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An open file dialog box in Access

open file dialog box

The Open File dialog box is the standard windows File menu option. It allows you to browse through the folders and select a file with any specified extension.

Unless you have the Access developers addition you can not make use of this tool within your programs and will be reliant upon your own less functional efforts.

The following code (written by Ken Getz) however generates this OpenFile dialog box and can be incorporated within a function to return a file name. You can set the default folder and file types and right button click functionality is available.

The code is very complex and contains narrative which give some idea as to what is being done. If you wish you can copy this entire code into a new module and then use my simple function which calls upon and makes use of this code.

A selection of books about Access from Amazon
Option Compare Database
Option Explicit

'API: Call the standard Windows File Open/Save dialog box
'Paste the following code in a new module
'***************** Code Start **************
'This code was originally written by Ken Getz.
'It is not to be altered or distributed, except as part of an application.
'You are free to use it in any application,
'provided the copyright notice is left unchanged.
' Code courtesy of:
' Microsoft Access 95 How-To
' Ken Getz and Paul Litwin
' Waite Group Press, 1996

lStructSize As Long
hwndOwner As Long
hInstance As Long
strFilter As String
strCustomFilter As String
nMaxCustFilter As Long
nFilterIndex As Long
strFile As String
nMaxFile As Long
strFileTitle As String
nMaxFileTitle As Long
strInitialDir As String
strTitle As String
Flags As Long
nFileOffset As Integer
nFileExtension As Integer
strDefExt As String
lCustData As Long
lpfnHook As Long
lpTemplateName As String
End Type
Declare Function aht_apiGetOpenFileName Lib "comdlg32.dll" _
Alias "GetOpenFileNameA" (OFN As tagOPENFILENAME) As Boolean
Declare Function aht_apiGetSaveFileName Lib "comdlg32.dll" _
Alias "GetSaveFileNameA" (OFN As tagOPENFILENAME) As Boolean
Declare Function CommDlgExtendedError Lib "comdlg32.dll" () As Long
Global Const ahtOFN_READONLY = &H1
Global Const ahtOFN_HIDEREADONLY = &H4
Global Const ahtOFN_NOCHANGEDIR = &H8
Global Const ahtOFN_SHOWHELP = &H10
' You won't use these.
'Global Const ahtOFN_ENABLEHOOK = &H20
'Global Const ahtOFN_ENABLETEMPLATE = &H40
Global Const ahtOFN_NOVALIDATE = &H100
Global Const ahtOFN_ALLOWMULTISELECT = &H200
Global Const ahtOFN_PATHMUSTEXIST = &H800
Global Const ahtOFN_FILEMUSTEXIST = &H1000
Global Const ahtOFN_CREATEPROMPT = &H2000
Global Const ahtOFN_SHAREAWARE = &H4000
Global Const ahtOFN_NOREADONLYRETURN = &H8000
Global Const ahtOFN_NOTESTFILECREATE = &H10000
Global Const ahtOFN_NONETWORKBUTTON = &H20000
Global Const ahtOFN_NOLONGNAMES = &H40000
' New for Windows 95
Global Const ahtOFN_EXPLORER = &H80000
Global Const ahtOFN_NODEREFERENCELINKS = &H100000
Global Const ahtOFN_LONGNAMES = &H200000
Function TestIt()
Dim strFilter As String
Dim lngFlags As Long
strFilter = ahtAddFilterItem(strFilter, "Access Files (*.mda, *.mdb)", _
strFilter = ahtAddFilterItem(strFilter, "dBASE Files (*.dbf)", "*.DBF")
strFilter = ahtAddFilterItem(strFilter, "Text Files (*.txt)", "*.TXT")
strFilter = ahtAddFilterItem(strFilter, "All Files (*.*)", "*.*")
MsgBox "You selected: " & ahtCommonFileOpenSave(InitialDir:="C:\", _
Filter:=strFilter, FilterIndex:=3, Flags:=lngFlags, _
DialogTitle:="Hello! Open Me!")
' Since you passed in a variable for lngFlags,
' the function places the output flags value in the variable.
Debug.Print Hex(lngFlags)
End Function

Function GetOpenFile(Optional varDirectory As Variant, _
Optional varTitleForDialog As Variant) As Variant
' Here's an example that gets an Access database name.
Dim strFilter As String
Dim lngFlags As Long
Dim varFileName As Variant
' Specify that the chosen file must already exist,
' don't change directories when you're done
' Also, don't bother displaying
' the read-only box. It'll only confuse people.
lngFlags = ahtOFN_FILEMUSTEXIST Or _
If IsMissing(varDirectory) Then
varDirectory = ""
End If
If IsMissing(varTitleForDialog) Then
varTitleForDialog = ""
End If

' Define the filter string and allocate space in the "c"
' string Duplicate this line with changes as necessary for
' more file templates.
strFilter = ahtAddFilterItem(strFilter, _
"Access (*.mdb)", "*.MDB;*.MDA")
' Now actually call to get the file name.
varFileName = ahtCommonFileOpenSave( _
OpenFile:=True, _
InitialDir:=varDirectory, _
Filter:=strFilter, _
Flags:=lngFlags, _
If Not IsNull(varFileName) Then
varFileName = TrimNull(varFileName)
End If
GetOpenFile = varFileName
End Function
Function ahtCommonFileOpenSave( _
Optional ByRef Flags As Variant, _
Optional ByVal InitialDir As Variant, _
Optional ByVal Filter As Variant, _
Optional ByVal FilterIndex As Variant, _
Optional ByVal DefaultExt As Variant, _
Optional ByVal FileName As Variant, _
Optional ByVal DialogTitle As Variant, _
Optional ByVal hwnd As Variant, _
Optional ByVal OpenFile As Variant) As Variant
' This is the entry point you'll use to call the common
' file open/save dialog. The parameters are listed
' below, and all are optional.
' In:
' Flags: one or more of the ahtOFN_* constants, OR'd together.
' InitialDir: the directory in which to first look
' Filter: a set of file filters, set up by calling
' AddFilterItem. See examples.
' FilterIndex: 1-based integer indicating which filter
' set to use, by default (1 if unspecified)
' DefaultExt: Extension to use if the user doesn't enter one.
' Only useful on file saves.
' FileName: Default value for the file name text box.
' DialogTitle: Title for the dialog.
' hWnd: parent window handle
' OpenFile: Boolean(True=Open File/False=Save As)
' Out:
' Return Value: Either Null or the selected filename
Dim strFileName As String
Dim strFileTitle As String
Dim fResult As Boolean
' Give the dialog a caption title.
If IsMissing(InitialDir) Then InitialDir = CurDir
If IsMissing(Filter) Then Filter = ""
If IsMissing(FilterIndex) Then FilterIndex = 1
If IsMissing(Flags) Then Flags = 0&
If IsMissing(DefaultExt) Then DefaultExt = ""
If IsMissing(FileName) Then FileName = ""
If IsMissing(DialogTitle) Then DialogTitle = ""
If IsMissing(hwnd) Then hwnd = Application.hWndAccessApp
If IsMissing(OpenFile) Then OpenFile = True
' Allocate string space for the returned strings.
strFileName = Left(FileName & String(256, 0), 256)
strFileTitle = String(256, 0)
' Set up the data structure before you call the function
With OFN
.lStructSize = Len(OFN)
.hwndOwner = hwnd
.strFilter = Filter
.nFilterIndex = FilterIndex
.strFile = strFileName
.nMaxFile = Len(strFileName)
.strFileTitle = strFileTitle
.nMaxFileTitle = Len(strFileTitle)
.strTitle = DialogTitle
.Flags = Flags
.strDefExt = DefaultExt
.strInitialDir = InitialDir
' Didn't think most people would want to deal with
' these options.
.hInstance = 0
.strCustomFilter = ""
.nMaxCustFilter = 0
.lpfnHook = 0
'New for NT 4.0
.strCustomFilter = String(255, 0)
.nMaxCustFilter = 255
End With
' This will pass the desired data structure to the
' Windows API, which will in turn it uses to display
' the Open/Save As Dialog.
If OpenFile Then
fResult = aht_apiGetOpenFileName(OFN)
fResult = aht_apiGetSaveFileName(OFN)
End If

' The function call filled in the strFileTitle member
' of the structure. You'll have to write special code
' to retrieve that if you're interested.
If fResult Then
' You might care to check the Flags member of the
' structure to get information about the chosen file.
' In this example, if you bothered to pass in a
' value for Flags, we'll fill it in with the outgoing
' Flags value.
If Not IsMissing(Flags) Then Flags = OFN.Flags
ahtCommonFileOpenSave = TrimNull(OFN.strFile)
ahtCommonFileOpenSave = vbNullString
End If
End Function
Function ahtAddFilterItem(strFilter As String, _
strDescription As String, Optional varItem As Variant) As String
' Tack a new chunk onto the file filter.
' That is, take the old value, stick onto it the description,
' (like "Databases"), a null character, the skeleton
' (like "*.mdb;*.mda") and a final null character.

If IsMissing(varItem) Then varItem = "*.*"
ahtAddFilterItem = strFilter & _
strDescription & vbNullChar & _
varItem & vbNullChar
End Function
Private Function TrimNull(ByVal strItem As String) As String
Dim intPos As Integer
intPos = InStr(strItem, vbNullChar)
If intPos > 0 Then
TrimNull = Left(strItem, intPos - 1)
TrimNull = strItem
End If
End Function
'************** Code End *****************

Sub Just_More_Notes()
'To call the actual dialog from your code, see the enclosed function TestIt()
'within the module or use the following example as a guideline and
Dim strFilter As String
Dim strInputFileName As String

strFilter = ahtAddFilterItem(strFilter, "Excel Files (*.XLS)", "*.XLS")
strInputFileName = ahtCommonFileOpenSave(Filter:=strFilter, OpenFile:=True, _
DialogTitle:="Please select an input file...", _

'Note that in order to call the Save As dialog box,you can use the
'same wrapper function by just setting the OpenFile option as False. For example,

'Ask for SaveFileName
strFilter = ahtAddFilterItem(myStrFilter, "Excel Files (*.xls)", "*.xls")
strSaveFileName = ahtCommonFileOpenSave(OpenFile:=False, Filter:=strFilter, _
End Sub

The next function is my own adapted function which calls upon the previous programs to open a dialog box and then return the selected file. I have configured this example to be used for text files. It can be amended for any type of file which can be imported into Access.

Function OpenTextFile(Optional varDirectory As Variant) As Variant
Dim strFilter As String, lngFlags As Long, varFileName As Variant

lngFlags = ahtOFN_FILEMUSTEXIST Or _
If IsMissing(varDirectory) Then
varDirectory = ""
End If
' you can choose to add a number of file extensions which will appear in the drop down Files of Type box
strFilter = ahtAddFilterItem(strFilter, "Text files (*.txt)", "*.txt")
strFilter = ahtAddFilterItem(strFilter, "Any files (*.*)", "*.*")
varFileName = ahtCommonFileOpenSave( _
OpenFile:=True, _
InitialDir:=varDirectory, _
Filter:=strFilter, _
Flags:=lngFlags, _
DialogTitle:="Open a text file ...") ' < This is the title to your dialog box
If Not IsNull(varFileName) Then
varFileName = TrimNull(varFileName)
End If
OpenTextFile = varFileName
End Function

The OpenTextFile() function can be incorporated within a further function which, in this example, loads the contents of the selected fixed width text file and appends it as new records in a table called Temp_Text. Before this can be used, you will need to create and save a file import specification (also called Temp_Text) which will be appropriate for the files being imported.

Function ImportFile() As Integer
' This function will return 1 if a file is imported, 0 if not imported
Dim FileSpec As String
FileSpec = OpenTextFile("D:\Download\")

If Len(FileSpec) = 0 Then
MsgBox "Operation Cancelled - file not loaded", vbOKOnly, "ImportFile() function"
ImportFile = 0
DoCmd.TransferText A_IMPORTFIXED, "temp_text", "temp_text", FileSpec
ImportFile = 1
End If
End Function

The code shown here may appear rather daunting but it can be applied regardless of whether you understand it. A small amount of experimenting with this code can greatly enhance your programs.

file: aopendlg.htm 2014 Page last modified Sep14