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Best place to define combo boxes in Access

Eddie Antar
Eddie Antar asked
So, this is a general question about best practices for building Access solutions. I'm building a new system. In the past, when I've built "main" tables that have lookup fields, I always used the Lookup Wizard on the field type and associated the field with the lookup table right in the table design. But I was wondering what you experts think about that. Should you leave the field as Numeric and design the drop down only on the forms? Does it matter? Is there a speed or index issue?

Let me know your thoughts.

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John TsioumprisSoftware & Systems Engineer

Always work on Numeric as the bound value
Just use both the key and the display value ...raise the column count to 2 (or more)
and arrange the Column Widths to hide the key

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Change to the equivalent in inches
President / Owner
Most Valuable Expert 2017
Most Valuable Expert 2012

I don't like to use the lookup wizard in table design because when you view a table directly, it makes it very hard to figure out what's going on.

Instead I always leave it as a numeric and do the setup myself in the combo.

Another CPU cycle sucker in table design is the subdatasheet feature.  Always leave it set to none.   If you need code to walk through your tables to turn it off, I can share.

Also make sure you leave auto correct tracking and auto correct off.


Jim Dettman (EE MVE)President / Owner
Most Valuable Expert 2017
Most Valuable Expert 2012


oh and one other; turn off the auto index and join features.   Especially the first.  Otherwise you end up with a bunch of indexes you don't need.

This is the feature where if a field is named something like "ID", it automatically creates an index for you.



Got it. Thank you Jim!