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  1. #1
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    Password Protect Excel 2000 (Excel 2000)

    One of my colleagues has developed a spreadsheet with macros written in VB and others recorded to perform some quite complex analysis. <img src=/S/dizzy.gif border=0 alt=dizzy width=15 height=15>

    He has password protected the workbook but the file needs to be sent out on a CD ROM and saved onto another network. This results in the password protection being lost thus allowing anybody, even unwittingly, to mess it up. <img src=/S/disappointed.gif border=0 alt=disappointed width=15 height=15> Is there anyway around this?

    The only idea around this so far is to have the new users save the file as a template, so if they make a pig's ear of it, they can start again.

    If this is the solution, is it possible to get the CD ROM to place the file in their template folder without the normal Excel user easily redirecting the file when they copy it from the CD.

  2. #2
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    Re: Password Protect Excel 2000 (Excel 2000)

    AFAIK copying the file to a CD would not change the password protection in any way.

    Excel has a number of passwords that can be set:

    - password protected worksheet(s)
    - password protected Workbook
    - File open password
    - File modify password
    - password to unhide/edit the VBA code

    Which is the one you're afraid of loosing?
    Jan Karel Pieterse
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  3. #3
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    Re: Password Protect Excel 2000 (Excel 2000)

    File system passwords are dependent on the file system understanding the password mechanism used by the originating file system. Has nothing to do with Excel.

    Excel VBA does allow one to password protect a project, but unethical peopke will purchase, or already have, password crackers. How good are the crackers? I dunno.

    Another alternative is to create a COM addin using either Office 2000 Developer or Office XP Developer, as the compiled DLLs are fairly secure.

  4. #4
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    Re: Password Protect Excel 2000 (Excel 2000)

    The password crackers for WB and WS protection work all too well. The File, Open password protection available in Excel is more robust, and I think only expensive commercial Crackers work on the VBE protection.
    -John ... I float in liquid gardens
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    Re: Password Protect Excel 2000 (Excel 2000)

    Password to modify. If the Excel workbook is copied from the CD to a pc, the password to modify disappears. It seems to perform a Save As type function. <img src=/S/confused.gif border=0 alt=confused width=15 height=20>

    If he ZIPs the file and then extracts it from the CD to the pc the password to modify remains. <img src=/S/confused.gif border=0 alt=confused width=15 height=20> . Send out a CD with the file as a self extracting ZIP? But I think we need to understand what is going on.

    What he doesn't want to happen is someone to be able to overwrite the original Master file, so to speak. The users of the workbook will have very little Excel experience. They will just fill in the information, press a few buttons the macros etc will generate the analysis and a report.

  6. #6
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    Re: Password Protect Excel 2000 (Excel 2000)

    Obviously it is the method that is being used to put the file on CD that is the culprit. I'd suggest :

    - save the file as usual (passwords in place and all).
    - Then close Excel
    - open Windows Explorer (or your CD burning program)
    - copy the file to CD or first ZIP it (recommended) and then copy it
    Jan Karel Pieterse
    Microsoft Excel MVP, WMVP
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    Professional Office Developers Association

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    Re: Password Protect Excel 2000 (Excel 2000)

    I have passed this information on and this seems to be the solution.

    Thanks to everyone for their help.

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    Re: Password Protect Excel 2000 (Excel 2000)

    What are "WB" and "WS"?

    The VBE crackers are not that expensive, but I do not know how well they work.
    Heck, if somebody wants to rip-off code, spending even a few hundred dollars for a cracker just ain't much compared to the cost of writin t ecode.

    In VS .NET, there is no way to protect managed code.
    You have to obfuscate, but all that does is make it more expensive for someone to figure out the code.

  9. #9
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    Re: Password Protect Excel 2000 (Excel 2000)

    WB = Workbook, WS = Worksheet. Excel has built in protection for Open, Workbook, Worksheet and VBE. Oops, and as Jan Karel noted, Modify.
    -John ... I float in liquid gardens
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  10. #10
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    Re: Password Protect Excel 2000 (Excel 2000)

    WB is shortcut for Workbook.
    WS is shortcut for Worksheet.
    In John's context they are the standard "protection" available from tools - protection (protect sheet / protect workbook)

    Steve

  11. #11
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    Re: Password Protect Excel 2000 (Excel 2000)

    Password crackers for Excel VBA work very well and pretty much instataneously.
    Drag an Excel file (containing a password protected project) from Explorer into the 'uncrack' box and you will get a password to unlock the project.
    Also, from what I have seen the actual password used for protection is not necessarily unique, i.e. a password given to unlock may actually be different to what was used to protect it.

    zeddy

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