Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: Checking for the Existence of a File.

Checking for the Existence of a File

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 23, 2018)

9

John has a column of invoice numbers in a worksheet. He has a directory on the network where staff save a PDF of the actual invoice and name it using the same invoice number that is in the worksheet. Each invoice number in the worksheet should have a correspondingly named PDF in the directory on the network. John is looking for a way, within Excel, to check and verify that a PDF really does exist for each invoice number.

There is no way to do this using built-in Excel commands. You can, however, create a macro that will do the checking for you. For instance, consider the following simple user-defined function:

Function FileExists1(sPath As String)
    FileExists = Dir(sPath) <> ""
End Function

The routine simply returns a True or False value, based on whether the specified file exists. The value that is passed to the function needs to include a full path and file name. For example, if the file specification (including the path) were in cell A1, you could use the following in a cell:

=FileExists1(A1)

You may not, however, want to put the full path name into the cell. In that case, you could specify it in the actual formula, in this way:

=FileExists1("c:\your\path\here\" & A1 & ".pdf")

Of course, you could instead specify the path in the user-defined function:

Function FileExists2(sFile As String)
    sPath = "c:\your\path\here\" & sFile & ".pdf"
    FileExists = Dir(sPath) <> ""
End Function

With such a function you could easily create a formula in your worksheet that would "flag" any invoices missing from the directory:

=IF(FileExists2(A1),"","Missing Invoice")

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the ExcelTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (7402) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Checking for the Existence of a File.

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. ...

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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 6Mpixels. 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 five more than 8?

2018-01-22 11:26:52

Fallon

First, I put the function in "This Workbook" and when I called the function I get "#NAME" error. I then tried putting the function in my Personal Macro Workbook and I still get the same error. Not sure how to implement this properly.


2018-01-18 13:32:51

Tariq

Hello,

Thank you for such great tutorial.
I have the same thing but with 10K raws, each raw has about 5 images, and sperated with comma ','
Would you please advise me how to solve this and check if the image in the folder or no?

Also, is there a way to remove the missing image from the cell?

Thank you again,


2016-08-19 11:45:57

Michael Heavener

Is there a macro that will flag files in the folders as changed or tell me when new ones are added. I can set alerts in SharePoint but it would also be nice to not hand-add them to the Excel tracker.


2016-08-18 02:29:55

SALU

ITS NOT WORKING.....


2016-08-17 08:45:32

ovi

there is any method to make excel to look in all folders contained by a specified location if the searched file exists without specifying full path. For example to check if file "file1.pdf" exists in any of the folders contained by "c:main folder" ?


2016-03-17 09:45:26

Kpax7

OK, Got it working. You should press Alt+Ctrl+Shift+F9 to force excel to calculate all formulas otherwise it still says missing invoice.
Using Office 2013

Thanks


2016-03-17 09:30:07

Kpax7

Not working, not even with GB's suggestion.


2015-03-05 10:44:39

GB

It looks like there is an error in the code.

Try:

Function FileExists1(sPath As String)
FileExists1 = Dir(sPath) <> ""
End Function


2014-08-21 05:00:15

Olav

Dear,

I won't get it working:).
Do you have a example sheet?


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