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How can I read data from my database into Surfer?

Surfer allows data to be read directly from several sources, including Excel XLS and XLSX, dBase DBF, and Access MDB and ACCDB files. Click File | Open and select these files directly to create maps directly from the data.
 
Other files, such as information in a database can also be loaded using the Microsoft ODBC connections. Surfer uses Microsoft's DataLink program to access databases.  DataLink provides support to access databases stored on a network (such as Oracle).  For information about how DataLink works, please refer to Microsoft's website and help files.  You may find this page useful for establishing the connection.
 
Note: If you will need to have the same bit-version of Surfer as the version of your database software. So if you are loading or connecting to a Microsoft Access MDB or ACCDB file and you have the 32-bit version of Microsoft Office, you will need the 32-bit version of Surfer. 
 
Note: Office 365 installed as click-to-run prevents other applications from using the Access ODBC driver. You may get the error that Surfer is unable to connect to the ODBC database driver. In this case, you can install the latest Microsoft Access Runtime. Be sure to install the same bit-version of the runtime as you have Surfer installed (e.g. if you have Surfer 64-bit installed, then install the 64-bit version of the runtime).
 
Some examples of opening a database file or loading a database are given below.
 
Method 1: Opening a Microsoft Access Database (*.MDB or *.ACCDB)
  1. Click File | Open (or any command that prompts to open a data file).
  2. In the Open or Open Data dialog, select an ACCDB or MBD file and click Open.
  3. In the Database Tables and Fields dialog, a list of tables is displayed with a preview of the table contents. Select the appropriate table to load.
  4. Click OK and the data is opened.

Method 2: Loading a Recently Loaded Database

  1. Click Home | Grid Data | Grid Data, or File | Open.
  2. Click the Database button in the Open Data or Open dialog.
  3. If a database has been recently loaded, the Recent Database Connections dialog appears. You can click on the recently loaded database and click OK
  4. In the Data Link Properties dialog, verify the Connection string is correct and click OK.
  5. In the Database Tables and Fields dialog, select the table and any fields that you want to import and click the OK button. The information should be imported into the worksheet.

Method 3: Loading a New Database (Microsoft Access example)

  1. Click Home | Grid Data | Grid Data, or File | Open.
  2. Click the Database button in the Open Data or Open dialog.
  3. If a database has been recently loaded, the Recent Database Connections dialog appears. You can click on the recently loaded database and click OK.
  4. In the Data Link Properties dialog, on the Provider page, select the appropriate driver, such as Microsoft OLE DB Provider for ODBC Drivers, and click Next.
  5. On the Connection page, choose Use connection string and click the Build button.
  6. In the Select Data Source dialog on the File Data Source page, click the New button.
  7. In the Create New Data Source dialog, select the appropriate file type, such as Microsoft Access Driver (*.mdb), and click Next.
  8. In the Create New Data Source dialog, press the Browse button.
  9. In the Save As dialog, choose the directory where the database file is located. Type in a File name for the data source connection. This can be the same as the database file that you are opening, or it can be something entirely different. For this example, type in example for the File name. Click the Save button.
  10. In the Create New Data Source dialog, click the Next button.
  11. In the Create New Data Source dialog, click the Finish button.
  12. In the ODBC Microsoft Access Setup dialog, click the Select button.
  13. In the Select Database dialog, select the database file that you wish to open and click the OK button.
  14. In the ODBC Microsoft Access Setup dialog, click the OK button.
  15. In the Select Data Source dialog, click the OK button.
  16. In the ODBC Microsoft Access Setup dialog, click the OK button.
  17. In the Data Link Properties dialog, click the OK button.
  18. In the Database Tables and Fields dialog, select the table and any fields that you want to import and click the OK button. The information is imported.

Method 4: Loading a New Database (SQL example)

  1. Click Home | Grid Data | Grid Data, or File | Open.
  2. Click the Database button in the Open Data or Open dialog.
  3. If a database has been recently loaded, the Recent Database Connections dialog appears. You can click on the recently loaded database and click OK.
  4. In the Data Link Properties dialog, on the Provider tab, select the appropriate driver, such as Microsoft OLE DB Provider for for SQL Server, and click Next.
  5. On the Connection tab, click the Refresh button to refresh the list of connected SQL databases.
  6. Click the drop-down list under Select or enter a server name: and select the appropriate SQL server.
  7. Select the appropriate log on option in the Enter information to log on to the server section. Input any User name and Password, if required.
  8. Click the drop-down list under Select the database on the server and select the appropriate database.
  9. Click OK.
  10. In the Database Tables and Fields dialog, select the table and any fields that you want to import and click the OK button. The information should be imported into the worksheet.

 

Updated February 20, 2017

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