XL: How to Set Print Area to Range with Defined Name

Article translations Article translations
Article ID: 141095 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q141095
Expand all | Collapse all

On This Page


In Microsoft Excel, if you have a macro that prints a range of cells on your worksheet, it may not print all of your data if you have inserted rows within the range specified in your macro. However, if rather than hard- coding a specific range of cells to print, you instead use a print area that refers to a defined name on your worksheet, you can create a print macro that automatically adjusts to any additional rows you insert into the range.


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. To follow the example provided in this article, enter any text information into the cell range A1:D5 on Sheet1 of a new workbook.

If you record a macro that selects the range of cells, sets the print area, and then prints the worksheet, you create a macro similar to one of the following:

Excel 5 for Windows, Excel 7 for Windows 95, or Excel 5 for the Macintosh

   Sub Macro1()
      ActiveSheet.PageSetup.PrintArea = Selection.Address
      ActiveWindow.SelectedSheets.PrintOut Copies:=1
   End Sub

Excel 97 for Windows, Excel 98 Macintosh Edition

   Sub Macro1()
      ActiveSheet.PageSetup.PrintArea = "$A$1:$D$5"
      ActiveWindow.SelectedSheets.PrintOut Copies:=1
   End Sub
NOTE: Macros recorded in these versions of Microsoft Excel set the Print Area to a range address rather than the more general Selection.Range.
The problem with this macro is that if you insert one or more rows within this range of cells, and then rerun the recorded macro, it still prints only the range specified in the macro. The macro does not print any rows that were moved down because of the row or rows that you inserted.

In order to have your macro automatically adjust when you insert or delete rows within the range you want to print, create a defined name for the range, and then use the defined name in your macro. For this example, you would do the following:
  1. In your worksheet, select the range A1:D5.
  2. On the Insert menu, point to Name, and then click Define.
  3. In the Define Name dialog box, type myrange in the Names In Worksheet box at the top of the dialog box. Make sure that the Refers To box at the bottom of this dialog box contains =Sheet1!$A$1:$D$5.
  4. Click OK.
  5. Modify the above recorded macro so it reads:
          Sub Macro1()
             ActiveSheet.PageSetup.PrintArea = "myrange"
             ActiveWindow.SelectedSheets.PrintOut Copies:=1
          End Sub
    NOTE: Instead of using a fixed range of cells, use the defined name "myrange". If the second line reads:
    ActiveSheet.PageSetup.PrintArea = Selection.Address
       as in versions prior to Excel 97, this does not have to be changed.
If you now insert one or more rows within this range, the range of cells referred to by the defined name "myrange" will grow accordingly, and if you run your macro, all of the rows in this range will be printed.


Excel 97

For more information about Defined Names, click the Index tab in Microsoft Excel Help, type the following text
ranges, naming
and then double-click the selected text to go to the "Name cells in a workbook" topic.


Article ID: 141095 - Last Review: August 17, 2005 - Revision: 2.1
  • Microsoft Excel 97 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Excel 95 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Excel 5.0 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Excel 98 for Macintosh
kbdtacode kbhowto kbprogramming KB141095
Retired KB Content Disclaimer
This article was written about products for which Microsoft no longer offers support. Therefore, this article is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.

Give Feedback


Contact us for more help

Contact us for more help
Connect with Answer Desk for expert help.
Get more support from smallbusiness.support.microsoft.com