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: Progression Indicator in a Macro.

Progression Indicator in a Macro

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated July 30, 2022)
This tip applies to Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


Macros are often created to process data, and processing data can often take a long time. Because of this, some users may think that their computer has stopped responding, even though the macro is busy chunking away a it's appointed task.

The solution for most macro developers is to somehow alert users as to the progress of the macro. There are two ways that you can do this in Excel. The simplest and most common approach is to use the status bar to indicate what the macro is doing. All you need to do is put together a string that contains the status message, and then assign that string to the StatusBar property of the Application object, as shown here:

sStatus = "Processing Input File - Please Be Patient"
Application.StatusBar = sStatus

The message stays on the status bar until you overwrite it with some other message. You could also indicate progress in a loop by giving the percentage complete:

For x = 1 to y
    Application.StatusBar = Format(x/y,"0.0%") & " Complete"
' Other coding here
Next

When your routine finishes, return the status bar back to normal with the following statement:

    Application.StatusBar = False

If you prefer to develop an actual progress indicator for the macro, you can do so by creating a UserForm and then updating the form to display a "percentage bar" or some other visual indicator. Most people who desire this type of progress indicator rely on a variation of John Walkenbach's solution, found at this address:

http://spreadsheetpage.com/index.php/tip/displaying_a_progress_indicator/

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 (3223) 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: Progression Indicator 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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