How to Use Attachment Data Type to Store Multiple Files in a Record in MS Access

In this article, we will learn about the Attachment Data Type field in MS Access, its key details, and how to create a table with attachment data type column.

If you needed proof regarding the versatility of MS Access, then here it is. This application might be used for storing small to big amounts of data, but it can also be used for storing different formats of data. Access databases are not just for storing textual or numeric data, but can also be used for storing information that is in jpg, bitmap or other formats. And if this was still not enough, then we would love to break it to you that you can store information in multiple formats in one single filed as well! But today we will focus on one single table only.Using Attachment Data Type To Store Multiple Files In A Record

Now we will learn how to create a table in Access with an Attachment data type column. But before that, there are certain points about this data type that you need to keep in mind.

  1. Any file you attach should not be larger than 256MB.
  2. Making any changes to the added files, like editing them, deleting them, etc. can be done only with Attachment dialog box.
  3. All the uncompressed files that you try to attach will be compressed automatically.
  4. You can take attachments either from the disk drive, or select it from the network.
  5. You can make use of VBA for working programmatically with attachments.

Steps for creating a table with Attachment data type column

  1. Attachment Data TypeThe very first thing you need to do is, create a table in the database. You can make use of the Create tab from the Ribbon for the same, to open table in datasheet. You can later shift to Design View if you wish to.
  2. Once the table is created, you can set the field properties in the Field Property sheet. Here you can specify the field size, as well as the data type that you want to enter in the field.
  3. Whatever fields you decide to add in the table, you can select data type ‘Attachment’ for any of these. You can also give it a caption, to understand it better.
  4. You can now see your table on the ribbon in datasheet view.
  5. In this table, you will see the column with Attachment as data type has been renamed by a paperclip logo. This shows that you have successfully created a table with attachment data type.

How is it useful?

If you are wondering what is the use of creating this attachment data type field and following all these steps? Then we are here to answer you. If you are an organization that needs to maintain a database of all its employees, and you want to have a record of not just their bios and resumes, but also images, then this is exactly what you need.

In the attachment field, you will be able to add employee images and ensure that all the details that are there are for the correct person and that there is no confusion regarding the information that has been entered.

A database crash can compromise all data stored in the Access database including attachments. Invest in an mdb recovery tool to get back your data after any incident of data corruption.

Author Introduction:

Vivian Stevens is a data recovery expert in DataNumen, Inc., which is the world leader in data recovery technologies, including sql recovery and excel recovery software products. For more information visit

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