Microsoft Access - autosave function lost me data!

  theDarkness 21:21 27 Jan 2011

I am using Microsoft Access 2007 to create multiple databases in one access file for easy 'access'!-my problem is that its autosave function, which doesnt seem to be able to switch off, as I switched between databases, lost me data! The reason for this was because I was in the middle of a cut n' paste (transferring one database from a different access file to the main access file I was working on).

Unfortunately the system auto saved the old access file after cutting the data, and for some reason-annoyingly enough, the cut and paste job refused to work. It was only after closing both programs and reopening them later that I had found out that autosave was switched on and I had lost the databases I was trying to transfer! So now I have my main access file without the database content I was transferring, and the original with no databases at all.

I am now wondering if recovery tools of deleted or lost data on a hard drive would be of much use (such as Undelete/R-Tools etc)? If the missing databases are now gone for good? Since my databases were all contained in single access files that were 'updated' under the same access file names, but now with less/no data, would access have written the update into the same location of the hd?

thanks for any info :)

  Woolwell 14:41 28 Jan 2011

An Access file is a single database. There are usually multiple tables within it. Do you mean that you were cutting and pasting from one table to another or from one access file to another? As soon as you change it the database is updated. For what you are doing it may be advisable to keep another copy of the database (access file) as a backup in a different location and then when it goes wrong you can restore the other copy.

  theDarkness 17:01 28 Jan 2011

sorry, I kept referring to the tables as databases-
yes, I was cutting my chosen tables from one access file, and putting them into another access file.
I just wasnt sure if a file recovery tool would work to get my lost tables back or not from the non edited original access file (before any cutting).

  skeletal 17:10 28 Jan 2011

I’m a bit confused with what you are trying to do. As Woolwell has said, Access is different from many applications in that any data manipulation you do is done (almost) instantly to the data file(s). You don’t have “auto save” in the same way as a Word document for example.

The number one rule with databases is NEVER work on a “live” database. A small error in development can easily corrupt or wipe a table. I can’t think of any way to easily recover from such a mishap because the actual data, in the table(s) will have been modified/overwritten. I’ve never tried to recover data using “Undelete” type tools and I don’t know how clever they are with dbs. A lost Windows file is easy to recover so long as it has not been overwritten, but generally I don’t think this would apply for a db file. There is no harm trying if you’ve got such software though!

Also, you say you have multiple dbs so for me, the mystery deepens. What you should do is either have just one db with everything in it, in one place, or, have several “front-ends” linked to a single “back-end”. The back-end is your data and is sacrosanct. Each front end can have all manner of queries and forms doing different things and can interact with the sacrosanct back-end. You can then fiddle to your heart’s content on each front end using dummy data. When they do what you want, you can then link up to the “proper” back-end.

I do hope you can retrieve your data, and others may have a few ideas, but from your description I’m a bit doubtful.

I don’t suppose you have a back-up disc either?


  Woolwell 17:44 28 Jan 2011

If working with two databases (and I am not sure that you are) then I would prefer to export the data from one and import into the other as the data should remain in the original database.

Like skeletal I'm doubtful that you can recover your data as the file has overwritten the original data.


  theDarkness 23:24 28 Jan 2011

thanks for the replies :) Sorry for the confusion-I was only working with tables. I had 2 access files, and wanted to simplify matters by transferring all my tables from access file 1 into access file 2, which also had content. I simply wanted to have all my tables in one access file/database, access file 2, as all the tables in 2 were also related.

I noticed that access had a quick cut and paste option for tables, so I was able to open up both access file 1 and 2 at the same time, highlight all the tables inside access 1, and cut them. For some reason I could not paste these tables into access file 2. I then had to close access file 1 that I was cutting from, as I could not undo the cut. The system must have saved/backed up access file 1 just before I closed it, as after reopening I could see that I now had an empty access file with no database tables at all. The access file I was going to paste into, 2, remained unchanged with all its tables intact, thankfully.

I know that I should always work from frequently updated backups, especially for large databases with multiple tables, and I did not realise that the program saves the access files I work upon immediately, after changing any data-my fault of course! I do have a backup of what I had 'cut' from access file 1, its not as updated as Id like, but it can be done. Ive been trying a few things out with access at the moment, and for some reason the cut and paste option, to cut from one access file and paste into another when they are both open, now works! My system must have played up at the last moment previously, but I have no idea why (an old system, lack of ram-could this be possible even if I am only dealing with databases?)

I know that on a hard drive, deleted files arent really deleted, windows simply no longer lists the "deleted file" after emptying the recycle bin, makes sure the user no longer has access to the file, and lets the hard drive overwrite the space it was in once again with other/newer data. My question is whether the original file can still be accessed through a file recovery program, or if updated files are literally overwritten, unlike the above standard process windows uses to delete files? I have tried some data recovery tools but I could not locate the access file 1 with its original non-cut data, only the new one with no data, so it does look like its not possible to get it back

I have a question.. why on earth would you CUT and paste, and not COPY and paste? I know its too late to blame, but I've been in IT for years, and have NEVER used CUT and paste unless it was data i wanted deleted in the first place.

  lotvic 22:58 11 Jul 2011

krisstariske welcome to the forum. May I respectfully and politely suggest you change your User name to something other than your email address. If someone were to copy and paste your username into a reply to you it would then probably be harvested by the bots and you would get lots of spam. It would also show up in results of google searches for problems/threads on pca that you had posted in.

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

Elsewhere on IDG sites

Alienware 17 R4 2017 review

These brilliant Lego posters show just what children's imaginations are capable of

Mac power user tips and hidden tricks

Comment réinitialiser votre PC, ordinateur portable ou tablette Windows ?