Review: Data On The Run
Need Pocket Access? Here's an interim solution.
I'm starting to keep an eye on the PDA market as a new frontier for development
these days. It's somewhat sobering to realize that the Pocket PC is now
much more powerful and less expensive than the IBM AT clone that I first
programmed (never mind how long ago that was). The PocketPC operating
system (once Windows CE, soon CE.NET) has made great strides as well.
But all is not 100 percent rosy in PocketPC land. For one thing, database
users have some difficult choices to make. The synchronization software
can still keep an Access database on the desktop in tune with a Pocket
Access database on the PDA -- but Microsoft is no longer supplying Pocket
Access with the operating system. What's a PocketPC programmer to do?
One good option is to download a 15-day trial of Data On The Run, give
it a spin, and then pay the paltry registration fee. Data On The Run works
with databases in the Pocket Access format, and it can perform most of
the basic operations you need:
- Browse data in form view or list view
- Create new tables or databases
- Search for records by setting a filter
- Create drop-down lists for relational data entry
Data On The Run isn't an end-user tool; it gives you raw access to your
data, and presumes that you know what you're doing. But it's a great tool
for the developer who's using Pocket Access databases to hold information
for an application on the Pocket PC. You can use Data On The Run to easily
examine (and, if need be, change) the data that your application has stored,
without the bother of transferring it all back to the PC -- which, after
all, may still be back in your office. If you (like most developers) feel
that good tools are one of the first steps to doing good development,
take a look at this little gem when you venture into those uncharted PocketPC
Mike Gunderloy, MCSE, MCSD, MCDBA, is a former MCP columnist and the author of numerous development books.