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This chapter is from the book

Using the Function Keys

Access assigns specific purposes to all 12 function keys of the 101-key extended keyboard. Some function-key combinations, such as Shift+F4 (which you press to find the next occurrence of a match with the Find dialog), derive from other Microsoft applications—in this case, Word.

Global Function Keys

Windows, rather than Access, uses global function-key assignments, except for F11, Ctrl+F1, and Alt+F1, to perform identical functions in all Windows applications. Table 3.6 lists the global function-key assignments.

Table 3.6. Global Function-Key Assignments




Displays context-sensitive help related to the present basic function and status of Access. If a context-sensitive help topic isn't available, F1 opens the Microsoft Access Help task pane page, which lets you search online help for a keyword or open its table of contents.

new Ctrl+F1

Toggles (alternates) visibility of the ribbon window in all Office 2007 members.


Closes the active window.


Exits Access or closes a dialog if one is open.


Selects each open window in sequence as the active window.

new F11

Toggles Navigation Pane visibility.


Opens the selected object's Save As dialog.


Saves your open database; the equivalent of the File menu's Save command.

Function-Key Assignments and Shortcut Keys for Fields, Grids, and Text Boxes

Access assigns function-key combinations that aren't reserved for global operations to actions specific to the basic function you're performing at the moment. Table 3.7 lists the function-key combinations that apply to fields, grids, and text boxes. (To present complete information, this table repeats some information that appears in the previous tables.)

Table 3.7. Function Keys for Fields, Grids, and Text Boxes




Toggles between displaying the caret for editing and selecting the entire field.


Opens the Zoom box to make typing expressions and other text easier.


Opens a drop-down combo list or list box.


Finds the next occurrence of a match of the text typed in the Find or Replace dialog, if the dialog is closed.


Moves the caret to the record-number box. Type the number of the record that you want to display.


In Table Design view, cycles between upper and lower parts of the window. In Form Design view, cycles through the header, body (detail section), and footer.


Starts the spelling checker.


Turns on extend mode. Press F8 again to extend the selection to a word, the entire field, the whole record, and then all records.


Reverses the F8 selection process.


Opens the Find and Replace dialog with the Find page active.


Opens the Find and Replace dialog with the Replace page active.

Ctrl++ (plus sign)

Adds a new record to the current table or query, if the table or query is updatable.


Saves changes to the active record in the table.


Undoes changes in the current record or field. By pressing Esc twice, you can undo changes in the current field and record. Also cancels extend mode.

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