Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Use Visual FoxPro and Visual Studio - and Share Your Existing DBFs

I put together a short screencast (10 minutes) showing how Advantage can share Visual FoxPro DBF tables with Visual Studio. This provides a variety of alternatives when migrating existing applications to client/server.

In the screencast I demo a Visual FoxPro application using Advantage sharing data with a Visual Studio application using Advantage (not earth shattering news, I know). I then move on to show something I do think is worth some consideration; A Visual FoxPro application using DBF tables WITHOUT Advantage (standard DBF access, no ODBC or OLE DB) sharing data with a new application written using the Advantage .NET Data Provider.

The second portion of the screencast calls out a major benefit to Visual FoxPro developers. You can continue to support your existing applications while doing new development using Visual Studio and all applications can share the exact same database.

If you find that interesting, be certain to also check out my previous post explaining some of the ISAM-specific functionality Advantage brings to .NET development via our direct table access.

While I call out Visual Studio in this screencast, the same approach can be taken with any of the development environments Advantage supports. Delphi, Visual Objects, JDBC, PHP, etc. Any of the clients listed on the downloads page of the DevZone can share data with an existing Visual FoxPro application.

View the screencast now

Download the screencast (19MB, open fox_sharing.html after unzipping)


Brian said...

Hi JD,

Where is the DBCConvert.prg? I installed the Advantage 9 ODBC Driver and can't find the prg anywhere.

I just found out about Advantage through FoxRockX and it looks like a great alternative for VFPers, especially if it works with the new VFP 9 data types. I noticed that you used the ODBC driver to connect via VFP, but can it be used to access the VFP tables through other products? Specifically I'm struggling to find a way to read VFP databases and free tables through Talend and Pentaho ETL software since they only connect via generic ODBC. Unfortunately I can't get the Advantage ODBC driver to work with Talend either...


- Brian

J.D. Mullin said...

Hi Brian,

DBCConvert.prg is installed with our OLE DB Provider (it uses an OLE DB connection to manipulate the Advantage database it creates). DBCConver.prg is located in the base installation directory. The default directory is c:\program files\Advantage 9.0

Yes, our ODBC driver can be used from any interface that consumes ODBC data sources (Crystal Reports, Microsoft Word and Excel, etc.).

I've never used Talend. I'll try to make some time to try it and see if there is any way to get our ODBC driver to work with it.

If you have any other questions feel free to post to our
Advantage.FoxPro newsgroup.

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