Just wondering what software package is available to produce a sql database?
Is it sql server?? which would cost me HEAPS!!! or can I use somthing else.
I know access has an export option but does that create a TRUE SQL database??
SQL Server is just one Database system based on the SQL standard. Others include Oracle, Sybase, DB2, Informix, PeopleSoft, Postgres SQL, Pervasive SQL.
If your just getting started and have a Unix/Linux host or want to work on your local Windows Machine check out MySQL at http://www.mysql.com/. Its is GPL and pretty fast. I would say its a good learning system optimized for web development.
You need to download the MYSQL database server from the Download page. After that run the executable and install the server.
Ok a few terms for you to know.
ODBC = Open DataBase Connectivity
SQL = Structured Query Language
DBMS = DataBase Management System (or Server)
You can not export an Access table as an ODBC file, ODBC doesn't have "files" but it provides ways to connect to different datasources. Access uses a form of SQL to perform database operations. Go into any query and choose "SQL VIEW" off the menu. This form of SQL is called Jet SQL and is specific to Access. MySQL uses MySQL SQL and it has things that are specific to it.
That being said some things work almost universally. These include commands such as SELECT, INSERT, UPDATE, DELETE and clauses such as WHERE, FROM and LIMIT. Other than that most DBMS try to stick to the SQL standard but often times add their own features and options. I recommend a book on SQL for beginners that covers the main three Database systems in use today (Oracle, Sybase and SQL Server). This will get you started and 90% of what you learn from the book can be applied to MySQL, Informix or any other system including Access.