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Part 5: Integrating Access with Other Of... > Using Access with Microsoft Word and...

Chapter 21. Using Access with Microsoft Word and Mail Merge

Members of the Microsoft Office 97 software suite are specifically designed to make constructing cooperative applications easy. Cooperative applications use two or more Windows productivity applications to perform a specified task. One of the principle uses for database applications is creating mailing lists for use in conjunction with form letters. Thus, Access 97—a member of the Professional Edition of Microsoft Office 97—includes a Mail Merge Wizard that not only automates the process of creating Word 97 Merge data files but also helps you create new form letters.

You also can use the reverse process and create form letters by using Word 97's new mail merge process. Creating form letters from Word 97 accommodates users who do not have retail Access 97 on their computers. Word 97 uses 32-bit Microsoft Query (Msqry32.exe) and the new 32-bit Open Database Connectivity (ODBC) application programming interface (API) version 2.5 to connect to Access 97 and earlier .mdb files, as well as to a variety of other desktop database types.

As with Excel worksheets, you can embed or link Word documents in bound or unbound object frames and add a complete word-processing system to your Access application. If you embed the Word document in the object frame, you can take advantage of OLE 2.1's in-place activation to make the operating environment of Access almost identical to that of Word. Word's menu supplements the Access menu, and Word's toolbars appear as docked or floating toolbars on your display. Word's document editing window, in Page view, appears within the confines of your object frame.


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