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: Checking if a Workbook is Already Open.

Checking if a Workbook is Already Open

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated May 22, 2021)
This tip applies to Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


Macros are often used to slice, dice, and otherwise process information contained in workbooks. This presumes, of course, that the workbook that contains the information is actually open. If it is not, then your macro will obviously need to include code to actually open the needed workbook.

Opening a workbook can really slow down a macro; it takes time to access the disk and load the file. Thus, if your macro can check to see if a workbook is open before going through the hassle of actually trying to open it, you could speed up your macros greatly if the workbook is found to already be open.

One very flexible way to approach the task of checking whether a workbook is open is to use a function that does the checking, and then simply returns a TRUE or FALSE value based on whether the workbook is open. The following short macro performs this succinct task:

Function AlreadyOpen(sFname As String) As Boolean
    Dim wkb As Workbook
    On Error Resume Next
    Set wkb = Workbooks(sFname)
    AlreadyOpen = Not wkb Is Nothing
    Set wkb = Nothing
End Function

To use the function, just pass it the name of the workbook you want to check, in the following manner:

    sFilename = "MyFileName.xls"
    sPath = "C:\MyFolder\MySubFolder\"
    If AlreadyOpen(sFilename) Then
        'Do not have to open
    Else
        Workbooks.Open sPath & sFilename
    End If

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the ExcelTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3104) 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: Checking if a Workbook is Already Open.

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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