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: Turning Off Screen Updating.

Turning Off Screen Updating

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 22, 2016)

3

Many people write their own macros to manipulate the information in a workbook. Many times the macro may do quite a bit with the data, such as selecting different cells, replacing values or formulas, and taking other types of actions. This means that the Excel screen can look like it has "gone crazy" while the macro is running.

One thing you may want to do with your macro to make it run faster and to prevent distracting flashes on the screen is to turn off screen updating while the macro is running. The following macro lines will, respectively, turn off screen updating and then turn it back on in a VBA macro.

Application.ScreenUpdating = False
Application.ScreenUpdating = True

The idea is to use the first line near the beginning of your macro, and then use the second line near the end. Thus, the main body of your macro can do its work behind the scenes without the necessity of stopping to update the screen.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2498) 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: Turning Off Screen Updating.

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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Printing without Track Changes Marks

If your document has a lot of markup visible in it, you may want to print a copy of the document that doesn't reflect those ...

Discover More

Searching Comments

Need to find that misplaced comment in your worksheet? It's easy to do using the Find and Replace capabilities of Excel.

Discover More

Changing the Link to Previous Default for Headers and Footers

When you insert a new section in your document, Word assumes you want the headers and footers in that section to be the same ...

Discover More

Solve Real Business Problems Master business modeling and analysis techniques with Excel and transform data into bottom-line results. This hands-on, scenario-focused guide shows you how to use the latest Excel tools to integrate data from multiple tables. Check out Microsoft Excel 2013 Data Analysis and Business Modeling today!

More ExcelTips (menu)

Checking if a Workbook is Already Open

Knowing of a workbook is already open can be a prerequisite to your macro working correctly. Here's how to check it out.

Discover More

Progression Indicator in a Macro

When your macro is humming along, minding its own business, a user watching the screen may not see any activity and therefore ...

Discover More

Understanding Functions in Macros

Functions are a common programming construct. They help you to create easy ways of processing information and returning a ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 6 - 0?

2017-02-21 04:49:20

Barry

Something that is not mentioned is that the macro will run faster as Excel doesn't have to constantly refresh the screen.

It is also useful to turn off automatic recalculation to improve macro execution speed on large spreadsheets.

How much faster will depend on the macro itself and how many changes it makes to a worksheet and then on how much recalculation that is done, but on a large spreadsheet this can make a significant improvement in performance.


2017-02-21 04:43:46

Barry

Something you don't mention is that the macro will run faster as Excel doesn't have to constantly refresh the screen. It is also useful to turn off automatic recalculation How much faster will depend on the macro itself and how many changes it makes to a worksheet and then on how much recalculation that is done, but on a large spreadsheet this can make a significant improvement in performance


2017-02-20 07:54:53

Fernando Martinez

Excel 2016 not responding to Application.ScreenUpdating.Why


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the menu interface (Excel 97, Excel 2000, Excel 2002, or Excel 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.