Can I open a database made in LO Base with another application?open

I have a LO base database which gets major data changes at this time of year -so a good time for me to make changes to the set up.

I am the sole user, will likely only ever be one user at a time. Data contained is ‘confidential’ and some work needs to be done somewhere without reliable internet access so everything needs to be contained on one computer (with a backup on a separate hard drive.)

I am self taught - started using databases with MS Access - so there are gaps in my knowledge and some things I don’t really understand. I have been reading around but getting more confused.

I get that I am using LO Base as a ‘front end’ - which I think means basically as a GUI?
And my data is in a ‘back end’ database - in this case firebird. And it is embedded so it is on my computer and not on a server anywhere?
I like using Base to make forms/enter data/move data to and from calc etc etc but find it clunky for some things.

Last year (doesn’t seem that long ago!) Ratslinger suggested I used firebird directly - not sure how to do that? What I need to install?
(I might be being stupid but I don’t think I want firebird server -as that wouldn’t be just on my computer?)

I have recently started using Linux Mint (and loving it -its like having a new computer - dual boot but rarely boot into Windows, its too irritating).

Ideally what I want is to have the database (firebird) in one file, on one computer and to be able to open it with LO base and if possible another ‘front end’ - I’ve been looking at Flamerobin and Kexi -neither of which seem to recognise .odb files.
Do I need to split the database?

Does this make sense? Is it even possible?

(Also just remembered I was supposed to file a bug report on LO Base and I don’t think I ever did -think I got stuck on something and then forgot -sorry Ratslinger - I’ll try and sort that later today)

I don’t think I want firebird server -as that wouldn’t be just on my computer?)

Of course you can install a firebird server instance on your computer - check apt list firebird* on your Mint system. Probably that is already installed on the system - on mine (Mint 20.1) it is installed (and I can’t remember to have installed manually - so I assume (!) it has been installed by default).

apt list firebird* --installed
Listing... Done
firebird3.0-common-doc/focal,focal,now all [installed,automatic]
firebird3.0-common/focal,focal,now all [installed,automatic]
firebird3.0-server-core/focal,now amd64 [installed,automatic]
firebird3.0-utils/focal,now amd64 [installed,automatic]

Ok - thanks!
I have got firebird 3.0 on my system (I did download the new 4.0 version tarball -but didn’t try to install as I thought that might confuse things…)
How do I go about using what I have to manipulate my .odb database? Is just the firebird part somewhere on my system already -or do I need to do something else?


It may be best to stay away from Firebird 4.0 if you are going to use Base and the same DB files for Base embedded or files (external DB). All can be interchangeable with some knowledge and the version needs to be consistent. LO Base uses Firebird version 3.0

There is some information in the LO documentation for setting up Firebird server. See → LibreOffice Base Guide Chapter 2 - Creating a database.

Avoid using an ODBC connection as it has many problems. Best with a JDBC connector.

Other information → connect base to firebird(server) - how??

Third-party Tools & Drivers

Base: HSQLDB to Firebird migration for existing databases


Another interesting post → How can I create a portable split embedded/local firebird database in the manner that is done with HSQLDB?

Thanks - I’ll do some reading! (I have an (outdated) LO base guide that hardly mentions firebird -so the one you linked to is really helpful) Stupid question time - looking at downloading Jaybird in guide it says latest version. The latest version of Jaybird is 4 and it says its compatible with Firebird 4 - so I think I should get Jaybird 3? Is that right?
(BTW I have (eventually) posted that bug report - sorry again for delay. I know its a convenient excuse but it was partly due to an increased workload due to having to get my head around ever changing regulations due to the pandemic)


have not worked with Firebird server much recently. Do see have Jaybird v4.01 on another system as well as v3.x so not certain this is of any concern. As with all drivers I have used with all databases (many) if one driver doesn’t work another probably will.

As for the Bug report, that to me was cosmetic. I knew the problem and how to work around. The issue was actually yours.

“As for the Bug report, that to me was cosmetic. I knew the problem and how to work around. The issue was actually yours.”
I apologised because I really appreciate the help I receive from this (and similar) forums. I try and help where I can but I know I can’t do much. I could (and should) have reported that bug promptly to help other users.
I know you offer a lot of help and support on this forum (you have helped me more than once) and not doing my bit when I can seems ungrateful. You might have to spend time helping another ranty idiot because I didn’t!
Thank you again for all your help - I really appreciate it, I am truly grateful.


You are quite welcome. Please remember when I don’t prove to be as helpful and actually seem like a jerk - maybe just something else bothering me :slight_smile:

It happens!


BTW did see the Bug report posted and your persistence in getting the problem recognized. Good work.

You can access the same database via LibreOffice/Base and other software. However I’m using SQlite for the situation you describe (via odbc).
So I have a dedicated file on my computer, containing all tables/data usable for Base, command-line tools or SQliteStudio as other GUI.

I have a similiar setup with a locally running MariaDB accessed via Base and HeidiSQL.

However the Forms and queries are stored in the odb by base. I can not use them with the sqlite-shell ir HeidiSQL directly. If I want a second tool for the same task, I have to copy the sql over, adapt etc.

And you should/must avoid the embedded versions, where the database is contained in the odb. I don’t think it is possible for external tools to connect to the embedded databases nor reading the tables from .odb-Files (I may be wrong here…)

Split-database was also recommended because of safety reasons.

I have not done much with Firebird, but it should be the same as with MariaDB. So for your approach you’d have to use an external Firebase Server/Task on your local system.
And you should realy read tge hints in the already given link How can I create a portable split embedded/local firebird database in the manner that is done with HSQLDB? found in one of the other answers, if you try this with firebase.