After you decide whether to import or link to your data to your Access 2013, you’re ready to take this step. If you can, look at the external data you want to use. Look for the following factors:
Are fields stored in columns and records in rows?
This structure is relevant to text and spreadsheet files, which sometimes separate data with commas or other symbols.
Does the data you need begin at the top of the file?
For text and spreadsheets, Access expects to see one row of names and then the data. If your data isn’t set up this way, you need to edit it.
Is all data within a field of the same type?
If not, the field is imported as a Text field, which can’t be used in mathematical equations.
Is the number of fields in each row the same?
This question is of particular concern in a text file. If necessary, add null values to make your data line up. Two quotation marks with nothing between them (““), for example, represent a null text value.
Are the field names in the data you’re importing identical to the field names in the Access table?
When you append data (that is, add data to an existing Access table), the field names in your source data must be identical to the field names in the Access table you’re appending to.
Are you importing the data into a new table, or do you want to append the data to an existing table? Appending can be tricky because the data in the external source and in the Access table have to match in terms of data type and relative location. You may want to import the data into a new table in Access first and then use an append query.
When your data source is cleaned up, you’re ready to import or link.
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