MS Excel Audit Trail Log

Posted on 2012-04-03
Last Modified: 2012-08-13

I would like to have VB script added to the attached worksheet that will allow me to automatically track by running a consistent audit trail log on the second spreadsheet of all changes made to the first spreadsheet.

I would like the following tracked.
Date and time of the addition/change/deletions
The username (as stated in the Excel options tab)
An explanation of the additions/changes/deletions

Also, I would like to know can the cells on the audit log be locked by a password, so other users of the spreadsheet will not be able to manually change any of the information?

Looking forward to your responses. Thank you so much -- Chris
Question by:ckwillGWU
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Author Comment

ID: 37806295
I found this link, but is was slightly confusing.
LVL 38

Expert Comment

ID: 37806744
Try the simple code below from this link:  

If you need more then what the simple code below provides, then go back to the link you found and try to take one segment at time.  IMHO, the link is a thorough and very comprehensive presentation of a complex subject in tutorial fashion, and shows how a variety of different requirements (some of which you may not  need or want) can be handled:

Note: You need to insert the code in each sheet:

Dim PreviousValue

Private Sub Worksheet_Change(ByVal Target As Range)
    If Target.Value <> PreviousValue Then
        Sheets("log").Cells(65000, 1).End(xlUp).Offset(1, 0).Value = _
            Application.UserName & " - sheet: " & ActiveSheet.Name _
            & " - changed cell " & Target.Address _
            & " from " & PreviousValue & " to " & Target.Value
    End If
End Sub

Private Sub Worksheet_SelectionChange(ByVal Target As Range)
    PreviousValue = Target.Value
End Sub
LVL 38

Assisted Solution

puppydogbuddy earned 500 total points
ID: 37806820
See also this link. It contains code for password protection.
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Author Comment

ID: 37807137
OK! I entered the code on spreadsheets; however I'm not sure if I was suppose to update or change any of the text, but I did test and no log was created. I've attached my attempt.
LVL 38

Assisted Solution

puppydogbuddy earned 500 total points
ID: 37812153
Just got back online and took a quick look at your test file and could not immediately determine out why it isn't working.  Funny thing is I downloaded the sample file from the tutorial link (, which uses the same code and it works.  I checked the obvious things like the references and security level and they appear to be ok.  The only apparent differences I noted between the the tutorial file (which works) and your test file (which is not working) are the following:
      1. Your file was created using Excel 2007; the tutorial file and my upload of your test file were saved in a pre-2007 format.  
       2. the VBA project view in the vb editor shows that you have 4 modules vs one module for the tutorial file.  One module appears to be all that is needed in this case because both sheets and the workbook all use the same code.                                            

I will look into it in greater detail later tonight.  In the meantime you should upload the tutorial file that is refered to above, and see if it  works  on your computer.

Author Comment

ID: 37812316
Thanks PuppyDogBuddy,

I actually downloaded the file yesterday. For the date and time addition, I'm going to try a workaround and do a nested IF statement to add the date and time to column B on the log sheet. Then, I hide columns A & B and Merge all the information to show Date, Time & Change in Column C. I'm pretty sure this will slow up the spreadsheet a little, but, it is the only thing that I can think of at the moment.

Author Comment

ID: 37814585
I've attached the working spreadsheet that has many issues; however for this post, I'm only going to focus on Issue #1 as found in the Desc tab of the attached workbook.

To solve issue 1, I attempted the code from the following link

I updated the range, but I'm not sure if it is correct. The code was entered on the log tab.

Can you see what I did wrong here for this not to work properly? Or, do you know how I can fix it?
LVL 38

Accepted Solution

puppydogbuddy earned 500 total points
ID: 37816355
I have excel 2003 + the compatibility pack for conversion of 2007, but for some reason it could not convert your latest file and I can only view it in read-only mode.  If you could attach a 2003 copy of your file,  I could tinker with it.

Just looking at what you have, I would use the DateAdd function, as discussed in the following link, for date incrementation and manipulation.

And you certainly can use nested ifs in excel, but you will have to play around the different syntaxes shown in the links below to find one that works.


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