Microsoft Access Database: What is… Some Popular Questions

Microsoft Access Database: What is… Some Popular Questions

Here are some questions I’ve been asked over the years regarding Microsoft Access databases which I thought you may want to review. 

Q: What features make Microsoft Access a valuable tool over say the more popular Excel spreadsheet or any other desktop software?

A: The key feature is the ability to “ask questions” and perform actions with large amounts of the data via Queries which is its real strength.  For the common MS Office user who doesn’t know anything about MS Access databases, this application can seem fairly user-friendly and most users tend to lean to a more comfortable environment, namely Excel.


Q: What’s the best way to start learning Microsoft Access?

A: It all depends on how you best absorb information and learn new technologies. Some people prefer a book but that can be quite time consuming and hard to follow as most books tend to be Continue reading “Microsoft Access Database: What is… Some Popular Questions”

Microsoft Access 2016 Runtime Now Available For Download

Microsoft Access 2016 Runtime Now Available For Download

If you are going to distribute your Microsoft Access 2016 database to other users who do not have a licenced copy of Access 2016, you can give them a free run-time version.

Click here: Download Microsoft Access 2016 Runtime

Note: Please make sure you have checked out the licence agreement and understood the terms before deploying the above run-times. Search on Microsoft’s website for further

There are two versions of the currient Access 2016 application. Make sure you have idenrtified which operating system you have installed (including the correct Windows o/s too) as you can choose between the 32 bit and 64 bit versions.

All versions can only run from Windows 7 or higher and that may need some updates added first.

Microsoft Access 2016 Runtime Now Available For Download

Microsoft Access 2016 provides a rich platform for developing database management solutions with easy-to-use customisation tools. If no end user customisation is required (including report modifications), you can choose to distribute those Access 2016 solutions so that they run without requiring a full installation of Access 2016. To do so, you must package and distribute your application with Access 2016 Runtime.

Make sure you also check out our other Access free stuff.

Microsoft Access 2016 Database Specifications

Microsoft Access 2016 Database Specifications

Welcome to a brand new year – 2016 which continues with regular blog posts – all about Microsoft Access databases.

So, with the recent release of Microsoft Access 2016, we now have parity and I thought as a recap (as with earlier versions of the past), we may as well start with Access 2016 specifications and get to know your limits (if any)!

This information about the limits of Microsoft Access database files and objects can be found from the official Microsoft support website.

microsoft access 2016 database specifications

Any database can exceed they limits which can cause performance issues and become corrupt overtime which is why Continue reading “Microsoft Access 2016 Database Specifications”

Microsoft Office 2016 (Preview): First Look

Microsoft Office 2016 (Preview): First Look

This quick video tutorial doesn’t mention Microsoft Access 2016 but the general newer look and feel and functionality will follow suite and not much seems may have changed.

So in this video, the narrator must have recorded the audio on double speed or his just very enthusiastic and wants to cram in as much as possible in less than four minutes!

Microsoft Office 2016 (Preview): First Look

So what about Access 2016? There’s very little on the net to confirm what’s new (if anything).

We know VBA programming language will be retained and be known as VB7.1 which hasn’t really changed since 1998 when it was first introduced but the emphasis on web applications is realised with this release (or hopefully, that is!). Continue reading “Microsoft Office 2016 (Preview): First Look”

Microsoft Access Table Relationships

Microsoft Access Table Relationships

An ideal database is free of redundant or duplicate data. To achieve that, you must split your data into many subject-based tables so each subject is presented only once. To do that in Microsoft Access, you place common fields in tables that are related. But before you do that, you must need to understand the relationships between your tables, then you can specify these relationships in your Access 2013 database.

microsoft access table relationships

In this article, I will elaborate to you the ten things you need to know about table relationships in Microsoft Access.

1. A one-to-many relationship is when one record in the parent table connects to many records in the child table.

To exemplify this, let’s take for example two tables: one for doctors and the other is for patients. A doctor can have several patients. In this case, you will Continue reading “Microsoft Access Table Relationships”

Microsoft Access Database: Pass Through Queries

Microsoft Access Database:  Pass Through Queries

There are many Microsoft Access queries to choose from that will manage your database reporting requirements but there are a handful of lesser known types of queries that you may not be aware of.

One in particular is a query called ‘Pass Through Query‘ as the following short video tutorial quickly explains…

Putting aside for the heavy American accent, it clearly explains the use for this type of query and the power behind how Continue reading “Microsoft Access Database: Pass Through Queries”

Microsoft Access Database: Next Generation of Spreadsheets

Microsoft Access Database: Next Generation of Spreadsheets

Bringing your Microsoft Access database application into the current online digital age started with the need for this integral tool for small and medium sized businesses way back in the 1990’s.

WordPerfect, Lotus 1–2–3, and dBase are the three software products that dominated the software market for a long period in the history of personal computing. WordPerfect is used for word processing; Lotus 1–2–3 is a spreadsheet program from Lotus Software; and dBase is a database management system for microcomputers.

During the early days of personal computing, spreadsheets and databases coexisted because there was a clear designation of responsibility between the two models.  During those times, the use of spreadsheets were mainly for financial modelling. While databases were intended for everything organization-related.

Spreadsheets and word processors offered the benefits of simplicity and direct manipulability. Databases were never as manageable as word processors and spreadsheets. The main drawback in using databases was in the technical implementation complexity of the software.

Microsoft Access Database Next Generation of Spreadsheets

As a result, average users began using spreadsheets as provisional databases.
After many consultations with dozens of Excel clients, it became clear that almost all of them were using the product not for the purpose of financial modelling but as a conventional tool for making tables instead.

At this point in time, the office productivity perspective had also shifted from a multiplayer market to one subjugated by Microsoft, which put down Lotus 1–2–3 and dBase with its own Excel and Access database products. The growing grey area between spreadsheets and databases gave Continue reading “Microsoft Access Database: Next Generation of Spreadsheets”

Microsoft Access Tutorial: Creating A Many-To-Many Relationship

Microsoft Access Tutorial: Creating A Many-To-Many Relationship

Let’s revisit a popular aspect to your Microsoft Access database design; Creating a many-to-many relationship.

Firstly, watch this quick video which explain the key components and the starting steps to getting to the many-to-many state for your Access database.


In order to create this type of relationship, it’s now clear we need an interceding or junction table to handle the two-way joins of the outer tables with Continue reading “Microsoft Access Tutorial: Creating A Many-To-Many Relationship”

Microsoft Access Queries and How Important They Are in Your Database

Microsoft Access Queries and How Important They Are in Your Database

The heart of any MS Access database system resides with the queries and I’m often asked to give new users a quick overview of this powerful application – here’s an example…

A Microsoft Access Database is a desktop application which stores large amounts of data and is able to recognize relationships between those data. It consists of data and tools that enable users to manipulate that data. 

Microsoft Access Queries eBook previiew

One of these tools are the queries. Microsoft Access Queries are used specifically to organize data on the Access database.

A database can hold multiple tables. Each of the tables can have hundreds of thousands of records. How the user extracts a specific section of Continue reading “Microsoft Access Queries and How Important They Are in Your Database”

Microsoft Access Database Versus Excel – Which To Choose?

Microsoft Access Database Versus Excel – Which To Choose?

Why Access? Why Excel?

In the modern age, ‘the books’ are done digitally. Individuals and businesses alike use software like Microsoft Excel to do a bunch of database stuff… – but strangely, bizarrely, bafflingly, Microsoft Access database remains a highly underused product in the Microsoft Office package.  There seems to be a general misconception about Access and Excel, with many people believing Excel to be both easier and more applicable to their needs.

microsoft access database versus excel image

Databases vs Spreadsheets

So what’s the difference between the two? Microsoft Access is a database, not just a large spreadsheet like Excel. Both have their uses and only the situation can dictate the need for one over the other. Excel is generally more convenient for crunching numbers and producing figures and graph that represent technical data. Access, however, is able to store a huge amount of data – far more than in any one spreadsheet. Additionally, Excel Continue reading “Microsoft Access Database Versus Excel – Which To Choose?”