PHPExcel auto size column width

If a column is set to AutoSize, PHPExcel attempts to calculate the column width based on the calculated value of the column (so on the result of any formulae), and any additional characters added by format masks such as thousand separators.

By default, this is an estimated width: a more accurate calculation method is available, based on using GD, which can also handle font style features such as bold and italic; but this is a much bigger overhead, so it is turned off by default. You can enable the more accurate calculation using


However, autosize doesn't apply to all Writer formats... for example CSV. You don't mention what writer you're using.

But you also need to identify the columns to set dimensions:

foreach(range('B','G') as $columnID) {

$objPHPExcel->getActiveSheet()->getColumnDimension() expects a column ID.

$objPHPExcel->getActiveSheet()->getColumnDimensions() will return an array of all the defined column dimension records; but unless a column dimension record has been explicitly created (perhaps by loading a template, or by manually calling getColumnDimension()) then it won't exist (memory saving).

If you need to do that on multiple sheets, and multiple columns in each sheet, here is how you can iterate through all of them:

// Auto size columns for each worksheet
foreach ($objPHPExcel->getWorksheetIterator() as $worksheet) {


    $sheet = $objPHPExcel->getActiveSheet();
    $cellIterator = $sheet->getRowIterator()->current()->getCellIterator();
    /** @var PHPExcel_Cell $cell */
    foreach ($cellIterator as $cell) {

Here a more flexible variant based on @Mark Baker post:

foreach (range('A', $phpExcelObject->getActiveSheet()->getHighestDataColumn()) as $col) {

Hope this helps ;)

for ($i = 'A'; $i !=  $objPHPExcel->getActiveSheet()->getHighestColumn(); $i++) {

This is example how to use all columns from worksheet:

$sheet = $PHPExcel->getActiveSheet();
$cellIterator = $sheet->getRowIterator()->current()->getCellIterator();
$cellIterator->setIterateOnlyExistingCells( true );
/** @var PHPExcel_Cell $cell */
foreach( $cellIterator as $cell ) {
        $sheet->getColumnDimension( $cell->getColumn() )->setAutoSize( true );

This code snippet will auto size all the columns that contain data in all the sheets. There is no need to use the activeSheet getter and setter.

// In my case this line didn't make much of a difference
// Iterating all the sheets
/** @var PHPExcel_Worksheet $sheet */
foreach ($objPHPExcel->getAllSheets() as $sheet) {
    // Iterating through all the columns
    // The after Z column problem is solved by using numeric columns; thanks to the columnIndexFromString method
    for ($col = 0; $col <= PHPExcel_Cell::columnIndexFromString($sheet->getHighestDataColumn()); $col++) {
beck kuo

for phpspreadsheet:

$sheet = $spreadsheet->getActiveSheet(); // $spreadsheet is instance of PhpOffice\PhpSpreadsheet\Spreadsheet

foreach (
    ) as $column
) {
foreach(range('B','G') as $columnID)

If you try to iterate with for ($col = 2; $col <= 'AC'; ++ $col){...}, or with foreach(range('A','AC') as $col) {...} it will work for columns from A to Z, but it fails pass the Z (Ex. iterate between 'A' to 'AC').

In order to iterate pass 'Z', you need to convert the column to integer, increment, compare, and get it as string again:

$MAX_COL = $sheet->getHighestDataColumn();
$MAX_COL_INDEX = PHPExcel_Cell::columnIndexFromString($MAX_COL);
    for($index=0 ; $index <= $MAX_COL_INDEX ; $index++){
    $col = PHPExcel_Cell::stringFromColumnIndex($index);

    // do something, like set the column width...

With this, you easy iterate pass the 'Z' column and set autosize to every column.

In case somebody was looking for this.

The resolution below also works on PHPSpreadsheet, their new version of PHPExcel.

// assuming $spreadsheet is instance of PhpOffice\PhpSpreadsheet\Spreadsheet
// assuming $worksheet = $spreadsheet->getActiveSheet();
foreach(range('A',$worksheet->getHighestColumn()) as $column) {

Note: getHighestColumn() can be replaced with getHighestDataColumn() or the last actual column.

What these methods do:

getHighestColumn($row = null) - Get highest worksheet column.

getHighestDataColumn($row = null) - Get highest worksheet column that contains data.

getHighestRow($column = null) - Get highest worksheet row

getHighestDataRow($column = null) - Get highest worksheet row that contains data.

Come late, but after searching everywhere, I've created a solution that seems to be "the one".

Being known that there is a column iterator on last API versions, but not knowing how to atuoadjust the column object it self, basically I've created a loop to go from real first used column to real last used one.

Here it goes:

//Just before saving de Excel document, you do this:


//We get the util used space on worksheet. Change getActiveSheet to setActiveSheetIndex(0) to choose the sheet you want to autosize. Iterate thorugh'em if needed.
//We remove all digits from this string, which cames in a form of "A1:G24".
//Exploding via ":" to get a 2 position array being 0 fisrt used column and 1, the last used column.
$cols = explode(":", trim(preg_replace('/\d+/u', '', $objPHPExcel->getActiveSheet()->calculateWorksheetDimension())));

$col = $cols[0]; //first util column with data
$end = ++$cols[1]; //last util column with data +1, to use it inside the WHILE loop. Else, is not going to use last util range column.
while($col != $end){


Bhavik Hirani

you also need to identify the columns to set dimensions:

foreach (range('A', $phpExcelObject->getActiveSheet()->getHighestDataColumn()) as $col) {
$col = 'A';
    $tempCol = $col++;
    if($tempCol == $objPHPExcel->getActiveSheet()->getHighestDataColumn()){

For Spreedsheet + PHP 7, you must write instead of PHPExcel_Cell::columnIndexFromString, \PhpOffice\PhpSpreadsheet\Cell::columnIndexFromString. And at the loop is a mistake, there you must < not work with <=. Otherwise, he takes a column too much into the loop.