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Author Topic: Which database program for lists?  (Read 642 times)
AJ4DW
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Posts: 130




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« on: January 09, 2008, 09:23:29 AM »

I used to program dBase IV+ about 20-25 years ago, but have been away from all that since then, so I need some help.

I have a database of all the hams in my county which I use to keep track of the ARES members. I need to be able to manipulate that data, add fields, search by fields, and pull out reports (e.g.: who's got HF capabilities, who has emergency power, where are they located, etc).

What programs are available to do that which will run on Windows XP (Access, Excel)? Any free programs that are worthwhile?

Many thanks in advance.

73 de Carl AJ4DW
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KE4DRN
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Posts: 3730




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« Reply #1 on: January 09, 2008, 04:26:44 PM »

hi carl,

http://www.oracle.com/technology/products/database/xe/index.html

Oracle has released a free version, I have not used it.

73 james
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AJ4DW
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Posts: 130




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« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2008, 07:53:12 PM »

Thanks James... I downloaded the free Oracle program. I'll probably get to experiment with it this weekend (everything seems to take a month to get done!).

73 de Carl AJ4DW
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KB1HTW
Member

Posts: 48




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« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2008, 08:32:32 AM »

Carl,

If you find Oracle not to your liking, you can try MySQL (http://dev.mysql.com/downloads/), PostgreSQL (http://www.postgresql.org/), or Base - part of the OpenOffice.org suite (http://www.openoffice.org/product/base.html).

All are open source and free/no charge. MySQL is big in the enterprise space as well, and they have a paid-version as well. I've been playing with it a bit in making my media PC based on MythTV. It uses MySQL for storing broadcast guides, and for building search indexes based on the metadata stored with music and video files.

I have no experience with PostgreSQL, but it is used in various Air Force systems I'm familiar with at work; nor do I have any experience using Base - although I do use the OpenOffice.org suite. It's somewhat similar to MS Access, but it's really just a front-end to OpenOffice's HSQL database engine, but can query just about any other database engine. My own real database experience ended with Informix on SCO Unix almost 20 years ago. I was modifying an Ericsson telco central office application for use in the US market (T1 vs E1, meters vs feet, MDF differences - not fun...)

I think Oracle or any of these are more than capable of handling your ARES data. Glad to see you're a db wonk and not stuffing it into a spreadsheet...

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KB1HTW
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Posts: 48




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« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2008, 08:36:15 AM »

Forgot to mention - while all these database applications are normally associated with Linux/Unix, all are available for Windows (XP and Vista). Since MythTv is a Linux-only application now, I'm running it and MySQL on Fedora 8 Linux.
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AJ4DW
Member

Posts: 130




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« Reply #5 on: January 10, 2008, 11:46:30 AM »

Yeah, a spreadsheet won't do it, db's are much more flexible (read "useful"). I see I'll have something to do this weekend after the Greenwood hamfest. <G>

73 de Car AJ4DW
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KE4DRN
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Posts: 3730




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« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2008, 04:04:45 PM »

hi,

Oracle Database 10g Release 2 (10.2.0.1)
Express Edition for Linux x86
is also available.

when you are finished with the project,
it would make a great eham and/or QST article.

my area is operations and support but I do enjoy
working on a db or program now and then.

73 james
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AD5TQ
Member

Posts: 7




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« Reply #7 on: February 24, 2008, 07:13:24 AM »

Lot's of good suggestions here. But you mentioned reports.

The Oracle, MYSQL and Postgress solutions are database engines. You must write an active content web page to enter and access your data.

Delphi has a free download version now but doesn't include a report writer.

MS Access has all you need but is not free.

We just went thru this same decision process and obtained an old version of Delphi that included the report writer for cheap (version 2 or 3). Also considered the late dbase program Foxpro for windows but couldn't find one.

I'd say pony up and get a copy of MS Access unless you have a lot time on your hands.
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