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Graph: dbPix image storage vs OLE Embedding and Linking in Microsoft Access

Continuous Image Forms in Access - Paging

This sample presents a solution to displaying multiple records/images on an Access form, without using 'continuous forms'. Examples are provided for both embedded and external-file storage (ie images stored in the database tables, or as external image files).

Due to technical limitations it is usually not possible to use Access 'Continuous Forms' with images, photos, pictures or graphics. In many cases it may also be undesirable: unless the recordset will only ever contain a small number of pictures, opening the form could cause potentially thousands of images to be retrieved and decoded, with a huge and unnecessary disk/network & CPU load. After all, only so-many pictures can be displayed on-screen at one time.

Note that this sample is now updated for DBPix 2.0, and is incorporated into the Main DBPix sample - the latest version is available below:

Download Sample   1.2 MB (Requires DBPix)

Download DBPix  3.7 MB ( About DBPix )


sample screenshot - Continuous Image Forms in Access - Paging - graphic photo picture database samples

System Requirements

Any Win32 platform (e.g. Windows 95, 98, ME, NT, 2000, XP, Vista, Server 2003 or Server 2008).
Access 2000 or later (Access 2000, XP/2002, 2003 or 2007).
DBPix 2.0


Unzip the archive into a new/empty folder.


Open the form 'Embedded_Multi' or 'External_Multi', to work with embedded images or external files respectively.

Use the Next/Prev buttons to navigate through the records. Click a photo thumbnail to view a 'Detail' image. Right click the detail image to view tools and options, and to display image info, such as EXIF digital camera photo info.

Note that the sample form is read-only - to add, edit or delete records/photos use the corresponding 'main' form.

Technical Overview

The form uses a fixed layout of 8 DBPix controls. The controls are not bound, and the form has no data source. Instead, an ADO recordset is opened in code, and then the data is loaded into the controls. ADO 'Paging' is used to display a page of records at a time.

Files & Code

File / module Description  

Embedded_Multi Form module for the 'Embedded' example View Code
External_Multi Form module for the 'External' example View Code
GetImageFolder Returns the path for external image files View Code