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In this lesson we will tell you what the Objects in Excel Visual Basic Application are.
Introduction and Hierarchy of Objects
An object is instance of something that hold some properties. Like John is object of Human, which hold many common properties that most humans have. In Excel one object can contain another object, than further that object can contain another object.
Excel VBA Programming involves working with an object hierarchy. It might sound quite confusing but in till the end of this lesson you will fairly familiar with what objects are and how they work in Excel VBA.
In Excel, we can say parent of all objects is Excel itself, and we call it Application object. Application object contains other objects, for example, the workbook object (this can be any workbook you have created). The workbook object can contain other objects, such as the worksheet object. The worksheet object contains other objects such as range object.
We hope you have already know that how to create a Macro in Excel if not then please check our tutorial on How to Create a Macro. In that chapter we have shown how to run code by clicking on command button. We used the following line of code in that chapter.
Range("A1").Value = "Hello"
Let me elaborate that line for you. Range is and object and Value is its property, we are assigning a string value “Hello” to object. This Range object is Child of its parent object, let’s see full hierarchy.
Application.Workbooks("create-a-macro").Worksheets(1).Range("A1").Value = "Hello"
You can clearly understand now, that Application is an object and it is accessing its child object Workbooks and in brackets (“create-a-macro”) is name of workbook it is accessing.
Now Workbook object is accessing its child object Worksheets and passing worksheet number in brackets (1), now Worksheet object is further accessing Range object that is child of it.
What are the Collections
You have noticed that workbooks and worksheets both are plural, but why? Because they are collections. Workbooks collection contains all the workbook objects that are currently open. The worksheet collection contains all the worksheet objects in a workbook.
How to refer to member of a collection
You can refer any member of any collection by following three methods.
1. Using the worksheet name.
Worksheets("Sales").Range("A1").Value = "Hello"
2. Using the index number (1 is the first worksheet starting from the left)
Worksheets(1).Range("A1").Value = "Hello"
3. Using the CodeName.
Sheet1.Range("A1").Value = "Hello"
Note: to see CodeName of any workseet, open the Visual basic editor. You can access VB Editor by clicking on Developer tab.
In project Explorer, the first name is Codename and second name is the worksheet’s name.
In image above you can see Sheet1 is CodeName and mySheet in actual name of worksheet.
Referencing a worksheet using codename is safest way to refer any worksheet because CodeName always remains the same even if you change name of worksheet.
But if you want to refer any worksheet into another workbook this method will not work.
Properties and Methods
Now we will learn about some properties and methods of Workbooks and Worksheets collection. Properties are something which a collections holds and which describe that collection, while methods can perform some action with a collection.
We have already added a command button in our previous lesson, now we will perform some actions with that. Open VB Editor and write following line of code
This Add method will create new Workbook. If we use it like following
It will add new worksheet to collection of worksheets.
The Count property of the Worksheets collection counts the number of worksheets in a workbook. Write the following line in code.
Now close VB Editor to try if your applied property of method works, click on button. In our example we have applied Add Method for worksheets.
After clicking on Command button, a new worksheet will added.
This is how we can use Methods and Properties.