Tables located beyone the scrollable/visible area in the Relationships Window

Posted on 2007-11-15
Last Modified: 2010-05-19
I've developed an Access d/base with about 50 tables.  Somehow 1 of these managed to locate itself above the visible area of the Relationships Window; the scrollbar doesn't go there.  In fact the only way I know it exists is because relationships exist between it and other visible tables.  I've tried deleting the relationships and creating a 2nd copy of the table in the window, then reconnecting relationships to the visible version, but despite saving these, the next time I open the window the relationships are again linked to the invisible table.  To make matters worse, another table has now jumped up to join the first one.  Why does this happen, how can I fix it and prevent others from moving out of visible bounds?
Question by:LSE_IT_Training
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LVL 44

Expert Comment

ID: 20291830
Is any of the table window visible or is just the thick blue top line at the top invisible?
LVL 44

Expert Comment

ID: 20291841
Try maximizing the Relationships window?
LVL 16

Accepted Solution

Rick_Rickards earned 500 total points
ID: 20291843
Unfortunately Access has a bug that can cause a table to appear outside the visible bounds of the relationships window.  Finding it can be hard but not impossible.

To help you find out where it is hidden create a bogus table that you'll delete when done (reason, a new table will not have any relationship to it).  Then add the hidden table to the relationships window.  An additional will appear and read something like Customer_1.

Then Relate the alias table (as above in "Customer_1" to the new bogus table in something like a 1 to many relationship".  Then click the Customer_1 table (substituting the name that fits your situation) and then hide it.  Then right click the new table (we'll call it "tblBogus" for this example") and then select Show Direct.  

Once you do this a line will appear that will wisk off the visible viewing area.  In so doing you'll now have some idea where this table is located.

One of the easiest ways to get that table back into the viewable area is to hide all visible tables EXCEPT THE NEW TABLE ADDED named tblBogus.   Once everything is hidden except for tblBogus and the missing/hidden table click the tblBogus table and then press Tab.  When you do focus will shift to the hidden table.

Once done, select the pull down menu named Relationships and click "Hide Table" from that menu.  That will remove the table from the invisible area.  Then Right click the table named tblBogus and select the menu option "Show Direct".  Your missing table will then appear within the viewable space after which you can break the relationship to tblBogus and delete that Bogus table.  At this point the table will now appear within the viewable range and stay that way as long as you save your changes when you close the relationships window.

The above process wile effective does have a downside.  If you have an investment of time in laying out the relationships window the above procedure will throw away all your work.  Not to worry there is another way.

Option 2:

Click any table you like so it has the focus.  Then press tab and look to see whether a visible table has focus (you can tell because one of the fields in the table will be highlighted).  Keep repeating this step until you've pressed tab and notice that none of the visible tables have focus.  As soon as you see that this is the case you can the click the pull down menu named "Relationships" and select "Hide Table".  Once done you can then add your hidden table back into the relationships window and it will appear in the visible space.  Move it anyplace you'd like it to go and then save your changes.  Once done your table located in the non-visible space will now be relocated into a space where you can see it.

In my experience this bug that you've stumbled accross happens primarily in Access 97.  If you're using a version other than 97 the above procedure will still work but I'd be interested to know which version of Access you're using if it wasn't Access 97.
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LVL 44

Expert Comment

ID: 20292033
Thanks, Rick - that's one to bookmark!
LVL 16

Expert Comment

ID: 20292334
You're most welcome.  I actually provided a poster to Microsoft illustrating this very bug back in 2005.  They hung it on the wall and put a note below the poster (huge screen shot of the relationships window as the database had over 100 tables in it) saying something to the effect... "Herein lies a bug, Can you see it?"  Nothing like a little brain teaser for the testers who were working on Office 2007 at the time.


Author Closing Comment

ID: 31409384
Hey Rick, its not for nothing you are a 'guru'!  Many thanks - option 2 worked a treat!  In answer to the version question, I am using Access 2003 sp3, working on a d/b in Access 2000 file format.  Many thanks again.  How DO you keep track of such obscure problems and their solutions??!!
LVL 44

Expert Comment

ID: 20294184
I wish the asker appreciated it as much as I;-)

Author Comment

ID: 20300080
Rick, this is a second attempt to post a giant 'thank you' for your brilliant solution to my question.  Option 2 worked a treat - its not for nothing you are a 'guru'!   How DO you manage to keep track of such apparently obscure issues?  In answer to your question, I am running Access 2003 sp3 to work on a d/b in Access 2000 file format.
My first 'thank you' message seems to have disappeared into the ether when I accepted your solution.  Did the points you so deserve disappear as well?  Please advise if there is something I can do to redirect them back to you!  As the question disappeared off my 'Questions in Progress' list, I assumed that both my message and the points had gone to their intended destinations until I checked my latest messages.    
LVL 16

Expert Comment

ID: 20300280
It would appear that LSE_IT_Training quitely extended appreciation by awarding points and then verbosely did in the last post.  By the way LSE_IT_Training, you are again most welcome.

In answer to LSE_IT_Training's questions:
Q: How DO you manage to keep track of such apparently obscure issues?
A: Not sure except to say I feel fortunate, (or unfortunate depending on the memory), to have a memory that seems unwilling to forget things easily.  Even when I cease to rely or use the information and despite the fact that decade’s may pass the memory remains crystal clear as if memorized it moments ago.

Q: Did I get the points
A: Yes I did, all 2000.  Thanks once more.

Thanks again GRayL for the compliment.


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