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Populate worksheets with data from a database

You can access data in document-level Office projects in the same way that you access data in Windows Forms projects. You use the same tools and code to bring the data into your solution, and you can even use Windows Forms controls to display the data. In addition, you can take advantage of controls called host controls, which are native objects in Microsoft Office Excel that have been enhanced with events and data-binding capability. For more information, see Host items and host controls overview.

Applies to: The information in this topic applies to document-level projects for Excel. For more information, see Features available by Office application and project type.

The following example shows how to add data-bound controls in document-level projects using a designer.

Add a data-bound control to a worksheet at design time

To populate a worksheet with data from a database

  1. Open an Excel document-level project in Visual Studio, with the worksheet open in the designer.

  2. Open the Data Sources window and create a data source for your project. For more information, see Add new connections.

  3. Drag the field or table you want from the Data Sources window to your worksheet.

One of the following controls is created on the worksheet:

You can add a different control by selecting the table or field in the Data Sources window and then choosing a different control from the drop-down list.

Objects in the project

In addition to the control, the following data-related objects are automatically added to your project:

When you run the project, the control displays the first record in the data source. You can use the BindingSource to enable users to scroll through the records.

To scroll through the records

For information about how to send updates to the typed dataset and the database, see How to: Update a data source with data from a host control.