Quick Tip – Conditional Formatting on Ms Access Reports

This is one little annoying problem that there is not enough obvious documentation for within Ms Access 2007. While it might seem obvious enough, at the time, it wasn’t to me (so who is to blame, my lack of knowledge, the software interface, or the help documentation?).

I was developing a report in Ms Access and setting all these conditional formatting expressions and values. When I was running the reports, the formatting conditions were seemingly not working. I ran my mouse over some of the textboxes, and noticed that the background colour was changing as per my formatting rules when I clicked in the text boxes.

I was slightly stuck, I couldn’t figure out why they weren’t working as I had specified. Then all of a sudden it dawned on me – you have to set the textbox control’s background to SOLID rather than TRANSPARENT. I did so, and viola! All was right in the world.

This was a tip brought to you from the seemingly-obvious-yet-not-so-obvious department.