Tech Tip: Print multiple Word docs/Simplify Excel dates/Preload a table into a new Access query

Learn how to print multiple documents from the folder list, simplify Excel dates, and preload a table into a new query.

Print multiple documents from the folder list

Printing a number of Word documents can easily become cumbersome. Rather than opening each file and printing individually, use the folder list to print them all at once.

Follow these steps:

  1. Open the folder that contains the Word documents you want to print.
  2. Press [Ctrl], and select the files you want to print. (If the files are adjacent, select the first file in the list, press [Shift], and select the last file in the list.)
  3. Right-click the selection, and select Print from the shortcut menu.
  4. Select the desired print options, and click OK. (The selected options will apply to all of the documents.)

Word will print the files in the order they appear in the folder.

Simplify entering and formatting dates

Working with dates in Excel can sometimes be tricky. Use these two tips to make entering and formatting dates easier.

Excel automatically formats a formula cell as a date cell when the formula refers to another cell containing a date or a time. For example, if you enter 1/1/2003 in A1, 1/1/2004 in B1, and =B1-A1 in cell C1, Excel displays the result in C1 as 12/30/1900.

While Excel doesn't let you turn off this automatic date formatting, it does provide a shortcut key combination to quickly change the cell to General format. Select the formula cell, and press [Ctrl][Shift][~] to display the true value, which in this case is 365.

In addition, Excel's Autofill feature lets you quickly enter a series of dates into a worksheet. For example, say you want to track weekly attendance by entering a series of dates in Column B, and you want to start with 3/1/04.

Follow these steps:

  1. Enter 3/1/04 in B1.
  2. In B2, enter =B1+7.

Click and drag B2's fill handle down the column to generate the additional dates.

Preload a table into a new query

If you know which table you want to use in a query, you can save a few mouse clicks by preloading it before you open the query in Design View.

Follow these steps:

  1. In the Database window, select the table you want to include in your query.
  2. On the Database toolbar, click the drop-down arrow on the New Object button, and select Query.
  3. In the New Query dialog box, select Design View, and click OK.

Access opens the new query in Design View with the selected table. To add another table, click the Show Table button in the Query Design toolbar.

You can also use this method to create a new query from an existing query. Just select the query instead of a table in Step 1.