Microsoft KB Archive/112103

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Article ID: 112103

Article Last Modified on 1/18/2007


  • Microsoft Access 2.0 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Access 95 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Access 97 Standard Edition

This article was previously published under Q112103

Novice: Requires knowledge of the user interface on single-user computers.


When you open a table, a query, a form, or a report, you may see any of the following error values:

  1. Error
  2. Num!
  3. Name?
  4. Div/0!
  5. Deleted
  6. Locked


Microsoft Access places one of these error values in a field when:

  • Access cannot find necessary information.
  • Access cannot carry out an expression.
  • Access cannot store a value within the limits set for the field.


The following sections explain what these error values mean, and list some of the reasons why Microsoft Access may display these error values.


The #Error error value means that Microsoft Access cannot evaluate an expression. For example, you may have supplied incorrect or too few arguments for an aggregate (totals) function, you may have used a parameter query as the domain for an aggregate function, or you may have made a circular reference in the expression.

The following three examples demonstrate possible causes for the #Error value:

Aggregate function:


In this example, the table name is misspelled. It should be "Employee" instead of "Employe".

Circular reference: (query)

FirstName: [FirstName] & " " & [LastName]

In this example, the alias FirstName is also part of the expression.

NOTE: In Microsoft Access 7.0 and 97, this example generates the error message "Circular reference caused by alias 'FirstName' in query definition's SELECT list."

Circular reference: (a form or a report)

Name: FirstName
ControlSource: =[FirstName] & " " & [LastName]

In this example, the text box name (FirstName) is also part of the expression.

In a table or form, this error can also occur when the DefaultValue property setting for a field or control is not appropriate for the DataType or the FieldSize property setting, or when an expression includes a bound control defined by using the Trim() function and the underlying field contains no data. The following example demonstrates a field whose DefaultValue property setting is not appropriate for its FieldSize property setting:

Field: State (Text, FieldSize = 2)
DefaultValue: ="Cal" (3 characters)

In a query, this error can occur when the value of a calculated field is greater than the value allowed by the field's FieldSize property setting. For example, if you add or multiply two integer values and the resulting integer is greater than the value permitted in an integer field, Microsoft Access displays the #Error value in the field. The following example demonstrates a value that is larger than is permitted for the field:

Field: Age (Integer, current record value = 50)
Expr1: [Age] * 1000


The #Num! error value means that the value in the field is too large (either positively or negatively) to be stored in the field, based on the field's DataType or FieldSize property setting.


The #Name? error value means that the name that you entered as the source of the value in the field is not valid. You may have misspelled the name, you may have omitted the equal sign (=) before the expression, or the source itself may have been deleted.

The following example demonstrates a missing equal sign (=) in an expression:

ControlSource: [FirstName] & " " & [LastName]
Should be: =[FirstName] & " " & [LastName]

The following example demonstrates an invalid ControlSource property name:

ControlSource: =[FirstNam] & " " & [LastName]
Should be =[FirstName] & " " & [LastName]

When you are referring to a control on a subform or subreport in Microsoft Access 2.0, you must refer to it through the main form or report and use the following syntax:




<MainFormName> or <MainReportName> is the name of the form or report that contains the subform or subreport.

<SubFormName> or <SubReportName> is the name of the subform or subreport.

Note that this name does not have to be the same name as the name of the subform or subreport itself. To verify this name, check the Name property of the subform or subreport.

<ControlName> is the name of the control on the subform or subreport. To verify this name, check the Name property of the control.

NOTE: In Microsoft Access 7.0 and 97 an incorrect reference to a field in a subform or subreport returns #Error rather than #Name?.

Some other causes for the #Name? error value include:

  • A field name on the form or report that does not match the name of the field in the underlying table.
  • A control name that is the same as one of the fields on the underlying table.
  • An expression that is designed to calculate a sum for a control may include a Sum() function. (You can use the Sum() function to calculate sums only for fields, not for controls.)


The #Div/0! error value means that you are trying to divide a number by zero (0), either directly in an expression (for example, 8/0), or by using a value from a field whose value is zero.


The #Deleted error value means that the record being referred to has been deleted.


The #Locked error value can be caused by any of the following situations:

  • The record has been locked by another user and Microsoft Access cannot read the data.
  • There are two or more instances of Microsoft Access running on the same computer. Microsoft Access treats each open copy of the database as a separate user.
  • Your code has opened a recordset and has a lock on a record.

It is important to note that Microsoft Access uses page locking instead of record locking. Microsoft Access stores records in groups of 2048 bytes, called pages. A single page may hold only one record, or it may hold many records. If each record only requires 200 bytes, then up to 10 records may be stored on a page. When Microsoft Access places a lock on a record, it locks that record's page. If there are 10 records on the page, then all 10 records on that page are locked.

Additional query words: pounderror poundname Pound, PoundDeleted

Keywords: kbfaq kbusage KB112103