When to Use MSDE
This content is no longer actively maintained. It is provided as is, for anyone who may still be using these technologies, with no warranties or claims of accuracy with regard to the most recent product version or service release.
Consider using MSDE as a desktop database alternative to an Access database in the following ways:
As a small-workgroup server database. You can develop your solutions by using an Access project connected to MSDE, anticipating that your workgroup and its business requirements may grow over time, eventually needing the full functionality of SQL Server 7.0 running on a larger network server.
As a replication subscriber in a SQL Server replicated database environment. For example, you may have mobile users working in the field who access and update MSDE on laptops or disconnected computers, but then periodically connect to the Master SQL Server database to reconcile changes.
To easily develop and test an Access project or client/server application on a personal computer or workstation. You would then modify the Access project connection information to connect to a SQL Server database on a remote server for final testing and production.