Comparing Outlook and Access Contacts

The Select Form combo box on the main menu (Figure 11.7) lets you select three forms, two of which compare Access and Outlook data. One of the data comparison forms is sorted by Contact ID and the other by contact name (sorting by name is useful for matching Access and Outlook contacts when the Outlook contact lacks a value in the CustomerID property).

Outlook contact items have a number of very useful built-in ID fields, which for some inexplicable reason are not displayed on the standard Contact item. The CustomerID field is the one I use to link Outlook contacts to Access records in tblContactInfo (using the key field ContactID). The GovernmentIDNumber field (corresponding to GovernmentID in tblContactInfo) can be used to store a Social Security Number (for the United States) or the equivalent government ID number for other countries. There is also another field useful for storing a company ID: OrganizationalIDNumber, corresponding to CompanyID in tblCompanyInfo.

To test synchronizing Contacts data, make a new Contacts folder and copy some (or all) of your contacts to it from your regular Contacts folder; that way, you can experiment various changes without messing up your real contact data.

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FIGURE 11.7

Selecting a form for comparing Access and Outlook contacts.

FIGURE 11.7

Selecting a form for comparing Access and Outlook contacts.

When you select one of these forms to open, a message box, shown in Figure 11.8, pops up.

FIGURE 11.8

A question on opening a comparison form.

FIGURE 11.8

A question on opening a comparison form.

You will get several other messages as the tables of Access and Outlook data are created, including an Outlook Select Folder dialog for selecting the Outlook Contacts folder to use when synchronizing the Access and Outlook contacts. This dialog is shown in Figure 11.9.

An Outlook Select Folder dialog for selecting the Contacts folder for synchronizing.

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