Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Opening an HTML Page in a Macro.

Opening an HTML Page in a Macro

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated May 11, 2013)

For some time now, Excel has been "Web aware," meaning that the program knows how to handle hyperlinks. You can add a hyperlink in a document, click on that link, and Excel opens your Web browser and displays the contents of that link in the browser. (You can also create a hyperlink to other Office documents, including Excel workbooks.) You can even create hyperlinks to different objects on your worksheet, such as a command button in a form.

What if you want to start the browser and open an HTML file from within a VBA macro, however? There are a couple of ways that you can do this. The first is to simply open a new Internet Explorer object within your code. A macro to do this would appear as follows:

Sub DoBrowse1()
    Dim ie As Object
    Set ie = CreateObject("Internetexplorer.Application")
    ie.Visible = True
    ie.Navigate "c:\temp\MyHTMLfile.htm"
End Sub

This macro will open the file c:\temp\MyHTMLfile.htm in a new Internet Explorer window. If you want to instead open a Web page from over the Internet, you can do so simply by changing where you want to navigate. (Replace the file path with a URL.)

Another way to accomplish the same task is to rely on Excel to figure out what your default browser is and open the HTML resource. The following macro does the trick:

Sub DoBrowse2()
    ActiveWorkbook.FollowHyperlink _
      Address:="c:\temp\MyHTMLfile.htm", _
      NewWindow:=True
End Sub

Again, the browser opens a new window and displays the specified file. You can change the Address parameter to any URL that you desire.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2003) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Opening an HTML Page in a Macro.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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