smozgur

XL2BB - Excel Range to BBCode 1.0.0

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A new way to show Excel range in messages - XL2BB

Although experts prefer to read your description and question instead of working in your actual file to solve your problem, there are times that it is difficult to explain an issue without providing actual data with formulas and extra information in an Excel-friendly format. To provide this kind of information, we've been using various add-ins to convert a selected worksheet range to HTML code to include in posts.

However, posting HTML in posts is not allowed anymore due to certain security and layout concerns. Therefore you won't be able to use any of the previous HTML maker tools. If you try to use these add-ins, generated codes will not be rendered as HTML but as plain HTML code. This led us to build our own BBCode to be used to convert a selected range to BBCode that can then be pasted and rendered in posts. It is called XL2BB.

For the forum migration in November 2019, more than 90 thousand existing posts using HTML-based code were converted to XL2BB code. We found that there were many different versions of HTML Makers in use and the output from some tools has not been converted yet. We are still working on converting these after the migration.

XL2BB simply captures the elements in the selected range and converts it to a special BBCode hash that you can paste into a post.

To install the XL2BB Excel add-in:

  • Launch Excel, click the File tab, click Options, and then click the Add-Ins category.
  • In the Manage box, click Excel Add-ins, and then click Go.
    The Add-Ins dialog box appears.
  • Click the Browse button to locate the add-in, and then click OK.
You will see the following buttons on the Home and Help tabs of the Ribbon.

XL2BB button on the Ribbon

XL2BB button on the Ribbon

Open your workbook and select the range that you want to include in your question. Click the Capture Range button:

Capture Range

Capture Range

If the selected range contains extra information, such as Formulas, Conditional Formatting, Data Validation and Named Ranges, a dialog box will appear. Select the information you'd like to include with your captured range and click Generate Output.

Select additional information

Select additional information

As soon as you see the following confirmation, you'll get the generated BBCode in the clipboard ready to be pasted in your post:

Copied to clipboard

Copied to clipboard

Now go to the board and paste the clipboard content right after your question text.

XL2BB in the message

XL2BB in the message

Note that cells containing formulas are indicated by a yellow triangle in the top left corner. You can hover the mouse pointer on these cells to see a quick tooltip showing the formula. You can click on the cell to show the actual formula in the formula bar below the workbook name. The formula is also copied to the clipboard once you click on a cell.

Formula cells

Formula cells

The Copy to Clipboard button in the top left corner is a reverse XL2BB (BB2XL) action that copies the entire range from the post to the clipboard. The data can then be pasted to the same top left cell to Excel, allowing you to get the same range with elements such as formulas, formatting (not conditional formatting as in Excel but current formatting as you can see in the post). Please note that array formulas won't be pasted as array formulas, so those formulas must be re-entered by using CTRL + Shift + Enter in Excel. Similarly, named ranges must be re-defined in Excel as well.

Reverse XL2BB

Reverse XL2BB

Note: We will continue improving XL2BB to provide more features and fix existing problems.

If you have difficulties installing the add-in, please refer to Jon Peltier's amazing article - Install an Excel Add-in.
Excel Version
365, 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, 2007
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smozgur
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