Link to or import from dBASE

dBASE was one of the original database management systems and the dBASE file format (.dbf) has been around for a long time. Microsoft Access supports importing from and linking to the following dBASE file formats: dBASE III, dBASE IV, dBASE 5, and dBASE 7.

Import data from a dBASE file

Note    dBASE support has the following requirements:

  • Office 365 subscription    If you are an Office 365 subscriber, make sure you have the latest version of Office. If you are an IT professional managing the Office 365 update process, check out the channel releases page to learn which updates are provided in each channel

  • Office 2016    Install the following updates in order: May 2, 2017, update for Office 2016 (KB3115501) and May 2, 2017, update for Access 2016 (KB3178700).

  • Office 2016 Click-to-Run editions    Updates are automatically applied.

  1. Select External Data, in the Import & Link group select More, and then select dBASE file.

  2. In the Get External Data – dBASE File dialog box, select Browse.

  3. In the File Open dialog box, locate the dBASE file, and then click Open.

    The default file format is dBASE III. To change to dBASE IV or dBASE 5, select a file format from the drop-down list next to the File name box. Although dBASE 7 is not listed, dBASE 5 and DBASE 7 are essentially the same file format.

  4. In the Get External Data – dBASE File dialog box, select Import the source data into a new table in the current database., and then select OK.

  5. Optionally, save the import steps. For more information, see Run a saved import or export operation.

As a result, a table is created with the dBASE data. If there are no column headers in the dBASE file, Access creates default column headers.

Link to data in a dBASE file

  1. Select External Data, in the Import & Link group select More, and then select dBASE file.

  2. In the Get External Data – dBASE File dialog box, select Browse.

    The default file format is dBASE III. To change to dBASE IV or dBASE 5, select a file format from the drop-down list next to the File name box. Although dBASE 7 is not listed, dBASE 5 and DBASE 7 are essentially the same file format.

  3. In the File Open dialogbox, locate the dBASE file, and then click Open.

  4. In the Get External Data – dBASE file dialog box, select Link to the data source by creating a linked table., and then select OK.

As a result, a linked table is created with the dBASE data. If there are no column headers in the dBASE file, Access creates default column headers in the linked table.

Access 2013 doesn't support dBASE

Linking to or importing from dBASE is not supported in Access 2013. To work with dBASE files, consider upgrading to an Office 365 subscription. Linking to or importing from dBASE is available in the Office 365 subscription versions of Access.

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Import data from a dBASE file

  1. Select External Data, in the Import & Link group select More, and then select dBASE file.

  2. In the Get External Data – dBASE File dialog box, select Browse.

  3. In the File Open dialog box, locate the dBASE file, and then click Open.

    The default file format is dBASE III. To change to dBASE IV or dBASE 5, select a file format from the drop-down list next to the File name box. Although dBASE 7 is not listed, dBASE 5 and DBASE 7 are essentially the same file format.

  4. In the Get External Data – dBASE File dialog box, select Import the source data into a new table in the current database., and then select OK.

  5. Optionally, save the import steps. For more information, see Run a saved import or export operation.

As a result, a table is created with the dBASE data. If there are no column headers in the dBASE file, Access creates default column headers.

Link to data in a dBASE file

  1. Select External Data, in the Import & Link group select More, and then select dBASE file.

  2. In the Get External Data – dBASE File dialog box, select Browse.

  3. In the File Open dialog box, locate the dBASE file, and then click Open.

    The default file format is dBASE III. To change to dBASE IV or dBASE 5, select a file format from the drop-down list next to the File name box. Although dBASE 7 is not listed, dBASE 5 and DBASE 7 are essentially the same file format.

  4. In the Get External Data – dBASE File dialog box, select Link to the data source by creating a linked table., and then select OK.

As a result, a linked table is created with the dBASE data. If there are no column headers in the dBASE file, Access creates default column headers in the linked table.

Import data from a dBASE file

  1. Select External Data, in the Import group select More, and then select dBASE file.

  2. In the Get External Data – dBASE File dialog box, select Browse.

  3. In the File Open dialog box, locate the dBASE file, and then click Open.

    The default file format is dBASE III. To change to dBASE IV or dBASE 5, select a file format from the drop-down list next to the File name box. Although dBASE 7 is not listed, dBASE 5 and DBASE 7 are essentially the same file format.

  4. In the Get External Data – dBASE File dialog box, select Import the source data into a new table in the current database., and then select OK.

  5. Optionally, save the import steps. For more information, see Run a saved import or export operation.

As a result, a table is created with the dBASE data. If there are no column headers in the dBASE file, Access creates default column headers.

Link to data in a dBASE file

  1. Select External Data, in the Import group select More, and then select dBASE file.

  2. In the Get External Data – dBASE File dialog box, select Browse.

  3. In the File Open dialog box, locate the dBASE file, and then click Open.

    The default file format is dBASE III. To change to dBASE IV or dBASE 5, select a file format from the drop-down list next to the File name box. Although dBASE 7 is not listed, dBASE 5 and DBASE 7 are essentially the same file format.

  4. In the Get External Data – dBASE file dialog box, select Link to the data source by creating a linked table., and then select OK.

As a result, a linked table is created with the dBASE data. If there are no column headers in the dBASE file, Access creates default column headers in the linked table.

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