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Get to know Access

You can change data type and properties in design view

Callout 1 If an existing field name isn't descriptive enough, you can rename the field.
Callout 2 A field's data type limits and describes the kind of information you can enter in a field, such as Number or Currency.
Callout 3 You use a unique identifier, called a primary key, for each record in your table.
Callout 4 Field properties are a set of characteristics that provide additional control over the data.

The fields in your database have settings that determine the type of data they can store, how the data is displayed, and what you can do with the data.

For example, you can use the field settings to make sure that everyone enters every shipping date with two numbers for the month, two numbers for the day, four numbers for the year, and slashes in between: 03/09/2008. You can also require that the shipping date be at least two days after the entry date.

One important setting for fields is the data type, including number, text, currency (money), and date/time (shown together as one type in Access). The data type limits and describes the kind of information in the field. The data type also determines the actions you can perform on a field and how much memory the data uses.

Fields also have properties that control the details of information inside them, including a character length, a default value, and a validation rule that makes sure the data meets certain criteria. The properties make it easier to enter and manage data.

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