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Restrict printing and copying in Excel

Posted on 2005-05-02
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Last Modified: 2012-06-27
Is there any way to restrict printing and copying a spraedsheet to another location in excel?  
We have a mix of office 2000 and 2003.
This person is useing 2000 but could be upgraded is need be.

We are running 2000/XP for WS and Novell 6.5 for server.
Any suggestions?
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Question by:pauls681
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LVL 35

Expert Comment

by:[ fanpages ]
ID: 13912961
Convert the ".xls" workbook file to an Adobe Acrobat Portable Document Format ".pdf" file & apply restrictions to the usage of the file of the type you mentioned.
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Author Comment

by:pauls681
ID: 13917299
I did think of that but I wanted to see if there was any way of doing it in Excel.
Converting to a pdf file can be done but this user is not very computer savy
and to convert the workbook file and set permissions is getting a little complex for this particular user.
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Accepted Solution

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[ fanpages ] earned 200 total points
ID: 13921909
Well... we could implement code within the workbook that would inhibit printing as long as the user elected to [Enable Macros] upon opening the file, but copying to another location will always be possible using the normal Windows file operations (e.g. within Windows Explorer).
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Expert Comment

by:bludraggin
ID: 13923044
Do you want the user to be able to select the cells so that they may type in them?
If not, you could protect the worksheet (or workbook).  

All cells are locked by default.  You can allow the user to edit specific cells by selecting them, then Format>Cells>Protection Tab uncheck the lock box.

Then, go to Tools>Protection>Protect Sheet (or Protect Workbook)
Uncheck "Select Locked Cells"

Add a password if you wish (make sure you write it down somewhere!)

They will only be able to select cells that you have set up as unlocked.  If they cannot select the cells, they cannot copy them.

I hope this is a possibility for you!
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LVL 35

Expert Comment

by:[ fanpages ]
ID: 13924540
Hi @bludraggin,

Even with protected cells there is nothing stopping anybody creating links to the locked content & then copying this.

For example, locking cells (and disallowing selection) in one workbook (including cell A1 on Sheet1) as you detailed above, and then creating a completely new workbook, and simply entering =[Locked_Workbook.xls]Sheet1!A1 into any cell will allow the 'copying' of the contents from the original workbook.

BFN,

fp.
0
 

Author Comment

by:pauls681
ID: 13925820
Thanks for the suggestions

The problem with entering code is the way this workbook will be updated.
This workbook is created off of a master so it would be overwritten each time it was updated.
The person updates the master then deletes the data they dont want to be seen and saves the workbook
as the updated version.

I think the only way to have this done is by using a 3d party program.
or
what I would do is tell the people that have access that if they print this workbook out they will
be in BIG trouble.

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LVL 35

Expert Comment

by:[ fanpages ]
ID: 13929942
Re: 'Overwriting' the file.

Surely you would just put the VBA code in the 'master' so that you always send out a copy with code within it...
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Author Comment

by:pauls681
ID: 13930342
We are going to try something different.
 I will start a new question if another question arises but we are scrapping this
excell spreadshhet.

Thanks anyway for the input.
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LVL 35

Expert Comment

by:[ fanpages ]
ID: 13930721
Hi again,

Sorry we weren't much use [unless, of course we were!?!].

BFN,

fp.
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