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Distilling what my customer wants in her Access report

July 11, 2013

Today, my access customer showed me a couple reports that work kinda well. She talked about what they do and what she wished they would do. This is what we call an informal requirements document! After we meet, I returned to my computer and pulled up the DB and the reports in question. After recreating what she showed me, I noticed something else and called her back for clarification. This is what we call the requirements analysis – and refining. Once I had gleened an additional critical bit of information, I was back into the report to try and solve the problem.

The jist of the the problem was one of her reports was not breaking properly on each new entity (you don’t really care what the entity is) its a new record with its own set of detail. When a new record would show up with its detail, it would be on the same page, not breaking on its own page. I do not know why the original design did not include this? Was it intentional? or and oversight? My customer has dealt with this imperfection on this report for a LONG TIME….

Steps to correct the problem:

Open the report in design view
select the detail section of the report
open the properties window/menu
find the appropriate control – Force new page
update the Force new page control to after section
save the report

There it is! the 100 + page report (thankfully using preview to test) is now breaking like a champ, one record and its detail per page!

On a final note, my customer also said while I was talking with her on the phone (yet more requirements analysis) I wish the default was b and not a. She has two ways the report could group. I clarified what she said and also changed the default selection of a radio button.

Steps to change the default radio selection from a to b.

open the form in design view
select the border around the radio buttons (that is the option group)
open the property sheet
change the default value control from 1 to 2 – in my case 2 is the value of the second radio button, 1 the value of the first (the first as in either the top or left radio button)
save the form
return to form View – check it out!


From → MS Access

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