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excel – VBA macro to compare two columns and color highlight cell differences

Posted by: admin April 23, 2020 Leave a comment

Questions:

I wanted to color highlight cells that are different from each other; in this case colA and colB. This function works for what I need, but looks repetitive, ugly, and inefficient. I’m not well versed in VBA coding; Is there a more elegant way of writing this function?

EDIT
What I’m trying to get this function to do is:
1. highlight cells in ColA that are different or not in ColB
2. highlight cells in ColB that are different or not in ColA

    Sub compare_cols()

    Dim myRng As Range
    Dim lastCell As Long

    'Get the last row
    Dim lastRow As Integer
    lastRow = ActiveSheet.UsedRange.Rows.Count

    'Debug.Print "Last Row is " & lastRow

    Dim c As Range
    Dim d As Range

    Application.ScreenUpdating = False

    For Each c In Worksheets("Sheet1").Range("A2:A" & lastRow).Cells
        For Each d In Worksheets("Sheet1").Range("B2:B" & lastRow).Cells
            c.Interior.Color = vbRed
            If (InStr(1, d, c, 1) > 0) Then
                c.Interior.Color = vbWhite
                Exit For
            End If
        Next
    Next

    For Each c In Worksheets("Sheet1").Range("B2:B" & lastRow).Cells
        For Each d In Worksheets("Sheet1").Range("A2:A" & lastRow).Cells
            c.Interior.Color = vbRed
            If (InStr(1, d, c, 1) > 0) Then
                c.Interior.Color = vbWhite
                Exit For
            End If
        Next
    Next

Application.ScreenUpdating = True

End Sub
How to&Answers:

Ah yeah that’s cake I do it all day long. Actually your code looks pretty much like the way I’d do it. Although, I opt to use looping through integers as opposed to using the “For Each” method. The only potential problems I can see with your code is that ActiveSheet may not always be “Sheet1”, and also InStr has been known to give some issues regarding the vbTextCompare parameter. Using the given code, I would change it to the following:

Sub compare_cols()

    'Get the last row
    Dim Report As Worksheet
    Dim i As Integer, j As Integer
    Dim lastRow As Integer

    Set Report = Excel.Worksheets("Sheet1") 'You could also use Excel.ActiveSheet _
                                            if you always want this to run on the current sheet.

    lastRow = Report.UsedRange.Rows.Count

    Application.ScreenUpdating = False

    For i = 2 To lastRow
        For j = 2 To lastRow
            If Report.Cells(i, 1).Value <> "" Then 'This will omit blank cells at the end (in the event that the column lengths are not equal.
                If InStr(1, Report.Cells(j, 2).Value, Report.Cells(i, 1).Value, vbTextCompare) > 0 Then
                    'You may notice in the above instr statement, I have used vbTextCompare instead of its numerical value, _
                    I find this much more reliable.
                    Report.Cells(i, 1).Interior.Color = RGB(255, 255, 255) 'White background
                    Report.Cells(i, 1).Font.Color = RGB(0, 0, 0) 'Black font color
                    Exit For
                Else
                    Report.Cells(i, 1).Interior.Color = RGB(156, 0, 6) 'Dark red background
                    Report.Cells(i, 1).Font.Color = RGB(255, 199, 206) 'Light red font color
                End If
            End If
        Next j
    Next i

    'Now I use the same code for the second column, and just switch the column numbers.
    For i = 2 To lastRow
        For j = 2 To lastRow
            If Report.Cells(i, 2).Value <> "" Then
                If InStr(1, Report.Cells(j, 1).Value, Report.Cells(i, 2).Value, vbTextCompare) > 0 Then
                    Report.Cells(i, 2).Interior.Color = RGB(255, 255, 255) 'White background
                    Report.Cells(i, 2).Font.Color = RGB(0, 0, 0) 'Black font color
                    Exit For
                Else
                    Report.Cells(i, 2).Interior.Color = RGB(156, 0, 6) 'Dark red background
                    Report.Cells(i, 2).Font.Color = RGB(255, 199, 206) 'Light red font color
                End If
            End If
        Next j
    Next i

Application.ScreenUpdating = True

End Sub

Things I did differently:

  1. I used my integer method described above (as opposed to the ‘for each’ method).
  2. I defined the worksheet as an object variable.
  3. I used vbTextCompare instead of its numerical value in the InStr function.
  4. I added an if statement to omit blank cells. Tip: Even if only one
    column in the sheet is extra long (e.g., cell D5000 was accidentally
    formatted), then the usedrange for all columns is considered 5000.
  5. I used rgb codes for the colors (it’s just easier for me since I
    have a cheat sheet pinned to the wall next to me in this cubicle
    haha).

Well that about sums it up. Good luck with your project!

Answer:

‘Compare the two columns and highlight the difference

    Sub CompareandHighlight()



        Dim n As Integer
        Dim valE As Double
        Dim valI As Double
        Dim i As Integer

        n = Worksheets("Indices").Range("E:E").Cells.SpecialCells(xlCellTypeConstants).Count
        Application.ScreenUpdating = False

        For i = 2 To n
        valE = Worksheets("Indices").Range("E" & i).Value
        valI = Worksheets("Indices").Range("I" & i).Value

            If valE = valI Then

            Else:

               Worksheets("Indices").Range("E" & i).Font.Color = RGB(255, 0, 0)

            End If
        Next i


    End Sub

‘ I hope this helps you