When it encounters a problem it attempts to save any files that were open at the time the problem occurred before the application crashes.
When the application restarts the files are listed in the Document Recovery task pane
Your original file is suffixed with [original[.

microsoft excel docs


(Tools > Options)(Save tab, "Save AutoRecover info every")
Excel will create a quick backup of your work every xx minutes
AutoRecovery works hand in hand with the Document Recovery task pane and can get most if not all of your data back in the event of a crash.
It is no substitue for clicking on the Save command on the Standard toolbar or pressing (Ctrl + S).
This feature is designed so if Excel does crash (which is possible) you loose as little work as possible.

Detect and Repair

In Excel 2002 and 2003 there is a feature that can repair your damaged or corrupted workbooks.
Select (Help > Detect and Repair)
The Detect and Repair process can take quite a long time and will uninstall the Excel application first
It will ask you later for the folder path of the original .CAB files which are typically on the C drive.

If you have a corrupted workbook then you can use the Open and Repair command that is available from (File > Open)(Options menu). It is best to try the Repair button first and then failing that try the Extract Data button.
All the data in your workbook including all worksheets in the correct order is recovered although only the cell contents is extracted, there is no formatting, charts or any other objects.

If you have a corrupted Excel workbook that will not open you can reference the workbook from another workbook using cell reference. =[corrupted_workbook name.xls]SheetName!A1.

When a workbook is opened some temporary files are created in the same directory or location as the original file (inc. floppy disks). These temporary files are deleted when the workbook is closed, although this may cause Excel to crash if there is not enough free space to accommodate these files.

Restore my shortcuts while repairing -
Discard my customised settings and restore default settings - This will remove any customised toolbars or menus, including any custom views ?? Or macros

You may have to re-enter your personal details (i.e. username and initials) when you restart Excel.

Open and Repair

You can also use the "Open and Repair" button on the Open drop-down menu from the (File > Open) dialog box.

There is also an action you can take when Excel hangs (or doesn't respond).
Start > Programs > Microsoft Office Tools > Microsoft Office Application Recovery
click "Recover Application" to try and recover the application click "End application" to close the application with a loss of data.
A document recovery task pane will appear.

If an error does occur Excel should prompt you to save your changes before the application is closed.
Any files that say [Recovered] against their file name are usually more recent than those that have [Original] against their file name.
The AutoRecovery is guaranteed to recover any lost work in the case that Excel crashes. Excel will recover any unsaved files after a crash. If Excel hangs you can try the MOAR help application (Start > Programs > Microsoft Office Tools)

The document recovery pane displays all files that were recovered from the previous Excel session.
After each file name there will be square brackets indicating whether the file is the original file or whether it is a receovered file.
When you select a file a drop-down menu will appear.
This will allow you to open, save as, delete or show repairs for that particular file.
Selecting the actual file will open it.
By default Excel saves information for document recovery every 10 minutes.
This interval can be changed from the (Tools > Options)(Save tab)
Make sure the "Save AutoRecovery" checkbox is selected.
You can enter an interval between 1 and 120 minutes.

If the word original appears in the square brackets then the file has not been recovered and will only contain the changes up to the last time the workbook was saved.

Document Recovery Task Pane

Document Recovery Task Pane

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