In Excel 2007, Microsoft has provided a number of ways to extend Excel using Add-Ins written in Visual Basic, or any other language that can produce Component Object Model (COM) DLLs, including .NET:

□ With Automation Add-Ins, you can add new functions for use in Excel worksheets and VBA routines.

□ The performance of Automation and COM Add-Ins is typically much faster than their VBA equivalents.

□ With COM Add-Ins, you can add new menu items and respond to Excel's events. You can also use these to create Add-Ins that work across multiple Office applications and the VBE.

□ The COM Add-In can provide programmatic access to the behavior of the Add-In, such as enabling or disabling its actions, or using its functions.

□ In Excel 2007, COM Add-Ins can be used for application-level customization of the Ribbon or to create custom task panes.

□ The Custom Task Pane extensibility model can be used to create multiple CTPs within a single COM Add-In and expose the CTP-creation features to VBA.

□ The RibbonX extensibility model forces you to declare your UI customizations as soon as the COM Add-In is loaded, preventing you from exposing RibbonX to VBA or creating highly dynamic interfaces.

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