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Update Configuration File - FE Started by User?

Settings - FE Started by User?The problem is that users can start the Access FE database file directly bypassing the version updating that the Auto FE Updater performs. In particular in Windows 7 and Windows 2008 Server R2 users can pin the Access FE database file to the task bar and start your Access app directly.

While this feature is great for other applications, such as pinning frequently used Word Or Excel files, it's bad for Access front end database files which are updated from the file server.

In Windows Vista and older operating systems it is possible, but considerably more difficult, for users to locate the FE on their own system and start the FE directly. This problem could also be caused by folks using the My Recent Documents list. (I don't recall any emails from anyone on this problem.)

The solution is for the Auto FE Updater to pass a special command line value to your Access application. Your application then runs some code which looks for the special command line value. If the value is found execution proceeds normally in your Access FE file.

If this special command line value is not found then the code in your Access app starts up the Auto FE Updater exactly as though the user had clicked on a shortcut and then closes down your Access app.  Now the Auto FE Updater does it's processing, if any, and starts up the Access FE database  file passing in the expected value.   All the user sees is a brief flicker as Access shuts down and starts up again. 

All the necessary code is supplied in the Auto FE Updater Sample Code Vx.xx.MDB file included in the Auto FE Updater download zip file.

Note that there is a safeguard in the Auto FE Updater that displays a message if the utility starts executing again within five seconds. This solves the problem of the Access FE application and the Auto FE Updater somehow starting each other up in a vicious end less loop.

One problem is if you are passing command-line switches using the command line from the Auto FE Updater to your Access FE. You must strip out the special value which is passed by the Auto FE update. If you are using the Command function anywhere in your code I would recommend replacing it with the AutoFEUpdater_Command function as supplied by the imported code.. This function removes the special value.

If you are using the Start Method = Executable and you need to use this option then the exe the Auto FE Updater is calling needs to be able to receive command line arguments and pass them on to Access.

Actions required in your Access database front end.

Import the code module zmdlAutoFEUpdater into your Access FE.

As the very first item in your startup routine insert the following line
Call AutoFEUpdater_CheckStartup

Your startup routine will either be a function called by the autoexec macro or your startup form as specified in your startup options.


If you would like to display a message to the user on exiting your app you can use the following:
Call AutoFEUpdater_Msg
This is particularly useful if you have an idle detect timeout routine and you want the FE to completely exit so as to not retain any locks on any files.

Other options will be added to the code module in the future.

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