Chapter 1: Getting Started withAccess
Access provides a powerful yet comfortable environment in which you can manage yourinformation. Using Access, you can tame even the most difficult data-management tasks. Thischapter is the first step in your journey. Here you will learn basic terms, as well as how to startand exit Access. You will also learn how to get help and even catch a glimpse of what you cando with Access.By the time you finish this chapter, you will understand the following key concepts:
What a database is
How tables, forms, and queries relate to a database
What records and fields are
How to start Access
The parts of the Access environment
How Wizards can help you
How to get help when using Access
Possible uses for both databases and Access
How to exit Access
Before you dive into the Access environment, there are a few terms with which you should befamiliar. As such, we'll discuss these terms now and make sure you understand them.
As you work through this book, you will undoubtedly come across other newterms. The text defines many of these terms at their first use. You can also use the onlineHelp System to find the definitions of many different Access terms.
The following sections discuss the major terms which you must understand before you workwith Access.
What is a Database?
is simply a collection of related information. For example, if you gathered togetherall your photographs, you would have a database of photographs. If you collected all yourphotographs that included your dog, you would have either a more targeted database or asubset of your larger database.If your database is small (for example, your home insurance policies), you can probablymanage the information manually. In such instances, you might use a traditional managementmethod such as a card file or a simple list on a piece of paper. However, as the databasebecomes larger, your management task becomes more difficult. For example, it would bevirtually impossible to manually manage the customer database of a large corporation. This iswhere your computer and a