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Precedents and Dependents

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Sometimes, in worksheets containing lots of formulas, it becomes difficult to identify which cell values or ranges are taken into consideration while doing calculations or how the result is calculated. Also, which cells are impacted if a cell value is modified. Hence, comes the need for precedent and dependent cells or ranges. GcExcel library provides GetPrecedents and GetDependents methods in the IRange interface, which help in identifying the precedent and dependent cells or ranges in excel worksheets.

**Precedents**: Cells or ranges which are referred to, by the formulas in other cells**Dependents**: Cells or ranges which contain formulas that refer to other cells

For example, the value in cell A1 =10, A2 = 20 and B1 = Sum (A1+A2), then A1 and A2 are the precedent cells of B1 which are used for calculating the value of B1. Also, B1 is the dependent cell for A1 and A2 whose value is calculated based on values of cell A1 and A2.

Refer to the following example code to get the Precedent ranges in a worksheet.

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public void GetPrecedents() { // Initialize workbook Workbook workbook = new Workbook(); // Fetch default worksheet IWorksheet worksheet = workbook.Worksheets[0]; // Set Formula in Cell E2 worksheet.Range["E2"].Formula = "=sum(A1:A2, B4,C1:C3)"; // Set Value of Cells worksheet.Range["A1"].Value = 1; worksheet.Range["A2"].Value = 2; worksheet.Range["B4"].Value = 3; worksheet.Range["C1"].Value = 4; worksheet.Range["C2"].Value = 5; worksheet.Range["C3"].Value = 6; // Get Precedent cells of Range E2 foreach (var item in worksheet.Range["E2"].GetPrecedents()) { item.Interior.Color = Color.Pink; } // Saving workbook to Xlsx workbook.Save(@"Precedents.xlsx", SaveFileFormat.Xlsx); } |

The below image shows the precedent ranges (highlighted in pink).

Refer to the following example code to get dependent ranges in a worksheet.

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public void GetDependents() { // Initialize workbook Workbook workbook = new Workbook(); // Fetch default worksheet IWorksheet worksheet = workbook.Worksheets[0]; // Set Value of Cell A1 worksheet.Range["A1"].Value = 100; // Set Formula in Cell C1 worksheet.Range["C1"].Formula = "=$A$1"; // Set Formula in Range E1:E5 worksheet.Range["E1:E5"].Formula = "=$A$1"; // Get Dependent cells of Range A1 foreach (var item in worksheet.Range["A1"].GetDependents()) { item.Interior.Color = Color.LightGreen; } // Saving workbook to Xlsx workbook.Save(@"Dependents.xlsx", SaveFileFormat.Xlsx); } |

The below image shows the dependent ranges (highlighted in green).

Often multiple precedent ranges are used to calculate cell formula. Refer to the following example code to get all the precedent ranges in a worksheet.

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public void GetAllPrecedents() { // Initialize workbook Workbook workbook = new Workbook(); // Fetch default worksheet IWorksheet worksheet = workbook.Worksheets[0]; // Set Formula in Cell E2 worksheet.Range["E2"].Formula = "=sum(C1:C2)"; // Set Formula in Cell C1 worksheet.Range["C1"].Formula = "=B1"; // Set Formula in Cell B1 worksheet.Range["B1"].Formula = "=sum(A1:A2)"; // Set Value of Cells worksheet.Range["A1"].Value = 1; worksheet.Range["A2"].Value = 2; worksheet.Range["C2"].Value = 3; // Get Precedent cells of Range E2 List<IRange> list = new List<IRange>(); foreach (var item in worksheet.Range["E2"].GetPrecedents()) { list.Add(item); } while (list.Count > 0) { var temp = list; list = new List<IRange>(); foreach (var item in temp) { for (int i = 0; i < item.RowCount; i++) { for (int j = 0; j < item.ColumnCount; j++) { var dependents = item.Cells[i, j].GetPrecedents(); if (dependents.Count == 0) { item.Cells[i, j].Interior.Color = Color.SkyBlue; } else { item.Cells[i, j].Interior.Color = Color.LightGreen; list.AddRange(dependents); } } } } } // Saving workbook to Xlsx workbook.Save(@"GetAllPrecedents.xlsx", SaveFileFormat.Xlsx); } |

The below image shows all the precedent ranges (highlighted in blue and green).