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Excel Use a Workspace to Remember What Workbooks to Open

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Use a Workspace to Remember What Workbooks to Open

Problem: I need to open the same four files in order to prepare a weekly report. It is tedious to open all these workbooks.

Strategy: You can open the workbook files and save them as a workspace. Follow these steps:

1. Open the workbooks.

2. (Optional) If you want the workbooks to always appear in a particular arrangement, select View, Arrange to arrange the workbooks in a certain tiled pattern

3. Select View, Save Workspace. Give the workspace file a name, such as MyFiles. Note that the file saved will have an .xlw extension instead of .xlsm. The MyFiles.xlw workspace will appear as a recent document in the Recent Files menu.

4. Close Excel and open MyFiles.xlw. All four workbooks will open at once and be arranged as you set them up in step 2.

Gotcha: This workspace does not actually store the files but only points to them. If you were to move one of the files to a new folder by using Windows Explorer, Excel would not be able to open that file. Similarly, if you rename one of the files by Windows Explorer, Excel will not be able to locate the file.

Gotcha: I am not a big fan of arranging documents in a tiled pattern. I keep all my files maximized and use Ctrl+Tab to switch among them. I still use workspaces to have Excel quickly open several files. However, because all my files were maximized, Excel will arrange them in a cascaded pattern. You simply click the Maximize button in the upper-right corner of the active workbook), and all the workbooks will become maximized again.

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