Creating an ODBC Connection (Windows 2000 Server)
About Microsoft ODBC.
Open Database Connectivity (ODBC) is a widely accepted application
programming interface (API) for database access. It is based
on the Call-Level Interface (CLI) specifications from X/Open
and ISO/IEC for database APIs and uses Structured Query Language
(SQL) as its database access language. (Microsoft)
In English, that statement from Microsoft means that you
can use ODBC as a medium for reading from, and adding to almost
any type of database for your web applications. An API is
required because there are so many types of Database you could
be using (FoxPro, MS Access, SQL Server, Paradox..etc..) and
in an ideal world you should only need one Language for communicating
with these databases, hence the ODBC API.
This tutorial will demonstrate the steps required to set up
Microsoft ODBC for an existing Microsoft Access 97 database
in Windows 2000 Server (although exactly the same steps could
be used to set up an existing Microsoft Access 2000 database).
1. Creating and storing a database.
In this case, I have two disks on my server. One hosts
the OS and the other is for storage. Therefore, the
intranet.mdb database is going to be hosted in a directory
called "DBase" on my D: drive (shown above
in Fig 1). Simply make a new directory and drop your
database into it. It is a good idea to keep the name
simple, avoiding capitals and using underscore instead
It's worth pointing out at this stage that because
it's your server that's going to be doing all the work,
you don't need to store your database within your site.
In fact, if your server is one of several in a Network,
you don't even need to store it on your Web Server.
2. Where to find the Data Sources Dialogue
Click on "Start", then "Administrative
Tools" and you'll find Data Sources (ODBC) just
above DHCP in the list (shown in Fig 2).
3. The ODBC Data Source Administrator:
You'll probably find that the dialogue defaults to "User
DSN". Make sure that you select the "System
DSN" tag and click "Add" (Fig 3).
4. Creating a New Data Source:
In our case, intranet.mdb is a Microsoft Access 97 Database.
Therefore, we need to highlight "Microsoft Access
Driver (*.mdb)" and click "Finish" (Fig
5. ODBC Microsoft Access Setup:
First of all, give the Data Source a name and keep it
simple. It's a good idea to give it the same name as
the database file (as shown in Fig 5). Then, give it
a friendly description in case other Administrators
need to know what it's for. Finally, you'll need to
point ODBC at the database you created in step 1. In
my case it is D:\DBase\intranet.mdb. Leave all the other
options as they are and click OK.
6. ODBC with new database connection:
If you have followed these instructions correctly, your
ODBC dialogue box should look something like Fig 6 (above).
You can make as many DSN (Delivery Status Notification)
connections as you like and to almost all types of databases.
If the Driver you require isn't listed, you should be
able to find it by checking the Web Site of your Database