Sunday, 17 June 2012

Lesson 10: VBA Macros Security and Protection in Excel (Excel 2007 and 2010)

Note: You will change the security setting one single time. You will not have to do it again. Tell your colleagues about it specially if you want to send them Excel workbooks with macros. The setting suggested here is totally safe and you will not make your computer vulnerable to any virus.

If you send a workbook with macros to a colleague and he can not get them to work it is probably because his security setting is at "High" . Tell him how to change his level of security by going to the "Developer" ribbon, clicking on "Macro Security", selecting "Macro Settings and checking the second level "Disable all Macros with Notification" and you are set.

From then on each time you open a workbook that contains macros a temporary status bar appears above the grid in Excel:

Click on "Options" and the following dialog window will appear.
VBA for Excel Security macros enable window

Adopt the same attitude as you have with documents attached to Emails. If you know the origin of the file you may enable the macros if not click on "Disable Macros" and you are fully protected. You can look at the workbook but the VBA procedures (macros) are not operational. You can go to the Visual Basic Editor to take a look at the macros. If nothing looks suspicious close the workbook and re-open it enabling the macros.

Password Protecting the code

As an Excel-VBA Developer you might want to protect your code so that nobody else may modify it. In the VBE editor go to "Tools/VBAProject Properties/Protection" . Check the box and submit a password. Make sure that you save the password somewhere that you will remember. If ever you loose the password for an important workbook you can always buy a program on the Internet that will allow you to view the code even if it is password protected.
Remember that passwords are like any locks, they only keep the honest people out.

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