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Chapter 11. Customizing Your Tables > Using Data Types Wisely

Using Data Types Wisely

In Access, every field in a table is assigned a data type. You got a glimpse of data types in Chapter 5, “Building Your First Tables,” when you used table design view to build the Plants table. Now it’s time to understand more about this aspect of table design.

The data type of a field controls the type and amount of data you can store in that field. This is an important part of keeping your data safe. For example, suppose you build a table that keeps track of your friends and their anniversary dates. That table might have a field for name and a field for anniversary dates. A good design for this table would use a field with the data type of date/time (usually just called a date/time field for short) to store anniversary dates. The data type would limit the field to just storing dates; if you tried to put anything else there (such as accidentally typing a name instead of a date), Access would warn you that the data cannot be saved to that field.


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