by April 1, 1998 0 comments

Access 97 essentially means leveraging powers of Visual
Basic for Applications (VBA), along with Access 97’s
built-in Database Access Objects (DAO), such as tables,
queries, forms, and reports. VBA is the application
development environment for Office 97 apps. Access 97
Programming for Windows for Dummies
(by Rob Krumm,
Comdex Computer Publishing, 394 pages, Rs 299, is an
excellent book to start with. You should, however, be
familiar with the Database Window and creating tables,
forms, reports, and simple queries.

The book centers on the
accompanying CD-ROM, which packs all example databases
and code. After introducing you to Access 97 objects and
their properties, the book introduces you to SQL,
designing and working with forms and reports, dialog
boxes, and functions. Advanced concepts, such as using
OLE object fields and ActiveX controls are well
explained. However, the book doesn’t discuss arrays.
A list of useful Web sites and Office 97 Developer
Edition Tools (a set of utilities that help in creating,
enhancing, and distributing Access 97 apps) come as a
bonus for advanced programmers.

Norton’s Guide to Access 97 Programming
Norton and Anderson, Techmedia, 596 pages, Rs 399, takes
a closer look at all VBA elements–objects,
collections, events, methods, procedures, statements, and
properties–along with SQL and macros.

Access 97’s
application development wizard lets you create an
application. This follows a step-by-step analysis of the
code created to help you identify what actually happens
in the background.

Working with SQL, creating
macros, and writing and debugging VBA procedures are well
explained. The book lets you create an application right
from the scratch. It also includes customizing data
management and reports, adding real-time features,
introducing database decision support systems, and
customizing input-output operations. Linking your app
with other Office apps using ActiveX controls, adding
networking features and security, and posting your
database to the Web are also covered in detail.

97 Power Programming
(by F Scott Barker, Que
Corporation, 981 pages, $59.99, distributed in India by
Prentice-Hall of India, is targeted at high-end
application developers. The book, in essence, is a
revision of Access 95 Power Programming. Apart
from discussions on some new features, such as Internet
access, command bars, and the new built-in Tab control,
the book also covers new techniques and useful routines
to get you going quickly and easily.

An excellent blend of text
and visuals, coupled with a logical approach leads you
from power programming basics to routines for adding
robustness to your creations. A centralized routine for
error logging is also included in the Tips on tracking

The author shows you how
to create powerful queries for tasks, forms, and reports,
along with a host of optimization techniques. Advanced
developers will appreciate the extensive discussion on
32-bit ActiveX controls, automation, programming command
bars and the Office Assistant using 32-bit API calls to
extend the power of Access and for security. The 32-bit
ActiveX controls are discussed with example code and the
new Win 95 interface ActiveX controls included in the ODE

The book also provides
tips for optimizing your apps for a network, using Access
with SQL Server for developing client-server apps,
creating routines for system checkup and maintenance, and
database replication.

The book rounds off with a
comprehensive documentation of Access 97, VBA and Jet 3.5
errors. It is highly recommended for wannabe experts.

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