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Open Statement in VBA helps Opening the Files. Optimize your VBA code with the Open statement. Learn how this powerful feature lets you access and manipulate files effortlessly. Boost your productivity now.

VBA Open Statement


One of the key features of VBA is the Open statement, which allows users to open and access external files, such as text files, databases, and even other spreadsheets. In this blog post, we will explore the purpose, syntax, and top 5 examples of using the Open statement in VBA. We will also discuss important notes and remarks, and conclude with asking for feedback and views on this topic.

The Purpose of the Open Statement

VBA Open statement is used to open a connection to an external file, database, or application and allows the user to perform operations on that resource. It is an essential command for handling data from external sources in VBA, making it a vital tool for data manipulation and analysis. The Open statement provides the VBA programmer with the ability to write code that can read, write, or append data from and to external files.

The Syntax of the Open Statement

The syntax of the Open statement is as follows:

Open [file path-name] For [mode] As [#] [Len = [length]]
  • File path-name: The path and file name of the file to be opened.
  • Mode: The mode specifies the operations that can be performed on the file.
  • #: The file channel number, which is a unique identifier for the open file.
  • Len: The maximum number of characters to be read or written when using a variable-length record.

Examples of Using the VBA Open Statement

Example 1: Opening a Text File for Reading

Imagine you have a text file containing a list of names and you want to read and process the data in that file using VBA. The following code uses the Open statement to open the text file and reads one line at a time, displaying each name on a new line in the ‘Immediate’ window.

Sub ReadNames()
Dim f As Integer, content As String, name As String
f = FreeFile 'Get the next free file number
Open "C:\Users\Username\Documents\Names.txt" For Input As f
Do Until EOF(f)
Line Input #f, content 'Read one line from the file
name = content 'Assign content to name variable
Debug.Print name 'Display name in Immediate window
Close #f 'Close file
End Sub

Example 2: Writing Data to a Text File

Similar to the previous example, we can use the Open statement to write data to a text file. The following code writes a list of numbers from 1 to 10 to a text file called ‘Numbers.txt’.

Sub WriteNumbers()
Dim f As Integer, i As Integer
f = FreeFile 'Get the next free file number
Open "C:\Users\Username\Documents\Numbers.txt" For Output As f
For i = 1 To 10
Print #f, i 'Write each number on a new line
Next i
Close #f 'Close file
End Sub

Example 3: Appending Data to a Text File

Suppose we have a text file with some data and we want to add more data to the end of the file without overwriting the existing content. The Open statement can achieve this by using the ‘Append’ mode. The following code appends the word “new” to the end of the file.

Sub AppendData()
Dim f As Integer, content As String
f = FreeFile 'Get the next free file number
Open "C:\Users\Username\Documents\Data.txt" For Append As f
content = "new"
Print #f, content 'Append the content to the end of file
Close #f 'Close file
End Sub

Example 4: Exporting Data to a CSV File

Using the Open statement with the ‘Output’ mode, it is possible to export data from a spreadsheet to a CSV file. The following code exports the data from the active sheet to a file called ‘Data.csv’ in the same directory as the current workbook.

Sub ExportToCSV()
Dim f As Integer, r As Integer, c As Integer, data As String
f = FreeFile 'Get the next free file number
Open ActiveWorkbook.Path & "\Data.csv" For Output As f
For r = 1 To ActiveSheet.UsedRange.Rows.Count 'Loop through each row
    For c = 1 To ActiveSheet.UsedRange.Columns.Count 'Loop through each column
        data = ActiveSheet.Cells(r, c).Value 'Get the cell value
        Print #f, data 'Write data to file
    Next c
Next r
Close #f 'Close file
End Sub

Example 5: Opening a Database Connection

The Open statement can also be used to connect to a database, allowing VBA code to query and manipulate data from the database. The following code connects to a Microsoft Access database and executes a SQL query, displaying the results in the ‘Immediate’ window.

Sub QueryDatabase()
Dim db As Database, rs As Recordset
Set db = OpenDatabase("C:\Users\Username\Documents\Database.accdb")
Set rs = db.OpenRecordset("SELECT * FROM Table1")
Do Until rs.EOF 'Loop through all records
    Debug.Print rs.Fields("Name") 'Display name field in Immediate window
    rs.MoveNext 'Move to next record
rs.Close 'Close recordset
db.Close 'Close database connection
End Sub

Important Notes & Remarks

  • The file path-name must be in quotes and include the full path to the file.
  • The mode can be either ‘Input’, ‘Output’, or ‘Random’ depending on the purpose of the Open statement.
  • The maximum number of file channel numbers is 255.
  • When opening a file for ‘Output’ or ‘Append’, if the file does not exist, it will be created. If the file already exists, the existing content will be overwritten unless the ‘Append’ mode is used.
  • The ‘Close’ statement should always be used to close the file after it has been opened.


In conclusion, the Open statement in VBA is a powerful tool for working with external files, databases, and applications. We have explored the purpose, syntax, and examples of using the Open statement, showcasing its versatility and usefulness in VBA programming. It is essential to understand and utilize this statement when handling external data and creating customized solutions.

We hope this blog post has provided valuable insights and clarified any doubts you may have had about using the Open statement in VBA.

We would love to hear your thoughts about this blog post on the Open statement in VBA. Did you find it useful and informative? Do you have any suggestions or feedback for improvement? Please let us know in the comments below. Thank you for reading!

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Categories: VBA StatementsTags: , Last Updated: September 28, 2023

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