Editing and Synching List Item Changes with Microsoft Access

Often, you need to change several list item columns / field content, using a Datasheet view of the list. However, performing such en masse updates via MS-Access can often be much easier.

Please find below, the standard, high-level instructions on how this is accomplished as well as a couple of key points, benefits, tips & tricks:

  • From a Datasheet view of your list (containing all list’s columns / fields / content), access the List tab from List Tools followed by clicking Open with Access
  • In this scenario, you’d update content you’re already prepared for, without the need to save the .ACCDB file with a particular name – do so, depending on requirements – below, we’ll focus on exporting a copy of the list, saving the file and unlinking the connection to the live list – click OK
  • With your list’s content opened in MS-Access, quickly make your changes and synchronize these changes back to the online list via Refresh All
  • Check the updates made, from your live / online list within SharePoint

MS-SharePoint: Editing and Synching List Item Changes with Microsoft Access (Open, Edit, Refresh All)

Very powerful and helpful is using Find and Replace – it can be used on most columns and their selections, including Multiple-Choice columns however, be cautious using this in order to avoid updating content from other columns your edits may impact.

  • NOTE: Multiple-Choice column updates will update the particular selection you choose to update, without affecting the other choices / entries.

MS-SharePoint: Editing and Synching List Item Changes with Microsoft Access (Find and Replace)

If you must export your list, saving a copy of this locally, it is critical that you unlink the exported data from your server (online list from your SharePoint site).  This ensures that those with edit access to the online list do not accidentally update column content and synchronize these changes to the live list.

You may find it easier to simply Export to Excel, followed by unlinking the exported data as seen from the screenshot below (>Export to Excel >Open >Enable >Unlink >OK).

MS-SharePoint: Editing and Synching List Item Changes with Microsoft Access (Export to Excel and Unlink for a Local Copy)

In addition, please familiarize yourself with “Working with a Datasheet View”.

From any SharePoint site, click ‘Help’ to view further instructions on managing SharePoint sites; the following is a direct link to Office.com’s details pertaining to this topic:

Please contact us with any questions.

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