How to use Excel startup folders in Excel for Mac

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Article ID: 259921 - View products that this article applies to.
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Summary

Microsoft Excel for Mac uses startup folders in two ways:
  • To load Excel files at startup
  • As a reference location for templates
The actual startup folder locations can vary depending on what version of Excel you are using. For more details about Excel startup locations, see the "More Information" section.

More information

Folders that Excel uses at startup

If you install Excel to the default location, Excel opens files from the following paths. In these paths, hard disk is the name of your hard disk drive.
  • Microsoft Excel 2004 for Mac
    hard disk/Applications/Microsoft Office 2004/Office/Startup/Excel
  • Microsoft Excel X for Mac
    hard disk/Applications/Microsoft Office X/Office/Startup/Excel
  • Microsoft Excel 2001 for Mac
    hard disk/Microsoft Office 2001/Office/Startup/Excel
    Microsoft Excel 98 Macintosh Edition
    hard disk/Microsoft Office 98/Office/Startup/Excel
  • The folder that is specified in the Alternate startup file location box. In Excel X for Mac and in later versions, click Preferences on the Excel menu, and then click the General tab in the Preferences dialog box to see the Alternate startup file location box. In Excel 98 for Mac and in Excel 2001 for Mac, click Preferences on the Tools menu, and then click the General tab in the Options dialog box to see the Alternate startup file location box.

Accepted file types during Excel startup

You typically use startup folders to load Excel templates and add-ins, but you can also use them to load workbooks. When you load these three types of files from a startup folder, they have the following important characteristics.

Templates

  • Templates that you put in a startup folder are not loaded when you start Excel. However, in Excel 98 for Mac and in Excel 2001 for Mac, you can use the templates by clicking New on the File menu.
  • If you save a template named Workbook and put it in a startup folder location, that workbook becomes the default workbook when you start Excel and when you open any additional new workbooks. When you save a template named Workbook to put in a startup folder location, remove the .xlt file name extension.
  • If you save a template named Sheet and put it in a startup folder location, that workbook becomes the default worksheet when you insert a new worksheet in a workbook by clicking Worksheet on the Insert menu. When you save a template named Sheet to put in a startup folder location, remove the .xlt file name extension.

    Note If you have multiple worksheets in the workbook template named Sheet, insert that same number of worksheets when you click Worksheet on the Insert menu. It is generally best to save a one-sheet workbook as the Sheet template.
  • In Excel X for Mac and in later versions, to use any additional custom templates that you create, you must put them in the following folder:
    Applications/Microsoft Office version/Templates/My Templates
    Then, to use the templates, click Project Gallery on the File menu, and then click the My Templates group.

Add-Ins

  • Add-Ins that you put in a startup folder do not typically appear when you start Excel, but are loaded into memory and run any auto macros.
  • You can then use these Add-Ins by whatever method the add-in provides (that is, a menu item or toolbar button).

Workbooks

  • Workbooks that you put in a startup folder are loaded and appear when you start Excel, unless the workbook is saved in a hidden state. For example, the Personal Macro Workbook is a global macro workbook that Excel typically loads from the hard disk/Microsoft Office 98/Office/Startup/Excel folder in a hidden state.

Incorrect use of the alternate startup file location

  • When using the alternate startup file location, it is important to specify a file path in which there are recognizable file types (such as templates, add-ins, and workbooks).
  • If Excel finds unrecognizable file types in a startup folder, you may receive an error message. The most common error message is:
    This file is not a recognizable format.

Using the default file location

  • In addition to the alternate startup file location, the Default file location setting is also on the General tab in the Options dialog box in Excel 98 for Mac and in Excel 2001 for Mac, or on the General tab in the Preferences dialog box in later versions of Excel for Mac. This setting is different from a startup folder; it sets the folder location that you want Excel to point to when you open or save a file by using the File menu.

References

Excel X for Mac and later versions

For more information about startup folders, click Excel Help on the Help menu, type startup folders, click Search, and then click a topic to view it.

Excel 2001 for Mac

For more information about startup folders, click the Office Assistant, type startup folders, click Search, and then click a topic to view it.

Excel 98 Macintosh Edition

For more information about startup folders, follow these steps:
  1. On the Help menu, click Contents and Index. If you are using a version of the Macintosh operating system that is earlier than 8.0, click Contents and Index on the Balloon Help menu.
  2. In Excel Help, click Index, and then type the following text:
    startup folders
  3. Click Show Topics. Click the Control what happens when you start Microsoft Excel topic, and then click Go To.
If you cannot find the information that you want, ask the Office Assistant.

Note This is a "FAST PUBLISH" article created directly from within the Microsoft support organization. The information contained herein is provided as-is in response to emerging issues. As a result of the speed in making it available, the materials may include typographical errors and may be revised at any time without notice. See Terms of Use for other considerations.

Properties

Article ID: 259921 - Last Review: April 8, 2013 - Revision: 1.0
Applies to
  • Microsoft Excel 2004 for Mac
  • Microsoft Excel X for Mac
  • Microsoft Excel 2001 for Mac
  • Microsoft Excel 98 for Macintosh
  • Microsoft Excel 2008 for Mac
  • Microsoft Excel for Mac 2011
Keywords: 
kbhowto KB259921

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