IN THIS CHAPTER
Getting started might be your biggest hurdle in learning Access. If you've worked with spreadsheets and word processors in the past but never looked at Access, you might be unsure about what a database does and how to get started with it. Access is called a relational database management system (RDBMS) because it stores data and provides tools with which you can manipulate that data. Fortunately, Microsoft has gone a long way toward making Access an easy-to-use product, even for the novice.
In this chapter you'll learn where to start. Specifically, we'll show you how to launch Access and how to create, open, and exit a database. We'll also introduce you to the application toolbar, menu bar, and task pane. We recommend that you take the time to learn these basics. Once you're ready to learn Access's more complicated features, you'll be glad you did.