Learn how to a build a cloud-first strategyRegister Now


Upgrade fromm Access 2002

Posted on 2011-10-09
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-11-28
Hi All

Which was the latest version of MS Access that did not use the blessed ribbon.

I need to update the interface of my applications in access 2002. The forms look old hat and I want to make them look as modern as I can without going to the version that uses the Ribbon. My options I guess are only 2003 and wondered if any new interface options are available. i have read about  Microsoft Windows XP theme support and wandered if this would help.
Question by:DatabaseDek
  • 3
  • 2
LVL 85

Assisted Solution

by:Scott McDaniel (Microsoft Access MVP - EE MVE )
Scott McDaniel (Microsoft Access MVP - EE MVE ) earned 600 total points
ID: 36938636
Access 2003 was the last to use the standard menu interface, and it does provide some support for Windows XP themes. It can make your application look better, although much of that depends on what your concept of "better" might be :)

I'm not sure what you mean by "interface options". 2003 was really just a fixup for 2002, and didn't add much in the way of UI features (if anything). Here's the official list:


LVL 75

Accepted Solution

DatabaseMX (Joe Anderson - Microsoft MVP, Access and Data Platform) earned 1400 total points
ID: 36939042
"i have read about  Microsoft Windows XP theme support and wandered if this would help."
Definitely it will.  Buttons and other controls have nice halos, as well as other nice cosmetic effect, whic change when you hover over the controls.  It's the only thing in use in A2003.  I definitely hear you about 'old hat'

"and didn't add much in the way of UI features (if anything)."
But it did add theme support ... and that was HUGE.

LVL 75
ID: 36939094
You have to enable Themes in Options (image 1)

Halos are even present in design mode (image 6)

Also, there is a gradient effect in the buttons and elsewhere.

How you set the Themes in Windows properties also affects what you see in forms.

Unfortunately, form what I've seen in the Access world, most developers don't have much concept of aesthetics, so the probably missed these enhancements in A2003.

But ... having said all of this, you are really going to be better of with A2010, because there are many more enhancements in this regard.  You just have to get past the Ribbon.  Plus, not sure where you are going to find A2003 at this point.


Get quick recovery of individual SharePoint items

Free tool – Veeam Explorer for Microsoft SharePoint, enables fast, easy restores of SharePoint sites, documents, libraries and lists — all with no agents to manage and no additional licenses to buy.

LVL 85
ID: 36939286
"and didn't add much in the way of UI features (if anything)."
But it did add theme support ... and that was HUGE.


Yes, as I pointed out in my first post, Access 2003 did provide some support for XP Themes, and they do make a nicer looking interface, at least in my opinion.

I was really referring more to new controls and such. The Theme support was nice, but it really didn't enchance the user interface from a functional standpoint.

LVL 75
ID: 36939293
True ... but the OP is interested in esthetics ...


Author Closing Comment

ID: 36943775
Brilliant responce.

Thank you.

Featured Post

How to Use the Help Bell

Need to boost the visibility of your question for solutions? Use the Experts Exchange Help Bell to confirm priority levels and contact subject-matter experts for question attention.  Check out this how-to article for more information.

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

Access custom database properties are useful for storing miscellaneous bits of information in a format that persists through database closing and reopening.  This article shows how to create and use them.
Windows Explorer let you handle zip folders nearly as any other folder: Copy, move, change, and delete, etc. In VBA you can also handle normal files and folders, but zip folders takes a little more - and that you'll find here.
Basics of query design. Shows you how to construct a simple query by adding tables, perform joins, defining output columns, perform sorting, and apply criteria.
Add bar graphs to Access queries using Unicode block characters. Graphs appear on every record in the color you want. Give life to numbers. Hopes this gives you ideas on visualizing your data in new ways ~ Create a calculated field in a query: …
Suggested Courses

810 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question