Fixing Access Annoyances
How to Fix the Most Annoying Things About Your Favorite Database
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: February 2006
Pages: 384

When an application is part of the Microsoft Office suite, it's sure to be a leader in its field. In the realm of desktop database management, Access is top dog with millions of users. But this is one dog that can bite. Although Access is a powerful, relational tool with the fetching talents of a Labrador, it's not an easy beast to train.

Still, millions of users count on Access for everything from managing parts databases to running Web catalogs to working as a front end to mondo SQL databases. But Access is chockablock with annoyances---report hassles, query conundrums, VBA bugs, arcane error messages, and more.

O'Reilly's Annoyances series offer real-world help, right now, and Fixing Access Annoyances continues tradition. You'll not only squash bugs and workaround Access' limits, but you'll learn how to use Access to the max, whether you're a newbie or a seasoned pro. Coverage includes install/configuration annoyances, building better tables and queries, creating forms that work right, generating reliable and sophisticated reports, pulling in data from a variety of sources, crafting macros and VBA code to customize Access, and much more.

You could grab those other books for help, but do they solve problems from page one? Meet a book of a different stripe. The authors come armed with knowledge of the program's quirks, design hurdles and interface snags. They provide you with battle plans in Fixing Access Annoyances to save you time and bouts of hair pulling.

Stop information from spiraling out of control when working with Access and trying to make this #$@@#$ thing work! Don't let its quirks, bugs, and troublemaking features beat you. Who you gonna call for help? Instead of waiting on the line for tech support or searching for the answer on the Internet with its too many resources to find exactly what you need, take control of databases with Fixing Access Annoyances, your partner on database adventures.

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oreillyFixing Access Annoyances

(based on 3 reviews)

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Great book for it's purpose!

By Caltech Nerd

from Whittier, CA

Verified Reviewer


  • Accurate
  • Concise
  • Easy to understand
  • Helpful examples
  • Well-written


    Best Uses

      Comments about oreilly Fixing Access Annoyances:

      I would change/add to the title. It's more than annoyances, it's a guide to experienced programmers on how to perform "normal" programming tasks in the frustrating, overly automated, black-box world of Access.

      Access does many tasks "under the covers". For instance, I wanted a combo box to search on lastname-comma-firstname. The only way to get there is through a setting that only appears in a wizard, no way to set it from a property, then modify the default query in a simple way. I would have never figured it out but the author, an experienced programmer, naturally wanted to do the same thing and outlined the specific steps to get there. He covers many of the basic tasks that any experienced programmer would want to do but wouldn't be able to find in Access.

      THANK YOU!

      p.s. I'm working in Access 2010 and the book is 2003 but it very much works for 2010.

      (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


      Buyer beware

      By Stephen Walsh

      from Undisclosed

      Comments about oreilly Fixing Access Annoyances:

      I bought this book because when viewed on Google books it showed a section referring to Access's annoying default of setting subdatasheet names to [Auto] causing very slow opening of tables under certain circumstances. More specifically the text said that if the reader didn't want to change this table by table to see the section on "Defaults for tables and queries":

      "To prevent this from happening, open your table

      in Design View, open its properties sheet (View→Properties), and set

      Subdatasheet Name to "[None]." (If you don't want to do this for every

      table, see "Defaults for Tables, Queries, and Datasheets," later in this


      This "Defaults for Tables, Queries, and Datasheets" section was not visible on Google Books but sounded very promising.

      Given the promise, I bought the book and have now read the section on "defaults" referred to so appealingly.

      In fact, this section provides no means of changing the problematic default of "[Auto]". It does refer to a Microsoft explanation of how to correct this unfortunate default retrospectively table by table using VBA but that is a very different matter to changing the default. I had already found and used this publicly accessible Microsoft support information but had noted that the problem reappeared any time I created a new table, e.g. via a make table query. I was looking for a way to change the default rather than patch it up afterwards as the latter took time.

      In that respect, I have wasted my money and more importantly my own time. The book may well have lots of good material and I may have been unlucky in stumbling across the one aspect that didn't live up to its promise. But as always, Buyer beware.


      Stephen Walsh


      Everyone using Access should read this book.

      By sbumgarn9

      from Undisclosed

      Comments about oreilly Fixing Access Annoyances:

      I've had this book for 3 plus months now and have been reading it off and on as I've gotten time during work - its so full of great advice and insights into Access that it is very much worth the full retail I actually paid for it (and you can't say that about many computer books). I've used Access for 4 years now and I've learned some great stuff that I would never have picked up in my day-to-day use of the software. Excellent read and very informative.

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