This article was previously published under Q243895
This article has been archived. It is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.
This article applies only to a Microsoft Access database (.mdb).
Novice: Requires knowledge of the user interface on single-user computers.
When you open a Microsoft Access database (an .mdb file), you may see a password prompt, even though you never set a password on the database. Nothing that you enter allows you to pass by the password prompt.
This behavior can happen if you directly open a database in a non-Access application, such as Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Notepad, and so on, and then save the database in that application. In some cases, the application that you use to open the database may automatically save a document after you open it, for example, a macro in Word.
The Microsoft Jet database engine is a distinct binary format. Opening your Access database directly in a non-Access application has no benefit because the data that you see is indecipherable. Also, saving the database in the non-Access application makes the file completely unusable to Access. You are unable to recover the data from, repair, or compact an Access database file that has been saved to any other format.
NOTE: Some macro viruses may cause applications to save documents automatically. Therefore, if your non-Access application contains such a virus, even though you may open the Access database and close it without saving, the database file is still saved in a non-Access format.
Do not try to open a Microsoft Access database (.mdb) in an application other than Microsoft Access. If you want to view your Access data in another application, try linking to it through ODBC or Office Links.
To use Office Links, on the Tools menu, click Office Links, and then click one of the commands. This causes a wizard to appear, and the wizard then guides you through the process.
For more information about using ODBC, click Microsoft Access Help on the Help menu, type odbc in the Office Assistant or the Answer Wizard, and then click Search to view the topic.
For additional information about a similiar issue, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
321905 ACC2000: Database Password Prompt Appears After You Open a Database Using a Hyperlink or Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) Code