Read Microsoft Access Database in C#

In this article, you’ll learn how to connect and read Microsoft Access 2003 or earlier versions (.mdb).
 
Note: Originally, this article was published on Jan 01, 2000. This is an updated article.
 
The code snippet in this article is a simple console application that connects with an Access 2000 database, reads data from a table, and displays it on the console. The database has a table named, Developer with two columns, Name and Address.
 
The .NET framework has two common approaches, ADO.NET and LINQ to read databases. ADO.NET uses the OLE-DB data provider to read a Microsoft Access database. The OLE-DB classes are defined in the System.Data.OleDb namespace. We must import the System.Data.OleDb namespace in our code using the following definition.
  1. using System.Data.OleDb; 
The following code is the complete list of the C# console app that connects with an Access database, opens a connection, reads data, and displays it on the system console.
 
The following code snippet adds a new row in the table. The INSERT SQL query is used to add a new row.
  1. using System;  
  2. using System.Data.OleDb;  
  3. namespace AccessDBSample {  
  4.     class Program {  
  5.         static void Main(string[] args) {  
  6.             // Connection string and SQL query    
  7.             string connectionString = @ "Provider=Microsoft.Jet.OLEDB.4.0;Data Source=C:\Mahesh\Data\Dev.mdb";  
  8.             string strSQL = "SELECT * FROM Developer";  
  9.             // Create a connection    
  10.             using(OleDbConnection connection = new OleDbConnection(connectionString)) {  
  11.                 // Create a command and set its connection    
  12.                 OleDbCommand command = new OleDbCommand(strSQL, connection);  
  13.                 // Open the connection and execute the select command.    
  14.                 try {  
  15.                     // Open connecton    
  16.                     connection.Open();  
  17.                     // Execute command    
  18.                     using(OleDbDataReader reader = command.ExecuteReader()) {  
  19.                         Console.WriteLine("------------Original data----------------");  
  20.                         while (reader.Read()) {  
  21.                             Console.WriteLine("{0} {1}", reader["Name"].ToString(), reader["Address"].ToString());  
  22.                         }  
  23.                     }  
  24.                 } catch (Exception ex) {  
  25.                     Console.WriteLine(ex.Message);  
  26.                 }  
  27.                 // The connection is automatically closed becasuse of using block.    
  28.             }  
  29.             Console.ReadKey();  
  30.         }  
  31.     }  

  1. // Add a new row  
  2. strSQL = "INSERT INTO Developer(Name, Address) VALUES ('New Developer', 'New Address')";  
  3. command = new OleDbCommand(strSQL, connection);  
  4. // Execute command  
  5. command.ExecuteReader();  
The following code snippet updates rows that match with the WHERE condition in the query.
  1. // Update rows  
  2. strSQL = "UPDATE Developer SET Name = 'Updated Name' WHERE Name = 'New Developer'";  
  3. command = new OleDbCommand(strSQL, connection);  
  4. command.ExecuteReader();  
The following code snippet deletes rows that match with the WHERE condition.
  1. // Delete rows  
  2. strSQL = "DELETE FROM Developer WHERE Name = 'Updated Name'";  
  3. command = new OleDbCommand(strSQL, connection);  
  4. command.ExecuteReader();  
Note: Access 2013 or Access 2016 versions work differently. If you want to work with Access 2013, 2016 or Office 365 databases, visit this article: Connecting C# Application To MS Access Database