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I'm still having problems

Discussion in 'Information Technology' started by Accessidiot, Jul 28, 2006.

  1. Accessidiot

    Accessidiot
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    I'm new to using access.
    I have created a database to help with filling a paper form system we use
    currently.
    The current paper form has about 100 entries where the user enters 1 of 5
    codes regarding checking systems on a vehicle, the codes are "ok", "Serious
    fault", "Minor Fault", "Advice Only" and "N/A".
    Buliding the database to present is fine, but I've hit 2 stumbling blocks,
    The first problem should be easy to resolve (But I can't!!) Once a vehicle's
    details have been entered, the user simply enters the registration plate
    details in a combo box and a form loads with all the details- No problem-
    This form then has a subform where the user enters combo boxes to enter one
    of the five codes. However I have to load the main form in read only to
    display the vehicle details, but then I need the subform to be in add mode.
    So is it possible to load the main form in read only and the subform in add
    mode?

    My second problem is taxing me. When the user checks one of 100 combo boxes
    with Serious, Minor, or advise they then need to enter a description of the
    fault and a description of the remedy. I've tried showing or hiding text
    boxes and also using a subform for each combo box, But this makes the form
    too big and cumbersome.

    On the original paper form there is simply a set of boxes where the user
    enters the code number for the fault, the severity of the fault and the
    descriptions.
    Is it possible for me to re create this, but with the program checking the
    combo boxes for thier value then entering the code for the fault, the
    severity of the fault and then the user can add the descriptions. I would
    prefer not to have 100 text boxes as again this makes the form cumbersome 20
    or so is plenty?

    Thanks for your help
    Everyone here is very helpful and certainly has a wealth of knowledge, I
    appreciate it. I'd still be at the first hurdle without your help.

    Ian
     
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  3. Rod Plastow

    Rod Plastow
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    Hello again Ian,

    Let me answer your last question first. Yes it is possible to recreate your
    paper system but you should start with the database design. Once you have
    this you can turn your attention to your form design. I know Access
    encourages you to start designing forms first but this approach soon leads to
    trouble.

    OK, you need a number of tables.

    Vehicle. This should contain all the static/standing data about a vehicle
    including registration number. Think whether you want (now or in the future)
    to relate this table to other tables such as Customer/Owner, Manufacturer,
    Supplier, etc. If you do make provision in the table for foreign keys.
    Foreign keys are long integers if you follow the practice of using the
    autonumber feature for all primary keys.

    Fault. This table simply lists the fault codes and related descriptions.

    Inspection (you may have a better name such as Service or Visit). This
    table identifies an occasion and will doubtless contain a date and other
    information pertinent to that occasion.

    InspectionRecord (or whatever name you choose) is a table that relates a
    Vehicle with an Inspection with one or more Faults. You indicate that the
    number of such records is fixed. This design however allows an unlimited
    number of faults for every Inspection and I advise against imposing fixed
    limits in your database design. Introduce the limit if you wish at the
    'front-end' GUI but not in you database that should remain as flexible as
    possible ('normalized' is the techie term). This table will have three
    foreign keys in every record: one for Vehicle, one for Inspection and one for
    Fault. You should include a memo field for additional comments.

    I recommend you relate the tables using the Tools/Relationships function
    from the main menu bar.

    As you design each table you may wish to specify the LookUp properties of
    each foreign key such that a meaningful text appears rather than a primary
    key number. You can choose combo boxes or list boxes. This also has the
    advantage that Access automatically places a control of the appropriate type
    on your forms when you design them.

    Space here is somewhat limited so I can't describe in great detail the
    complete design but the foregoing should get you started in the right
    direction.

    Returning to your first 'stumbling block,' have you considered displaying
    your 'main form' in a sub form holder? You can simply then disable the
    holder and your users cannot access any data on the form shown. Link the sub
    form to the primary key of your Vehicle table that hopefully is the bound
    value of your main combo box. Your data entry form thus has two sub forms,
    one disabled displaying the chosen vehicle details and one enabled for
    selection of faults and entry of additional comments. In fact thinking about
    it this second form is itself probably a main form and sub form - the main
    form being the Inspection and the sub form being a continous form for fault
    information.

    I know I've really only 'scratched the surface' so get back if you need more
    help.

    Regards,

    Rod


    "Accessidiot" wrote:

    > I'm new to using access.
    > I have created a database to help with filling a paper form system we use
    > currently.
    > The current paper form has about 100 entries where the user enters 1 of 5
    > codes regarding checking systems on a vehicle, the codes are "ok", "Serious
    > fault", "Minor Fault", "Advice Only" and "N/A".
    > Buliding the database to present is fine, but I've hit 2 stumbling blocks,
    > The first problem should be easy to resolve (But I can't!!) Once a vehicle's
    > details have been entered, the user simply enters the registration plate
    > details in a combo box and a form loads with all the details- No problem-
    > This form then has a subform where the user enters combo boxes to enter one
    > of the five codes. However I have to load the main form in read only to
    > display the vehicle details, but then I need the subform to be in add mode.
    > So is it possible to load the main form in read only and the subform in add
    > mode?
    >
    > My second problem is taxing me. When the user checks one of 100 combo boxes
    > with Serious, Minor, or advise they then need to enter a description of the
    > fault and a description of the remedy. I've tried showing or hiding text
    > boxes and also using a subform for each combo box, But this makes the form
    > too big and cumbersome.
    >
    > On the original paper form there is simply a set of boxes where the user
    > enters the code number for the fault, the severity of the fault and the
    > descriptions.
    > Is it possible for me to re create this, but with the program checking the
    > combo boxes for thier value then entering the code for the fault, the
    > severity of the fault and then the user can add the descriptions. I would
    > prefer not to have 100 text boxes as again this makes the form cumbersome 20
    > or so is plenty?
    >
    > Thanks for your help
    > Everyone here is very helpful and certainly has a wealth of knowledge, I
    > appreciate it. I'd still be at the first hurdle without your help.
    >
    > Ian
     
  4. Rod Plastow

    Rod Plastow
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    Later........

    No one spotted my deliberate error. The Inspection table should have the
    vehicle id as a foreign key and the InspectionRecord does not need the
    vehicle id.

    Rod

    P.S. Ian send me your email address to fe_rod@hotmail.com and I will send
    you a sample mdb for most of this.

    "Accessidiot" wrote:

    > I'm new to using access.
    > I have created a database to help with filling a paper form system we use
    > currently.
    > The current paper form has about 100 entries where the user enters 1 of 5
    > codes regarding checking systems on a vehicle, the codes are "ok", "Serious
    > fault", "Minor Fault", "Advice Only" and "N/A".
    > Buliding the database to present is fine, but I've hit 2 stumbling blocks,
    > The first problem should be easy to resolve (But I can't!!) Once a vehicle's
    > details have been entered, the user simply enters the registration plate
    > details in a combo box and a form loads with all the details- No problem-
    > This form then has a subform where the user enters combo boxes to enter one
    > of the five codes. However I have to load the main form in read only to
    > display the vehicle details, but then I need the subform to be in add mode.
    > So is it possible to load the main form in read only and the subform in add
    > mode?
    >
    > My second problem is taxing me. When the user checks one of 100 combo boxes
    > with Serious, Minor, or advise they then need to enter a description of the
    > fault and a description of the remedy. I've tried showing or hiding text
    > boxes and also using a subform for each combo box, But this makes the form
    > too big and cumbersome.
    >
    > On the original paper form there is simply a set of boxes where the user
    > enters the code number for the fault, the severity of the fault and the
    > descriptions.
    > Is it possible for me to re create this, but with the program checking the
    > combo boxes for thier value then entering the code for the fault, the
    > severity of the fault and then the user can add the descriptions. I would
    > prefer not to have 100 text boxes as again this makes the form cumbersome 20
    > or so is plenty?
    >
    > Thanks for your help
    > Everyone here is very helpful and certainly has a wealth of knowledge, I
    > appreciate it. I'd still be at the first hurdle without your help.
    >
    > Ian
     
  5. Accessidiot

    Accessidiot
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    If you didn't get my email rod its ian@hemingwaycc.fsbusiness.co.uk
    Thanks
    Ian

    "Rod Plastow" wrote:

    > Hello again Ian,
    >
    > Let me answer your last question first. Yes it is possible to recreate your
    > paper system but you should start with the database design. Once you have
    > this you can turn your attention to your form design. I know Access
    > encourages you to start designing forms first but this approach soon leads to
    > trouble.
    >
    > OK, you need a number of tables.
    >
    > Vehicle. This should contain all the static/standing data about a vehicle
    > including registration number. Think whether you want (now or in the future)
    > to relate this table to other tables such as Customer/Owner, Manufacturer,
    > Supplier, etc. If you do make provision in the table for foreign keys.
    > Foreign keys are long integers if you follow the practice of using the
    > autonumber feature for all primary keys.
    >
    > Fault. This table simply lists the fault codes and related descriptions.
    >
    > Inspection (you may have a better name such as Service or Visit). This
    > table identifies an occasion and will doubtless contain a date and other
    > information pertinent to that occasion.
    >
    > InspectionRecord (or whatever name you choose) is a table that relates a
    > Vehicle with an Inspection with one or more Faults. You indicate that the
    > number of such records is fixed. This design however allows an unlimited
    > number of faults for every Inspection and I advise against imposing fixed
    > limits in your database design. Introduce the limit if you wish at the
    > 'front-end' GUI but not in you database that should remain as flexible as
    > possible ('normalized' is the techie term). This table will have three
    > foreign keys in every record: one for Vehicle, one for Inspection and one for
    > Fault. You should include a memo field for additional comments.
    >
    > I recommend you relate the tables using the Tools/Relationships function
    > from the main menu bar.
    >
    > As you design each table you may wish to specify the LookUp properties of
    > each foreign key such that a meaningful text appears rather than a primary
    > key number. You can choose combo boxes or list boxes. This also has the
    > advantage that Access automatically places a control of the appropriate type
    > on your forms when you design them.
    >
    > Space here is somewhat limited so I can't describe in great detail the
    > complete design but the foregoing should get you started in the right
    > direction.
    >
    > Returning to your first 'stumbling block,' have you considered displaying
    > your 'main form' in a sub form holder? You can simply then disable the
    > holder and your users cannot access any data on the form shown. Link the sub
    > form to the primary key of your Vehicle table that hopefully is the bound
    > value of your main combo box. Your data entry form thus has two sub forms,
    > one disabled displaying the chosen vehicle details and one enabled for
    > selection of faults and entry of additional comments. In fact thinking about
    > it this second form is itself probably a main form and sub form - the main
    > form being the Inspection and the sub form being a continous form for fault
    > information.
    >
    > I know I've really only 'scratched the surface' so get back if you need more
    > help.
    >
    > Regards,
    >
    > Rod
    >
    >
    > "Accessidiot" wrote:
    >
    > > I'm new to using access.
    > > I have created a database to help with filling a paper form system we use
    > > currently.
    > > The current paper form has about 100 entries where the user enters 1 of 5
    > > codes regarding checking systems on a vehicle, the codes are "ok", "Serious
    > > fault", "Minor Fault", "Advice Only" and "N/A".
    > > Buliding the database to present is fine, but I've hit 2 stumbling blocks,
    > > The first problem should be easy to resolve (But I can't!!) Once a vehicle's
    > > details have been entered, the user simply enters the registration plate
    > > details in a combo box and a form loads with all the details- No problem-
    > > This form then has a subform where the user enters combo boxes to enter one
    > > of the five codes. However I have to load the main form in read only to
    > > display the vehicle details, but then I need the subform to be in add mode.
    > > So is it possible to load the main form in read only and the subform in add
    > > mode?
    > >
    > > My second problem is taxing me. When the user checks one of 100 combo boxes
    > > with Serious, Minor, or advise they then need to enter a description of the
    > > fault and a description of the remedy. I've tried showing or hiding text
    > > boxes and also using a subform for each combo box, But this makes the form
    > > too big and cumbersome.
    > >
    > > On the original paper form there is simply a set of boxes where the user
    > > enters the code number for the fault, the severity of the fault and the
    > > descriptions.
    > > Is it possible for me to re create this, but with the program checking the
    > > combo boxes for thier value then entering the code for the fault, the
    > > severity of the fault and then the user can add the descriptions. I would
    > > prefer not to have 100 text boxes as again this makes the form cumbersome 20
    > > or so is plenty?
    > >
    > > Thanks for your help
    > > Everyone here is very helpful and certainly has a wealth of knowledge, I
    > > appreciate it. I'd still be at the first hurdle without your help.
    > >
    > > Ian
     

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