Chapter 5. Doing Database Magic with Access

In This Chapter

  • Starting Access

  • Touring the Access window

  • Creating tables

  • Creating forms

  • Using templates in Access

  • Printing your data

What? You never used Access? Don't sweat it: There's a good reason why Microsoft Office Access 2010 isn't everyone's bag of potato chips. Much like Excel, Access can be more complex and harder than the average application for the novice to use — hence, the relative obscurity of Access compared with Office applications like Word and PowerPoint. (Based on what I see in my appearances at user group meetings and in mail from my readers, Access has far less of a following than the "superstars" of Office.)

However, Microsoft has done its best to help bring Access to the home PC owner. Wizards abound, and the Access Help system is one of the most extensive in the Office 2010 suite. (It's no coincidence that the other standout in the Help system is Microsoft Excel.) I'm happy to report that you can now take care of basic Access chores — like building tables and forms — without having to have a degree in particle physics. In this chapter, I introduce you to those basics and show you how to keep track of really important data — like your collection of porcelain chicken planters.

If you're interested in taking the plunge and trying everything that Access has to offer, I can heartily recommend the more comprehensive book Access 2010 For Dummies, by Laurie Ulrich Fuller and Ken Cook (Wiley). They have the elbowroom to cover Access ...

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