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Old 08-06-2018, 09:52 AM   #1
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Colored Background For Windows View in A2016

Here's something someone might find useful.

I don't know about Access 2013, but in Access 2016, Microsoft, in its infinite wisdom, decided to limit the color themes available in Access. Unlike the rest of the Office suite, there is no longer a color theme available that turns the Access background color to something other than bright white.

My office recently upgraded from Office 2007 to Office 2016, and as a result, a number of my users started reporting serious eye fatigue and even a number of recurring migraines because of this change.

One way to avoid this issue is to switch to using tabs instead of windows, but I dislike this solution both because of aesthetics (I and most of my users HATE the tabbed documents look), and because it takes away some of my control over what users see. Because of that, I wound up coming up with this: a simple background form that automatically sizes itself to fit the display area, and if accidentally clicked, takes steps to ensure it remains in the background.

Here is the code behind the form:

'** MODULE:         frmBackground
'** CreatedBy:      Scott L Prince
'** CreationDate:   8/4/2018
'** Description:    Provides application background in place of Access White.
Option Compare Database
Option Explicit
Private Sub Form_Activate()
    'Show all OTHER forms that are flagged as visible.
    Call ShowLoadedScreens
End Sub
Private Sub Form_Load()
    'Resize the form.
    Call SetBackground
End Sub
Private Sub SetBackground()
'Version:               1.0.0
'Created By:            Scott L Prince
'Date Created:          8/4/2018
'Purpose:               Resizes frmBackground to precisely fit the application window.
'Parameters:            None
'Returns:               N/A
'Dependencies:          None
'Comments:              None
Dim WH As Long
Dim WL As Long
Dim WT As Long
Dim WW As Long
    With Me
        WT = .WindowTop
        WL = .WindowLeft
        WH = .WindowHeight
        WW = .WindowWidth
        Call .Move(WL, WT, WW, WH)
    End With
End Sub
Private Sub ShowLoadedScreens()
'Version:               1.00.00
'Created By:            Scott L Prince
'Date Created:          8/4/2018
'Purpose:               Displays all OTHER forms flagged as visible.
'                       Displays all opened reports and queries.
'Parameters:            None
'Returns:               N/A
'Dependencies:          None
'Comments:              None
Dim frm As Form
Dim rpt As Report
Dim obj As AccessObject
    'Show all loaded forms that are not this form.
    For Each frm In Application.Forms
        If frm.Visible And Not (frm.Name = Me.Name) Then frm.SetFocus
    'Show all loaded reports.
    For Each rpt In Application.Reports
        DoCmd.SelectObject acReport, rpt.Name
    'Show all open queries.
    For Each obj In Application.CurrentData.AllQueries
        If obj.IsLoaded Then DoCmd.SelectObject acQuery, obj.Name

    If Not obj Is Nothing Then Set obj = Nothing
    If Not rpt Is Nothing Then Set rpt = Nothing
    If Not frm Is Nothing Then Set frm = Nothing
    Exit Sub

    MsgBox "An error has been encountered." & vbCrLf & vbCrLf & _
           "Procedure:" & vbTab & Me.Name & "ShowLoadedScreens" & _
           "Error Number:" & vbTab & Err.Number & vbCrLf & _
           "Description:" & Err.Description, vbCritical, "ERROR"
    Resume ProcExit
End Sub
Using it is pretty straightforward:
  • Create a form with the background of your choice. (I went with a light blue because...reasons.)
  • Include this code in the form, and save it.
  • Create a startup procedure in a general module that opens the background form, THEN opens your main menu.
  • Create a macro named AutoExec.
  • In that Macro, use the RunCode action, and have it run your startup procedure.
For those who just want to download and go, I've attached two Access 2016 databases:
  • BGForm.accdb
  • BGFormExample.accdb
The first one contains just the background form and nothing else. The other is a full-blown demo so you can see the implementation.

The databases SHOULD open for Access 2013, but you might be out of luck if you have Access 2007 or 2010. Then again, if you use those earlier versions, then you shouldn't need this form anyway. If you do want to use this anyway, you'll probably need to create your own form and copy my code.

Anyway, this isn't a clever solution to a pressing problem, a much-desired feature not built into Access, or a way to push Access beyond its intended boundaries. It's just something your users may appreciate, especially if any of them get migraines from looking at a white background all day.

As per forum rules, if you have any questions regarding this, you're best off posting a PM. If you do reply to this post, please remember to Report this post with the report icon in the bottom-left corner of the post. This is a moderated forum, and without that, your post may well never be approved.
Attached Files
File Type: accdb BGForm.accdb (476.0 KB, 25 views)
File Type: accdb BGFormExample.accdb (672.0 KB, 37 views)

This is a test.
This is only a test.
If this were a real emergency, you would NOT have been informed, and we would have fled screaming in terror.

Last edited by Frothingslosh; 08-06-2018 at 11:31 AM.
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background color , backgrounds , form

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