This Wiki article introduces the INFO function and its syntax, with examples of it is used and troubleshooting tips.

 Compatibility:  All Versions
Excel Function Category:  Information Functions
Valid in Standard Expression:  Yes
Valid in Array Expressions:  Yes
Collapses / Summarises Array Results:  No
Accepts Ranges Spanning Multiple Sheets:  No
Volatile Function:  Yes


Returns information about the current operating system.  Note some information to do with memory which was supported in older versions of Excel has been removed.




One of a predefined list of string values that indicates about which attribute of the system is to be returned.
It is expected to be a string entered as either: a string literal
; a reference to a cell containing a string; a nested expression returning a string; or a nested expression returning a reference to a cell containing a string.
If the value of type_text is provided by a reference to a blank cell, it is coerced to an empty string ("")
If the value type
of type_text is a number
or logical
, the value will be coerced to a string.
If the data type of type_text is an error value
, the error value will be returned by the function.
if the value of info_text is other than the following ten listed values, an #VALUE! error is returned.
Acceptable values for into_text are: "DIRECTORY", "NUMFILE", "ORIGIN", "OSVERSION", "RECALC", "RELEASE", "SYSTEM", "MEMAVAIL", "MEMUSED", "TOTMEM".  See the discussion below for the values returned.  They are shown here in capitals, as that is how they are displayed in function entry enumerated list.  However, lower case strings are supported.
Three of these acceptable values were supported in older versions of Excel, but are no longer supported since Excel 2007, and no return an #N/A error value: "MEMAVAIL", "MEMUSED", "TOTMEM".

Return Value

The return value is an attribute of the current operating system and state.  Following is a list of the return values by type_text:

Returns a string, being the UNC to the current default directory on the system.
Returns an #N/A error as this attribute is no longer supported since Excel 2007.
Returns an #N/A error as this attribute is no longer supported since Excel 2007.
Returns a number being the count of sheets in workbooks open in memory.  In very early versions of Excel, one sheet per file was the limit, so number of files = number of sheets.  That is no longer the case.  The count includes hidden sheets and sheets in hidden workbooks, so may be higher than the number of sheets visible.
Returns a string in a format compatible with Lotus 1-2-3 that is the address of the topmost and leftmost visible cell on screen.  For Lotus compatibility, it has a $A: prefixed to the actual cell address.  The address is returned in the address style currently being used.
Returns a string that indicates which operating system is in installed on the host machine.
Returns a string indicating the current calculation mode setting.  If the system has been set to Manual recalculation, it returns "Manual".  If the system is in either Automatic or Automatic Except for Data Tables modes, it returns "Automatic"."row"
Returns a number, being the column number of the worksheet in which the cell is located.  A non-volatile alternative to this would be to use the ROW function.
Returns a string  indicating the operating system environment.
"mac" → running on a MacIntosh operating system
"pcdos"→ running on a Windows operating system
Returns an #N/A error as this attribute is no longer supported since Excel 2007.


Returned when type_text is not one of the acceptable ten string values listed above.
Returned if the value of type_text is #VALUE!
Returned when type_text is one of the discontinued attributes, no longer supported.
Returned if the value of type_text is #N/A
#NULL!, #DIV/0!, #REF!, #NAME?, #NUM!
Returned if the value of of info_type or reference evaluates to these error values.


The following embedded Excel workbook shows samples of the function in use with different data types. You can click the buttons in the footer of the embedded worksheet to see and edit it full screen or download a copy to experiment with the formulas.

Due to the use of unsupported features in the web environment, some of the formulas will return errors in the online version that would not be returned on the desktop.  This sample is best downloaded and viewed in a desktop copy of Excel.

If the embedded document above will not load,
you may download the file here: download file from OneDrive.