Recently, I bought a new laptop, because my old Toshiba died down. After installing the OS and other necessary tools (like browser, skype etc.), I have installed Office 2010. Since Excel is my bread and butter, I like to customize it so that I can get more work done.
So today,let me share how I customized my newly installed Excel and ask you the same question.
Customizing Excel from Excel Options
The first thing I do after opening Excel, is go to File > Excel Options.
Here, we can customize various Excel default behaviors.
Only one worksheet instead of 3
To begin with, I want to have only 1 sheet on my new workbooks as I seldom work with 2 or 3 sheets.
Change the user name
Since many of my workbooks are emailed to clients or uploaded on chandoo.org for you to download, I want to use our website address (chandoo.org) as my username.
Enable Developer Ribbon
After this, I went to customize ribbon and checked the Developer Ribbon box. This ensures that I can see the developer ribbon in Excel so that I can use features like form controls, macros etc.
Note: If you are using Excel 2007, you can find this in Popular tab in Excel Options.
Disable Error Checking Options
Excel has a friendly feature called as error checking. By default this is enabled and Excel shows warning messages whenever you have made some predefined errors while using Excel. For example, you would get a warning whenever your formulas omit adjacent cells in a region.
While this is useful, I find it annoying as most of the time I know what I am doing. So I disabled almost all of the error checking rules except the ones that I want.
You can do this from Formula options in Excel Options screen.
Tell Excel to take frequent backups of your files
Since the work I do in Excel feeds my family, I want to make sure nothing is lost. Apart from using external back-up applications, I want to use built-in backup features in Excel. You can set these settings from Save tab in Excel options.
Customize Quick Access Toolbar
There are quite a few things in Excel that I use on regular basis. To begin with, I use shapes, alignment tools, text-box, select objects on regular basis. So I add these to my QAT. I will be adding more items to QAT as I use more features on this laptop’s Excel.
Adding Excel to Taskbar
This next is not an Excel tip but Windows tip. Since I use Excel thru-out the day, I just add it to taskbar (by right clicking on Excel in Programs and choosing Pin to task bar.)
What about you?
Those are the bare-minimum customizations I made to my Excel 20101.
What about you? How do you customize your own Excel to make it productive & easy to use. Please share using comments.
More Tips on Customizing Excel
If you want to use Excel productively, then customizing how it behaves is the first step. Here are some handy ideas you can try,
- 10 Tips to make better & boss-proof spreadsheets in Excel
- How to create new ribbons in Excel 2010
- Pin frequently used documents to Excel’s file menu
- 15 Productivity Tips for Excel users (Excel 2003 and above)
- How to add your macros to Quick Access Toolbar
- More Excel Productivity Tips, Keyboard Shortcuts & Mouse Shortcuts
PS: Wish you a happy weekend. We are taking the kids to Safari World today (Friday), for a day of giraffes, monkeys, dolphins, elephants and sun.
My name is Chandoo. Thanks for dropping by. My mission is to make you awesome in Excel & your work. I live in Wellington, New Zealand. When I am not F9ing my formulas, I cycle, cook or play lego with my kids. Know more about me.
Thank you and see you around.
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