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XL2000: Run-Time Error Message Occurs When Using SpecialCells Method with Protection

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This article was previously published under Q213203

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When you attempt to use the SpecialCells method in a Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications macro or procedure in Microsoft Excel, you may receive the following error message:
Run-time error '1004':

You cannot use this command on a protected sheet. To unprotect the sheet, use the Unprotect Sheet command (Tools menu, Protection submenu). You may be prompted for a password.

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This problem can occur if both of the following conditions are true:
  • You are running a Visual Basic for Applications macro or procedure that selects cells by using the SpecialCells method.

  • The contents of the active worksheet are currently protected.

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To work around this behavior use one of the following methods.

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Method 1: Unprotect the Worksheet

If the SpecialCells method is used on a worksheet with the contents protected, the macro produces the error message described in the "Symptoms" section. To avoid this error message, unprotect the sheet before using the SpecialCells method. Reapply the protection after the cells have been selected. This sample macro unprotects the sheet, selects all blank cells in the used range, and then protects the sheet:
Sub Test3()
   ActiveSheet.Protect DrawingObjects:=True, Contents:=True, _
End Sub
NOTE: If the worksheet is protected by a password, you must supply the password as an argument for the Unprotect method.

Method 2: Use the SendKeys Statement

The SpecialCells constant xlCellTypeLastCell has a keyboard equivalent that can be selected by pressing a specific key combination. You can use this constant to select the last cell in the used range by using the SpecialCells method. This operation can be simulated on the worksheet by pressing CTRL+END. Using the SendKeys statement, a macro can simulate this key combination.

The following sample macro provides a simulation of pressing CTRL+END, and it operates when the worksheet contents are protected:
Sub Test1()
   Application.SendKeys "^{END}"
End Sub

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Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in Excel 2000.

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For more information about how to use the sample code in this article, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
212536� OFF2000: How to Run Sample Code from Knowledge Base Articles

For more information about keyboard commands, click Microsoft Excel Help on the Help menu, type keyboard shortcuts in the Office Assistant or the Answer Wizard, and then click Search to view the topic.

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Keywords: KB213203, kbpending, kberrmsg, kbdtacode, kbbug

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Article Info
Article ID : 213203
Revision : 9
Created on : 11/23/2006
Published on : 11/23/2006
Exists online : False
Views : 375