Renaming Worksheets Based On a List

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 15, 2017)

Gilbert has a worksheet (named "Control") that contains a list of desired worksheet names in cells A1:A12. He needs a way, in a macro, to rename each of the other 12 worksheets in the workbook based upon that range of cells. The worksheet names don't need to be dynamic; they just need to be renamed when he runs the macro.

The core of developing a macro to address this need is to rely on the Name property of each worksheet you want to rename. For instance, you could use a very simple macro like this:

Sub RenameSheets()
    Dim c As Range
    Dim J As Integer

    J = 0
    For Each c In Range("A1:A12")
        J = J + 1
        If Sheets(J).Name = "Control" Then J = J + 1
        Sheets(J).Name = c.Text
    Next c
End Sub

The macro simply steps through the cell range A1:A12 and, if the next worksheet isn't named "Control," it renames the worksheet to the cell value.

As noted, this macro is very simplistic and should, in all likelihood, be a lot more robust. For instance, what should be done if there are more (or fewer) than 13 worksheets in the current workbook? What should be done if there are empty cells in the range A1:A12? What should be done if someone runs the macro and "Control" isn't the active worksheet? What should be done if there are two identical values in A1:A12? What if there are leading or trailing spaces on one or more names in the range A1:A12? These and (most likely) a whole range of other questions can affect how the macro finally looks. Here's a commented version of the macro that takes into account several of the possibilities just mentioned:

Sub RenameSheets()
    Dim c As Range
    Dim J As Integer
    Dim K As Integer
    Dim sName As String
    Dim w(12) As String
    Dim bGo As Boolean
    Dim sTemp As String

    bGo = True
    If Worksheets.Count <> 13 Then
        ' Check to make sure exactly 13 worksheets in workbook
        bGo = False
        sTemp = "There are more than 13 worksheets."
    End If
    If ActiveSheet.Name <> "Control" Then
        ' Check to make sure Control is active
        bGo = False
        sTemp = "Control worksheet is not active."
    Else
        ' Check for empty and duplicate cells in range
        J = 0
        For Each c In Range("A1:A12")
            sName = Trim(c.Text)
            If sName <> "" Then
                For K = 1 to J
                    If LCase(w(K)) = LCase(sName) Then
                        bGo = False
                        sTemp = "Duplicate sheet names in list."
                    End If
                Next K
                If bGo Then
                    ' Everything still good; add name
                    J = J + 1
                    w(J) = sName
                End If
            End If
        Next c
    End If

    If bGo Then
        K = 0
        For J = 1 To 12
            K = K + 1
            If Sheets(K).Name = "Control" Then K = K + 1
            Sheets(K).Name = w(J)
        Next J
    Else
        MsgBox(sTemp)
    End If
End Sub

Notice how much longer the second version of the macro is than the first? Anytime you start adding multiple checks in a macro, it can really make it much longer than without the checks. The benefit in adding the checks, of course, is that your macro is less likely to run into problems as it is used by people other than you.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (1506) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Picking Up Where You Left Off

Need a quick way to get back to a where you previously edited? Here's a shortcut that will serve you well.

Discover More

Speeding Up Mail Merges

The Mail Merge tool in Word is a great way to create new, customized documents. If you are doing a lot of merging, you may ...

Discover More

Using WordArt in Excel

The WordArt program has been available in Office for a long, long time. It allows you to (dare I say it) create art from ...

Discover More

Comprehensive VBA Guide Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is the language used for writing macros in all Office programs. This complete guide shows both professionals and novices how to master VBA in order to customize the entire Office suite for their needs. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2010 today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

Converting Numbers Into Words

Write out a check and you need to include the digits for the amount of the check and the value of the check written out in ...

Discover More

Renaming a Macro

Got a macro that doesn't have quite the right name? You can rename the macro by following these simple steps.

Discover More

Counting Empty Colored Cells

There are a variety of ways that you might want to count the cells in your worksheet. One way is to figure out how many of ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 8Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 6 - 3?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the ribbon interface (Excel 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.