Chapter 13. Importing and Exporting
When you create an Access database, it's possible (perhaps even likely) that much of your data already exists in electronic form. It could be in another Access database or a database of another software maker. It could be in another Office program, such as Word or Excel. Or it could be on the Internet or in some other computing environment.
It's equally possible that, although you store and manipulate your data in an Access database, you will ultimately use the data in some other milieu. The final destination could be in another program on your own computer, such as a mail-merge document in Word. Or it could be an external audience, such as a client who will look at your billings only if they're in Excel.
In this chapter, I discuss ways of making external data available to an Access database, and making data in an Access database available to non-Access users and outside environments. That's a long-winded way of saying that this chapter discusses importing and exporting. But it's also more precise because I describe linking as well, which occupies some middle ground between those two activities. You were already exposed to linking in Chapter 12, "Form/Report Design Elements," where I discussed how it compares with embedding objects in forms and reports. But here the emphasis is linking external data sources as tables so they become active parts of an Access database.