The ability to insert an object created in one program into a document created in another program allows you to create documents that meet a variety of needs. Access can convert data or text from one format to another using a technology known as object linking and embedding ( OLE ). OLE allows you to move text or data between programs in much the same way as you move them within a program. The table below includes terms that you'll find useful in understanding how you can share objects among documents.
To better understand how these objects and terms work together, consider this example: If you place an Excel chart in an Access database, Excel is the source program and Access is the destination program. The chart is the source file; the database is the destination file.
There are three ways to share information in Windows programs: pasting, embedding, and linking.
You can cut or copy an object from one document and then paste it into another using the Cut, Copy, and Paste buttons on the source and destination program toolbars .
When you embed an object, you place a copy of the object in the destination file. When you activate the embedded object, the tools from the source program become available in the destination file. For example, if you insert an Excel chart into an Access database, the Excel menus and toolbars become available, replacing the Access menus and toolbars, so you can edit the chart if necessary. With embedding, any changes you make to the chart in the database do not affect the original file.
When you link an object, you insert a representation of the object itself into the destination file. The tools of the source program are available, and when you use them to edit the object you've inserted, you are actually editing the source file. Moreover, any changes you make to the source file are reflected in the destination file.