Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Office 365. 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: Determining the Length of a Text File.

Determining the Length of a Text File

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated July 10, 2018)

Other ExcelTips have discussed opening, reading, writing, appending, and closing text files. Another VBA function associated with sequential text files is the LOF function. If used on an open file, it returns the length of the file, in bytes. In other words, you can determine the number of characters in the file.

This can come in handy if you are processing a text file character by character. You can determine the length of the file and then read that many characters before you finish processing the file. The following code fragment is an example of how the LOF function is used:

Open "MyFile.Dat" for Input as #1
FileLen = LOF(1)

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 (9094) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Office 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Determining the Length of a Text 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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Resizing Table Columns with the Mouse

Once a table is inserted in your document, you can use the mouse to adjust the width of columns. The effect the mouse ...

Discover More

Printing to a Disk File

When printing a worksheet, there may be times when you want to send the printer output to a disk file instead of to the ...

Discover More

PivotTables for the Faint of Heart

PivotTables are a powerful tool for consolidating huge amounts of data. PivotTables for the Faint of Heart shows ...

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)

Adding a File Path and Filename

If you need to stuff the current workbook's filename and path into a cell or a header or footer, you'll appreciate the ...

Discover More

Correctly Saving Delimited Files

Delimited files are often created through Excel so that your data can be exported to other programs. If the delimited ...

Discover More

How Excel Treats Disk Files

Workbooks are loaded from disk files, but workbooks aren't the only type of files that Excel can load. This tip provides ...

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 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 three less than 4?

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.