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How This Book Is Organized

Each chapter in Access Hacks centers on a facet of Access. In this way, you can focus on areas in which you need a little inspiration. If you need help with queries and SQL, go to Chapter 5. If you want to learn some programming tricks, go to Chapter 8. In particular, here is what you'll find in each chapter:

Chapter 1, Core Access

The first chapter covers the basics, from organizing database objects to working with data. In this chapter, you'll find nuggets about helping users, overcoming version incompatibility, and even how to work with any amount of data.

Chapter 2, Tables

Tables are the core object of any database. In this chapter, you'll find hacks that show you how to move data between tables and how to reset AutoNumbering to begin with a number of your choice. Also, you will learn what system tables are and how to have them stay out of your way.

Chapter 3, Entry and Navigation

This chapter focuses on users' needs. Besides storing data, a database system needs to make it easy for users to manage the data. Chapter 3 is chock-full of hacks that improve how users work with forms, which of course are the most common database objects users interact with.

Chapter 4, Presentation

Once data is entered and stored, the rest of the equation involves reporting. This chapter shows you new ways to work with reports. Learn how to use a watermark, provide sophisticated sorting, and provide conditional totals. Don't forget to check the hacks on creating a slide show and playing videos!

Chapter 5, Queries and SQL

Running queries is a big part of database work. Many of the hacks in this chapter take you beyond the basics of the query design grid. Immerse yourself in the SQL language itself as you discover Union queries, using the In and Not operators, and how to use custom functions in queries. There is even a hack that encourages you to query unrelated tables to return all combinations of data in two fields.

Chapter 6, Multiuser Issues

Certain issues exist only in a shared environment. In this chapter, you'll find hacks that provide workarounds for common problems. Learn how to end an unattended edit and how to distribute a database with no hassles.

Chapter 7, External Programs and Data

Access is easy to integrate with other programs and protocols. This chapter shows you many ways to use Access with other products, including Excel, Word, MySQL, and SQL Server. If you have an inkling of how to work with XML data, this chapter includes hacks for that. There is even a hack that shows you how to create Access tables without running Access.

Chapter 8,Programming

This chapter provides a number of programming techniques. It includes hacks for optimizing code, writing faster code, and protecting code. Other hacks provide minisolutions, such as a way to drill down to a specific record and to provide feedback during a long process.

Chapter 9, Third-Party Applications

This chapter previews a few third-party products that make your database work a breeze. Learn about products that create a database framework, document your database, and even provide data. Last but not least, this chapter provides an overview of a complete XML-based application solution.

Chapter 10, The Internet

The hacks in this chapter show you how to create HTML files from Access. With just a little editing with an HTML tool or in a text editor you can turn an Access report into the format you need. You'll find hacks in this chapter for putting a web browser directly on an Access form. Need to check your online investments? You can do so without leaving the database.

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