User FAQs


1) What is the difference between the file extensions '.xlsx' and '.xlsm' ?
.xlsx - an XML based default file format.
.xlsm - an XML based file format that can contain macros.


2) What is the '.xlsb' file format ?
This is a binary based file format that can contain macros but not ribbon customisations.


3) Are there any advantages or disadvantages to saving a workbook with the '.xlsb' file extension ?
*) File size might be smaller
*) Read from and Write to is faster
*) Formulas larger than 8192 characters can be saved
*) The individual files contained in the xml zip package are compressed binary files and not readable xml.
*) Power Query cannot read data saved in an XLSB workbook.


4) Is there a way to force Excel to always use manual calculation ?
Yes. Create an Excel template the filename Book.xltx and save it in one of the startup folders.


5) Is there a way to close all my open workbooks at once without having to close them one at a time ?
Yes. Hold down Shift and click on the X (cross) in the top right corner of one of the open workbooks (or windows).


6) What is the largest Excel file you can have ?
Either for a single workbook or a combination of open workbooks.
32 Bit - Excel 2013 / 2016 - 2 GB of memory.
64 Bit - Excel 2013 / 2016 - no hard limit. Workbook size is limited only by available memory and system resources.


7) What changes could you make to reduce the file size of a workbook ?
*) Check the last used cell on each worksheet and delete any redundant blank rows and columns.
*) Check for hidden worksheets and remove out of date sheets.
*) Compress or remove images and pictures.
*) Reduce the size of pivot tables.
*) Optimise formulas and remove array formulas.
*) Remove any unnecessary formatting and use consistent formatting across worksheets.
*) Remove conditional formatting.


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