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Home > English site > Articles > Treeview control

An MSForms (all VBA) treeview


If you have ever used the Treeview control from the "Additional controls" section, then you know what a versatile control this is to show hierarchically organized data. There are a couple of problems with this Treeview control:

  1. Compile errors due to a difference in how the control libraries are registered in 32 bits Windows' System32 and 64 bit Windows' SysWOW64 folders. If you distribute a file that was saved in 64 bit Windows, containing one of the "Microsoft Windows Common Controls 6.0" (The Treeview control is one of them) and with the reference set to "mscomctl.ocx", people using 32 bit Windows will almost certainly have problems. At best it could entail removing both the control and the reference and replacing both, but at worst the user's Excel can crash when trying to load the file and run the app.
  2. The standard Treeview control, like all non built-in ActiveX controls, cannot be used in 64 bit versions of Office.

Especially the second point convinced me it is time to develop a custom-made Treeview "control", that only uses the native Office forms controls. I started building this a couple of weeks ago and after some time I tricked Peter Thornton into helping me with it

The screenshot below shows both our new Treeview (left) and the Windows one (right) side-by-side in their simplest display mode (read on, there are even prettier screenshots further down the page):

Treeview controls
Two treeviews, left: VBA tree, right: Common controls tree

In the following pages I'll show what our treeview can do and explain how to put it to use in your own VBA project.

MAC Office and 64 bit Office Compatible!

Our treeview was tested (and works) on 64 bit Office. It also works on MAC office. Tested applications include:

Excel 2000
Excel 2003
Excel 2010
Excel 2010 (64 bit)
Excel 2011 (MAC Office)
Excel 2013 (32 bit)

Access 2003
Access 2010 (32 bit)
Access 2010 (64 bit)

Windows screenshot:

Treeview demo on Windows Excel
Treeview demo on Windows Excel

Mac screenshot:

MAC screenshot of our treeview demo form
Screenshot of treeview on Mac Excel 2011


The basic plumbing and code structure of this treeview control was devised by me. However, without the help of my friend and fellow MVP Peter Thornton, lots of functionality would not have been available now. For that I sincerely thank Peter!

Furthermore, Access MVP Ben Clothier was kind enough to make the necessary adjustments to incorporate the treeview in an Access form

Also: Fellow Excel MVP Ron De Bruin ensured the treeview also works on MAC Office 2011, Thanks Ron!

Copyright and Licensing

All code in the treeview is (c) JKP Application Development Services and Peter Thornton (the Authors). It remains our sole intellectual property.

However, we're offering this treeview to you at no cost. You get an unrestricted license for use in any VBA project you like. You're free to modify any part of the code at will.

We do have some rules:

And please mention the source of the treeview (including a link to this page) in your helpfile, manual and/or on your about screen.

We're always interested to see how people have implemented the VBA Treeview. So please feel free to send a screenshot with a brief description or relevant details.


You use this control at your own risk: The authors accept no liability whatsoever for any damages which may arise due to the use of our treeview.


Many, many hours were spent developing this treeview. Although we developed it for use in our own projects, we are giving it away for free!

Nevertheless, we would really be pleased if you actually express your appreciation in a more "tangible" form. So here is a paypal donation button at your disposal:


The Excel workbook contains most of the documentation (on the tabs of the workbook), so I recommend you to at least download the Excel version. The Access version has instructions on its main form (click the "How do I...?" button) on how to implement the treeview in your own projects.

Download the treeview sample Excel workbook (including documentation) (build 026, 15 Oct 2015, downloaded 28,065 times)

Download the treeview sample Word document (build 026, 15 Oct 2015, downloaded 8,525 times)

Download the treeview sample Access database (build 025, 16 Oct 2013, downloaded 22,762 times)

‘Pro’ Treeview and ListGrid VBA controls

The professional version of the treeview control has exceptional performance. Even with tens of thousands of nodes it will load quickly and remain highly responsive. It also has several new features including drag and drop.

Our new ListGrid combines most of the functionality of the ActiveX Listview and Flexgrid controls with many extra useful features. It is the result of extensive beta testing by some of our treeview users, thanks guys!

The screenshot of the demo below gives an idea of just some of its capability.

Professional ListGrid control

The Pro Treeview and ListGrid are available for 32/64 bit Excel and Access. The Excel version will also work in Mac, one or two features are disabled for Mac but we’re working on it. Unlike our free treeview they are self contained in their own files and designed to work more like real controls.

For more details and if interested to try either of these ‘controls’ please contact us:

Pro Treeview enquiry

Pro Listgrid enquiry

Please note that the pro versions are paid versions. Pricing available upon request by using the links above.



Other controls

Another often used control is the calendar control. This control has the added problem that it has been deprecated with Office 2010 (where we're supposed to use the date picker control). Frankens Team created an all-vba alternative using very similar techniques to what we've done here.

Ron de Bruin created a Date Picker control for MAC Excel.

We are currently developing a listgrid/listview control. Contact us if you would like to participate in the beta program. Note that this control will not be made available as freeware.



Showing last 8 comments of 573 in total (Show All Comments):


Comment by: edd (12/4/2017 5:36:45 PM)

Hi, my data will end up creating a ragged structure with some levels as deep as 27. Will this treeview work with the recursive loading used in the Microsoft article as below;

Whilst I was able to use the above, I am not sure I know enough to implement this without someone pointing me in the right direction...

Ps this is great stuff!!! :)


Comment by: Peter Thornton (12/5/2017 10:17:47 AM)

Hi edd,

There's no defined limit for the number of Levels though for usability 27 seems a lot.

That recursive example would need slightly adapting but it should work, at a glance you'd need to change:

objTree As TreeView > WithEvents objTree As clsTreeview ' at module level
nodCurrent As Node > nodCurrent As clsNode
objTree.Node.Add > objTree.NodeAdd
tvwChild > tvChild

You'd first need to create the Treeview and write any properties you want included, and not need the Set objTree = Me!xTree.Object line.

Refer to the documentation in the Excel download and update the Access v025 to 026

If you've got a large tree, particularly with those 27 levels, you might find our 'pro' version more suitable.


Comment by: Elen Glimois (12/5/2017 10:10:16 PM)


What a great work I found on your web site !!!

I am wondering if your treeview support multiple columns. If it does, how does it work? I would like to implent it on MS Access 2013.

Thanks a lot


Comment by: Jan Karel Pieterse (12/6/2017 2:13:23 PM)

Hi Elen,

Our treeview does not support columns. But there is a listgrid control that we sell which has capabilities that might help?


Comment by: Volker Lorenz (1/30/2018 3:50:34 PM)

Hi Jan, I modified your frm_demo and after a short time it worked great! Than I copied clsNode, clsTreeview, modStartup, modDemo and the form into my Access application and at the line: Set mcTree = Me.subTreeView.Form.pTreeview the error occured: Error Load Nr:40036 Discr: Die Methode 'Form' für das Objekt '_SubForm' ist fehlgeschlagen DLLError:0 Context: 104436
Can you please give me an advise, what I have done wrong?



Comment by: Jan Karel Pieterse (1/30/2018 5:14:39 PM)

Hi Volker,

In the Access Demo's startup form there is a "How do I?" button which displays important information on how to implement the treeview in Access.


Comment by: shinzi asano form japan (2/18/2018 2:25:43 AM)

Nice to meet you
About shown Treeviev
I thank for precious information.

About contents, there might be a better method particularly, but succeeded in hierarchy indication when I did it as follows.
I inform it until a report.

Will you come better than machine translation?

Dim cNode(3) As clsNode '(a): maxLevel
Set cNode(1) = cRoot.AddChild(cRoot.Key & "A", "NodeA")
 Set cNode(2) = cNode(1).AddChild(cRoot.Key & "_1", "nodeA_1")
Set cNode(3) = cNode(2).AddChild(cRoot.Key & "_1.1", "nodeA_1.1")
     cNode(3).AddChild cRoot.Key & "_1.1.1", "nodeA_1.1.1"
     cNode(3).AddChild cRoot.Key & "_1.1.2", "nodeA_1.1.2"

Set cNode(2) = cNode(1).AddChild(cRoot.Key & "_2", "nodeA_2")
     cNode(2).AddChild cRoot.Key & "_2.1", "nodeA_2.1"

Set cNode(1) = cRoot.AddChild(cRoot.Key & "B", "NodeB")
Set cExtraNode = cNode(1).AddChild(cRoot.Key & "_3", "nodeB_1")
     cExtraNode.AddChild cRoot.Key & "_3.1", "NodeB_1.1"


Comment by: Peter Thornton (2/18/2018 10:43:30 AM)

Hello Shinzi,

One of the objectives of the simple demo is to illustrate it is not necessary to add nodes in sequential order, several approaches are possible. One of the 'pro' Treeview version demos illustrates an approach that works with an array cNode(0-9), one for each level, like your example.

In passing note your declaration cNode(3) is actually cNode(0 to 3).


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