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Old 2004-10-31, 15:21   Link #1
syntex
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Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Canada
Encrypt a MS Access file

Is there a way to encrypt a microsoft Acess file with a master password or something so only the person who knows the password can open it? I am not good at programming so id prefe it if you could recommend a third party add-on of plug-in that can do the job with little hassle would b very much appreciated.
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Old 2004-10-31, 18:52   Link #2
AnimeOni
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I assume you mean use another encryption other than the weak one supplied with MS-Access.

One way to encrypt is to use the simple file sharing encryption and access control with windows.

Another one is to go with 3rd party such as MDBSecure. http://www.Mindwarp-Consultancy-Software.com. The software is very easy to use and it's cheap - ~14 USD.
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Old 2004-10-31, 23:19   Link #3
Forse
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Quote:
Originally Posted by syntex
Is there a way to encrypt a microsoft Acess file with a master password or something so only the person who knows the password can open it? I am not good at programming so id prefe it if you could recommend a third party add-on of plug-in that can do the job with little hassle would b very much appreciated.
You can simply just rar it and set strong password (latest winrar has a good encryption method) or you could google for some free software. I wouldn't trust in MS encryption as AnimeOni stated, it's just plain weak.
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Old 2004-11-01, 01:00   Link #4
AnimeOni
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Forse
You can simply just rar it and set strong password (latest winrar has a good encryption method) or you could google for some free software. I wouldn't trust in MS encryption as AnimeOni stated, it's just plain weak.
Are you sure that Access encryption is weak? The 2000-2003 versions are pretty strong.

I said use it in conjunction with file access privledges to provide 2 level protection. Since Syntex says that he is looking for a plug-in is most likely that Syntex wants to access the file from time to time but needs a master password. The problem using RAR is that you cannot access the MS-Access file without unRAR'ing it. Yes, you get the Strong encryption that RAR provides but you will have to unRAR, open the file, enter the pw if necessary, edit the database, RAR back into the archive with password. The process itself may not be feasible - especially if multiple people are using it.

I didn't want to get into the technical stuff, but here it is. If someone were to base their security on just MS-Access 2000/2002/2003, the way to do it would be through Workgroup security. A good hacker (or brute force) will be required to recover so read carefully. It's very tricky. Check out MS DBA books for detailed instructions. Note: This is not VBA/ASP based security which can be easily hacked.

1. Open the DB
2. Create a .mdw through Workgroup Admin (tools/secruity/workgroup admin)
3. Create user groups, users, and assign permissions. (tools/security/workgroup admin/create) and browse to the db you wish to secure.
4. Create a User in the Admin group (the owner) and grant all priv.
5. Close the DB
6. Open the DB again.
7. Take ownership of all the objects. ** IMPORTANT. Once you take ownership, other admins are kicked out permenantly. The only solution is to create the db from scratch.
8. Restrict rights from the original admin users (basically disables the admin acct)
9. Set a new pw.
10. Run the User security wizard. Note it will create a backup unsecured db. Save for now since you will delete this later.
11. Open another DB or blank db.
-> you will be prompted to login as the new owner)
12. Join to the default. mdw and close db

Check to see if your db works and then delete the backup db. How do you check?
You will need to use the .mdw file you just created.
Create a new shortcut.
Target: [drive]:\[database_path]\[database_file] /wrkgrp [drive]:\[mdw_file_path]\[mdw_file]
e.g. "C:\my documents and settings\administrator\MyDatabase.mdb" /wrkgrp "C:\my documents and settings\administrator\MyDatabase.mdw"

To further encryption, go to Tools | Security | Encrypt/decrypt

The reason I suggested the software is to simplify all these steps. It's a pain and if you get it wrong, it's an even bigger pain.

I hope this answers your questions.
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Old 2004-11-01, 03:07   Link #5
Forse
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blah..your way is too complicated (for someone that isn't familiar with this). If you need transparent encryption then just get software that creates virtual drive which is encrypted/decrypted on fly...no problems and no worries.
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Old 2004-11-01, 12:20   Link #6
AnimeOni
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It's not that complicated but you have to be very careful. the 3rd party plug-in I suggested is so much easier. you basically launch one screen and create your users and then you are done.

I've been setting up Encrypted Access DBs for many years and know it's complicated. I don't think any experts out there will say it's easy.
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Old 2004-11-01, 16:19   Link #7
syntex
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Join Date: Dec 2003
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thX SO MUCH GUYS really helped me alot
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