QlikView macro’s are bad!

By Barry Harmsen

Last Thursday I did a presentation at the Qlik Dev Group NL about QlikView macro’s. While the title Macro’s are bad! suggests that I have a very firm view on macro’s, of course the actual presentation is much more nuanced. I wouldn’t be talking about macro’s if I didn’t think they have their uses ๐Ÿ˜‰

In my presentation, I identify some potential use cases for macro’s and discuss if these are a good idea. Next, I share some tips on developing and debugging your macro’s. There are a lot of myths around macro’s, so I have taken a look at which ones are actually true. The presentation concludes with an overview of some of the cool macro’s that are already out there.

You can find my slide deck below:

The examples that I used in my presentation can be downloaded using the link below:

Download the macro examples

I hope you will enjoy these slides. If you have any questions or, also interesting, a different opinion, then feel free to post to the comments section below.

About The Author

Barry Harmsen

Hi there, I'm Barry and I'm a Business Intelligence Consultant at Bitmetric and based in the Netherlands. Originally from a background of 'traditional' Data Warehousing, Business Intelligence and Performance Management, for the past 10 years I have been specializing in Qlik and a more user-centric form of BI. I have done numerous QlikView and Qlik Sense implementations in many different roles and industries. In 2012 I co-authored the book QlikView 11 for Developers. You can follow me on Twitter at @meneerharmsen.


  • 1
    Donnie Clark
    November 2, 2015 - 15:44 | Permalink

    Good stuff as always Barry. I myself largely use them to automate design-time tasks across my qvws. Works very well to ensure consistency and saves a ton of time.

    One critique. No apostrophe in plural form of macro.

    • 2
      November 2, 2015 - 21:20 | Permalink

      Hi Donnie,

      Good to hear that you like the presentation. If the apostrophe is the worst critique then I can certainly live with that ๐Ÿ˜‰ Will not make that mistake again.

      Kind regards,

  • 3
    November 5, 2015 - 21:35 | Permalink

    So, Pac-man wasn’t a good extension?

    • 4
      November 5, 2015 - 23:08 | Permalink

      Pacman was a brilliant macro! Just not for deploying to your end-users, save it for the developers ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • 5
    Donnie Clark
    November 6, 2015 - 15:27 | Permalink

    In regards to the IDE for writing VBScript for Qlikview, I actually use VBA in Microsoft Excel to do my development.

    It’s free so long as you have office, gives you breakpoints and debugging tools and as long as you add the Qlikview reference in VBA, you’ll get intellisense and object browser capabilities also.

    • 6
      November 8, 2015 - 21:35 | Permalink

      Hi Donnie,

      Yes, VBA in Excel is also a perfectly fine alternative. Another one would be Visual Studio, though that is not free. I just happen to like VbsEdit and thought I’d give them a plug ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Kind regards,

  • 7
    November 8, 2015 - 20:08 | Permalink

    Do you have a link for TurboQlik? I can’t seem to find it.

    • 8
      November 8, 2015 - 21:33 | Permalink

      Hi Brian,

      TurboQlik is currently not publicly available. It’s an internal tool at my company and there are currently no plans for releasing it.

      Kind regards,

  • 9
    November 11, 2015 - 16:21 | Permalink

    Icy a winner!
    Didn’t you forget to mention the API Guide?

  • 11
    Andrew McIlwrick
    November 15, 2015 - 19:45 | Permalink

    Hi Barry – an excellent deck ! You mention never use Dynamic Updates – can you please explain why ? I am aware of technical limitations such as being n/a on clusters, but would welcome any additional reasons ? Thanks.

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