Access 2007 for Starters: The Missing Manual
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: January 2007
Pages: 396

This fast-paced book teaches you the basics of Access 2007 so you can start using this popular database program right away. You'll learn how to work with Access' most useful features to design databases, maintain them, search for valuable nuggets of information, and build attractive forms for quick-and-easy data entry.

The new Access is radically different from previous versions, but with this book, you'll breeze through the new interface and its timesaving features in no time with:

  • Clear explanations
  • Step-by-step instructions
  • Lots of illustrations
  • Larger type
  • Plenty of friendly advice

Ideal for small businesses and households, Access runs on PCs and manages large stores information, including numbers, pages of text, and pictures -- everything from a list of family phone numbers to an enormous product catalog. Unfortunately, each new version of the program crammed in yet another set of features -- so many that even the pros don't know where to find them all. Access 2007 breaks the mold: Microsoft changed the user interface by designing a tabbed toolbar that makes features easy to locate.

One thing that hasn't improved is Microsoft's documentation. Even if you find the features you need, you still may not know what to do with them. Access 2007 for Starters: The Missing Manual is the perfect primer for small businesses with no techie to turn to, as well as those who want to organize household and office information.

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Access 2007 For Starters The Missing Manual

By Cher81

from Undisclosed

Comments about oreilly Access 2007 for Starters: The Missing Manual:

Access 2007 For Starters The Missing Manual

Matthew MacDonald

Pogue Press/O'Reilly

Reviewed by Esther Schare, Director

Broward Personal Computer Association

President, Kings Point Computer Club

As with all other Microsoft products, Access 2007 For Starters, The Missing Manual should have been in the box with the application. Once again, it is your best friend for answers, in spite of the "Help" area in the product.

The biggest difference in Microsoft's latest issue of Access 2007 For Starters is that there is no "drop down" menu. It has been replaced by "ribbons" that indicate immediately where you want to do to do whatever it is that you want to make or change. The greatest obstacle is unlearning all the strokes that you had to do prior to this version. The learning curve of the ribbons takes time, but the bottom line is that once learned, it becomes a treasure because of the amount of time that it saves when adding to, or taking away from, or changing and/or amending your worksheet. Every one of the previous Access keyboard features continues to work in the same manner. There is no relearning for these actions.

The Access For Starters, The Missing Manual has Four Parts, each of which have several chapters that takes you by the hand, to lead you through this new application. It is specifically written for those who have not yet been introduced to the many uses of databases.

One of the more difficult tasks with any database, is that you have to think ahead of all the types of information you will want in that database. Yes, you can insert various information at a later date, but it will serve you well if you think it through before you begin. Essentially, a database is a collection of information that is stored in a single file.

Altogether you have six different types of database objects, i.e., Tables that store information and are the heart of the database; Queries that allow you to quickly perform an action on a table. Usually this action involves retrieving a choice bit of information; Forms are the windows that you create, arrange and colorize (if you like). Forms provide an easy way to view or change the information; Reports help you print some or all of the information in a table and you can choose where the information appears on the page and how it is grouped and sorted as well as how it is formatted; Macros are mini-programs that automate custom tasks. Macros are a simple way to get custom results without becoming a programmer; and finally, Modules which are files that contain Visual Basic code. This last, both Macros and Modules and described simply here, but go into much more detail in the advanced book by Matthew MacDonald entitled Access 2007, not to be confused with Access 2007 For Starters.

Part One

Chapter 1: Instructs you how to create your first database, and understanding tables. In this chapter you will also learn how to edit a table, understand tables, editing the table and then save the database. In this chapter you will also learn how to make a backup, saving a dataset with a different name, and opening more than one database at a time.

Chapter 2: speaks to design view, access data types, i.e. text, memo, number, currency, date/time, attachment, etc. This chapter also includes information concerning database dsign like choosing good field names, breaking down your information, including all the details in one place, avoiding duplicating information and/or redundant information.

Chapter 3: goes into more detail about datasheet customization, formatting the datasheet, rearranging and/or resizing columns and rows, how to hide columns or freeze them. It also discusses datasheet navigation, like sorting, filtering, searching, and then printing the datasheet.

Chapters 4 and 5: These chapters are about blocking bad data, validation rules, linking tables with various relationships, such as matching fields, redundant data vs. related data, defining and editing a relationship and finally a one-to-one or many-to-many relationships. While these two chapters sound far advanced, once you read about them and following the instructions, you can see that they are not as difficult as they sound.

Part Two

Chapter 6: Discusses in depth the basic reason that databases are so popular. You can query the selected records so that you can manipulate whatever information has been input. Microsoft has included a Query Wizard, which makes it easier to obtain your selected information.

Chapter 7: This chapter further discusses queries and Mr. MacDonald has succinctly discussed understanding the action queries.

Part Three

Chapter 8: This chapter is devoted to creating simple reports, arranging a report, adding and removing fields and creating a report from scratch. Printing, previewing and exporting a report is addressed, as is formatting, filtering and sorting reports.

Chapter 9: This chapter describes the creation of simple forms as opposed to reports. Again, creating, using a form, sorting and filtering and the Form Wizard is included in this chapter.

Part Four

Chapter 10: Gives you information about sharing Access with the rest of the world by understanding imports and exporting . This chapter also goes into detail about using the clipboard and copying cells from another application, like Excel, into your Access datasheet.

In spite of the fact that this book "For Starters", make no mistake, Microsoft's Access is a heavy weight application that will take time to learn. However, it is easier to learn the application using Access 2007 For Starters rather than continually input mountains of information into various reports, when this application will allow you to query and then generate a report with all the data that you require.

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