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Connecting to existing databases in OpenOffice.org 2.0

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In the glamorous world of office suites, the new features often get all the attention. The Bases, the Impress Redux and the New Toolbar Metaphors of OpenOffice.org 2.0 get all the cover stories and the center spreads in Office Suite Weekly, while the slight changes that make life easier often get ignored. It's a sad story.

I'm here to change that; a bit, at least.

Creating a new database with OpenOffice 2.0 Base is convenient. You get to start from scratch, use cool features like relations and data entry forms and so on. I sure wouldn't argue against anyone using Base.

However, few of us come to the table empty-handed, data-wise. We, at least, have an address book lurking somewhere. We probably have a spreadsheet of items such as a list of customers, all our expenses for the last year, all the Star Trek conventions we want to go to and who the headliners are, etc. And there's always the possibility that one, or two of us have an Oracle or Access database and that we might even like to use it with our office suite.

So the main question is, in OpenOffice.org 2.0, how do you link to the perfectly good data you've got lying around? The answer is: it's very similar to how you used to do it, just easier. That's always a plus.

Connecting to an existing data source to make an OpenOffice.org 2.0 database

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