DocX VS ExcelDna

Compare DocX vs ExcelDna and see what are their differences.


Fast and easy to use .NET library that creates or modifies Microsoft Word files without installing Word. (by xceedsoftware)


Excel-DNA - Free and easy .NET for Excel. This repository contains the core Excel-DNA library. (by Excel-DNA)
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DocX ExcelDna
7 11
1,669 1,200
- 0.8%
6.2 8.7
about 1 month ago 8 days ago
C# C#
GNU General Public License v3.0 or later zlib License
The number of mentions indicates the total number of mentions that we've tracked plus the number of user suggested alternatives.
Stars - the number of stars that a project has on GitHub. Growth - month over month growth in stars.
Activity is a relative number indicating how actively a project is being developed. Recent commits have higher weight than older ones.
For example, an activity of 9.0 indicates that a project is amongst the top 10% of the most actively developed projects that we are tracking.


Posts with mentions or reviews of DocX. We have used some of these posts to build our list of alternatives and similar projects. The last one was on 2023-04-14.


Posts with mentions or reviews of ExcelDna. We have used some of these posts to build our list of alternatives and similar projects. The last one was on 2023-01-25.
  • Show HN: I've built a C# IDE, Runtime, and AppStore inside Excel
    4 projects | | 25 Jan 2023
    Does this use behind the scenes?
  • Issue with .tlb file in Excel
    2 projects | /r/csharp | 9 Dec 2022
    I would suggest to you to take a look into excel-dna, it's a pretty good project to build functions for excel.
  • US Equity Index Options Pricing and Scenarios
    2 projects | /r/quant | 12 Oct 2022
    Not sure why paying for a plug-in that lets you call python functions in excel is still a thing anymore when there’s pretty activity community that integrates excel with .NET. From there it’s easy to use python.
  • Using C to Create Performant Excel Functions
    3 projects | /r/excel | 27 Jul 2021
  • Creating an Excel Add-In in D
    5 projects | | 14 Mar 2021
    I can try to give you an overview, but caveat emptor that I'm no expert.

    The two historical programmatic interfaces to Office (that I'm familiar with):

    VBA[1] - They have a pretty extensive VBA object model for the various Office programs, and is used for macros (either by auto-generated code when you "Record Macro" or manually developed code). The code lives within the Office file and follows it around, allowing it to be fairly portable since it doesn't require anything external to the file (unless you're calling out externally or relying on things like ODBC drivers).

    You can also package up VBA into add-ins as well.

    COM - There's an interopp assembly[2] that exposes a COM-based object model. This is the object model being used here (via Excel-DNA[3]), and the one hooked into by Visual Studio Tools for Office[4].

    The biggest issue with both of these is cross-platform support – historically add-ins have been Windows only. COM isn't supported anywhere else, and VBA is only supported on Mac (not mobile). And the Mac VBA model isn't nearly as robust as the Windows version and has several caveats[5].

    Enter Javascript, which is a relatively new option and what they're pushing hard get people onto. They've started developing an object model to expose the various Office apps via Javascript[6]. When you develop an add-in using this[7], the add-in is actually a webapp running in a sandboxed browser, with transparently handled interop between the add-in sandbox and the Office app. So all of the actual add-in development is HTML, CSS, and Javascript based.

    The primary benefit of the Javascript option is that they're portable between the various platforms ([7] mentions Windows, Mac, Web-based, and the iPad. Not sure about Android/iPhone). But you get a lot of secondary benefits as well, such as the ability to have your add-in resources loaded from a remote website, ensuring things like the user always loading the latest version.

    They've also slowly been making inroads in expanding the usage of Javascript - Office Scripts[8] is a preview feature they have right now, that effectively allows you to record macros in Excel for the web, which generate Javascript-based code rather than VBA code. You can also create user defined functions[9] in Javascript that can be mixed with normal functions within cells.

    I (unfortunately) have to use Excel for many end-user deliverables, and have tinkered around with the Javascript options to make a few quality-of-life utilities for myself and others on my team. It's super handy for plugging into online services, and for being portable. I have one or two utilities for external teams that they access via Excel Online but I don't give them the file, and for others on the team we have several in circulation the Javascript-based stuff all "just works" in these contexts.

    A major caveat of the Javascript stuff is that it all runs in sandboxed contexts and can primarily only interface between the Office host application and external services. COM and VBA-based add-ins don't have this constraint, and interact with other local resources beyond the host application itself.

    On the plus side for the JavaScript option – in addition to being cross-platform, they're also not nearly as locked down in corporate environments because of their reduced security threat. But that limitation also means that it's unusable for solutions like this D in Excel add-in, which couldn't execute in that browser context and require the COM interop capabilities.











    5 projects | | 14 Mar 2021
    Yeah, it's practically archaeology now! It is very fast for doing some things, though.

    If anyone's interested in it from a Dot Net perspective, ExcelDNA [0] was excellent when I used it a few years ago.


What are some alternatives?

When comparing DocX and ExcelDna you can also consider the following projects:


ClosedXML - ClosedXML is a .NET library for reading, manipulating and writing Excel 2007+ (.xlsx, .xlsm) files. It aims to provide an intuitive and user-friendly interface to dealing with the underlying OpenXML API.

NPOI - a .NET library that can read/write Office formats without Microsoft Office installed. No COM+, no interop.

Open XML SDK - Open XML SDK by Microsoft

NetOffice - 🌌 Create add-ins and automation code for Microsoft Office applications.

Report-From-DocX-HTML-To-PDF-Converter - .NET Core library to create custom reports based on Word docx or HTML documents and convert to PDF

ShapeCrawler - πŸ‚ A .NET library for manipulating PowerPoint presentations

ExcelDna-Unpack - Command-line utility to extract the contents of Excel-DNA add-ins packed with ExcelDnaPack