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FMS Email NewsletterNovember 2012

For Microsoft Access, SQL Server,
Visual Studio .NET, and VB6 Professionals

Greetings!Luke Chung, FMS President

Thanks for joining me in September at the User Group. It was fun to see old and new faces after so many years. Will have to do that again next year!

The day after the user group meeting was September 11th, and I was able to visit the World Trade Center site on the 11th anniversary of the tragedy (pictures). I was also able to meet with some friends and colleagues in the area that was recently flooded by hurricane Sandy.

Disaster Recovery

Our sympathies go to everyone in the northeast impacted by the recent weather. Many buildings sustained damage and some remain closed. We hope for a speedy recovery but also want to remind everyone about the need for a solid disaster recovery plan which we discuss below.


Being in the Washington DC area and battleground state of Virginia, the elections were quite a spectacle. Microsoft hosted an event with Virginia senate candidates Allen and Kaine speaking consecutively (not debating) the day the Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act. I was standing next to Governor Allen as the news was announced. One can debate all the pros and cons around that issue, but for FMS, we received an unexpected health insurance premium refund from it. More info in my blog about it.

Supporting International Entrepreneurship

On a less controversial level, I participated for the second year in the State Department's New Beginnings program. It welcomed 30 young entrepreneurs on a tour of the US to learn about building their businesses and our culture. They held a reception in the diplomatic rooms at the top of the State Department. I was surprised to find myself alone with one of two original copies of the Treaty of Paris that ended the Revolutionary War (pictures). If you're an entrepreneur interested in applying, learn more here and apply at your country's US Embassy.

Keep in Touch

If you're on Facebook, please Like our Facebook page to receive more timely information than we can provide in our newsletter. We've been sharing tips, news, humor, and other experiences there.

All the best,

Luke Chung


Microsoft Access 2010Perform statistical analysis on Microsoft Access dataPerform statistical analysis on Microsoft Access dataNumerical Analysis for Microsoft Access data

Advanced Data Analysis with Total Access Statistics

Total Access Statistics is the most popular and powerful data analysis tool for Microsoft Access. Easily extend the power of Microsoft Access queries to perform advanced calculations using our add-in. All the results are in Access tables (or update your tables).

We recently published a page that describes in detail how to run Simple, Multiple and Polynomial Regressions with Total Access Statistics. This is in addition to other pages on:

Download the free trial. In addition to the add-in, Total Access Statistics also includes a royalty-free runtime library so you can invoke the data analysis with VBA.

Disaster RecoveryDisaster Recovery and Business Continuity

With the recent weather disruptions, we've worked with clients dealing with disaster recovery and business continuity issues. If you haven't already, please read our paper: Creating a Backup and Disaster Recovery Plan for Microsoft Access Database Applications, then do something with it! We've helped organizations host their applications remotely and continue running even when no one could get to their offices.

Verizon's 911 Emergency Call Center Failure

During our summer Derecho, Verizon's emergency 911 service center for Northern Virginia failed when electricity was cut off. It was a huge problem as people who tried to call 911 for help could not reach an operator. The community was notified to call local numbers which was a mess since people lost electricity, internet connections, etc.

As part of Luke Chung's involvement on the Fairfax County IT Policy Advisory Committee, during a Disaster Recovery review, we learned that it was human error. Verizon has two generators to power their 911 center but it took over a day for the technicians to realize they needed to flip a switch to send the generator's power to the phone system. It turns out that the lights were on (they were powered by the other generator), so the technicians thought there was equipment failure and didn't think electricity was the problem. So even a well-designed, redundant backup system collapses if people aren't properly trained to implement the procedures. Fortunately, no one was hurt because of this, but it could have been awful.

Make sure you test your disaster recovery and business continuity plans!

Microsoft Access Database Documentation and Analysis: Total Access AnalyzerMicrosoft Access Design AnalysisMicrosoft Access documenter

Total Access Analyzer Product Review

Total Access Analyzer remains the most popular Microsoft Access add-in of all time. Total Access Analyzer provides comprehensive documentation of your databases so you can better understand how it works. More importantly, it performs advanced analytics on the documentation to pinpoint errors, inconsistencies, performance opportunities, and suggestions for improving your design and VBA coding.

Professional developer, Geoff Hollander, wrote about his experiences with Total Access Analyzer and how it helped him. Here's his review, summarized by:

"Total Access Analyzer is a solid product that any Access developer should have in their toolbox; and one that will pay for itself in short order."

Microsoft AccessMicrosoft's Fix to Fix their Common Control Library Update

On August 14, 2012, Microsoft released a security update for Microsoft Office that included an update to the Windows Common Control MSCOMCTL.OCX. We previously wrote about how that control caused existing applications to crash if they used the Treeview and ListBox controls.

We wrote an article about the issue in Fixing the Microsoft Windows Common Control Library (MSCOMCTL.OCX) Security Update. Microsoft has since released a program you can download and run to fix the security update they applied (KB Article).

Fairfax County Public SchoolsLeveraging Technology to Enhance Teaching for the 21st Century

For several years, Luke Chung serves on a business advisory board to the Superintendent of Fairfax County's Public Schools. FCPS is creating an academy to evaluate how new technology and teaching styles can improve teaching at the same or reduced costs. Luke wrote this blog to discuss his excitement, vision, and concerns for education, taking into account these trends:

  • Facts are Available Instantaneously, Everywhere
  • Science is Multi-Disciplinary
  • Babel Towers are Crashing
  • Non-STEM Subjects are Important
  • Online Teaching is Good and Getting Better
  • Teachers are Evolving into Coaches
  • We Cannot Predict Future Careers; We Need to Teach the Tools to Achieve Success
Overall, we hope they'll teach 21st century skills, and not 20th century skills better.

FMS Professional Solutions GroupLightSwitch for Microsoft Access, SQL Server, and Visual Studio Developers

We've written a new paper entitled:

Microsoft Visual Studio LightSwitchMicrosoft Visual Studio LightSwitch for Microsoft Access, SQL Server, and Visual Studio .NET Database Developers

This paper helps Microsoft Access developers better understand the issues around this technology, its benefits and limitations. We've found it to be an important addition to the Visual Studio family. This platform makes it far more efficient to create basic database applications with Microsoft SQL Server for the web.

The next version of LightSwitch with Visual Studio 2012 includes support for HTML5 which eliminates the need for users to install Silverlight which means you can support mobile devices and tablets that don't support Silverlight. The second preview version is available now.

Our Professional Solutions Group has created several custom LightSwitch applications recently to the delight of our clients. Learn more and contact us to learn how our team can help you.

Microsoft Access for the Veterans AdministrationThank You Veterans!

FMS would like to thank all the veterans for the sacrifices they and their families' have made. By coincidence on Veterans Day, we received our first contract with the Veterans Administration for a Microsoft Access project!

Thank you for your continued support!

Watch our FMS BlogBlog, FMS Facebook PageFacebook page, and FMS TwitterTwitter feed for our latest announcements

Microsoft LightSwitch HTML Client Preview for Visual Studio 2012

Visual Studio's LightSwitch platform is great for database application development. The current version uses Silverlight, the new one supports HTML5. Preview 2 is now available.

LightSwitch Preview


Steven Sinofsky Resigns

Microsoft's VP of Windows, and past head of the Office team, leaves. Here's his
departure Letter



Product Catalog for Microsoft Access, Visual Basic 6, VBA, Office
FMS Product Catalog

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