Monday, January 10, 2011

Map3D and 64bit ODBC Connections

So with more users upgrading to 64 bit operating systems more are failing to connect to their access or excel files. Maybe you try to drag and drop a mdb file on the Map Explorer or tried to use a ODBC connection in the Data Connect. Did you get one of these messages to popup?
DataConnectFail   FailToConnect
Well the problem is Windows 64 bit does not have any ODBC drivers for Access or Excel files. If you look at the ODBC connection manager all we see are the drivers for SQL. 
So what is a user to do? Well we can not throw out the new OS and reinstall a 32 bit OS, but we can do  something else. If you are on subscription you can still install and run AutoCAD Map3D 2009 which is a 32 bit application and will run on a 64 bit OS if you install the correct version that needs to be downloaded. Check with your reseller on getting the link to download or contact support on your subscription site. Once you installed the 2009 version on your 64 bit system you can now make an ODBC connection to our files. However you can not use the ODBC Connection Manager from the control center. You need to use the ODBC Connection Manger for 32 bit. Browse to the folder  C:\Windows\SysWOW64 and locate odbcad32.exe. This will allow you to set up your ODBC connection for a 32 bit application.
Now you can use your mdb and xls file again. Just remember you need to use AutoCAD Map 3D 2009. Obvious you do not want to use 2009 forever otherwise you would not have updated, so now may be time to start looking at copying your data to SQL databases. And before users start complaining that Autodesk is not taking care of it’s long time users and leaving them out in the rain, I can ensure you that Autodesk along with other software developers are on Microsoft’s case trying to get ODBC drivers for 64 bit OS.

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