Sakila Database In Microsoft Access File Format
Over the course of (more than) twenty years I have taught Microsoft programs like SQL, Excel, and Access. In the process of teaching I endeavor to educate students about different well known data sets that include: Contoso, AdventureWorks, Northwind, Sakila, Chinook, Lahman and others. I use these examples to teach star schemas, database design, data normalization, and PivotTables for data analysis.
I was recently surprised to learn that I was unable to find the Sakila database in a Microsoft Access file format. For those of you unfamiliar with the Sakila data set, it represents a fictional VHS rental chain with two stores and a few employees. For acknowledgements about the Sakila data set, please visit https://dev.mysql.com/doc/sakila/en/sakila-acknowledgments.html
For most students, installing MySQL server and MySQL Workbench, as well as importing the Sakila sample data is a task that is too complex. To remedy this shortcoming I took time to import Sakila’s data into Microsoft Access and I provide that database here for public consumption at no cost. Educators can use this data to teach structured query language.
That said, for those who will download and work with this data, please be informed that:
1) The data is provided under GNU public license for educational and entertainment purposes only. For more information about the GNU public license please visit: https://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-3.0.en.html
2) I do not warrant the data against defects and by downloading this file you agree to use it at your own risk.
3) In the process of converting the data, the data types are not optimal due to data conversion issues between MySQL and Access. Text fields are all set at 255 characters, primary and foreign key fields are not set as long integers that auto increment. In Microsoft Access the imported numeric data has defaulted to a double data type.
4) Because I find students are disappointed when querying ‘old date data’, I have modified the original Sakila dates that span from May 2005 to February 2006 to spread out evenly across the full year 2020 in the rental and payments tables. Other dates have not been modified.
5) Because Microsoft Access does not support either Views or Stored Procedures, those elements of the Sakila database are not included.
6) I have created a relationship diagram and suggest the first task when viewing an unfamiliar database is to explore the entity diagram. Users are welcome to change the relationships I hastily made.
I hope this data is useful for students seeking education and entertainment. Please email me through the contact form if you encounter any problems I may be able to resolve or fix.
Link to Download the Sakila Database in Microsoft Access file format (6.5Mb)