New Features in Access

Some of the key new features in Access 2007 will likely have a big impact on the way that developers think about VBA, macros, and even their approach to database design. With changes of this magnitude, it will take a while to adapt or even to figure out what projects to upgrade and when. The main thing right now is for you to be aware of the opportunities and how you can both enhance your projects and significantly reduce development time.

If you look at the big picture, it appears that the new features in 2007 are designed to benefit just about anybody who has contact with Access. The count of new features ranges from about 50 to more than 100, depending on who is counting and the way that things are grouped and sorted. With so many changes, it would be nearly impossible for a developer to find them all on his own. This chapter describes the highlights of the key new features or feature sets so that you'll know what to look for and can then investigate changes that are relevant to your projects and your clients. It starts with a summary of benefits to the end user, the power user, IT departments, and the developer. Then, it introduces the main improvements grouped into the following areas:

Access's new look

Development environment

Forms

Reports

Embedded macros

Access data engine (ACE)

Integration with SharePoint

External data sources

Security

Easy upgrading

Access Developer Extensions (ADEs)

There are almost 1,000 commands in Access, but the new user interface is smart about displaying relevant commands in a manner that makes it easy for you to find and select the correct one.

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