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An Introduction to Databases Created by: H.R. Lawrence

An Introduction to

An Introduction to Databases Created by: H.R. Lawrence

Databases

Created by: H.R. Lawrence

What is a database?

What is a database?  A collection of data organized in a manner that allows access,

A collection of data organized in a manner that allows access, retrieval and use of that data.

A structure that can be used to store information about various entities and the relationships that exist among them

Common Database Terminology

Common Database Terminology  An entity is an object. A person, place or thing about which

An entity is an object. A person, place or thing about which information will be stored.

An attribute is a property of an entity.

A relation is an association between entities. Typically, it is used to maintain links between entities (tables) using a key.

Types of Keys  Primary- used to uniquely identify each record/tuple in a table. In most

Types of Keys

Primary- used to uniquely identify each record/tuple in a table. In most cases it is the indexed key that is used to maintain sequence

Composite – is made up of two or more fields

Candidate – Any key that can be used as a primary key – but was not chosen to function as such.

Alternate/Secondary – Any candidate key that is not selected to be the primary key

Foreign – A primary key in one table that appears in another table but does not function as the primary key

Database Management System (DBMS)

Database Management System (DBMS)  A software package that is designed to manipulate ( add, modify,

A software package that is designed to manipulate (add, modify, sort, retrieve and delete) data in a database by an end user.

Examples of powerful desktop DBMS are:

Microsoft Access, MySQL, Lotus Approach, FileMaker Pro, and Paradox.

Hierarchical Structure of a Database

Hierarchical Structure of a Database  Bit is the smallest unit of data that a computer

Bit is the smallest unit of data that a computer can understand. Bit, a binary digit can either be a one (1) or zero (0).

Character is a collection of eight (8) bits, also known as a byte. This can be any letter, number symbol or punctuation mark.

Field is a column in a database. A field contains a specific piece of information e.g. name, age, gender and address of a student

Hierarchical Structure of a Database cont ..

Hierarchical Structure of a Database cont ..  Record (Tuple) is a row in a database.

Record (Tuple) is a row in a database. A record is a unit of information about something e.g. about a single student in a class.

Files are made up of records. In a school, for example, you find files on students and teachers

Objects in a Database Management System

Objects in a Database Management System  Tables  Forms  Reports  Queries

Tables Forms Reports Queries

Creating a Database

Creating a Database  Tables are the building blocks of databases.  A table is a

Tables are the building blocks of databases.

A table is a collection of data about a specific topic, such as person or thing.

Creating a Database cont…

Creating a Database cont…  Tables provide easy mechanisms for adding, changing and deleting data including

Tables provide easy mechanisms for adding, changing and deleting data including the ability to make mass changes in a single operation.

A separate table should be created for each entity as this will greatly reduce data entry errors and increase efficiency.

It is a good idea to design your database initially using pen/pencil and paper.

Defining the Structure of Tables

Defining the Structure of Tables In defining the structure of a table you need the following

In defining the structure of a table you need the following (as a start):

  • 1. Field Name —Each field in the table must have a unique name. For example, some fields in your school record would be first name, last name, address, DOB, gender etc.

  • 2. Data Type — This indicates to Access the type of data the field will contain, such as text, number, date or currency.

  • 3. Description — Access allows you to enter a detailed description of the field (optional).

  • 4. Field length – (for text) this determines the size of the field.

  • 5. Field Properties – which include data validation check

Example of Table Structure

Example of Table Structure

Data Types use by Microsoft Access

Data Types use by Microsoft Access Data Type Use For Size Text Made up of combination

Data Type

Use For

Size

Text

Made up of combination of letters and numbers. Used with numbers that will not be used in calculations, for example, postal and telephone numbers.

Up to 255 characters. The user can control the number of character.

Memo

Use for long text and numbers such as notes or descriptions

Up to 65,536 characters.

Number

Data to be used for calculation except money.

1, 2, 4, 8 or 16 bytes.

Currency

Used to store money. This data type accurately calculates money

8 bytes

Date / Time

Use to store date and time.

8 bytes

Data Types use by Microsoft Access cont…

Data Types use by Microsoft Access cont… Data Type Use For Size AutoNumber Use for automatically

Data Type

Use For

Size

AutoNumber

Use for automatically sequencing data.

 

Yes/No (a.k.a. Boolean or Logical field)

Use for fields that will contain only one of two values such as yes or no; true or false and on or off.

1 bit

OLE Objects

Stores objects such as Microsoft Applications: Pictures, Graphics, Sound etc.

Up to 1 GigaByte.

Hyperlink

Contain a link to a URL on the Internet.

Look Up

If two tables have the same entries the

 

Wizard

entry is typed once in the first table and a look up field is used to pull the entries from the first to the second.

Advantages of a database

Advantages of a database  Quicker and easier access to data  Allowing sharing of data

Quicker and easier access to data Allowing sharing of data

TO CREATE A NEW DATABASE FILE

TO CREATE A NEW DATABASE FILE  Click Start, All Programs,  Microsoft Office, Microsoft Office

Click Start, All Programs,

Microsoft Office, Microsoft Office Access

2003

Select Blank Access Database, Click OK

Choose your storage location (

Enter the File Name in the textbox, and then click Create

TO DEFINE THE STRUCTURE OF A TABLE

TO DEFINE THE STRUCTURE OF A TABLE         

Click Tables in the Objects pane

Double click Create table in Design view OR click once and then press the Enter Key

Enter the first Field Name in the Field Name Column, and then press the TAB key

Click on the drop down list; select the Data Type (Text is the default) by clicking on it.

Press the TAB key then enter the description (if given one)

[IF THE DATA TYPE IS TEXT delete the 50 at Field Size and enter the value given]

Repeat from step 3 to enter remaining fields. To select a Primary Key, Click in the respective row, Click Edit, Primary Key. Click File then Save, enter the table name and then click OK. Close the design view window.

TO POPULATE (ENTER DATA INTO) A TABLE

TO POPULATE (ENTER DATA INTO) A TABLE  Click on Tables in the object pane (the

Click on Tables in the object pane (the names of existing table(s) will be displayed)

Double click the name of the table you want OR click once and then press the Enter Key

Enter the relevant data for EACH record under the respective Field Names