Fixes To Resolve Microsoft Access NOT Showing Tabs Mystery


This blog targets on solving the MS Access Missing Tab mystery. Whether, it happened in any of the Access Database version 2007/2010/2013/2016.  You will get to know the easiest way to resolve this Microsoft Access NOT showing Tabs issue.

Practical Scenario:

In MS access 2010, if I create a brand new project, the ribbon has a lot of options and actions.

But if I open an existing project, created in MS access 2003, I can’t see any of those tabs. Does this just have to do with it being a 2003 .mdb? Or is there some other issue that could be causing this?

What Is MS Access Tab?

When any new database is created in MS Access, by default, Access displays the object in the database the forms, reports, tables, and queries in a single window. To separates each of the open object access makes use of the tabs. To do easy switching between the open objects, you just need to click the tabs.

Actually MS Access tabs help in easy opening, visibility and accessibility of the objects. In former versions of Access, objects are displayed in separate overlapping windows. Those Windows tends to obscure each other and thus it gets difficult to find objects in this overlapping window. To overcome this, Tabs are introduced as this help in resolving this issue by remaining visible at all times.

Why Hide Tabs?

Access NOT Showing Tabs

Typically, object taps gets hided for two reasons:

  • When you customize the look and feel of the database. Suppose you need to make set of buttons that allow users to navigate around your database. Tabs may be making your database look more cluttered and interfere with your design. So you have hidden it.
  • When you love the look and feel of older access version. MS office Access version doesn’t provide a “classic” view but overlapping window has the same look and feel as the windows was in earlier Access version.


Well you can hide access tabs and not displaying the overlapping windows. If you do this, access don’t give you the close button that normally appears in the corner of open objects .  If you hide tabs and remain in single document view, you must provide another way for user to close any open windows, such as pressing CTRL+F4.

You hide tabs and work with overlapping windows by making changes in the database settings, Access Options dialog box. But remember one thing that changing the setting affects the entire opened database.

How To Resolve Microsoft Access Not Showing Tabs Issue?

Steps To Show Or Hide Object Tabs Without Using Overlapping Windows

Follow these steps to resolve the Microsoft Access NOT showing Tabs issue. Following this procedure hides the Close button that normally appears at the corner of the open object window.  If you select this option, provide other ways to close the window.

  1. Hit the Microsoft Office Button, and then click to the Access Options. This will open the Access Option.
  2. Tap to the Current Database.
  3. From the Application Options section, just clear up the Display Document Tabs check box.

Switch From Tabs To Overlapping Windows

  1. Tap the Microsoft Office Button , and then tap to the click Access Options.

The Access Options dialog box appears.

  1. Click Current Database.
  2. In the Application Options section, under Document Window Options, click Overlapping Windows.


Once you select this option, access will clears the Display Document Tabs check box automatically.

Things To Care:

  • Must open the database in order to hide document tabs or enabling overlapping windows.
  • If you have already set the database to display overlapping windows by default, then you can’t enable the document tabs.
  • When Database created in previous version of access gets opened, document tabs are automatically closes off.

To turn it on, reverse the step in Switch from tabs to overlapping Windows above, and then close and reopen the database.

If you hide the document tabs and want to open and switch between multiple objects, you can do this using the Navigation Pane.


Or else from the Home tab, in the window group, click Switch Windows. You can also make a tap to the arrow at the bottom of the Switch Windows button. After then select the display option, such as Tile Vertically or Cascade.

How To Resolve Access 2016/2013/2010 Ribbon Missing Issue?

fix ms access missing tab

If you are observing that all of sudden your message bars from the ribbon go missing then what’s your initiative at this stage? Well not to worry, here is the fixes to resolve this.

By default, message bar appears when there are security alerts, workflow tasks, document information, and policy messages. But you have the option to show or hide that message bar from the Access Ribbon.

Method 1: Get Message Bar in Access 2007/2010/2013/2016 easily if you have Classic Menu for Office

Classic Menu for office targets to bring back the classic interface of Microsoft Office 2003/XP (2002)/2000, and helps in working efficiently in the MS Office ribbon.

  • Tap to the View drop down menu in main menus;
  • After then you will find out the Message Bar item.

Method 2: Look for Message Bar in Ribbon if you do not have Classic Menu for Office

In Access 2007:

At the beginning, it’s hard to find out message bar in ribbon of Access 2007. But actually it’s quite simple.

  • Hit the Database Tools tab;
  • After then go to the Show/Hide group;
  • Then view the Message Bar button.

In Access 2010/2013/2016:

  • Hit the File tab after open Access 2010/2013;
  • Tap to the Options button at left bar;
  • Now enter into the Access Option window, click the Trust Center button;
  • After then click the Trust Center Setting button;
  • Now you will enter the Trust center window, click the Message bar and modify the settings.

Wrap Up:

Trying above fixes will surely resolve MS Access Missing Tab and Access 2016/2013/2010 Ribbon Missing Issues.  After then do share your experiences and opinion with us in our comment section.

Fixes To Resolve Microsoft Access NOT Showing Tabs Mystery…!