Master.GetFormulas method (Visio)

Returns the formulas of many cells.


expression. GetFormulas( _SID_SRCStream()_ , _formulaArray()_ )

expression A variable that represents a Master object.


Name Required/Optional Data type Description
SID_SRCStream() Required Integer A stream that identifies cells to be queried.
formulaArray() Required Variant Out parameter. An array that receives formulas of queried cells.

Return value



The GetFormulas method is like the Formula property of a Cell object, except you can use it to obtain the formulas of many cells at once rather than one cell at a time. The GetFormulas method is a specialization of the GetResults method, which can be used to obtain cell formulas or results. Setting up a call to the GetFormulas method involves slightly less work than setting up the GetResults method.

For Master objects, you can use the GetFormulas method to get formulas of any set of cells in any set of shapes of the page or master.

SID_SRCStream() is an array of 2-byte integers. For Master objects, SID_SRCStream() should be a one-dimensional array of 4 n 2-byte integers for n >= 1. The GetFormulas method interprets SID_SRCStream() as:

{sheetID, sectionIdx, rowIdx, cellIdx}n

where sheetID is the ID property of the Shape object on the page or master whose cell formula is desired.


If the sheetID in an entry is visInvalShapeID (-1) or if the bottom byte of sectionIdx is visSectionInval (255), the entry will be ignored and an empty variant will be returned in the corresponding results array entry. This is because the same SID_SRCStream() array can be used on several calls to GetFormulas, SetFormulas, and similar methods with the caller only needing to make minor changes to the stream between calls.

If the GetFormulas method succeeds, formulaArray() returns a one-dimensional array of n variants indexed from 0 to n - 1. Each variant returns a formula as a string. formulaArray() is an out parameter that is allocated by the GetFormulas method, which passes ownership back to the caller. The caller should eventually perform the SafeArrayDestroy procedure on the returned array. Note that the SafeArrayDestroy procedure has the side effect of clearing the variants referenced by the array's entries, hence deallocating any strings the GetFormulas method returns. (Microsoft Visual Basic and Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) take care of this for you.) The GetFormulas method fails if formulaArray() is Null.


Beginning with Microsoft Visio 2000, you can use both local and universal names to refer to Visio shapes, masters, documents, pages, rows, add-ons, cells, hyperlinks, styles, fonts, master shortcuts, UI objects, and layers. When a user names a shape, for example, the user is specifying a local name. Beginning with Microsoft Office Visio 2003, the ShapeSheet spreadsheet displays only universal names in cell formulas and values. (In prior versions, universal names were not visible in the user interface.)

As a developer, you can use universal names in a program when you don't want to change a name each time a solution is localized. Use the GetFormulas method to get more than one formula when you are using local syntax. Use the GetFormulasU method to get more than one formula when you are using universal syntax.


The following VBA macro shows how to use the GetFormulas method. It assumes that there is an active Microsoft Visio page that has at least three shapes on it. It uses GetFormulas to get the width of shape 1, the height of shape 2, and the angle of shape 3.

This example uses the GetFormulas method of the Page object to get three cell formulas. The input array has four slots for each cell, as it also would for Master objects. For Shape or Style objects, only three slots would be needed for each cell (section, row, and cell).

Public Sub GetFormulas_Example() 
 On Error GoTo HandleError 
 Dim aintSheetSectionRowColumn(1 To (3 * 4)) As Integer 
 aintSheetSectionRowColumn(1) = ActivePage.Shapes(1).ID 
 aintSheetSectionRowColumn(2) = visSectionObject 
 aintSheetSectionRowColumn(3) = visRowXFormOut 
 aintSheetSectionRowColumn(4) = visXFormWidth 
 aintSheetSectionRowColumn(5) = ActivePage.Shapes(2).ID 
 aintSheetSectionRowColumn(6) = visSectionObject 
 aintSheetSectionRowColumn(7) = visRowXFormOut 
 aintSheetSectionRowColumn(8) = visXFormHeight 
 aintSheetSectionRowColumn(9) = ActivePage.Shapes(3).ID 
 aintSheetSectionRowColumn(10) = visSectionObject 
 aintSheetSectionRowColumn(11) = visRowXFormOut 
 aintSheetSectionRowColumn(12) = visXFormAngle 
 'Return the formulas of the cells. 
 Dim avarFormulaArray() As Variant 
 ActivePage.GetFormulas aintSheetSectionRowColumn, avarFormulaArray 
 Debug.Print "Shape 1 width is "; avarFormulaArray(0) 
 Debug.Print "Shape 2 height is "; avarFormulaArray(1) 
 Debug.Print "Shape 3 angle is "; avarFormulaArray(2) 
Exit Sub 
 MsgBox "Error" 
Exit Sub 
End Sub

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