MS Access Function : Automate Normalisation or De-concatenate a field (MS Outlook export example)

I was contemplating a better way of storing our old emails and unhappy with some of the systems in place I started considering whether I could dump them into a database.

Thing is when you export from Outlook some of the standard fields in particular To and From are concatenated. Wouldn’t it be nice to separate those fields into their own table of names and addresses and reference them back to a main table of messages.

This is what I came up with.

For demonstrations purposes I will use two tables

pkid - autonumber primary key
ccaddresses - memo or long text

and the child table

pkid - autonumber primary key
ccaddress - string(150 should do it)
pkidt001 - number

and here is the blank second table

Next we create a user defined function

Public Function CreateChildTable()

    Dim db          As DAO.Database
    Dim rs          As DAO.Recordset
    Dim rsTarget    As DAO.Recordset

    Dim strSQL      As String
    Dim strField1   As String
    Dim strField2   As String
    Dim varData     As Variant
    Dim i           As Integer
    Dim intPKID     As Integer

    Set db = CurrentDb

    'Select all the ccaddresses from the parent table
    strSQL = "SELECT pkid,ccaddresses FROM t001parent"

    Set rsTarget = db.OpenRecordset("t002newchildren", dbOpenDynaset, dbAppendOnly)

    Set rs = db.OpenRecordset(strSQL, dbOpenDynaset)
    With rs
        While Not .EOF
            intPKID = !pkid
            varData = Split(!ccaddresses, ";") ' Get all semi colon delimited fields
            'add email addresses if there is only one email address there
            With rsTarget
            !ccaddresss = Trim(varData(0)) ' remove spaces before writing new fields
            !pkidt001 = intPKID
            End With

            'loop through addtional email addresses and add them as children to table
            For i = 1 To UBound(varData)
                With rsTarget
                    !ccaddresss = Trim(varData(i)) ' remove spaces before writing new fields
                    !pkidt001 = intPKID
                End With


    End With

    Set rsTarget = Nothing
    Set rs = Nothing
    Set db = Nothing

End Function

After running this we should

We’ve just nicely split the parent table ccaddesses field into constituent emails and normalised it as a child of the parent table.