USING IRONWORD

How To Manipulate A Word document Using C#

Updated December 24, 2023
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Introduction

Microsoft created Word to serve as a word processor. Initially available under the name Multi-Tool Word for Xenix systems, it was introduced on October 25, 1983. Subsequent versions were developed for a wide range of operating systems, such as SCO Unix (1990), Microsoft Windows (1989), Atari ST (1988), OS/2 (1989), AT&T UNIX PC (1985), IBM PCs running DOS (1983), Apple Macintosh running the Classic macOS (1985), macOS (2001), Web browsers (2010), iOS (2014), and Android (2015). Wine can be used to run older versions of Microsoft Word on Linux.

Commercial Word versions can be licensed as a stand-alone application or as a component of Microsoft 365, which can be purchased as a perpetual license or as part of a Microsoft 365 subscription. In this article, we will manipulate Word documents using C# with the help of Microsoft Interop assemblies and explore how IronXL helps us to Edit Excel documents.

How To Manipulate Word document using C#

  1. Make a brand-new Visual Studio project undertaking.
  2. Set up the necessary library to read Word documents.
  3. To Manipulate a Word document, load an existing file or create a new file.
  4. Edit the document data and parse the file.
  5. Get rid of all object that was created.

What is Microsoft Interop

Programs written in C# or VB.NET can create or open Word documents (DOC, DOCX, and RTF) with Office Interoperability for Microsoft Word. However, it has a lot of drawbacks when used in projects.

We will discuss frequent issues that you may run across when using Microsoft Office Interop (Word Automation) from C# or VB.NET in this article.

For example:

  • Every client PC required for word automation needs to be licensed for Microsoft Word.
  • On every client's PC, the same version of Microsoft Word must be installed.
  • Word uses a few megabytes of RAM to load different files and DLLs in the background when automation is utilized.
  • Microsoft Word API is accessed via a COM object. Issues may arise when calling a COM object from managed code, such as type conversions, requiring a COM wrapper, and poor .NET Framework integration.

Creating a New Project in Visual Studio

It is necessary to launch Visual Studio and create a .NET project before using the Interop library. Visual Studio is compatible with any version, though the most recent is advised. Depending on your needs, you can either develop a project template or an application that resembles Windows Forms. I'll be using the Console Application in this case for simplicity's sake.

How To Manipulate A Word document Using C#: Figure 1 - Creating a New Visual Studio Project

Configure Project Details

Next, provide the location and name of the project.

How To Manipulate A Word document Using C#: Figure 2 - Configuring the New VS Project

Create a New Project File using the .NET Framework

Using the Framework drop-down menu, you can choose a .NET Framework. The Dot.NET Framework 4.7 will be utilized for this project. The next action is to press the "Create" button.

After the application has generated the solution, you may input the code and build or run the program by accessing the Program.cs file.

How To Manipulate A Word document Using C#: Figure 3 - New .NET Project .cs file

Now that the Microsoft.Office.Interop.Word library has been added, we can test the code.

Install Interop Library

The next repair requires installing the Interop library. Enter the following command in the NuGet Package Manager Console to accomplish this:

:InstallCmd: Install-Package Microsoft.Office.Interop.Word

How To Manipulate A Word document Using C#: Figure 4 - For installing the IronXL library, you can use the Package Manager Console and enter the given command: Install-Package IronXL.Excel

Another way to find the package "Interop" is to use the NuGet Package Manager. Among all the NuGet packages related to Interop, we may select the required package to download from this list.

How To Manipulate A Word document Using C#: Figure 5 - Selecting `Microsoft.Office.Interop.Word` Library

Once you have installed all the necessary libraries, you can then start to edit DOCX files.

Manipulate Existing Word Documents using Interop

To use Microsoft Word, you must first create an instance of Microsoft.Office.Interop.Word.Application. The communication of Word documents would take place in this instance. The next step is to create a new Word document instance using the Documents property of Microsoft.Office.Interop.Word.Application instance we just created. As seen in the C# code excerpt below, this allows us to manipulate Word documents, programmatically

using System;
using System.Data;
using Microsoft.Office.Interop.Word;
try
{
    var WordApp = new Microsoft.Office.Interop.Word.Application();
    var WordDoc = WordApp.Documents.Open(@"d:/Demo.docx");
    WordDoc.Paragraphs [1].Range.Text = "New text here...";
    WordDoc.SaveAs(@"d:/NewDemo.docx");
    WordDoc.Close();
    WordApp.Quit();
}
catch (Exception ex)
{
    Console.WriteLine(ex.ToString());
}
using System;
using System.Data;
using Microsoft.Office.Interop.Word;
try
{
    var WordApp = new Microsoft.Office.Interop.Word.Application();
    var WordDoc = WordApp.Documents.Open(@"d:/Demo.docx");
    WordDoc.Paragraphs [1].Range.Text = "New text here...";
    WordDoc.SaveAs(@"d:/NewDemo.docx");
    WordDoc.Close();
    WordApp.Quit();
}
catch (Exception ex)
{
    Console.WriteLine(ex.ToString());
}
Imports System
Imports System.Data
Imports Microsoft.Office.Interop.Word
Try
	Dim WordApp = New Microsoft.Office.Interop.Word.Application()
	Dim WordDoc = WordApp.Documents.Open("d:/Demo.docx")
	WordDoc.Paragraphs (1).Range.Text = "New text here..."
	WordDoc.SaveAs("d:/NewDemo.docx")
	WordDoc.Close()
	WordApp.Quit()
Catch ex As Exception
	Console.WriteLine(ex.ToString())
End Try
VB   C#

In the above code, we are able to edit the Word document in C#. First, We're creating an item object for the word processor that Interop uses. With the help of the created object which has an open method allows us to pass the existing Word file name. It helps us to convert the file to a document object.

By using the document object we can get all the processes available related to the existing Word document. Then using the paragraphs object we get all the content available in the DOCX files. Using the array we can replace the text of each paragraph with the specific paragraphs by passing them in the array. Then, we can save them into new MS Word documents as a DOCX file. We can also create Word documents by using Interop.

IronXL Library Alternative to Interop

IronXL is an alternative to Microsoft Interop that may be used in .NET programs to handle Excel files. While Microsoft Interop requires interacting with Excel through the Interop assemblies, IronXL offers a more straightforward, effective, and powerful method for programmatically manipulating Excel files in .NET contexts.

Utilizing IronXL instead of Microsoft Interop has several benefits, such as:

  • Performance and Resource Efficiency: Compared to Microsoft Interop, which depends on the Excel application being installed on the computer, IronXL performs better and uses fewer resources because it is not dependent on the Excel application.
  • Ease of Use and Simplicity: IronXL provides an easier-to-use API that simplifies the reading, writing, and manipulating of Excel files without the complications that come with Microsoft Interop.
  • Compatibility and Dependency: IronXL eliminates dependencies and compatibility problems that may occur with various versions of Excel or Office by not requiring the installation of Microsoft Excel on the computer.
  • Platform Independence: Unlike Microsoft Interop, which may be more closely associated with particular Microsoft Office versions, IronXL offers greater flexibility and ease of deployment across various environments and platforms.

For .NET developers who must operate with Excel files programmatically, IronXL is frequently a better option because of its ease of use, speed, and decreased reliance on third-party software installations. The decision between IronXL and Microsoft Interop, however, could be influenced by the particulars of the project, the infrastructure that already exists, and the user's level of expertise with each library.

When deciding between these options, always keep your application's requirements in mind. Check visit this link to learn more about the IronXL library.

Installing IronXL Library

Since the IronXL library is needed for the upcoming patch, install it. To finish this, open the NuGet Package Manager Console and type the following command:

Install-Package IronWord

How To Manipulate A Word document Using C#: Figure 6 - Installing IronXL using the console command

Searching for the package "IronXL" via the NuGet Package Manager is an additional choice. From this list of every NuGet package linked to IronXL, we can select the one we need to download.

How To Manipulate A Word document Using C#: Figure 7 - Installing the `IronXL.Excel` Package through Browsing

Editing Excel Documents using IronXL

Data can be exported to the.XLSX or.XLS formats with just a few lines of code. The following example of source code shows how data can be exported from an Excel file into a simple tabular table format:

var workbook = IronXL.WorkBook.LoadExcel("Demo file.xlsx");
WorkSheet ws = workbook.GetWorkSheet("Sheet1");
string address_val = ws ["A1"].ToString();
console.writeline(address_val);
ws ["A2"].Value = "Hello World";
workbook.SaveAs("export.xlsx");
//or
workbook.SaveAs("export.xls");
//or
workbook.WorkSheets [0].SaveAs("export.xls");
var workbook = IronXL.WorkBook.LoadExcel("Demo file.xlsx");
WorkSheet ws = workbook.GetWorkSheet("Sheet1");
string address_val = ws ["A1"].ToString();
console.writeline(address_val);
ws ["A2"].Value = "Hello World";
workbook.SaveAs("export.xlsx");
//or
workbook.SaveAs("export.xls");
//or
workbook.WorkSheets [0].SaveAs("export.xls");
Dim workbook = IronXL.WorkBook.LoadExcel("Demo file.xlsx")
Dim ws As WorkSheet = workbook.GetWorkSheet("Sheet1")
Dim address_val As String = ws ("A1").ToString()
console.writeline(address_val)
ws ("A2").Value = "Hello World"
workbook.SaveAs("export.xlsx")
'or
workbook.SaveAs("export.xls")
'or
workbook.WorkSheets (0).SaveAs("export.xls")
VB   C#

The previous example loads an Excel file that already exists by calling the LoadExcel function, which takes an argument for the file path and name. Importing the file into the Workbook object is now complete. The Excel worksheets are then loaded with the help of GetWorkSheet, which allows us to load the worksheet using the sheet name. The Excel address was then used to read the value. To know more about reading Excel files click here.

We can alter the Excel sheet's values by utilizing the same Excel URL. The Excel document can be saved as an XLSX or XLS file by utilizing the SaveAs function that is offered by the 'Workbook' object. Using this process, the entire file is saved in the chosen format.

How To Manipulate A Word document Using C#: Figure 8 - Console Output

Additionally, we can choose a certain Excel worksheet by utilizing its index value or by referring to it by name. Next, we may export the data from the Excel spreadsheet to a different file by using the SaveAs option. Click this link to find out more about formatting and exporting Excel files.

Conclusion

One of the most popular add-ons for Excel is IronXL. It doesn't rely on any additional external libraries. It is not necessary to install Microsoft Excel because it is self-contained. It operates via a multitude of channels. This contrasts with the Interop library which has to parse the file using extra libraries to edit Word documents.

A complete solution for any programming process utilizing Microsoft Excel documents is IronXL. Calculations, sorting strings or numbers, pruning, adding, finding and replacing, merging and unmerging, and file storage are just a few of the many available operations. Not only can spreadsheet data be validated, but you can also construct new forms of cell data. It facilitates reading and writing files as well as handling Excel data.

When IronXL was first released, it cost $599. Alternatively, customers can opt to pay a one-year subscription fee to receive software updates and support. For a charge, IronXL provides security against unauthorized redistribution. Go to the IronXL licensing page. To know more about Iron Software products check here.

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