How To Automate Microsoft Word to Perform Mail Merge from Visual Basic

This article was previously published under Q220607
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This article demonstrates how to use Microsoft Word to create a mail-merged document by using Automation from Microsoft Visual Basic.
There are two ways to control an Automation server: by using late binding or by using early binding. With late binding, methods are not bound until runtime and the Automation server is declared as Object. With early binding, your application knows at design-time the exact type of object it will be communicating with and can declare its objects as a specific type. This sample uses early binding, which is considered better in most cases because it affords greater performance and better type safety.

To early bind to an Automation server, you have to set a reference to that server's type library. In Visual Basic, this is done through the References dialog box. To open the References dialog box, click References on the Project menu. For this sample, you have to add a reference to the type library for Word before you can run the code.

Building the Automation Sample

  1. Start Visual Basic, and create a new Standard EXE project. Form1 is created by default.
  2. Add a CommandButton control to Form1.
  3. On the Project menu, click References to open the References dialog box.
  4. Select Microsoft Word 11.0 Object Library to create a reference to the Microsoft Office Word 2003 type library. For Word 2002, select Microsoft Word 10.0 Object Library. For Word 2000, select Microsoft Word 9.0 Object Library. For Word 97, select Microsoft Word 8.0 Object Library.
  5. Click OK to close the References dialog box.
  6. In the code window for Form1, add the following code:
    Option ExplicitDim wrdApp As Word.ApplicationDim wrdDoc As Word.DocumentPrivate Sub Command1_Click()  Dim wrdSelection As Word.Selection  Dim wrdMailMerge As Word.MailMerge  Dim wrdMergeFields As Word.MailMergeFields  Dim StrToAdd As String  ' Create an instance of Word, and make it visible.  Set wrdApp = CreateObject("Word.Application")  wrdApp.Visible = True  ' Add a new document.  Set wrdDoc = wrdApp.Documents.Add  wrdDoc.Select    Set wrdSelection = wrdApp.Selection  Set wrdMailMerge = wrdDoc.MailMerge  ' Create the MailMerge Data file.  CreateMailMergeDataFile  ' Create a string, and insert it into the document.  StrToAdd = "State University" & vbCr & _           "Electrical Engineering Department"  wrdSelection.ParagraphFormat.Alignment = wdAlignParagraphCenter  wrdSelection.TypeText StrToAdd     InsertLines 4   ' Insert merge data.  wrdSelection.ParagraphFormat.Alignment = wdAlignParagraphLeft  Set wrdMergeFields = wrdMailMerge.Fields  wrdMergeFields.Add wrdSelection.Range, "FirstName"  wrdSelection.TypeText " "  wrdMergeFields.Add wrdSelection.Range, "LastName"  wrdSelection.TypeParagraph  wrdMergeFields.Add wrdSelection.Range, "Address"  wrdSelection.TypeParagraph  wrdMergeFields.Add wrdSelection.Range, "CityStateZip"      InsertLines 2  ' Right align the line, and insert a date field' with the current date.  wrdSelection.ParagraphFormat.Alignment = _        wdAlignParagraphRight  wrdSelection.InsertDateTime _        DateTimeFormat:="dddd, MMMM dd, yyyy", _        InsertAsField:=False          InsertLines 2  ' Align the rest of the document.  wrdSelection.ParagraphFormat.Alignment = _        wdAlignParagraphJustify    wrdSelection.TypeText "Dear "  wrdMergeFields.Add wrdSelection.Range, "FirstName"  wrdSelection.TypeText ","  InsertLines 2    ' Create a string, and insert it into the document.  StrToAdd = "Thank you for your recent request for next " & _      "semester's class schedule for the Electrical " & _      "Engineering Department. Enclosed with this " & _      "letter is a booklet containing all the classes " & _      "offered next semester at State University.  " & _      "Several new classes will be offered in the " & _      "Electrical Engineering Department next semester.  " & _      "These classes are listed below."  wrdSelection.TypeText StrToAdd    InsertLines 2    ' Insert a new table with 9 rows and 4 columns.  wrdDoc.Tables.Add wrdSelection.Range, NumRows:=9, _       NumColumns:=4  With wrdDoc.Tables(1)    ' Set the column widths    .Columns(1).SetWidth 51, wdAdjustNone    .Columns(2).SetWidth 170, wdAdjustNone    .Columns(3).SetWidth 100, wdAdjustNone    .Columns(4).SetWidth 111, wdAdjustNone    ' Set the shading on the first row to light gray.    .Rows(1).Cells.Shading.BackgroundPatternColorIndex = _       wdGray25    ' Format the first row in bold.    .Rows(1).Range.Bold = True    ' Center the text in Cell (1,1).    .Cell(1, 1).Range.Paragraphs.Alignment = wdAlignParagraphCenter        ' Fill each row of the table with data.    FillRow wrdDoc, 1, "Class Number", "Class Name", "Class Time", _       "Instructor"    FillRow wrdDoc, 2, "EE220", "Introduction to Electronics II", _       "1:00-2:00 M,W,F", "Dr. Jensen"    FillRow wrdDoc, 3, "EE230", "Electromagnetic Field Theory I", _       "10:00-11:30 T,T", "Dr. Crump"    FillRow wrdDoc, 4, "EE300", "Feedback Control Systems", _       "9:00-10:00 M,W,F", "Dr. Murdy"    FillRow wrdDoc, 5, "EE325", "Advanced Digital Design", _       "9:00-10:30 T,T", "Dr. Alley"    FillRow wrdDoc, 6, "EE350", "Advanced Communication Systems", _       "9:00-10:30 T,T", "Dr. Taylor"    FillRow wrdDoc, 7, "EE400", "Advanced Microwave Theory", _       "1:00-2:30 T,T", "Dr. Lee"    FillRow wrdDoc, 8, "EE450", "Plasma Theory", _       "1:00-2:00 M,W,F", "Dr. Davis"    FillRow wrdDoc, 9, "EE500", "Principles of VLSI Design", _       "3:00-4:00 M,W,F", "Dr. Ellison"  End With    ' Go to the end of the document.  wrdApp.Selection.GoTo wdGoToLine, wdGoToLast  InsertLines 2    ' Create a string, and insert it into the document.  StrToAdd = "For additional information regarding the " & _             "Department of Electrical Engineering, " & _             "you can visit our Web site at "  wrdSelection.TypeText StrToAdd  ' Insert a hyperlink to the Web page.  wrdSelection.Hyperlinks.Add Anchor:=wrdSelection.Range, _     Address:=""  ' Create a string, and insert it into the document.  StrToAdd = ".  Thank you for your interest in the classes " & _             "offered in the Department of Electrical " & _             "Engineering.  If you have any other questions, " & _             "please feel free to give us a call at " & _             "555-1212." & vbCr & vbCr & _             "Sincerely," & vbCr & vbCr & _             "Kathryn M. Hinsch" & vbCr & _             "Department of Electrical Engineering" & vbCr  wrdSelection.TypeText StrToAdd   ' Perform mail merge.  wrdMailMerge.Destination = wdSendToNewDocument  wrdMailMerge.Execute False  ' Close the original form document.  wrdDoc.Saved = True  wrdDoc.Close False  ' Notify user we are done.  MsgBox "Mail Merge Complete.", vbMsgBoxSetForeground  ' Release references.  Set wrdSelection = Nothing  Set wrdMailMerge = Nothing  Set wrdMergeFields = Nothing  Set wrdDoc = Nothing  Set wrdApp = Nothing  ' Clean up the temp file.  Kill "C:\DataDoc.doc"End SubPublic Sub InsertLines(LineNum As Integer)  Dim iCount As Integer' Insert "LineNum" blank lines.  For iCount = 1 To LineNum    wrdApp.Selection.TypeParagraph  Next iCountEnd SubPublic Sub FillRow(Doc As Word.Document, Row As Integer, _                   Text1 As String, Text2 As String, _                   Text3 As String, Text4 As String)                     With Doc.Tables(1)    ' Insert the data into the specific cell.    .Cell(Row, 1).Range.InsertAfter Text1    .Cell(Row, 2).Range.InsertAfter Text2    .Cell(Row, 3).Range.InsertAfter Text3    .Cell(Row, 4).Range.InsertAfter Text4  End WithEnd SubPublic Sub CreateMailMergeDataFile()  Dim wrdDataDoc As Word.Document  Dim iCount As Integer  ' Create a data source at C:\DataDoc.doc that contains the field data.  wrdDoc.MailMerge.CreateDataSource Name:="C:\DataDoc.doc", _        HeaderRecord:="FirstName, LastName, Address, CityStateZip"' Open the file to insert the data.  Set wrdDataDoc = wrdApp.Documents.Open("C:\DataDoc.doc")  For iCount = 1 To 2    wrdDataDoc.Tables(1).Rows.Add  Next iCount' Fill in the data.  FillRow wrdDataDoc, 2, "Steve", "DeBroux", _        "4567 Main Street", "Buffalo, NY  98052"  FillRow wrdDataDoc, 3, "Jan", "Miksovsky", _        "1234 5th Street", "Charlotte, NC  98765"  FillRow wrdDataDoc, 4, "Brian", "Valentine", _        "12348 78th Street  Apt. 214", "Lubbock, TX  25874"' Save and close the file.  wrdDataDoc.Save  wrdDataDoc.Close FalseEnd Sub					
  7. Press the F5 key and click the button to run the sample.
For more information on Office Automation, visit the following Microsoft Office Development support site:

Article ID: 220607 - Last Review: 12/05/2015 13:09:20 - Revision: 6.4

Microsoft Visual Basic 6.0 Learning Edition, Microsoft Visual Basic 5.0 Learning Edition, Microsoft Visual Basic 6.0 Professional Edition, Microsoft Visual Basic 5.0 Professional Edition, Microsoft Visual Basic Enterprise Edition for Windows 6.0, Microsoft Visual Basic 5.0 Enterprise Edition, Microsoft Office 2003, All Editions, Microsoft Office XP Developer Edition, Microsoft Office 2000 Developer Edition, Microsoft Office Word 2003, Microsoft Word 2002, Microsoft Word 2000, Microsoft Word 97 Standard Edition

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