Creating a Simple Query in Microsoft Access

northwind database screenshot

Note: This tutorial is for Microsoft Access 2000. If you are using a newer version of Access, read Creating a Simple Query in Microsoft Access 2010.

Have you ever wanted to combine information from multiple tables in your database in an efficient manner? Microsoft Access offers a powerful query function with an easy-to-learn interface that makes it a snap to extract exactly the information you need from your database.

In this tutorial we'll explore the creation of a simple query.

In this example, we will use Access 2000 and the Northwind sample database included on the installation CD-ROM. If you're using an earlier version of Access, you may find that some of the menu choices and wizard screens are slightly different. However, the same basic principles apply to all versions of Access (as well as most database systems).

Step-by-Step Process

Let's explore the process step-by-step. Our goal in this tutorial is to create a query listing the names of all of our company's products, current inventory levels and the name and phone number of each product's supplier.

1. Open your database. If you haven't already installed the Northwind sample database, these instructions will assist you. Otherwise, go to the File tab, select Open and locate the Northwind database on your computer.

2. Select the queries tab. This will bring up a listing of the existing queries that Microsoft included in the sample database along with two options to create new queries.

3. Double-click on "create query by using wizard". The query wizard simplifies the creation of new queries. We'll use it in this tutorial to introduce the concept of query creation. In later tutorials, we'll examine the Design view which facilitates the creation of more sophisticated queries.