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: Copying Headers and Footers.

Copying Headers and Footers

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated January 12, 2015)

Excel allows you to specify headers and footers for your worksheets. You may want to copy these headers and footers from one worksheet to another. Doing so within a workbook is relatively easy, but doing so from one workbook to another can be more daunting.

If the header and footer is one you use quite a bit in new workbooks, and your main concern is to have the header and footer available in those new workbooks (not in existing workbooks), then the best approach would be to create a template workbook. Just set up a workbook as desired, including the specification of headers and footers. Then, save the workbook as an Excel template (XLT format). You can then create your workbooks based on this template and it will have the headers and footers you desire.

One way to copy headers and footers from a worksheet in one workbook to a worksheet in another is to use the traditional editing methods of copying and pasting. In other words, you can select the header material you want to copy, press Ctrl+C, display the header in the target worksheet, and then press Ctrl+V. The drawback to this approach is that it can involve quite a few steps. After all, there are three sections (left, center, and right) for each header and three for each footer. This means that you must do six copy and paste operations to copy the complete header and footer.

Another way to copy headers and footers from one workbook to another involves the use of native Excel commands to make copies of worksheets. Follow these steps:

  1. Open the target workbook; the one to which you want the headers and footers copied.
  2. Open the workbook that is the source of your header and footer, and make sure the desired worksheet is displayed.
  3. Choose Move or Copy Sheet from the Edit menu. Excel displays the Move or Copy dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The Move or Copy dialog box.

  5. Using the To Book drop-down list, select the target workbook you opened in step 1.
  6. Using the Before Sheet area, indicate where you want the sheet copied.
  7. Make sure the Create a Copy check box is selected.
  8. Click on OK. The worksheet is copied to the target workbook.
  9. Close the source workbook from step 2.
  10. In the target workbook, display the worksheet you just copied.
  11. In the tab area at the bottom of the window, right-click and choose Select All Sheets. All the worksheets are now selected.
  12. Display the Page Setup dialog box. (Choose Page Setup from the File menu.)
  13. Make sure the Header/Footer tab is selected. (See Figure 2.)
  14. Figure 2. The Header/Footer tab of the Page Setup dialog box.

  15. Using the Header and Footer drop-down lists, select the header and footer used in the worksheet you just copied.
  16. Click on OK.
  17. Delete the worksheet you copied in steps 1 through 7.

What you essentially did is to copy the worksheet containing the header and footer you desired, then you copied that header and footer to other worksheets in the workbook, then you deleted the original worksheet.

While these steps work fine, they can be tedious if you need to copy headers and footers to a number of different workbooks. In this case, using a macro to do the copying is the saner approach. The following two macros can be used to copy headers and footers in one simple step. All you need to do is display the source worksheet and use the GetHeaders macro. This macro copies the header and footer information to string variables. You can then display, in turn, each worksheet that you want to have the same header and footer and run the DoHeaders macro.

Option Explicit

Dim strHeadLeft As String
Dim strHeadCenter As String
Dim strHeadRight As String
Dim strFootLeft As String
Dim strFootCenter As String
Dim strFootRight As String
Dim bGotHeaders As Boolean

Sub GetHeaders()
    With ActiveSheet.PageSetup
        strHeadLeft = .LeftHeader
        strHeadCenter = .CenterHeader
        strHeadRight = .RightHeader
        strFootLeft = .LeftFooter
        strFootCenter = .CenterFooter
        strFootRight = .RightFooter
        bGotHeaders = True
    End With
End Sub
Sub DoHeaders()
    If bGotHeaders Then
        With ActiveSheet.PageSetup
            .LeftHeader = strHeadLeft
            .CenterHeader = strHeadCenter
            .RightHeader = strHeadRight
            .LeftFooter = strFootLeft
            .CenterFooter = strFootCenter
            .RightFooter = strFootRight
        End With
    Else
        MsgBox "Select the sheet with the " _
            & "headers you want to copy," _
            & vbCrLf & "then run 'GetHeaders'", _
            vbExclamation, "No Headers In Memory"
    End If
End Sub

You could even assign the macros to toolbar buttons, if desired, which can make them even handier for copying headers and footers.

If you have quite a few worksheets and workbooks into which you want the headers and footers copied, there is a different macro approach you can use. The following macro will copy the headers and footers from the active worksheet to all other worksheets in all other open workbooks.

Sub CopyHeaderFooter()
    Dim PS As PageSetup
    Dim WB As Workbook
    Dim WS As Worksheet

    Set PS = ActiveSheet.PageSetup
    For Each WB In Workbooks
        For Each WS In WB.Worksheets
            With WS.PageSetup
                .LeftHeader = PS.LeftHeader
                .CenterHeader = PS.CenterHeader
                .RightHeader = PS.RightHeader
                .LeftFooter = PS.LeftFooter
                .CenterFooter = PS.CenterFooter
                .RightFooter = PS.RightFooter
            End With
        Next
    Next
End Sub

In other words, if you want to copy headers and footers from the current worksheet to 150 other worksheets spread across 15 different workbooks, all you need to do is open the 15 workbooks at the same time, display the source worksheet, and run the macro.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2696) 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: Copying Headers and Footers.

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

Counting Filtered Rows

The filtering capabilities of Excel are indispensable when working with large sets of data. When you create a filtered list, ...

Discover More

Printing a Document's Mirror Image

If you need to print the mirror image (backwards) of a document, you may think you are out of luck in Word. There are ...

Discover More

Changing Months in a Workbook

When you copy a worksheet and then need to make changes to information in that worksheet (such as changing month names), the ...

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)

Header and Footer Background Color

Want to add some color to the printing of your page headers and footers? Your options are limited, as disclosed in this tip.

Discover More

Putting Headers and Footers On Multiple Worksheets

You can easily create headers and footers for multiple worksheets by working with a selection set of the worksheets you want ...

Discover More

Deleting a Footer

Excel allows you to add footers to the worksheets you create. If you decide you don't need a footer any more, here's how to ...

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