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Article ID: 259926 - Last Review: August 27, 2002 - Revision: 1.0

 
This article was previously published under Q259926

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SUMMARY

Microsoft Excel uses startup folders in two ways:
  • To load Excel files at startup

    -and-

  • 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, please see the "More Information" section later in this article.

MORE INFORMATION

Folders That Excel Uses at Startup

If you install Microsoft Excel to the default location, Excel opens files from the following paths:

Microsoft Windows 95 and Microsoft Windows 98

  • C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office\Xlstart
  • The folder specified in the Alternate startup file location box on the General tab in the Options dialog box (on the Tools menu click Options).

Microsoft Windows NT 4.0

  • C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office\Xlstart
  • The folder specified in the Alternate startup file location box on the General tab in the Options dialog box (on the Tools menu, click Options).

Microsoft Windows 2000

  • C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office\Xlstart
  • The folder specified in the Alternate startup file location box on the General tab in the Options dialog box (on the Tools menu, click Options).

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 <*.xlt> that you place in a startup folder are not loaded when you start Excel, but you can use the templates by clicking New on the File menu.
  • If you save a workbook called book.xlt and place it in a startup folder, that workbook becomes the default workbook when you start Excel, and when you open any additional new workbooks.

Add-Ins

  • Add-Ins <*.xla> that you place 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 <*.xls> that you place 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 <Personal.xls> is a global macro workbook that Excel typically loads from the XLStart 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. 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

For more information about startup folders, click Contents and Index on the Help menu, click the Index tab in Excel Help, type the following text
startup, folders
and then double-click the selected text to go to the "Control what happens when you start Microsoft Excel" topic. If you are unable to find the information you need, ask the Office Assistant.

APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Excel 97 Standard Edition
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This article was written about products for which Microsoft no longer offers support. Therefore, this article is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.
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