Designing a database
A database consists of a collection of tables that stores a set of structured
data. Designing a database requires an understanding of both the business
functions you want to model and the database concepts and features used
to represent those business functions. Your database should be easy to
maintain and must not cause performance
Tables are database objects that contain all the data in a database.
A table contains a collection of rows and columns. Each column in the
table is designed to store a certain type of data. Each
table contains data about only one subject, such as customers. Therefore,
you update a particular piece of data, such as an address, in just one
place and that change automatically appears throughout the database.
Tables can have indexes similar to those
in books that allow rows to be found quickly. Each table should contain
information about one subject. Your list of fields will provide clues
to the tables you need. For example, you might have a table for Customers,
a table for Products, and a table for Orders.
A well-designed database usually contains different types of views
that show the information you need. A view might show a subset of data,
such as all customers in a certain city, or combinations of data from
different tables, such as order information combined with customer information.
It is important to accurately design a database to model the business
because it can be time consuming to change the design of a database significantly
once implemented. A well-designed database also performs better.
The results you want from your database don't necessarily provide clues
about how you should structure the tables in your database. Before you
actually build tables, views, forms, and other objects, it's a good idea
to sketch out your database design on paper first. You can open the sample
database in BaseNow (the 'Data\Sample Database.mdb' file) and then open
the Relationships Manager
to examine its design.
The first step in designing a database is to determine its purpose and
how it's to be used. You must have a good understanding of the job the
database is expected to perform. As you determine the purpose of your
database, a list of information you want from the database will begin
to emerge. From that, you can determine what facts you need to store in
the database. These facts correspond to the fields (columns) in tables
During the process of gathering information, you must identify the key
objects or entities that will be managed by the database. The object can
be a person or a product, or it can be a business transaction, or a department
in a company. There are usually a few primary objects, and after these
are identified, the related items become apparent. Those objects correspond
to the tables.
Creating a new database
Create a table
How to create
About Create Database Wizard