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> Accessing Locked Database, Access 2000    
 
   
jczst21
post Sep 21 2018, 03:15 PM
Post#1



Posts: 70
Joined: 21-September 18



I have a database that the author 15-20 years ago implemented the setexpired() function in a module so I am unable to open this database.
The author is long gone.

Is there a way to bypass this module in an access 2000 database that will allow me to get into the system?
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theDBguy
post Sep 21 2018, 03:28 PM
Post#2


Access Wiki and Forums Moderator
Posts: 76,378
Joined: 19-June 07
From: SunnySandyEggo


Hi,

Welcome to UtterAccess!
welcome2UA.gif

Just curious... Do you have access to a newer version of Access starting with Access 2007?

--------------------
Just my 2 cents... "And if I claim to be a wise man, it surely means that I don't know" - Kansas
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jczst21
post Sep 21 2018, 03:33 PM
Post#3



Posts: 70
Joined: 21-September 18



oh yeah! i have the later versions. I'm trying to get into this old one.
and i get a pop up that says the database expired contact this person but obviously they used the setexpire() function where after i click ok on the pop up it closes out the database
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GroverParkGeorge
post Sep 21 2018, 03:40 PM
Post#4


UA Admin
Posts: 35,842
Joined: 20-June 02
From: Newcastle, WA


Hi, but we don't necessarily know what the setexpire() function is. I assume it's a custom function created by the original developer?

Try holding down the Shift Key while the database opens to bypass the startup code.

--------------------
My Real Name Is George. Grover Park Consulting is where I do business.
How to Ask a Good Question
Beginning SQL Server
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theDBguy
post Sep 21 2018, 03:51 PM
Post#5


Access Wiki and Forums Moderator
Posts: 76,378
Joined: 19-June 07
From: SunnySandyEggo


Hi,

I was going to say to rename the file and then try opening it using Access 2007 or later and don't enable any code if you're asked to. Then, see if you can get into the code to change what you need to change to make it work for you.

Just my 2 cents...

--------------------
Just my 2 cents... "And if I claim to be a wise man, it surely means that I don't know" - Kansas
Access Website | Access Blog | Email
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jczst21
post Sep 21 2018, 03:52 PM
Post#6



Posts: 70
Joined: 21-September 18



probably was...
yes that did it! that's awesome! thank you!
i'll play with this to do the rest of my conversion to the current version
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GroverParkGeorge
post Sep 21 2018, 04:16 PM
Post#7


UA Admin
Posts: 35,842
Joined: 20-June 02
From: Newcastle, WA


Congratulations on solving the problem.
That's just a reminder. Access is not secure; trying to make it secure is not the most productive use of one's time and resources.
Continued success with the project.

--------------------
My Real Name Is George. Grover Park Consulting is where I do business.
How to Ask a Good Question
Beginning SQL Server
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jczst21
post Sep 22 2018, 01:39 PM
Post#8



Posts: 70
Joined: 21-September 18



So I got into the database and now it seems that the module file I can't get into.
It's not allowing me to access the forms and reports in the database. Any idea how to get into this module? It will not let me into design mode.
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theDBguy
post Sep 22 2018, 02:42 PM
Post#9


Access Wiki and Forums Moderator
Posts: 76,378
Joined: 19-June 07
From: SunnySandyEggo


Hi,

What is the file extension of your database file?

--------------------
Just my 2 cents... "And if I claim to be a wise man, it surely means that I don't know" - Kansas
Access Website | Access Blog | Email
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jczst21
post Sep 24 2018, 08:13 AM
Post#10



Posts: 70
Joined: 21-September 18



it's an .mde...i realize i cannot export forms and reports and such from .mde but I can't get into design mode on these. I believe it's locked down.
If i was able to at least get into design mode or be able to copy these forms and reports, i could bring them into the fresh database file i've created and re-create them.

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isladogs
post Sep 24 2018, 09:34 AM
Post#11


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Posts: 1,680
Joined: 4-June 18
From: Somerset, UK


There are ways of 'unlocking' MDE files which will allow you to edit the design of forms & reports & therefore also to export them to another database.
I'm also confident that the DBGuy knows how to do this as well.

However this will not decompile the MDE and so you still will not have access to the code

However, as I'm sure you will realise, knowing how to do this makes it possible for you to meddle with MDE files for which you do not have ownership rights.
Indeed we do not know that the information you have provided is genuine.

Therefore I'm not going to pass on the information on how to do this.
If you do sufficient research online, you may be able to find out for yourself.
Otherwise I suggest you recreate the forms & reports from scratch - you'll need to do the code anyway

NOTE: There are companies who will reverse engineer MDE files (at a hefty price) but you will need to prove ownership to them

--------------------
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jczst21
post Sep 24 2018, 09:41 AM
Post#12



Posts: 70
Joined: 21-September 18



I'm doing it for a client. As it's a company that hasn't existed since 1999 that had created it and now is long gone.
No I do not own the code...no...but the client also wanted to get into this database which they have the tables now and queries but the forms and reports are still unreachable.
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theDBguy
post Sep 24 2018, 09:59 AM
Post#13


Access Wiki and Forums Moderator
Posts: 76,378
Joined: 19-June 07
From: SunnySandyEggo


Hi,

I've done this for a client before too. All they had to do was prove they own the database and pay the fee to recover the code.

--------------------
Just my 2 cents... "And if I claim to be a wise man, it surely means that I don't know" - Kansas
Access Website | Access Blog | Email
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jczst21
post Oct 4 2018, 08:45 AM
Post#14



Posts: 70
Joined: 21-September 18



So after talking with the client i'm working with...I came to find out this database is working fine on her current machine.
However when we back it up and make a copy to move it to a new machine is when this lock happens.
I thought it was just locked because the date had expired that the author set as the expiration date but it seems it's a per machine install of this .mde and if you move the database...it locks it.

Any thoughts or ideas on that?
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GroverParkGeorge
post Oct 4 2018, 09:01 AM
Post#15


UA Admin
Posts: 35,842
Joined: 20-June 02
From: Newcastle, WA


That would be proprietary code written by the original developer, or perhaps a commercially available tool that implements licensing.

In either case, we can't see the accdb in question, so we couldn't analyze its internals.

However, the more relevant issue is that it is an MDE, i.e. compiled to remove the VBA that you could see and edit anyway. So, even if you can figure out HOW this was done, there's no easy way to do anything about it.

Perhaps the client mentioned to you that they purchased this application with a license to be used on one computer?

--------------------
My Real Name Is George. Grover Park Consulting is where I do business.
How to Ask a Good Question
Beginning SQL Server
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jczst21
post Oct 4 2018, 09:06 AM
Post#16



Posts: 70
Joined: 21-September 18



I'm not sure of her purchase or what the agreement was. From looking at it and going through the screens, I feel this was a custom system designed for her business seeing the detail on the forms and reports.
The company that designed this access db closed up and was never heard of again so even if she wanted to renew the license, she can't. She probably unfortunately does not understand about the per machine licensing...not a lot of non-computer people do, and I feel bad they get taken advantage of. I tried asking her about the licensing and installs, and she does not know, nor do i think it was explained to her. I feel very bad, I'm probably going to have to reverse engineer a lot of this for her.


This is very frustrating. I was able to get the forms and reports but I think some things are tied to code somewhere that I obviously can't see.
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theDBguy
post Oct 4 2018, 10:23 AM
Post#17


Access Wiki and Forums Moderator
Posts: 76,378
Joined: 19-June 07
From: SunnySandyEggo


Hi,

You could ask your client if she is willing to pay for a private company to recover the VBA code from the MDE file. She would just have to prove she owns the database.

--------------------
Just my 2 cents... "And if I claim to be a wise man, it surely means that I don't know" - Kansas
Access Website | Access Blog | Email
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