Some may ask the question, is Access the end-all to database systems? The simple answer is, "No." Access is not the only database product on the market, nor is it the only database product available from Microsoft or for Windows. There are times you might want to use a different type of database system such as SQL Server or SQL Server Express. If you've only used Microsoft Access for your database needs, you might be wondering why you'd ever need another database system. It could be argued that Access can connect to so many different types of data sources that there's no need for other front-end products. Moreover, developers could make a case that an Access database is a perfect solution for data storage for an application developed outside of the Access client, such as a .NET application that stores data in a back-end Access database. Still, there may be several reasons to use other database products, and the following sections discuss Access features, as well as other database system features, to help you choose what is right for your scenario.
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