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Microsoft KB Archive/108385

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Knowledge Base

Article ID: 108385

Article Last Modified on 10/11/2006


  • Microsoft Excel 97 Standard Edition

This article was previously published under Q108385


In Microsoft Excel, when you use the Put statement in a Visual Basic for Applications procedure, there is no limit to where you can start writing data to a file. Therefore, it is possible to write data well beyond the current end of a file.

This behavior is compatible with earlier versions of Visual Basic.


Microsoft provides programming examples for illustration only, without warranty either expressed or implied. This includes, but is not limited to, the implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. This article assumes that you are familiar with the programming language that is being demonstrated and with the tools that are used to create and to debug procedures. Microsoft support engineers can help explain the functionality of a particular procedure, but they will not modify these examples to provide added functionality or construct procedures to meet your specific requirements. You can use the Put statement to place data in a file at a specified location. However, when you write data beyond the end of a file, the gap between the end of file and the starting point of new data is filled with random data.

In order to see this behavior, you must first create a sample file. Follow these steps to create a sample file:

  1. On the Start Menu, point to Programs, point to Accessories, and then click Notepad.
  2. Type ABC into the blank Notepad document.
  3. Click Save on the File Menu. In the Save As dialog box, open the My Documents folder. Then, type Test in the File name box, and click Save.
  4. On the File menu, click Exit.

This creates a file called Test.txt in the My Documents folder.

Next, create a Visual Basic for Applications procedure to illustrate the behavior discussed in this article.

  1. Close and save any open workbooks, and then open a new workbook.
  2. Start the Visual Basic Editor (press ALT+F11).
  3. On the Insert menu, click Module.
  4. In the module type the following code:

    Type Test_Record
         Test As String * 7
       End Type
       Sub PutTest()
         Dim P As Test_Record
         Dim filenum As Integer
         filenum = FreeFile()
         'Open the file you created.
         Open "c:\My Documents\Test.txt" For Random As filenum Len = Len(P)
           P.Test = "Testing"
           'Write a record to the file.
           Put #filenum, 2, P
         'Close the file.
         Close #filenum
       End Sub
  5. Run the PutTest macro.
  6. Open the file Text.txt in Notepad.

Note that random data is written between the entry that you made in the file and Testing, which is the record that the PutTest macro wrote to the file. For additional information about Working with Random Access Files, please see the following article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

150700 Excel: How to Work with Random Access Files


For more information about the Put statement, click the Index tab in Microsoft Visual Basic Help, type the following text


and then double-click the selected text to go to the "Put Statement" topic.

Additional query words: xl97 XL

Keywords: kbprogramming KB108385