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: Easily Changing the Default Drive and Directory.

Easily Changing the Default Drive and Directory

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated March 15, 2014)


In other issues of ExcelTips you learned how you can use VBA to switch the current drive and directory. In short, you can change drive and directory as follows:

MyDrive = "E:"
MyFolder = "\MyDocs\ThisFolder\"
ChDrive MyDrive
ChDir MyFolder

When done, the current directory will be E:\MyDocs\ThisFolder\. VBA provides a handy shortcut that allows you to easily specify both the drive and directory using the same information. Consider the following:

MyPath = "E:\MyDocs\ThisFolder\"
ChDrive MyPath
ChDir MyPath

This code contains one less line (and one less variable), but it does the same thing. VBA, when executing the ChDrive command, only pays attention to the drive letter in a path. This allows you to easily set the single variable to your path, and then use it when both setting drives and directories.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (9182) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Easily Changing the Default Drive and Directory.

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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What is six more than 8?

2014-03-17 09:14:06

Jeff C

In my opinion you should always explicitly reference the drive and path when doing any file i/o as a best practice. To me, it's akin to using a global variable; convenient, but potentially dangerous.

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