"this action cannot be completed because the other application" in VBA when opening Excel app object

I have looked through existing questions and although some are related, they do not specifically apply to my issue.  I am opening the Excel Application object to create an excel spreadsheet from Access.  All is fine and I can open new ones even when there are some open EXCEPT if the excel application has a workseet in Print Preview.

If Excel is in this state I cannot manually open or switch to view another Excel spreadsheet, and when I attempt this in code, I get the error message noted in the title of my question.  If I manually close the print preview screen, badabing, my new excel sheet pops up and there is no issue.

I thought of trying to test the status of the excel app object, but the message occurs on the line that is just setting the object  "Set xlApp = GetObject(, "excel.application")".

What I am getting is that message flashing quickly, and though I am able to go to excel and change the status to close print preview, it's not what I want my users to have to do, I would like to be able to test if that status were true (B4 the message occurs), close the print preview and have my new excel sheet open up and be the active worksheet.

Any ideas out there?

Laura
L-auraAsked:
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tony_angelopoulosCommented:
you might try error trapping and popping up a message box to inform the user to close print preview before continuing.
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L-auraAuthor Commented:
I don't get an error number, just the crazy blicking message box telling me that the app is busy. Arghhhh.
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L-auraAuthor Commented:
FYI, it's pretty easy to replicate this issue....  you just open an excel spreadsheet, go to print preview, then attempt to run this code:

You never get to the problemo msgbox.
Public Sub TestExcelStatus()
 
Dim xlApp As Object
On Error GoTo problemo
 
    Set xlApp = GetObject(, "excel.application")
   Debug.Print xlApp.WindowState
 
  If xlApp.ActiveWorkbook.PrintPreview = True Then
    MsgBox "Print preview"
  Else
  
  End If
  
problemo:
 MsgBox "there is a problem"
 
End Sub

Open in new window

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tony_angelopoulosCommented:
Wow, that crashed my PC.
I would say you found quite the bug.  I'm thinking the only way around it would be to find some kind of API function that looked at OLE or Hwnd properties before trying to grab hold of Excel (if you want to grab an already open excel session).
HOWEVER:
Another option would be to instantiate a new excel object with CreateObject, open or create the workbooks, and then close the object.
I changed your Set xlApp = GetObject(, "excel.application") to
Set xlApp = CreateObject("excel.application")

and added
xlApp.visible = true

(so that I could see the new session)

and it circumvented the issue.  The ActiveWorkbook line will error because there is no open workbook yet, but you get the picture.  I think CreateObject is what you should do.

I'm sorry I can't help much more than that!
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