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Chapter 4. Relationships: Your Key to Da... > Understanding Relationships

Understanding Relationships

A relationship exists between two tables when a key fields from one table is matched to a key fields in another table. The fields in both tables usually have the same name, data type, and size. Relationships are a necessary by-product of the data-normalization process. Data normalization is covered in Chapter 1, “Introduction to Access Development;” it is the process of eliminating duplicate information from your system by splitting information into several tables, each containing a unique value. Although data normalization brings many benefits, you need to relate the tables in your system so that your users can view the data in the system as a single entity. After you define relationships between tables, you can build queries, forms, and reports that combine information from multiple tables. In this way, you can reap all the benefits of data normalization while ensuring that your system provides users with all the information they need.


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