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The Microsoft Excel Viewer allows people who do not have Microsoft Excel to view Excel workbook files.  

Microsoft Excel Viewer is a small, freely distributable program that lets you view and print Microsoft Excel 2007, Microsoft Office Excel 2003, Microsoft Excel 2002, Microsoft Excel 2000, Microsoft Excel 97 for Windows and Microsoft Excel 95 for Windows workbook files. In addition, the Excel Viewer can open workbooks created in Microsoft Excel for the Macintosh (versions 2.2 and later).

The Microsoft Excel Viewer can open Microsoft Excel 2010 files but it will not display Excel 2010 specific features.

More information

The Microsoft Excel Viewer is the latest version of the viewer. It has the ability to read Excel 2007 and Excel 2010 file formats and replaces the Microsoft Excel Viewer 2003. For more information about opening a workbook, viewing a worksheet, working with data, and printing using the Excel Viewer, see the help file in the following location:

You do not have to download the Excel Viewer to view Excel 2010 files. You can use Excel Online available through OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive) or deployed as part of a Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010 or Microsoft SharePoint Foundation 2010 installation. Excel Online can view, edit and print Excel files. For more information about Excel Online, see the Office Online overview article at

Note: Excel Viewer 2003 is no longer available for download and has been replaced by the Excel Viewer.

System Requirements

Supported operating systems: Windows Server 2003; Windows Vista; Windows XP, Windows 7, and Window Server 2008

The Excel Viewer is only available as a 32-bit application. A 64-bit version of the Excel Viewer does not exist. The 32-bit version of the Excel Viewer can be used on 64-bit versions of Windows.

How to Obtain the Excel Viewer

 The Excel Viewer is available for download from the following Microsoft Web site:

Microsoft also recommends installing Excel Viewer 2007 Service Pack 2 (SP2) to obtain the latest improvements to the Excel Viewer. To download the Excel Viewer 2007 Service Pack 2, please click the following link. 

For more information about what is fixed by Excel Viewer 2007 Service Pack 2 (SP2), see the following KB article:

Description of the Excel Viewer 2007 Service Pack 2:

The file name of the Excel Viewer is xlview.exe. The default folder location for the Excel Viewer on a 32-bit operating system is c:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office12\. The default folder location for the Excel Viewer on a 64-bit operating system is c:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office12\.

Note If you already have a full version of Microsoft Excel installed on your computer, do not install Microsoft Excel Viewer in the same directory. Doing so causes file conflicts.

How to Run the Excel Viewer

 To run Microsoft Excel Viewer, use either of the following methods:  

· On the Start menu, point to Programs, and then click Microsoft Office Excel Viewer.

· From the desktop, locate and double-click the Xlview.exe program file. 

File Formats Supported
You can open only Excel files (.xlsx, .xlsm, .xlsb, .xltx, .xltm, .xls, .xlt, .xlm, and .xlw). Even though you can open macro-enabled files (.xlsm, .xltm, and .xlm), you will not be able to run macros.

Known issues with Excel 2010 Workbooks and the Excel Viewer

Even though the Excel Viewer can read Excel 2010 Workbooks, the following new features are not visible or display in a different manner in the Viewer.

·         Sparklines are not shown in Excel Viewer. The cells where they are located will appear blank.

·         Slicers do not display data in the Excel Viewer. Instead a box displays in the location of the slicer with this text, “This shape represents a slicer. Slicers can be used in at least Excel 2010. If the shape was modified in an earlier version of Excel, or if the workbook was saved in Excel 2003 or earlier, the slicer cannot be used.”

If you need to view these features, use Excel Online.


Article ID: 273711 - Last Review: February 26, 2014 - Revision: 10.2
Applies to
  • Microsoft Excel 97 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Excel 2000 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Excel 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Office Excel 2003
  • Microsoft Office Excel 2007
  • Microsoft Excel 2010
kbinfo kbhowto kbofficeupdate KB273711

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