Gridlock

BY J. CARLTON COLLINS, CPA

Q: Help! I upgraded from Excel 2003 to Excel 2010 because I thought that Excel 2010 provided a larger worksheet grid, but I find that Excel 2010 provides the same 65,536 rows that I had before. I’ve looked for an option for displaying additional rows, but I can’t find one. Is it possible to add more rows to Excel 2010 and, if so, how is this done?

A: I am fairly certain that the problem is that you have opened one of your old .xls workbooks, and by default, Excel opens these older workbooks in compatibility mode, which displays only 65,536 rows. To solve this problem, save your workbook using the newer Excel Workbook (.xlsx) format, as follows. From the File tab, select Save As and select Excel Workbook (*.xlsx) from the Save as type dropdown options box, then click the Save button.

Excel 2010 and Excel 2007 each provide 1,048,576 rows and 16,384 columns (compared with only 65,536 rows and 256 columns in Excel 2003), which equates to 17.1 billion cells per worksheet.

Note: Compatibility mode is useful for those Excel 2010 and 2007 users who share workbooks with Excel 2003 users. You can convert any Excel 2010 or 2007 workbook to the older Excel 2003 (.xls) format, but doing so truncates the extra rows and columns (and any data contained therein) and deletes other file attributes such as presentation quality formatting.

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