You can use it as a time saver tool but not as a task saver. Guess what. I think the statement about warning of overusing vba is true though. And with that in mind, in just the same way that a simple in-house vba solution will negate the need to pay exorbitantly expensive SAP consultants, sometimes too, a normal spreadsheet is just plain simpler than a vba workbook, no matter how much you love vba.
Oh Oz of the Sun, you have hurt my feelings. With 6 reasons to be cautious about VBA, there are indeed billions of reasons to love it. I regularly use VBA just to clear forms so that the user can start fresh. VBA can definitely be a time saver. Actually, more people should be experienced in VBA. The blogpost was just a caution. Just some things to think about before we open that VBA editor.
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For example. It was necessary. Deal with it. Fortunately, I can fix defective code. But I digress… 2 Huh? Not sure that one belongs in the list of why not to use VBA. Good advice though. Think about the users. Nobody is so good that no other developer can figure it out or recreate the solution. Stay thirsty my friend and code responsibly.
There are a lot of reasons to be careful about using VBA. In no way do I suggest VBA is the devil. As you, I and RStadther agree, there are ways of dealing with all the 2 thru 5 things that I mention. With 1. And there are 2 problems:. New VBA developers, need to be careful, though. Thanks for commenting. The book is written in bite-sized chunks covering a lot of Excel functions and features. YakshChauhan Thanks so much for commenting.
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This blogpost was meant to be cautionary. There are good reasons to use VBA. I wrote a blogpost in support of using VBA. Excel ran for 4 days by itself. In many cases, the lack of Undo can be obviated by simply closing all other files and saving the file s to be operated on by the macro, before launching it.
I always do this. If I get a weird result, I just close without saving. If a macro involves changing and saving a file, save it somewhere else first.
If it involves changing and saving many files, try to keep them each small and noncritical. Ok Oz. So I should avoid using VBA. All the automation and scripting that gets the job done?
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If you have a better solution that is preferable, instead of using VBA, please share. The article is just 6 reasons not to use VBA. There are plenty of reasons to use VBA. So are you ready for a comment six years later? I actually found this blog subject while searching for a more insidious undo problem. If, for example, I accidentally delete the contents of a cell, unless I have a good photographic memory of what was there before I made it disappear, that change is lost forever. The problems you have had, I have faced and overcome; that is, these for me do not exist.
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So look for other pretexts to stop using Excel VBA. This was a cautionary warning. I wrote a blogpost on reasons to use VBA. That said, the more experienced you are in VBA or coding, the quicker you can turn out a reliable solution. If someone just records a macro and expects it to work the same way on differently formatted sheets, etc. Also, recording the macro with relative references can help. First rule of computers, save your work often! At the end of the day I might have 50 versions. Sadly in this day and age computers still crash, what can you do?
Second, good programming design is to non-destructively edit the data. If you want to delete rows and have some method of rollback, maybe instead of deleting, have your macro create a copy of the worksheet with the rows you want to keep or make whatever changes you want there. The macro could automatically save a backup copy of the workbook before proceeding. There are a million ways around this problem. This one is silly. Of course, when designing ANY software or process, we should consider the users and user experience.
A well designed application or macro comprehensively prompts and displays status to the user, catches errors gracefully, and manages their experience overall. The job of a programmer is to foresee scenarios like this and design for it. But at the other end of the spectrum, programming using extreme OOP design patterns can cause headaches too. Have you read my responses to this?
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Especially my Medium article. Often we build spreadsheets for other people, and Excel is unique in the way that users often need to make modifications to calculations, the layout, etc. So, it helps to be in their world.
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