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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 29,406 times)

Download the treeview sample Word document (build 026, 15 Oct 2015, downloaded 9,070 times)

Download the treeview sample Access database (build 025, 16 Oct 2013, downloaded 23,834 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 582 in total (Show All Comments):


Comment by: Jan Karel Pieterse (3/13/2018 2:11:00 PM)

Hi Kerry,

After adding a node, set its expanded property to the value you need, E.g.:
cRoot.Expanded = False

will show just the rootnode, collapsed.


Comment by: Zoltan (3/23/2018 2:27:46 PM)

Is there any posibility to check if a Node already exists before to add it to the tree? Somtimes I have to update some values of a node and not to add it again.


Comment by: Jan Karel Pieterse (3/23/2018 3:02:41 PM)

Hi Zoltan,

You can traverse through the nodes already there using:

For Each cNode In mcTree.Nodes
    'Check for cNode.Caption or cNode.Key


Comment by: Woo (4/10/2018 1:06:52 PM)


I download "treeview sample Access database" file.
And I insert following code into on Load event of "frmDemo" form like this.

Private Sub Form_Load()

    '=========== Original Code ===========
    AppName = GCSAPPNAME

    '=========== Inserted Code ===========    

    If Not mcTree Is Nothing Then
    End If

End Sub

Problem is..
I can't move between nodes when mainform load event finished.
"Me.subTreeView.SetFocus" code doesn't seem to be working.

I wanna move between nodes when mainform load event finished.

How can I work around this..?

Sorry for my poor english.


Comment by: Peter Thornton (4/10/2018 5:10:15 PM)

Hello Woo,
It's not clear if you say you've removed all the code in the Load event, I hope not!

If I follow you want to show the treeview in the form's load event, and SetFocus to the treeview so you can immediately start navigating between nodes with the arrow keys, or Tab out or F2 Edit, without first clicking the treeview with the mouse(?)

When the Load event fires the subForm's window doesn't yet exist, so SetFocus doesn't work.

In Excel the Activate fires after the form has fully loaded, but not it seems in Access. Try adding a timer, something like this -

Load event
' Me.subTreeView.SetFocus
     Me.TimerInterval = 500 ' milliseconds

Private Sub Form_Timer()
    Me.TimerInterval = 0 ' cancel the timer
End Sub

In the subFrom change Sub moSubControl_Enter from Private to Public

Maybe Access experts can suggest a better way, we are Excel guys!


Comment by: Woo (4/11/2018 2:23:52 AM)

Hello Peter.

I executed your solution. It works well.
Thank you for your help and explanation.

As you said, It seems that there is no form_load_finished event in access.

Additionally, I find another imperfect solution.

--- another workaround ---

1. Main form(form load event)
Insert following code at the end of the original code

2. Main form: Add textbox(with tab index = 0, tab stop = true)

3. in added textbox(got focus event)
Insert following code.
SendKeys "{TAB}"

Have a good day, Peter.


Comment by: Yuan Yao (5/15/2018 8:59:46 PM)

Hi Peter, this is absolutely a masterpiece to me! Thanks for all the work!

A quick question, how do i dump only the data I checked/ticked?


Comment by: Peter Thornton (5/16/2018 10:07:38 AM)

Thank you Yuan Yao, but note of course Jan Karel is also co-author

In the demo form, adapt Sub GetData1 or GetData2 like with something this

    If cParent.Checked = -1 Then
        lCt = lCt + 1
        rng(lCt, lLevel) = cParent.Caption
    End If


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