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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' SysWOW32 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:

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, 13 March 2015, downloaded 13906 times)

Download the treeview sample Word document (build 026, 13 March 2015, downloaded 3613 times)

Download the treeview sample Access database (build 025, 16 Oct 2013, downloaded 11663 times)



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.


Showing last 8 comments of 367 in total (Show All Comments):


Comment by: Chris (6/19/2015 7:20:08 AM)

Hi Peter,
Just confirming its only happening in Access 2000. It's a strange one but it can be replicated using your demo access project under Access 2000 easily. It would be great to know what the problem is but I can understand if you can't lay your hands on a copy off Access 2000 anymore!

I've also just emailed you privately regarding getting updates from you on the listview alternative when there is an update :)

Thanks for all your responses and indeed getting back to me your great work is appreciated!!


Comment by: Andrew Glasgow (6/22/2015 4:43:32 PM)

How can I download the treeview control. There's no link associated with "Download". Do I have to donate first?


Comment by: Jan Karel Pieterse (6/22/2015 5:01:36 PM)

Hi Andrew,

"Download" is just a header, the download links are below that heading. There are three of them:
One for Excel, one for Word and one for Access.


Comment by: Eliton Elias (6/23/2015 7:21:27 PM)

I'm struggling to create a macro to populate the treeview with data from the spreadsheet.
Thanks in advance


Comment by: Peter Thornton (6/24/2015 6:09:39 PM)

Hi Eliton,
Without knowing anything about how your data is arranged it's hard to suggest a macro. There are several approaches.


Comment by: Niels de Nies (6/29/2015 1:44:44 PM)

Jan Karel,
Ik heb -als prototype- in Access een database gebouwd waarmee een product breakdown van een te ontwerpen installatie gemaakt kan worden. Jullie Treeview werkt daarin prachtig.
Nu wordt mij gevraagd het prototype op te schalen naar SQL. Ik zou Access kunnen handhaven als client, maar mijn klant heeft dat liever niet.

Mijn vraag is: kan jullie Treeview ook in een VB omgeving draaien. De code zelf lijkt me niet zo'n probleem, maar ik zou zelf niet weten hoe ik met het ufTreeview scherm uit de voeten moet. Kan je me adviseren?

Vriendelijke groet, Niels de Nies


Comment by: Jan Karel Pieterse (6/29/2015 2:43:18 PM)

Hallo Niels,

VB heeft een eigen treeview die je kunt gebruiken voor zover ik weet. Ik neem overigens aan VB.NET?


Comment by: Niels de Nies (6/29/2015 3:14:24 PM)

Klopt: VB.NET.
Ik had er nog niet naar gezocht. Op is het zich prettig dat er een treeview in VB.NET is, maar ik ben erg tevreden met jullie Treeview. Die ken ik nu en doet alles waar de gebruiker behoefte aan heeft.

Maar goed, ik snap dat het niet opportuun is om naast de standaard van .NET nog een andere treeview te gaan maken.

Dank je wel. En nogmaals, voor Access is die van jullie TOP.


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