In our databases we often want to be able to include relevant material with our records. For example, if you are in a health related field, you might want to include the latest information about a particular drug or the latest study about a particular medical ailment. Up to now, what you had to do was to either retype a short summary of the article or you could create a hyperlink data type to store the URL of the article on the web. In an employee database, you might want to also store the resumes with the applications. Now in Access 2010 and in Access 2007, you can use the new data type field of attachment to do this. This is where you can attach any type of file or multiple files to a particular record: a word document, an Excel worksheet, a chart, or an image to name a few. In the Employee table of your database, you may want to include the resumes of perspective employees. You can do this by simply adding the field of resume as an attachment data type in design view of your table.
Once you switch to datasheet view, the view will look similar to this.
To use the attachment field, simply double click on the paper clip and this dialog box will open.
Click the Add button and choose the file that you want to attach. Then click the okay button.
Now in the datasheet view, your record will look similar to this.
The number represents the number of attachments to this record. To be able to open that attachment, just double-click on the number and this dialog box will appear. Choose the file that you want and double-click on the file name or single click on the name of the file and then click the open button.
When you open the attachment, Access will also open the associated program for that attachment. You can add several documents as attachments for one record. Notice that you can also choose to save this attachment as a separate file, simply read the document, or edits the attached document.
Everything can now be kept within your database for a logical way of keeping track of your information. No more trying to remember where your supporting documentation is stored.
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