The first step in getting started with using Access is to launch Microsoft Access. You launch Microsoft Access from the Start menu or from a desktop shortcut.
To start Access from the Start menu, you select Start | Programs | Microsoft Office | Microsoft Office Access 2003. The Access Desktop with the Getting Started window appears (see Figure 1.1). Here you can get help, open an existing database, or create a new database.
To start Access from a desktop shortcut, with the Windows desktop active, you simply double-click the Desktop shortcut. Access launches.
When you first launch Access, a special window, called the task pane, appears on the right-hand side of the screen. From the task pane, you can easily open a recently used database, create a new database of any type, or navigate to any database stored locally or on a network drive.