Free beta testers wanted

I’m slowly but surely releasing bits and bobs that I think people might find useful. They are targeted towards the pain points I have seen (and felt) whilst working with large and complex spreadsheets.

There are a bunch of them over at codematic. And I have a few others in various states of readiness. They are all free until or unless I can find a (pain free) way to make a few bob on them.

The latest one is here. No liability blah blah.

print manager

Its a print manager worksheet. Copy the sheet into a new workbook and it then lets you keep upto 10 lists of sheets that can be printed together with a simple double click.

Hopefully its self explanatory. All the code is in the class behind the sheet, you can do pretty much what you like with it. If you improve it (or fix it ;-)), it would be nice if you leave a comment with what you did and why. If you see any gaping holes in the functionality then leave a comment on that too.

Test it in a fresh Excel with non critical workbooks first. Tested on Excel 2003 and Excel XP, not 2007 or 2000, or 97.

Known issue 1: I had a few crashes, but I think it was a conflict with another add-in. My usually rock solid 2003 (SP1) has gone all soft recently – keels over a the first sign of trouble. The code is fully visible so feel free to tinker.

Known issue 2: The number of printed pages doesn’t work right if you have ‘fit to x high by y wide’ set.

If you do use it, then thanks for being a free beta tester please post back any feedback. Or email me.Other ideas of simple (ish) self-contained components welcome.

Cheers

Simon

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4 Responses to “Free beta testers wanted”

  1. Dennis Wallentin Says:

    I only test unmanaged/managed COM based tool :-) :-) :-)

    Kind regards,
    Dennis

  2. Marcus Says:

    A couple of initial thoughts before I played with the tool:

    I can only imagine this is for experienced Excel users or developers becuase I can’t imagine my mother copying a worksheet from one workbook to another.

    If this is for a broader audience could something be done about the asthetics? Yes, yes, yes, I know form over function. But at the end of the day pretty pixels sell.

    ‘Blank rows and spaces are fine’
    Aaargh. Now you’re just messing with me.

    ‘Error, The worksheet ‘Fred’ was not found in this workbook’
    Good, recognises when I’m trying to trick it.

    Leaving the cursor blinking in the cell after a double click may confuse some. How about de-selecting the cell after the double click.

    If I may be so bold, are there other ways this functionality may be implemented? For example an add-in.

    You could add a menu option to an existing menu or create a new ‘Codematic’ menu (to which you could add more tools as you develop them). While the add-in (native) wont securely protect you code, it’s more than what there currenly is.

    Clicking the Print Manager menu option would display a dialog from which you could select any combination of worksheets from a list box.

    You could then assign a name to that combination of worksheets.

    Why stop at worksheets, in a given worksheet, couldn’t you select one or more ranges or range names?

    While you could store these details in the registry or an ini file I’d probably use the workbook custom properties. That makes each workbook self describing if people in a team want to share workbooks.

    Could users select a macro they want executed before and/or after printing the selected worksheets? For example to refresh data from an external data source?

    Regards – Marcus

  3. Marcus Says:

    I started playing with an add-in prototype. Would you like me to send it through?

  4. Simon Says:

    Marcus
    All good feedback thanks. Its just a simple freebie (hacked off some client work), hence the basic-ness. Your additional features might make an interesting commercial app, and is something I have in the back of my mind for a ‘one day…’ (VB6 of course)
    Double click – good catch, I de-select edit in cell, so I always forget that.
    I have an installer as part of the index thing on codematic free tools, I just didnt bother here as its just a copy, version 2 maybe? (that resets the links too so I could use buttons instead of dblclick.
    Yep send it through, and see my next post about structure, look like we are on the same wavelength.
    Cheers
    Simon
    ps I’m not a big Excel forms fan remember ;-)

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