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Define and use names in Excel formulas and in VBA

Using Excel 2010, cell address can be replaced by a name or in another point of view it is some sort of an alias for a cell address.

You can define a name for a particular cell, based on its value.

It’s quite easy to remember a name rather than a cell value if you are working in multiple workbooks.

But of course it’s a personal preference whether to remember cell addresses or just use names. Excel 2010 has 1,045,876 rows and 16,384 columns.

To define use name in Excel formulas, on the Excel ribbon click on “Formulas” and on the options available click on “Define Name”. (See screen shot below)

On the worksheet, select the cell which a name will be defined and click on “Define Name”.

After clicking define name option, a window will open and type the name for the cell address. (See screen shot below)

After defining the name, on the name box (on the upper left corner of the worksheet) it will display the defined name instead of the cell address. (See screen shot below)

Screen shots above shows the two defined names or aliases for the two cell addresses (A11 & B11).

On the formula bar, names can be used instead of cell addresses to process data. (See screen shot below)

Defined names can also be used on VBA, check example below on how to use defined names using VBA.

Sub x()
Dim xCostValue, xPriceValue As Double
Dim xProfitValue As Double

xCostValue = Range("CostTotal") 'Will get the value for the CostTotal define name

xPriceValue = Range("PriceTotal") 'Will get the value for the PriceTotal define name

xProfitValue = xPriceValue - xCostValue

MsgBox xProfitValue

End Sub

On creating the defined names, if the scope was set to Workbook the names can be used on other worksheet also.

 Thus, values on the defined name can be called and re-used on other worksheet using the defined name only.  In Excel if you don’t use define name, if you want to use cell address or cell values on other worksheet, worksheet name and address has to be define when re-using or calling other value from other worksheet. (See screen shot below)

See screen shot below to check the difference of using define name and without define name


Hope it helps and save time doing Excel stuff. Cheers!!!


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