:Mac 98, but I'm sure that there are several folks here who remember it and can comment), check out the following blog post from Word:Mac developer Rick Schaut: Mac Word 6.0.

    Regards,
    Nadyne.
     
  9. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #10
    Interesting blog. Thanks!

    Paradigms do change. :)

    Personally, if I were king for a day, I would focus all efforts by both the Windows and Mac Office folks on a ground up redo of Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Access. I would focus on the feature set first, then do the coding for both platforms at the same time. I would release the new Office with the same name for all platforms. All files would be 100% compatible.

    Please don't go down the path saying that is impossible. Apple has demonstrated that you do this with an OS (PPC and Intel Mac code base).

    Other companies have done this as well such as FileMaker and others. It is possible with the right leadership and control.

    Office 98 was a long time ago. What was nice about the Windows 97 version and Mac 98 version is that the menus and such were the same. Now, unfortunately they are not. Currently most technical manuals used in the classroom environment are based upon the Windows version of Office. One manual should work for both versions!

    I would venture to say that today the majority of Mac users use Office to be compatible with their office environment which is primarily based upon Office running on PCs.

    I would also venture to say that few Mac users use Office for it's unique features. There are so many other great products out there that the average Mac user does not need or want Office for the Mac. The exception is for those who must have compatibility with the PC version.

    IMHO, the time that it would take to redo Office would be well spent in the long term. Good software takes time and lots of effort! :)

    Those of us who use both platforms on a daily basis really appreciate all you guys do to make Office better.

    Here's hoping that someone at Microsoft has the vision and authority to do something like this.
     
  10. MacVault macrumors 65816

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    Planet Earth
    #11
    MS Access is a horrible program

    I HATE MS Access! After using FileMaker, WHO... Access feels like a total abomination!
     
  11. klaxamazoo macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2006
    #12
    I had a quick question. I got a really informative packet about the switch from Visual Basic to Applescript from the MS Office team at MacWorld (they were very nice to me and I was a little snooty, I feel bad about that. I should have asked about this whole "ribbon" interface I've been hearing about). The packet said that MS Office will eventually move macros to a different language for the Windows side too. Do you know what language they are going to use? Will it be something cross combatible between
    Windows and Macs?
     
  12. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #13
    So OpenBase comes on many Macs in order to enable WebObjects, right? What do you have to do to go from what's built onto the computer to something that's actually usable for end users as a local database system? Is there a particular GUI to download, or...?
     
  13. nadyne macrumors 6502a

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    Mountain View, CA USA
    #14
    This is one opinion amongst many that we consider as we work on our future versions. Mac users a rather diverse crowd, and have many opinions about how we should go forward.

    Regards,
    Nadyne.
     
  14. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #15
    Completely understand! :)

    My comment was made in the interest of increasing the sales of the Mac version of Office. There are many folks in the government/DoD/Fortune 500 companies arena use Office at work on PCs. Quite a few use Macs at home. Being able to use compatible software at home on their Macs (with the same interface and complete file compatibility) is a big plus! :)

    From Microsoft's perspective, I would think that every sale of Office would be good regardless of whether it is the Mac or PC version. By making both versions completely compatible would be a huge plus.

    Filemaker learned this and has done very well in the database arena.

    Why Microsoft does not approach the Office market the same surprises me.

    BTW, for those who don't know, Microsoft markets Office differently here in Japan. Office comes with Word and Exel. Professional comes with Work, Excel and PowerPoint. Why it is not the same as the US version is a mystery to many!
     
  15. Totty macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2006
    #16
    To OP, another alternative, although it may be a little overkill is to download MAMP (http://www.mamp.info/en/home.php). MAMP is Mac-Apache-MySQL-PHP. MySQL is a database management system you could use to develop your database. One good thing about this alternative is that MAMP is free. A second good thing is that if you must demo or turn in your project to a Windows or even Linux machine, you could load the MySQL database into a (free) version of MySQL for that operating system.
     
  16. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #17
    Most interesting alternative for Access.
     
  17. theBB macrumors 68020

    theBB

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    Jan 3, 2006
    #18
    I believe OpenOffice includes a database program and I think it is even compatible with Access.
     

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