VBA Training

Excel VBA 2013: Track Changes With the Inquire Add-In

new feature for microsoft office 2013Comparing and tracking changes in a spreadsheet is hard work. It’s utterly necessary but that doesn’t make it any easier. When you start adding in modifications to the VBA code underneath – which is not immediately obvious – there’s a mountain of things to screen. If a colleague has modified a module you’ll have to resort to third-party tools such as Visual Studio to monitor for code changes. Arguably it’s a sledgehammer to crack a nut.

We’ve previously talked about how the Inquire Add-In can help regulate your formulas and examine differences. Inquire is not just limited to the cells. Inquire will also check for changes within the Visual Basic Editor.

excel 2013 inquire comparing vba changeSimply point it in the direction of your two files, ensure the Macros box is checked and let it do its magic. You’ll get a list of procedures that have changed along with the text output. It still doesn’t drill down to every specific character but in a complex project it will get you closer to what’s happened.

How to: Enable the Add-in through File > Options > Add-Ins, from the Manage drop-down choose COM Add-Ins > Go. Tick Inquire and click OK.

To use it select the Inquire Tab in Ribbon > Compare Files. Browse to your files and click OK.

For training on Excel VBA 2013 and other versions, browse Excel VBA training courses from Best STL, available London and UK wide.

VBA Training

Using VBA to call the Windows File Open dialog box

After you’ve worked with VBA for a while, you’re going to want to prompt the user to open a file. Maybe they need to go and select the latest download from their database, or you need to import the contents of the latest sales data. Whatever the scenario, you’re going to need to access the Windows file dialogue.

Over on the forum part of our site, we’ve detailed a method you can use regarding the msoFileDialogFilePicker method. It involved creating a custom user form and reading in the selected filename.

Here’s an alternative: use the built-in system dialogue box.

open file dialogue triggered from excel vba
The Open File dialogue.

The Workbooks.Open() command is straightforward: in the brackets you can input a filename. It’s common to put a variable in there. In this case, we’re using the Application.GetOpenFilename() command which executes the standard File Open dialogue box for Excel. The workbook selected will be opened.

There’s also a number of arguments for the GetOpenFilename property, filtering by types, allowing multiple files to be selected… here’s a full description of the GetOpenFilename arguments.

Want to find out more VBA tricks and tips? Attend a Best STL VBA training course.