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XML Data Export in Access

This content is no longer actively maintained. It is provided as is, for anyone who may still be using these technologies, with no warranties or claims of accuracy with regard to the most recent product version or service release.

Exporting data and database objects to an XML file is a convenient way to move and store your information in a format that can be used across the Web readily. In Microsoft® Access, you can export just the data, just the schema (data structure), or both to XML files. You can:

  • Export data to an XML file and, optionally, use an XSLT to transform the data to another format
  • Export the data schema using XSD
  • Export the data behind forms and reports to an XML file
  • Send a table or query, or the data behind a form or report, as an e-mail attachment

In addition, you can transform the data to another presentation format using an Extensible Style Language (XSL) file during the export process. You can export tables, queries, and the data behind forms or reports from an Access database (.mdb) and tables, views, and the data behind forms and reports from an Access project (.adp).

Exporting tables, queries, views, datasheets, forms or reports

When you export a database object as an XML document, Access provides several options:

  • You can export just the data from a table, query/view, datasheet, form, or report into an XML file. This data "snapshot" is saved to a file named <filename>.xml.
  • You can export just the schema (data structure) from a table, query/view, datasheet, form, or report to an XML schema file. An XML schema file is a formal specification of the rules for an XML document, providing a series of element names, as well as which elements are permitted in the document and in what combinations. If you select to save the schema as XSD, the file is saved as <filename>.xsd.
    Note   When you export a table to an XML document, you also can export related tables. For example, if you export a table of Customers Orders, you also can choose to export a related Orders Details table and Customers table.
  • If selected, you also can save the structure of a table, query/view, datasheet, form, or report into a file that describes the presentation and connection information. For forms and reports, this file is saved in an XML-based language called ReportML, which provides presentation data as well as a data model for creating a data access page. For tables, queries/views, and datasheets, the presentation file is a spreadsheet-like template. This file is saved as <filename>_report.xml.
  • In addition, when you choose to save the data as XML, you can specify that the data be transformed to a custom display format by using an existing .xsl file. If no .xsl file is specified, the data is saved in standard XML format. The file is saved as <filename>_report.xml.
    Note   If no data is selected for export, then a presentation format is unavailable.

See Also

Working with XML | XML Data Import | Office Applications and XML | XSL: Technology Backgrounder | Access Forms and Reports Conversion | Working with XML in the Design Environment | Developing Office Developer Applications