Series: Missing Manual
Paperback: 866 pages
Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (April 28, 2013)
Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.7 x 9.2 inches
Shipping Weight: 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #238,431 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #49 in Books > Computers & Technology > Databases & Big Data > Access #60 in Books > Computers & Technology > Software > Databases #252 in Books > Textbooks > Computer Science > Database Storage & Design
The obvious way to make a book like this functional is to include sample databases that the reader can download from the web and follow along with or manipulate as the book instructs. In fact, the book promises exactly that, on page 18: "Go to ...where you can download a Zip file that includes the examples, organized chapter by chapter." That sounds great, but is only about 30% true. I have now completed chapters 1-4, and the majority of the exercises have no corresponding example database to work with. For example, I am currently on page 153 in chapter 4, learning about Table Validation Rules. I am asked to create a rule to ensure that Date Ordered is earlier than Date Shipped. There is no example database listed under chapter 4 or any preceding chapter that has columns called DateOrdered or DateShipped. While I can create a database from scratch that includes these fields and practice with it, that is not what the promotional material has promised to potential purchasers of the book.This problem has been present in every chapter so far. Even when there is a usable example database, the reader is left to guess which one, among three or four possibilities, to open. Only in the first few pages of the book does the author say something like "Open the example database called "Bobblehead". The reader is left to open all examples, and guess which one will be best for the exercise.On the positive side, the style is easy to read, and understandable to me. (I am a beginner at database use, design, and programming.) Also, the number of books for beginners on this subject is very small, and this may still be the best book despite the apparent sloppiness with examples.
This is the best book on Access 2013 I've been able to find. It's comprehensive and well written. It seems to straddle the line between a textbook and a reference manual, veering on the side of textbook more than I'd prefer.Search suffers from a failure to recognize some valid Access terms, gives many more results (sometimes hundreds) making it a laborious exercise to find what you're looking for, and gives more than one reference for a term where here are multiple uses on one page.For users coming from earlier versions of Access (2007 and 2010) there is no discussion of how to work around features that were dropped from Access 2013 (pivot tables). There's either a statement that you now have to use something else (pivot tables) or there's no discussion at all (data collection forms).Still, I find "Access 2013: The Missing Manual" my go-to book when I need information on a particular topic.
I was looking for a more detailed book. For eg - the book talks about linking tables from excel file, but there is no details about how to go about on reporting from there or how to create a union query or how to create a back-end database. The book is probably for someone who already know how o manipulate in Access, but looking for addiitonal tips. Not for a beginner definitely.
I was looking for The Access Bible in Barnes and Noble when I found this instead, but I can't imagine the Access Bible was anymore helpful. I had to learn Access very quickly and with this book it only took a few days to get it down.If you have had experience with databases and programming before, then you can breeze through this book with no problems. Its just converting what you already know into a way you can use it for Microsoft Access. I can imagine it is still pretty simple if you don't know anything about databases, as well. I got a little bored in the forms and reports section (that is probably because I was going on a very long day of reading this book and practicing stuff in Access though), but got back into it when the VBA programming came back. That's not to say it wasn't helpful! Understanding Forms and Reports was something I needed a lot of work on.The chapters about sharing your database over a network was the most helpful thing in this book for me. It shows all the options you have and tells you how to decide which is best for your needs.Edit: Those chapters about sharing your database over a network were helpful, as I said. However, the solution I ended up using was MySQL instead of SQL Server or Sharepoint. It took me a while to figure out this was possible to use with Access though, because the book only mentions Microsoft's solutions. I can see why the book is like this, it would just be helpful if it wasn't biased towards Microsoft. Still, all-in-all, this is a great book to learn Access as quickly as possible.
I had a need to learn Access for a work project. While searching at I was bombarded with more books that I would ever have time to evaluate. I settled on this one, and I wasn't disappointed. It covers all the necessary aspects of Access in an easy to understand way, void of the technical jargon that can quickly turn off someone new to the language. My only criticism was the layout. Though the text is excellent, with nice color pictures to guide you along, the organization of the chapters doesn't naturally lead one from start to finish. That's why I took one star off for this review. All the material you would ever want is there, but you have to move around and not expect to read it start to finish. Anyway, if you are looking for a great book to learn Access this is it.
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