How to Work with Switchboard Forms in MS Access

Understanding Switchboard forms and how to set them as default in MS Access

Access users commonly make use of forms for entering data in the databases. As a user of MS Access, it is important for you to know about the different types of forms the application provides you with, and how to make the best use of them. One of the many types of forms available in MS Access are the Switchboard forms. In many Access editions these are not available by default, and need to be set manually. This is true for MS Access editions after 2010. Today we will learn not only the steps to set these forms to default, but also why should you do it.Working With Switchboard Forms In MS Access

Switchboard forms

Switchboard FormsOne of the not so commonly used type of form in Access are the switchboard forms, that are usually created when all other forms, reports and queries are complete. The purpose of switchboard forms is to give users access to a menu that in turn gives them instant access to data entry forms, queries, reports and other objects in the database that users often make use of. It is created to guide users towards appropriate forms and reports, and also serves as a shortcut to various database objects.

In the MS Access edition from 2010, you are not given access to these forms by default, so adding them manually to the ribbon is something that you will have to do. The steps for the same are given below.

  1. In the main screen of MS Access, select Database tools tab, and then select Switchboard Manager.
  • If this switchboard is the first one for this database, then you will have to create another one. Just click on Yes in Switchboard manager for the same.
  1. The Switchboard manager window will now appear on your screen with all the available options. To edit switchboard, click on the Edit option.
  2. From the appearing edit switchboard page, you can change the existing name, add new items and edit or delete and previously added items.
  3. You can perform the desired actions by clicking on the respective buttons.
  4. Click on the Close button when you are done making changes. To close Switchboard manager, click on close button once more.
  5. Go back to the main screen of MS Access and check if there is any new section that is labeled as Switchboard items. You can view Switchboard, by double clicking on it.
  6. Your switchboard form is now created.

While creating the switchboard form, you can opt for adding fields, and editing items that appear in the form. When you opt for editing items, there are certain fields you need to fill in the Edit Switchboard dialog box. Here you can enter all items that you wish the switchboard form to display every time it is clicked. Make sure that the items you are selecting are relevant and all the required fields for the same are filled correctly. If you do not wish to make use of switchboard forms, you can opt for using Navigation forms that are available by default.

All data and custom elements present in MS Access including forms are vulnerable during a database crash. So it is prudent to keep an Access fix tool handy to deal with incidents of database corruption.

Author Introduction:

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

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