If you use Microsoft Access, you already know the many ways to add data to your databases. Most users use the table method as that’s the easiest way to view and add new data. However, the problem with that is you need to go through your existing data before you can add new.
There are also chances of accidentally modifying your existing data with the table method.
Luckily, Access has something called Forms that lets you work on one entry at a time to add new data to your tables. Forms are an easy way to both edit as well as store new items in your tables, and you should start using them if you don’t already.
1. How to Create a Form in Microsoft Access
Before you can create a form in Microsoft Access, you should have created at least one table in your database. This is the table that you’ll add data to from your newly created form.
Once your table is ready with some columns in it, follow these steps to add a form for it:
- Select your database table by clicking on it in Access.
- Click the Create tab at the top, find the Forms section, and select Form.
- Microsoft Access will create a new form with all the columns of your table as fields.
- You can now edit and also add new data to your table with this form. Use the pagination at the bottom to go through your table records.
- Click the Save icon at the top-left corner to save your newly created form.
- Enter a descriptive name for your form and click OK to save it.
2. How to Create a Blank Form in Microsoft Access
The above method creates a form with all your table’s columns added to it. If you don’t want to use all the columns, create a blank form first, and then select the fields you want to include.
You can add fields to your blank form from any of your tables within the same database. You can also change the order of your fields in your form with this method.
Here’s how to create a blank form in Access:
- In Access, click the Create tab at the top and select Blank Form.
- Start adding fields. On the right, select the table that you want to add fields from, then double-click on individual fields to add them to your form.
- Once your chosen fields are added to the form, click the save icon at the top-left corner to save the form.
- Type a name for your form and click OK.
3. How to Add New Fields to Your Forms in Microsoft Access
When you update your tables and you add new columns to them, those new columns won’t automatically be added to your forms. So you can’t add data into those new columns until you update your forms.
In Access, you can add new fields to your existing forms anytime.
- Right-click on your form in Access and select Layout View. This opens the form in the layout view.
- Click the Design tab at the top and select Add Existing Fields from the Tools section. This will let you add new fields to your form.
- On the right, you will see all the fields that your tables currently have. Double-click on a missing field and it will be added to your form.
- Save your form by clicking the save icon.
4. How to Customize Your Forms in Microsoft Access
You can make your job of adding data even easier by customizing your Access forms. There are many options that you can specify for your forms, so that they work the way you want.
For example, if there’s a certain column in your table that only accepts certain values, you can specify those values in a dropdown menu so one can select from that while adding data.
This way, you can avoid adding unwanted data to your tables. Here we show how you can use one of these form controls, namely Combo Box, in your Access form:
- Double-click on your form so that it’s open.
- Click the Design tab at the top and choose one of the controls you want to add to your form. Let’s choose Combo Box for this example.
- Click on your form where you want to add the box.
- You will see a dialog box on your screen. Select I will type in the values that I want in the box and hit Next.
- On the following screen, type the items that one can choose from while using this form to add data. Then, hit Next.
- Access will ask where you’d like to save the data entered in this box. Select the Store that value in this field option and choose the field that you want to add data to from this Combo Box.
- Click Next, enter a name for your Combo Box, and hit Finish at the bottom.
- Your form should now have two fields for the same column. Remove the old field by right-clicking on it and selecting Delete.
- Save your form by clicking the save icon at the top-left corner.
Make Entering Data Easier With Forms in Microsoft Access
Forms are an easy way to add data to even the largest of the databases. This is because, no matter the size of your database, you will always only see one entry at a time. This helps you focus on that entry and make changes to it, without worrying about other data in the table.
Microsoft Access is an ideal choice for many types of databases. However, it may not serve well in all scenarios. Luckily, you have several Microsoft Access alternatives to choose from. These programs let you create and manage your databases in many ways.