AutoTab Property

Applies to

TextBox Object

You can use the AutoTab property to specify whether an automatic tab occurs when the last character permitted by a text box control's input mask is entered. An automatic tab moves the focus to the next control in the form's tab order. Read/write Boolean.


expression Required. An expression that returns one of the objects in the Applies To list.


The AutoTab property uses the following settings.


Visual Basic




Generates a tab when the last allowable character in a text box is entered.



(Default) Doesn't generate a tab when the last allowable character in a text box is entered.

You can set this property by using a form's property sheet, a macro, or Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) code.

You can set the default for this property by using the control's default control style or the DefaultControl property in VBA code.

The AutoTab property affects tab behavior in both Form view and Datasheet view.


You create an input mask for a control by using the InputMask property.

You can also create an input mask for a text box control bound to a field by setting the InputMask property for the field in the form's underlying table or query. If the field is dragged to a form from the field list, the field's input mask is inherited by the text box control.

You could use the AutoTab property if you have a text box on a form for which you usually enter the maximum number of characters for each record. After you have entered the maximum number of characters, focus automatically moves to the next control in the tab order. For example, you could use this property for a CategoryType field that must always be five characters long.

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