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Formatting Charts with Microsoft.Office.Interop.Excel

Last Modified: 2013-12-16
I am trying to use C# to generate a spreadsheet that has a chart graphing a few non-contiguous rows of data.  I have almost everything working.  There are two things remaining that I cannot figure out how to do.  One is to set the background color (the fill color I presume) for the chart.  The other is to specify the font name, size, and color for the category and value axes (I'm not talking about an AxisTitle - I'm trying to format the labels for the tick marks on the chart).  The working code is below (with random data just to illustrate the point).  If anyone can fill in these two blanks it would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks in advance.

private void btnDrawIt_Click(object sender, EventArgs e)
            Excel.Application oXL;
            Excel._Workbook oWB;
            Excel._Worksheet oSheet;
            Excel.Range oRng;
            Excel._Chart oChart;

            //Start Excel and get Application object.
            oXL = new Excel.Application();
            oXL.Visible = true;

            //Get a new workbook.
            oWB = (Excel._Workbook)(oXL.Workbooks.Add(Missing.Value));
            oSheet = (Excel._Worksheet)oWB.ActiveSheet;

            Random rand = new Random(DateTime.Now.Millisecond);

            //Add table headers.

            oSheet.Cells[1, 1] = "Key Indicators";
            oSheet.Cells[2, 1] = "Total Employees";
            oSheet.Cells[3, 1] = "Total Service Hours";
            oSheet.Cells[4, 1] = "Performance Factor";
            oSheet.Cells[5, 1] = "Serv Hrs per Employee";
            oSheet.Cells[6, 1] = "Total Widgets";
            oSheet.Cells[1, 2] = "Monthly Average";
            oSheet.Cells[1, 3] = "'Jan 11";
            oSheet.Cells[1, 4] = "'Feb 11";
            oSheet.Cells[1, 5] = "'Mar 11";
            oSheet.Cells[1, 6] = "'Apr 11";
            oSheet.Cells[1, 7] = "'May 11";
            oSheet.Cells[1, 8] = "'Jun 11";
            oSheet.Cells[1, 9] = "'Jul 11";
            oSheet.Cells[1, 10] = "'Aug 11";
            oSheet.Cells[1, 11] = "'Sep 11";
            oSheet.Cells[1, 12] = "'Oct 11";
            oSheet.Cells[1, 13] = "'Nov 11";
            oSheet.Cells[1, 14] = "'Dec 11";

            // Format the title cells

            oSheet.get_Range("A1", "N1").Font.Bold = true;
            oSheet.get_Range("A1", "N1").VerticalAlignment =
            oSheet.get_Range("A2", "A2").WrapText = true;

            // Fill rows with random data, populated for Jan, Feb, and Mar only.
            // The "Total Employees" and "Total Widgets" are integer.  The others are float.

            for (int rowCounter = 2; rowCounter < 7; rowCounter++)
                for (int columnCounter = 2; columnCounter < 6; columnCounter++)
                    if ((rowCounter == 2) || (rowCounter == 6))
                        int theThing = rand.Next(11);
                        oSheet.Cells[rowCounter, columnCounter] = theThing;
                        double theThing = rand.NextDouble() * 10.0;
                        oSheet.Cells[rowCounter, columnCounter] = theThing;

            //Format the floating point cells

            oSheet.get_Range("B3", "M3").NumberFormat = "#.00";
            oSheet.get_Range("B4", "M4").NumberFormat = "#.00";
            oSheet.get_Range("B5", "M5").NumberFormat = "#.00";

            // Autofit the cells

            oRng = oSheet.get_Range("A1", "N1");

            //Add a Chart for a comparison of Total Service Hours vs. Total Widgets only.

            // Create the initial chart

            oChart = (Excel._Chart)oWB.Charts.Add(Missing.Value, Missing.Value,
                Missing.Value, Missing.Value);
            oChart.Name = "TheChartName";

            // Define the range for the data to be charted.  Note that this initally includes some rows that we don't want.

            Excel.Range chartRange = oSheet.get_Range("A1", "N6");

            // Use the chartwizard to customize the chart

            oChart.ChartWizard(chartRange, // use the range that we just defined
                               Excel.XlChartType.xlLine, // this is just a line chart
                               Excel.XlRowCol.xlRows, // the series data is in the rows, not the columns
                               1, // the row and column contain labels
                               true, // include a legend
                               "This is my chart title", // this is the chart title

            // Get the collection of data rows that are included in the chart

            Excel.SeriesCollection myCollection = (Excel.SeriesCollection)oChart.SeriesCollection(Missing.Value);

            // Remove the lines that we do not want


            // Format the chart title

            oChart.ChartTitle.Font.Name = "Arial";
            oChart.ChartTitle.Font.Size = 20;
            oChart.ChartTitle.Font.Color = ColorTranslator.ToOle(System.Drawing.Color.Red);

            // Format the chart border

            oChart.ChartArea.Border.Color = ColorTranslator.ToOle(System.Drawing.Color.Blue);
            oChart.ChartArea.Border.Weight = Excel.XlBorderWeight.xlMedium;
            Excel.Axis theCategoryAxis = (Excel.Axis)oChart.Axes(Excel.XlAxisType.xlCategory, Microsoft.Office.Interop.Excel.XlAxisGroup.xlPrimary);
            Excel.Axis theValueAxis = (Excel.Axis)oChart.Axes(Excel.XlAxisType.xlValue, Microsoft.Office.Interop.Excel.XlAxisGroup.xlPrimary);

            // ????? How do I set the font name, the font size, the bold setting, and the color
            // ????? for each axis.  I'm not talking about an AxisTitle.  I'm talking about the 
            // ????? labels on the tick marks on each axis, i.e. the "Jan 11", "Feb 11", etc.

            // ????? Second question - How do I set the background color for the chart?

            // Add the chart to the original worksheet rather than have it as a stand-alone chart

            oChart.Location(Excel.XlChartLocation.xlLocationAsObject, oSheet.Name);
            int myIndex = oSheet.Shapes.Count;

            // Stretch the chart to span the range A9 through N20

            oRng = (Excel.Range)oSheet.get_Range("A9", "N20");
            oSheet.Shapes.Item(myIndex).Top = (float)(double)oRng.Top;
            oSheet.Shapes.Item(myIndex).Left = (float)(double)oRng.Left;
            oSheet.Shapes.Item(myIndex).Width = (float)(double)oRng.Width;
            oSheet.Shapes.Item(myIndex).Height = (float)(double)oRng.Height;

            //Make sure Excel is visible and give the user control of Microsoft Excel's lifetime.
            oXL.Visible = true;
            oXL.UserControl = true;

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