How to post a proper question to the Access-L newsgroup.
The following is a list of suggestions for creating a posting to the Access-L newsgroup.  Following these suggestions will help ensure an answer that will suit your needs.

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      How to Ask a Good Question on ACCESS.doc

How to Ask a Good Question on ACCESS-L

1. Always consult the standard resources before posting. These are: on-line help, the list archives at and the Microsoft Knowledgebase at

2. Ask one question at a time and give it a meaningful subject line that will fit in the space available. This allows members to answer topics within their knowledge and all of us to find answers in the archives.

3. Do provide sufficient detail, at least: the version of Access, your objective, what you have tried and what is actually happening now. Include any error message and number.

4. You can make describing a complex situation much clearer by using your form, control, table and field names. Talking vaguely is little help and your names may be part of the problem! If getting to this level it is good to mention the data types (eg: text, integer, date/time) of important fields.

5. If you are asking about data or design issues then describe your existing tables or the data that you want to store or give a sample of data.

6. If your question is specifically about queries or coding, and you have made a start, then post the SQL string or code segment. We cannot debug what we cannot see.

7. When asking about a query or report describing your objective may be difficult. If you provide a few rows of sample data and the results you wish to obtain from that data, that will help us understand your problem.

8. If you are having trouble running a query from code, provide us with the result of a "debug.print strsql" statement as well as the code. Raw code that composes SQL can be very tough to read. Comparing the resulting SQL string with your code may help you or someone else solve the problem.

9. Don't expect members to write your application for you. If you are given just hints or general directions don't take it personally, it is because we all have real jobs to do as well. You will get more help if you show that you are making an effort yourself.

10. Don't complain repeatedly that Access doesn't work the way that you wish. It is one thing to warn others of pitfalls it's another to waste time in wishing land.

11. Don't be shy about starting to answer others' questions. It is a great way for YOU to learn and if you make an error you will be treated kindly. Remember that a Guru is just somebody who started making mistakes before you did.

12. Do thank people who are particularly helpful - but privately.


For the Access-L Moderation Panel
Nancy McLaughlin, Co-Owner, Access-L