Today’s YouTube video on the Roger Talks Tech channel (transcript posted below).
Transcript: How to Backup your Microsoft Word or Excel for Mac Macros – And Why You Should
If you use the macros feature in Microsoft Word or Microsoft Excel for Mac macro user, perhaps you’ve experienced this scenario: After a Microsoft Office update, all of your beloved macros are gone. Poof! Or maybe you’ve moved over to a new computer and you neglected to bring over your macros.
Unfortunately, this has happened to me on more than one occasion and since then, I’ve been extremely faithful about backing up my macros, which is actually a lot easier than you may think.
I’m going to start off with the Mac version of Microsoft Word and then show you the process in Windows.
What I do, is display the code for all of my macros, by selecting Tools > Macro > Visual Basic Editor
from the menu. This will display all of the macros that you’ve created.
Then, Choose Edit > Select All from the menu or press the Command + A keystroke combination. This copies all of your macros to the clipboard.
Now we’re going to close the Visual Basic for Applications window by choosing Word > Close and Return to Microsoft Word (or Excel) from the menu.
With our macros in memory, we’ll now want to paste the code into an external document such as Evernote, OneNote, Apple Notes, a plain text file or even a Word file (I personally use OneNote but also I have a backup in Apple Notes).
So I’m going to open OneNote. In my Personal notebook, I have a page called Tidbits where I store various odds and ends. So let’s create a new page called “Word Macros”. I’ll click into the document and choose Edit > Paste from the menu. You could also press the Command + V keystroke combination. The code for all of your macros will be inserted into the document.
In Windows, the process for backing up your macros is a little different. First, click the View tab on the Ribbon. Click the Macros button on the Ribbon and then click the Edit button. This will open the Visual Basic for applications window.
Then, press Ctrl + A to select all the code or choose Edit > Copy from the menu.
When finished, choose File > Close and Return to Microsoft Word. Now we would do the same thing we did before – copy and paste the code into the application of your choice for storage – OneNote, Evernote, or even a text or Microsoft Word file.
So if you move to another computer or your macros mysteriously disappear from Word or Excel, you can quickly paste in any or all of the macros from this document into the Visual Basic Editor. Voilà – macros restored.
This technique also comes in handy if you use more than one computer or are temporarily using someone else’s computers and wish to quickly add in your favorite macros. In this case, you’ll want to make sure your macros are stored on a Cloud Service such as Evernote or OneNote on the cloud.
If you’re using someone else’s computer, however, don’t forget to delete them afterward. Of course, you’ll also want to make certain that you’re not overwriting their macros with yours. Otherwise, you could end up in a whole heap of trouble.