Increasing Microsoft Access Record Limit: A Step-by-Step Guide


Microsoft Access is a powerful tool for managing and analyzing data. However, it comes with a default limitation of 9,500 records that can be processed in a single table. This limitation can be frustrating when you’re dealing with larger datasets. Fortunately, there’s a solution to this problem, and it involves tweaking a few registry settings. In this blog post, we’ll walk you through the process of increasing the record limit in Microsoft Access to a more substantial 200,000 records.

Disclaimer: Modifying the Windows Registry can be risky. Proceed with caution, and consider creating a backup of your registry before making any changes.

Step 1: Accessing the Windows Registry Editor

To begin, press the Windows Key + R on your keyboard to open the Run dialog. Type regedit and press Enter. This will launch the Windows Registry Editor.

Step 2: Navigating to the Access Connectivity Engine Settings

In the Registry Editor, you’ll need to navigate to the following path:

Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Office\ClickToRun\REGISTRY\MACHINE\Software\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\Office\16.0\Access Connectivity Engine\Engines\ACE

This path contains the settings for the Access Connectivity Engine, which controls the behavior of Microsoft Access.

Step 3: Changing the MaxLocksPerFile Value

Within the ACE folder, you should see a key called MaxLocksPerFile. By default, this value is set to 9,500. To increase the record limit, double-click on MaxLocksPerFile to open the Edit DWORD (32-bit) Value window.

Step 4: Adjusting the MaxLocksPerFile Value

In the Edit DWORD (32-bit) Value window, you can change the “Value data” field. To accommodate up to 200,000 records, set the value to 200000. Then, click the “OK” button to save your changes.

Step 5: Restart Microsoft Access

After making this change, you should restart Microsoft Access for the new setting to take effect. Close Access if it’s open and then open it again.

Congratulations! You’ve successfully increased the record limit in Microsoft Access to work with more than 9,500 records. Now, you can work with larger datasets without running into limitations.

Remember that modifying the Windows Registry carries some risk, so it’s essential to be cautious and create backups if necessary. Additionally, the steps provided are specific to the configuration mentioned in your notes. Registry paths and keys may vary slightly depending on your specific version of Microsoft Access and Windows, so make sure to adjust accordingly.

Always exercise care and consider consulting with an IT professional if you’re uncomfortable making registry changes. Happy data managing!

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