VBA for Beginners – Chapter 42 : API Calls

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VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) is a powerful programming language used in Microsoft Office products to automate repetitive tasks, create custom functions and add new features. An API (Application Programming Interface) is a set of rules and protocols for accessing a web-based software application or web tool. VBA can be used to make API calls, which allow you to retrieve data from a web-based application and use it in your Excel spreadsheet.

As a beginner, the concept of making API calls may seem overwhelming, but with a little guidance, you can easily start making API calls in VBA. In this article, we will focus on the basics of making API calls in VBA, specifically in Microsoft Excel.

To make an API call in VBA, you need to send a request to the API and retrieve the response. This request and response are typically in the form of a URL and data. To send the request, you can use the VBA function called “WinHttp.WinHttpRequest.5.1”, which allows you to send HTTP requests and retrieve the response.

The response from the API is typically in the form of data, which can be in different formats such as JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) or XML (Extensible Markup Language). Once you have received the response, you need to parse it to extract the data you want to use. In VBA, you can use the JSONConverter library to convert the data from JSON to a VBA object that you can easily manipulate.

When making API calls in VBA, it is important to be aware of the rate limits imposed by the API provider. A rate limit is a restriction on the number of API requests you can make within a specific time period. This is in place to prevent overloading of the API server and to ensure that the service remains available to all users. To avoid exceeding the rate limit, you can add a delay between API requests in your VBA code.

Another important factor to consider when making API calls in VBA is security. You should never send sensitive information such as passwords or credit card numbers in your API requests. Additionally, you should always use secure connections (HTTPS) when making API calls to ensure that the data being transmitted is encrypted and protected from eavesdropping.

In conclusion, making API calls in VBA can be a powerful tool for retrieving data from web-based applications and using it in your Excel spreadsheet. By following the basics of sending a request, parsing the response, being aware of rate limits, and ensuring security, you can start making API calls in VBA with ease.


VBA for Beginners – Chapter 42 : API Calls


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