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Types of Access Reports

Reports created by Access fall into six basic types, also called layouts, that are detailed in the following list:

  • Single-column reports list in one long column of text boxes the values of each field in each record of a table or query. A label indicates the name of a field, and a text box to the right of the label provides the values. Access 97's AutoReport feature creates a single-column report with a single click of the toolbar's AutoReport button. Single-column reports are seldom used because the format wastes paper.

  • Tabular reports provide a column for each field of the table or query and print the value of each field of the records in rows under the column header. If you have more columns than can fit on one page, additional pages print in sequence until all of the columns are printed; then the next group of records is printed. Figure 14.1 shows in Report Preview mode a tabular report that is based on Northwind.mdb's Customers table.

    Figure 14.1. A preview of a tabular report created from Northwind.mdb's Customers table.

  • Multicolumn reports are created from single-column reports by using the "newspaper" or "snaking" column approach of desktop publishing and word processing applications. Information that doesn't fit in the first column flows to the top of the second column, and so on. The format of multicolumn tables wastes less paper but the uses are limited because the column alignment is unlikely to correspond with what you want.

  • Groups/totals reports are the most common kind of report. Access groups/totals reports summarize data for groups of records and then add grand totals at the end of the report.

  • Mailing labels are a special kind of multicolumn report designed to print names and addresses (or other multifield data) in groups. Each group of fields constitutes a cell in a grid. The design of the stock adhesive label on which you are printing determines how many rows and columns are on a page.

  • Unbound reports contain subreports based on unrelated data sources, such as tables or queries.


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