How to Convert Microsoft Works Files to Access Database

By Tricia Goss

Convert a Works database to Access.
i Jack Hollingsworth/Photodisc/Getty Images

Microsoft Works Database is part of the Works suite of home productivity applications. You can use the program to create database tables listing items such as recipes, your CD collection or your home inventory. If you find that the database is not comprehensive enough for your needs, you can convert the file to a more robust Microsoft Access database table.

Step 1

Open the Works database. Go to the "View" menu and select "Form." Resize fields if necessary by dragging the borders of the fields so that the data in each form is completely visible. Select the first field column, go to the "Format" menu and select "Field." Make sure that the format type selected is either "General" or "Text." Repeat for each column.

Step 2

Make sure that the first 10 characters of each field name are unique from other field names, as Access will truncate them to 10 characters. For example, "Home Address 1" and "Home Address 2" would both shorten to the same name and therefore not convert correctly.

Step 3

Go to the "File" menu and select "Save As." Enter a file name and select ".csv" in the "Save As Type" list. Click "Save" and close Microsoft Works Database. Start Microsoft Access. Open an existing database to import the Works file to it, or select "New."

Step 4

Go to the "Tools" menu in Access 2003. Click "Get External Data" and select "Import." Select "Text Files" in the "Files of Type" box. Select the Works file and click "Import." In Access 2007 or 2010, go to the "External Data" tab and click "Text File." Click "Browse," select the Works file, click "Import" and click "OK."

Step 5

Select "Delimited" and click "Next." Select "Comma" and click "Next." Check and correct your field names if needed and click "Next." Choose whether to set a primary key or allow Access to do so and click "Next." Click "Finish" to complete the wizard and convert the Works file into Access.