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Microsoft Access Tutorial


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Multiple-Page Forms Using Tabs

Tab controls allow you to easily create multi-page forms. Create a tab control by following these steps:

  1. Click the Tab Control icon on the toolbox and draw the control on the form.
  2. Add new controls to each tab page the same way that controls are added to regular form pages and click the tabs to change pages. Existing form controls cannot be added to the tab page by dragging and dropping. Instead, right-click on the control and select Cut from the shortcut menu. Then right-click on the tab control and select Paste. The controls can then be repositioned on the tab control.
    [Tab control example]
    • Add new tabs or delete tabs by right-clicking in the tab area and choosing Insert Page or Delete Page from the shortcut menu.
    • Reorder the tabs by right-clicking on the tab control and selecting Page Order.
    • Rename tabs by double-clicking on a tab and changing the Name property under the Other tab.

Conditional Formatting

Special formatting that depends on the control's value can be added to text boxes, lists, and combo boxes. A default value can set along with up to three conditional formats. To add conditional formatting to a control element, follow these steps:

  1. Select the control that the formatting should be applied to and select Format|Conditional Formatting from the menu bar.
  2. Under Condition 1, select one of the following condition types:
    • Field Value Is applies formatting based upon the value of the control. Select a comparison type from the second drop-down menu and enter a value in the final text box.
    • Expression Is applies formatting if the expression is true. Enter a value in the text box and the formatting will be added if the value matches the expression.
    • Field Has Focus will apply the formatting as soon as the field has focus.
  3. Add additional conditions by clicking the Add >> button and delete conditions by clicking Delete... and checking the conditions to erase.
    [Conditional Formatting dialog window]

Password Text Fields

To modify a text box so each character appears as an asterisk as the user types in the information, select the text field in Design View and click Properties. Under the Data tab, click in the Input Mask field and then click the button [...] that appears. Choose "Password" from the list of input masks and click Finish. Although the user will only see asterisks for each character that is typed, the actual characters will be saved in the database.

Change Control Type

If you decide the type of a control needs to be changed, this can be done without deleting the existing control and creating a new one although not every control type can be converted and those that can have a limited number of types they can be converted to. To change the control type, select the control on the form in Design View and choose Format|Change To from the menu bar. Select one of the control types that is not grayed out.

Multiple Primary Keys

To select two fields for the composite primary key, move the mouse over the gray column next to the field names and note that it becomes an arrow. Click the mouse, hold it down, and drag it over all fields that should be primary keys and release the button. With the multiple fields highlighted, click the primary key button.

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