Alex & Access

December 11, 2012

2003 verses 2000 format

Filed under: Access — access @ 11:57 am

Interesting post by Garry Robinson (and reply from Wayne Phillips):

I asked this question of Wayne Phillips from
In your website you stated "When using Access objects (e.g. forms, reports, modules etc.) consider upgrading Access 2000 databases to Access 2002/2003. This is due to a much improved file-system for storing these objects in Access 2002/2003."
I am working on a huge system in a2000 format. Is it really worth the upgrade to 2003 ?

and Wayne answered
I generally go with ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it’ 🙂 But if it is broke, or you’re experiencing regular corruption, I definitely would recommend it. In Access 2000 the forms/reports/vba etc are all stored together in one big compound file called a DocFile, which is then itself split into 4000 byte or so chunks and each stored as records in the MSysAccessObjects table. This DocFile adds an extra layer of abstraction (and complexity) to the storage of Access-objects which is not needed and degrades performance. The 2002+ format removes the DocFile complexity and instead stores all the Access-objects data directly as separate records in the MSysAccessStorage table. Furthermore, in my experience, the 2000 format is more prone to corruption issues.

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