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This makes it very convenient to distribute the entire application to another user, who can run it in disconnected environments. One of the benefits of Access from a programmer’s perspective is its relative compatibility with SQL structured query language —queries can be viewed graphically or edited as SQL statements, and SQL statements can be used directly in Macros and VBA Modules to manipulate Access tables. Users can mix and use both VBA and “Macros” for programming forms and logic and offers object-oriented possibilities.

VBA can also be included in queries. Microsoft Access offers parameterized queries. These queries and Access tables can be referenced from other programs like VB6 and. Microsoft Access is a file server -based database.

Unlike client—server relational database management systems RDBMS , Microsoft Access does not implement database triggers , stored procedures , or transaction logging. Access includes table-level triggers and stored procedures built into the ACE data engine. Thus a Client-server database system is not a requirement for using stored procedures or table triggers with Access Tables, queries, forms, reports and macros can now be developed specifically for web based applications in Access Integration with Microsoft SharePoint is also highly improved.

The edition of Microsoft Access introduced a mostly flat design and the ability to install apps from the Office Store, but it did not introduce new features. The theme was partially updated again for , but no dark theme was created for Access. NET web forms can query a Microsoft Access database, retrieve records and display them on the browser. SharePoint Server via Access Services allows for Access databases to be published to SharePoint, thus enabling multiple users to interact with the database application from any standards-compliant Web browser.

Access Web databases published to SharePoint Server can use standard objects such as tables, queries, forms, macros, and reports. Access Services stores those objects in SharePoint. Access offers the ability to publish Access web solutions on SharePoint The macro language is enhanced to support more sophisticated programming logic and database level automation. Microsoft Access can also import or link directly to data stored in other applications and databases.

Microsoft offers free runtime versions of Microsoft Access which allow users to run an Access desktop application without needing to purchase or install a retail version of Microsoft Access.

This actually allows Access developers to create databases that can be freely distributed to an unlimited number of end-users. These runtime versions of Access and later can be downloaded for free from Microsoft. The runtime version allows users to view, edit and delete data, along with running queries, forms, reports, macros and VBA module code. The runtime version does not allow users to change the design of Microsoft Access tables, queries, forms, reports, macros or module code.

The runtime versions are similar to their corresponding full version of Access and usually compatible with earlier versions; for example Access Runtime allows a user to run an Access application made with the version as well as through Due to deprecated features in Access , its runtime version is also unable to support those older features. Access stores all database tables, queries, forms, reports, macros, and modules in the Access Jet database as a single file.

For query development, Access offers a “Query Designer”, a graphical user interface that allows users to build queries without knowledge of structured query language. In the Query Designer, users can “show” the datasources of the query which can be tables or queries and select the fields they want returned by clicking and dragging them into the grid.

One can set up joins by clicking and dragging fields in tables to fields in other tables. Access allows users to view and manipulate the SQL code if desired. Any Access table, including linked tables from different data sources, can be used in a query. Access also supports the creation of “pass-through queries”. This enables users to interact with data stored outside the Access program without using linked tables or Jet.

When developing reports in “Design View” additions or changes to controls cause any linked queries to execute in the background and the designer is forced to wait for records to be returned before being able to make another change. This feature cannot be turned off. Non-programmers can use the macro feature to automate simple tasks through a series of drop-down selections.

Macros allow users to easily chain commands together such as running queries, importing or exporting data, opening and closing forms, previewing and printing reports, etc. Macros support basic logic IF-conditions and the ability to call other macros. Macros can also contain sub-macros which are similar to subroutines. In Access , enhanced macros included error-handling and support for temporary variables. Access also introduced embedded macros that are essentially properties of an object’s event.

This eliminated the need to store macros as individual objects. However, macros were limited in their functionality by a lack of programming loops and advanced coding logic until Access With significant further enhancements introduced in Access , the capabilities of macros became fully comparable to VBA. They made feature rich web-based application deployments practical, via a greatly enhanced Microsoft SharePoint interface and tools, as well as on traditional Windows desktops.

It is similar to Visual Basic 6. To create a richer, more efficient and maintainable finished product with good error handling, most professional Access applications are developed using the VBA programming language rather than macros, except where web deployment is a business requirement.

In the database container or navigation pane in Access and later versions, the system automatically categorizes each object by type e. Many Access developers use the Leszynski naming convention , though this is not universal; it is a programming convention, not a DBMS-enforced rule.

Navigate by project, deliverables, and employees, keep an eye on budgets, owners, costs, and status, and generate focused reports such as Project Balance Sheet and Deliverables by Assigned.

Create a project tracking database to track multiple projects, including time-sensitive deliverables, owners, and budgets, using this popular Access template. Navigate by projects, tasks, and employees, keep an eye on costs, priorities, and status.

Create a personal account transaction database to track income and payments across domestic categories from groceries to healthcare to charitable donations using this Access template. Search and view income and expenses by category and view tax reports. A field for memos helps you remember handy details for every transaction. Create a customer service database to manage multiple issues tracking assignments, priority, status, customer, and resolution using this Access template.

Navigate by open cases using multiple criteria, create and manage knowledge base articles, and manage customer details while producing useful reports such as Open Cases by Assigned To and Overdue Cases. Create and maintain an up-to-the-minute database of your business contacts and call history using this simple yet effective Access template.

In addition to maintaining details on company, job title, and contact information, you can navigate and search by contacts, calls by contact or subject, as well as add contacts from Outlook. Assign and track status of customer calls using this dynamic Access template. Navigate by customers, employees, and calls, as well as track by priority, status, and assignment. And you can generate useful reports in real time such as Open Calls by Assigned To that can give you the extra edge you need when things get busy.

Create and manage a home inventory database to retain and manage vital data on your personal belongings using this Access template. Search by item name, category, or location, while retaining important details for insurance purposes, such as condition, acquired date, and value. Attach photos of items to each entry to help ensure reimbursement in the case of loss or damage. Manage your organization’s client cases and projects, including billing, invoices and balance sheets using this robust Project time and billing Access template.

PART 1. What is a database?. D programs have been available for personal computers for a long time. Even many computer-literate people have avoided the more complex database systems unless they have been handed a complete, custom-built database application. The introduction of Microsoft Access over two decades ago represented a significant turnaround in ease of use.

Many people are drawn to it to create both simple databases and sophisticated database applications. With the addition of new online table templates and app templates, Access can help solve many business and personal needs.

The online web app templates are fully function- ing applications that can be used as is, and the table templates can be used to get a head start on creating a complete application. The key advantage to Access is the ability to quickly and easily create an Access Services web app using Microsoft SharePoint Server and SQL Server and work with your data in a web browser.

What is a database? In the simplest sense, a database is a collection of records and files that are organized for a particular purpose. On your computer devices, you might keep the names and addresses of all your friends or customers. You might have another set of files in which you keep all your. The word processor documents that you organize by topic are, in the broadest sense, one type of database.

The spreadsheet files that you organize according to their uses Chapter 1. Shortcuts to all your applications on your computer device are a kind of database. Internet shortcuts organized in your Favorites folder are a database. How can you col- lect information about all customers and their orders easily when the data might be stored in several document and spreadsheet files?

How can you maintain links between the files when you enter new information? How do you ensure that data is being entered correctly? Faced with these challenges, you need a database management system DBMS. Relational databases Nearly all modern database management systems store and handle information using the relational database management model.

In a relational database management system, sometimes called an RDBMS, the system manages all data in tables. Even when you query the database fetch information from one or more tables , the result is always something that looks like another table.

The term relational stems from the fact that each table in the database contains informa- tion related to a single subject and only that subject.

Also, you can manipulate data about two classes of information such as cus- tomers and orders as a single entity based on related data values. For example, it would be redundant to store customer name and address information with every order that the cus- tomer places.

In an RDBMS, the information about orders contains a field that stores data, such as a customer number, which can be used to connect each order with the appropriate customer information.

You can also join information on related values from multiple tables or queries. For exam- ple, you can join company information with contact information to find out the contacts for a particular company.

You can join employee information with department information to find out the department in which an employee works. Information about a single subject such as customers, orders, employ- ees, products, or companies. A relation is usually stored as a table in a relational database management system. A specific piece of information about a subject, such as the address for a customer or the dollar amount of an order.

An attribute is normally stored as a data column, or field, in a table. A particular member of a relation—an individual customer or product. An instance is usually stored in a table as a record, or row. The way information in one relation is related to information in another relation.

For example, customers have a one-to-many relationship with orders because one customer can place many orders, but any order belongs to only one customer. A company might have a many-to-many relationship with internal employees because an employee might be trained in more than job posi- tion, and a job position might be associated with more than one employee.

The process of linking tables or queries on tables via their related data val- ues. The architecture of Access Access calls anything that can have a name an object.

Within an Access desktop database, the main objects are tables, queries, forms, reports, macros, data macros, and modules. Within an Access web app, the main objects are tables, queries, views, macros, and data macros. If you have worked with other database systems on desktop computers, you might have seen the term database used to refer to only those files in which you store data. However, in Access, a desktop database.

Here is a sum- mary of the major objects in an Access database:. An object that you define and use to store data. Each table contains infor- mation about a particular subject, such as customers or orders. Tables contain fields or columns that store different kinds of data, such as a name or an address, and records or rows that collect all the information about a particular instance of the subject, such as all the information about a department named Housing Administra- tion. Chapter 1.

An object that provides a custom view of data from one or more tables. You can define queries to select, update, insert, or delete data. You can also define queries that cre- ate new tables from data in one or more existing tables. An object in a desktop database designed primarily for data input or display or for control of application execution.

You use forms to customize the presenta- tion of data that your application extracts from queries or tables. You can also print forms. You can design a form to run a macro or a Microsoft Visual Basic procedure in response to any of a number of events—for example, to run a procedure when the value of data changes. An object in a web app designed primarily for data input or display or for control of application execution. You use views to customize the presentation of data that your app extracts from queries or tables.

Users interact with views inside a web browser. You can design a view to run macros and data macros in response to any of a number of events—for example, to run when the value of data changes.

An object in desktop databases designed for formatting, calculating, print- ing, and summarizing selected data. You can view a report on your screen before you print it. An object that is a structured definition of one or more actions that you want Access to perform in response to a defined event. For example, you might design a macro that opens a second form in response to the selection of an item on a main form.

You can include simple conditions in macros to specify when one or more actions in the macro should be performed or skipped. You can use macros to open and execute queries, to open tables, or to print or view reports. You can also run other macros or Visual Basic procedures from within a macro. An object that is a structured definition of one or more actions that you want Access to perform on data stored in tables. Data macros can be attached directly to table events such as inserting new records, editing existing records, or deleting records.

Data macros in web apps can also be stand-alone objects that can be called from other data macros or macro objects. An object in desktop databases containing custom procedures that you code using Visual Basic. Modules provide a more discrete flow of actions and allow you to trap errors. Chapter 1 Database capabilities An RDBMS gives you complete control over how you define your data, work with it, and share it with others. The system also provides sophisticated features that make it easy to catalog and manage large amounts of data in many tables.

You can define what data is stored in your database, the type of data for example, numbers or characters , and how the data is related. In some cases, you can also define how the data should be formatted and how it should be validated.

You can work with the data in many ways. You can select which data fields you want, filter the data, and sort it. You can join data with related information and summarize total the data. You can select a set of information and ask the RDBMS to update it, delete it, copy it to another table, or create a new table containing the data.

You can take advantage of features that help ensure that the right type of data goes into the correct places. In many cases, you can also define how data can be shared and updated by multiple users using the database. All this functionality is contained in the powerful features of Access. It provides all the data definition, data manipulation, and data control features that you need to manage large volumes of data.

You can use an Access desktop database. A desktop database can also act as the data source for data displayed on webpages on your company intranet.

To maintain maximum backward compatibility, Access can still open, run, and save. If you must create an Access application that will be run by users with previous versions of Access, you should use the Access or Access — Data definition and storage As you work with a document or a spreadsheet, you generally have complete freedom to define the contents of the document or each cell in the spreadsheet.

Within a given page in a document, you might include paragraphs of text, a table, a chart, or multiple columns of data displayed with multiple fonts. Within a given column on a spreadsheet, you might have text data at the top to define a column header for printing or display, and you might have various numeric formats within the same column, depending on the function of the row.

This flexibility is great for solving relatively small, well-defined business problems. But a document becomes unwieldy when it extends beyond a few dozen pages, and a spread- sheet becomes difficult to manage as the amount of data grows. For example, on a spreadsheet, even though one cell might need a date and another a currency value to make sense, a user might easily enter character data in error.

Chapter 1 tally store alphabetic characters in a field that should contain a number. Other rules might define valid values or ranges of values for your data. In the most sophisticated systems, you can define the relationship between collections of data usually tables or files and ask the RDBMS to ensure that your data remains consistent.

For example, you can have the system automatically check to ensure that every order entered is for a valid customer. With an Access desktop database. You can define simple or complex validation rules to ensure that only accurate values exist in your database. You can request that Access check for valid relationships between files or tables in your database. Access desktop databases include an Attachment data type that can store images and other file types within the record.

The Attachment data type can handle multiple attach- ment files per record via the use of a concept called Complex Data. In previous versions of Access using the. Examples of files that could be attached to a record using the Attachment data type could be a cover letter created in Microsoft Word for each busi- ness contact, a bitmap picture of the contact person, or various sales worksheets created in Microsoft Excel.

Figure shows an example of a form using the Attachment data type to display a contact picture in the Contacts Map. You can download the Contacts Map. Access can also understand and use a wide variety of other data formats, including many other database file structures. You can export data to and import data from word process- ing files, spreadsheets, or database files directly.

You can also import and link data from these files into an Access table. Data manipulation Working with data in an RDBMS is very different from working with data in a word pro- cessing or spreadsheet program. In a word processing document, you can include tabular data and perform a limited set of functions on the data in the document.

You can also search for text strings in the original document and, with ActiveX controls, include tables, charts, or pictures from other applications. In a spreadsheet, some cells contain functions that determine the result you want, and in other cells, you enter the data that provides the source information for the functions. For example, you can search a single table for information or request a complex search across several related tables. You can update a single field or many records with a single command.

You can write programs that use RDBMS commands to fetch data that you want to display and allow the user to update the data. Access uses the powerful SQL database language to process data in your tables.

Using SQL, you can define the set of information that you need to solve a particular problem, including data from perhaps many tables.

But Access simplifies data manipulation tasks. Access uses the relationship definitions you provide to automatically link the tables you need. You can concentrate on how to solve information problems without having to worry about building a complex navigation system that links all the data structures in your database.

Access also has an extremely simple yet powerful graphical query definition facility that you can use to specify the data you need to solve a problem. Using pointing and clicking, dragging, and a few keystrokes, you can build a complex query in a matter of seconds. Figure shows a complex query used in the Conrad Systems Contacts desktop database. You can find this query in the Contacts. Access displays field lists from selected tables in the upper part of the window; the lines between field lists indicate the automatic links that Access will use to solve the query.

To create the query, you add the tables containing the data you need to the top of the query design grid, select the fields you want from each table, and drag them to the design grid in the lower part of the window. Figure shows the result of asking the query to return the data. Data control Spreadsheets and word processing documents are great for solving single-user problems, but they are difficult to use when more than one person needs to share the data.

For example, a spreadsheet works well as a template for an invoice for a small business with a single proprietor. But if the business expands and several salespeople are entering orders, the company needs a database. Like- wise, a spreadsheet can assist employees with expense reports in a large business, but the data eventually must be captured and placed in a database for corporate accounting.

Access as an application development system When you need to share your information with others, true RDBMSs give you the flexibility to allow multiple users to read or update your data. An RDBMS that is designed to allow data sharing also provides features to ensure that no two people can change the same data.

Chapter 1 at the same time. The best systems also allow you to group changes a series of changes is sometimes called a transaction so that either all the changes or none of the changes appear in your data. For example, while confirming a new order for a customer, you prob- ably want to know that both the inventory for ordered products is updated and the order confirmation is saved or, if you encounter an error, that none of the changes are saved.

You might also want to be sure that no one else can view any part of the order until you have entered all of it. Because you can share your Access data with other users, you might need to set some restrictions on what various users are allowed to see or update.

Access has greatly improved the ability to share data with secured SharePoint lists and SQL Server to ensure data security. With SharePoint-to-Access integration, users can take advantage of workflow support, offline SharePoint lists, and a Recycle Bin to undo changes.

Access desktop databases also have strong data encryption with tougher encryption algorithms. Access automatically provides locking mechanisms to ensure that no two people can update an object at the same time, and Access also understands and honors the locking mechanisms of other database structures such as SQL databases that you attach to your database.

Access as an application development system Being able to define exactly what data you need, how it should be stored, and how you want to access it solves the data management part of the problem. However, you also need a simple way to automate all the common tasks you want to perform. In a spreadsheet, you enter formulas that define what automatic calculations you want per- formed.

Database systems are specifically designed for application development. They Chapter 1. You also get a full programming language and debugging tools with a database system.

When you want to build a more complex database application, you need a powerful RDBMS and an application development system to help you automate your tasks. Virtually all database systems include application development facilities to allow programmers or users of the system to define the procedures needed to automate the creation and manipu- lation of data.

Unfortunately, many database application development systems require that you know a programming language, such as C, to define procedures. Although these languages are very rich and powerful, you must have experience working with them before you can use them properly.

To really take advantage of some database systems, you must learn programming, hire a programmer, or buy a ready-made database application which might not exactly suit your needs from a software development company. Fortunately, Access makes it easy to design and construct database applications without requiring that you know a programming language.

Although you begin in Access by defin- ing the relational tables and the fields in those tables that will contain your data, you will quickly branch out to defining actions on the data via forms, reports, macros, and Visual Basic. You can use forms and reports to define how you want to display the data and what addi- tional calculations you want to perform—very much like spreadsheets.

In this case, the format and calculation instructions in the forms and reports are separate from the data in the tables , so you have complete flexibility to use your data in different ways without affecting the data. You simply define another form or report by using the same data. When you want to automate actions in a simple application, Access provides a macro definition facility to make it easy to respond to events such as clicking a button to open a related report or to link forms and reports.

Access makes using macros easy by letting you embed macro definitions in your forms and reports. If you want to create more sophisticated applications, such as contact tracking, order processing, and reminder sys- tems see the Conrad Systems Contacts sample desktop database , you can employ more advanced techniques using Visual Basic and module objects.

If you want to create a com- plex web app to help manage various aspects of managing a restaurant see the BOSS web app , you can use user interface and data macro logic to automate the data flow in the app. Deciding to move to database software Access provides advanced database application development facilities to process not only data in its own database structures but also information stored in many other popular data- base formats.

This means that you can use Access to create a Windows-based application that can process data from a network server running SQL Server or from a mainframe SQL database. Deciding to move to database software When you use a word processing document or a spreadsheet to solve a problem, you define both the data and the calculations or functions you need at the same time.

For sim- ple problems with a limited set of data, this is an ideal solution. But when you start collect- ing lots of data, it becomes difficult to manage in many separate document or spreadsheet files.

Adding one more transaction another contact or a new investment in your portfolio might push you over the limit of manageability.

If you need to change a formula or the way certain data is formatted, you might find that you have to make the same change in many places. When you want to define new calcula- tions on existing data, you might have to copy and modify an existing document or create complex links to the files that contain the data. If you make a copy, how do you keep the data in the two copies synchronized? Your cart. This eBook includes the following formats, accessible from your Account page after purchase: EPUB The open industry format known for its reflowable content and usability on supported mobile devices.

Downloads Follow the instructions to download this book’s companion files or practice files. Click the Download button below to start the download. If prompted, click Save. This supremely organized reference packs hundreds of timesaving solutions, troubleshooting tips, and workarounds.

Discover how the experts tackle Access —and challenge yourself to new levels of mastery. The complete guide to Excel Whether you are just starting out or an Excel novice, …. Your all-access guide to all things Access If you don’t know a relational database from …. Steve Johnson.



Featured Access templates

Reader Aid Notes offer additional information related to the task being discussed. By default, the file format is set to create all accesss desktop data- bases in Http:// format. You can enable this feature by right-clicking the top of the Navigation pane where you see the text All Access Objects and then clicking Search Bar, as shown in Figure In Access, you store a single copy of the data in the tables you design.


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