On re-reading my last blog I think I was a little harsh on the Java community, because when I started posting questions about connecting a Java app to an Access database, a single post in the Java Forum produced an informative thread with two participants besides myself, while two posts in the MS Community Forum produced no response at all. So while the Java community might not be hugely interested in problems connecting to a Microsoft database, the Microsoft community seems totally uninterested in a Java related problem.
Further digging revealed that while MS have grudgingly produced a JDBC driver for SQL Server, they have never produced one for MS Access. The Sun Website provides a list of 3rd party vendors producing JDBC drivers for MS Access but paying for a driver seems to defeat the object of using an open source IDE. I had a look at some of them to crib tips on connection syntax, but nothing I tried worked on my installation of NetBeans on two different computers.
So, sadly, it seems that if I am to continue down the Java path, I must abandon MS Access, and with it the last connection to the client-server app I built using first VB5 and then a second edition using VB6 all those years ago.
I shall now use a database that ships with NetBeans. I'm not sure which one yet, and since I can't get a connection to my old Access database, I'm not sure exactly how I shall import all my old data.
I shall return to the JDBC Basics trail, this time resigned to rebuilding from scratch, and resigned to a potentially long slow process.