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: Finding the Directory Name.

Finding the Directory Name

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated May 31, 2014)

If you have a need to find out the directory in which your workbook is saved, you may be tempted to use a macro to figure out the answer. While this is a valid approach (and relatively easy), some people are intimidated by macros or don't want to use them within the workbooks. The following worksheet formula will return the directory in which the workbook is stored:

=LEFT(CELL("Filename",$A$1),FIND("[",CELL("Filename",$A$1))-1)

If you use this formula in a workbook that is brand new—one that has yet to be saved—then it will return a #VALUE! error. This happens because the filename has not yet been set, and the LEFT function cannot return a portion of something that is not there. To avoid the error, simply encase the formula in an IF function, as follows:

=IF(CELL("Filename",$A$1)>"",LEFT(CELL("Filename",$A$1),
FIND("[",CELL("Filename",$A$1))-1),"")

In this variation the CELL function is used to determine if the filename has been set. If it has, then the directory name is extracted and returned. If not, then an empty string is returned.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2571) 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: Finding the Directory Name.

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

Three-Dimensional Transpositions

Excel makes it easy to transpose your data so that rows become columns and columns rows. It doesn't have a built-in ...

Discover More

Selecting Sentences

Need to select an entire sentence at once? You can do so by creating a short macro that does the task for you, or you can ...

Discover More

Converting a PDF to a Docs File

Need to get the text out of a PDF file so that you can edit it? Docs makes it easy by offering to convert the file for you as ...

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)

Combining Numbers and Text in a Cell

There are times when it can be beneficial to combine both numbers and text in the same cell. This can be easily done using a ...

Discover More

Viewing Formulas versus Results

Sometimes it is helpful to see the actual formulas in a cell, rather than the results of those formulas. Here's how to make ...

Discover More

Entering Formulas in Excel

The way you signify that you are entering a formula is to start a cell entry with an equal sign. Here is the reason why Excel ...

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 for this tip:

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)

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.

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.

Links and Sharing
Share