How to Run Excel Macros in a Mac iWork

By Ruby Neusom

If you use spreadsheets a lot, you've probably used a mini-program to automate functions in your spreadsheet. These custom macros (or scripts) are frequently programmed into Microsoft Excel spreadsheets, as they can handle complex calculations that simple spreadsheet formulas can't. Macros are written in a programming language called Visual Basic for Applications (VBA). Unfortunately, Apple's spreadsheet application, Numbers, can't read macros that are written in VBA. If you have Apple's iWork 09, however, there are a few options you can try if you still want to use macros in your spreadsheets.

Step 1

Use AppleScript to create your spreadsheet macros. This is the built-in Mac OS X scripting language. All iWork '09 applications, including Numbers, support the use of AppleScript.

Step 2

Switch to using the previous version of Excel for Mac. Excel 2004 supports the use of VBA macros.

Step 3

Convert your Numbers '09 spreadsheet to a Windows Excel spreadsheet format. Open your Numbers spreadsheet, and click "File," then "Save As." Select "Save copy as," and choose Excel Document from the pop-up menu. You can now apply macros to the spreadsheet by opening the spreadsheet with a Windows version of Excel.