Excel Repair Files

Updated on February 27, 2024
Article byWallstreetmojo Team
Reviewed byDheeraj Vaidya, CFA, FRM

What Is Repair Files In Excel?

A corrupted Excel file is a mayhem message for any Excel user. After putting in all the hard work, if the file is corrupted, then it will create panic for the user. So, how to deal with these corrupted files? This article will provide you with some techniques to deal with corrupted files. Read the whole article to learn about repairing corrupted Excel files.


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Key Takeaways

  • Excel Repairs including use third-party software solutions. To quickly repair corrupted Excel workbooks that cannot be recovered through conventional means. These tools are specifically designed to address various file corruption issues and minimize data loss while ensuring workbook integrity.
  • Make a backup copy of files that may become corrupted to avoid losing important data.
  • Create automatic backup files at different stages of the process to ensure the safety and integrity of our workbook, prevent data loss, and minimize the risk of errors or system failures. 

Top 4 Ways To Repair Corrupted Excel Files

In this article, let us learn the top 4 ways to repair corrupted Excel files.

#1 – Repair The Workbook Manually

Once the Excel file is corrupted and if you try to reopen it, Excel may start the file recovery mode by default. In addition, it may try to reopen the file and repair the workbook.

If you cannot open the Excel file because it is corrupted, we can repair the workbook through a manual process.

Follow the below steps to repair the corrupted excel workbook manually.

  1. We must first open one blank workbook. Then, click on the “File” tab.

    Repair files- Excel File option

  2. Now, we must click on the “Open” option and choose the “Browse” option.

    Excel Repair Browse Option

  3. From this “Browse” window, we must locate the corrupted file.

    Open File Option

  4.  After that, click on the ” Open ” drop-down list in the same window and choose “Open and Repair.”

    Open and Repair Option

  5. Now, Excel shows the below message box.

    Excel Repair Msgbox

    We can “Repair” if we want to recover as much work as possible. So, to select this option, we need to click on the “Repair” option.

    We can “Extract Data” if Excel previously failed to repair the workbook. So, to select this option, we need to click on the “Extract Data” option.

    If Excel can repair the workbook successfully, we may get the below information message.

Excel Repair Example 1.1

Now, in the newly opened workbook, we can see the status of the workbook as “Repaired.”

Excel Repaired File

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#2 – Recover Data From Opened Workbook

If we cannot save the latest work from the workbook, we can recover the last saved version data from the corrupted workbook.

Then, we must click on the “File” tab and choose an “Open” option from another workbook. And select “Browse.”

Excel Repair Browse Option

Now, select the Excel workbook that needs to be repaired.

Open File Option

Then, click on “Yes” to reopen the workbook.

Now from this file, we can recover the data until the time auto-recovery lasts.

#3 – Setting Calculation To Manual

Recover Data from Corrupted Workbook By Setting Calculation to Manual

If we cannot repair the corrupted Excel workbook, we can recover the data by setting the calculation mode to manual. Follow the below steps to get data from a corrupted workbook that it did not repair.

Step 1: We must first open a blank workbook.

Step 2: In the blank workbook, we must click on FILE >>> Options.

autosave in excel example 1.1

Step 3: In the “Excel Options” window, we need to go to “Formulas.Under “Calculation options,” choose the workbook calculation to “Manual.

Excel Repair Example 3.3

Step 4: After this, click on “OK.” Now, go to “File” and open the corrupted Excel file to recover the data from the corrupted file.

#4 – Create Backup Copy Of Workbook Automatically

Having a backup copy of all the workbooks is gold.

We can instruct the Excel workbook to automatically create a backup copy of all the workbooks we work with.  Follow the below steps to apply this setting change.

Step 1: We must first open any of the workbooks.

Step 2: Then, click on Save As in the excelSave As In The ExcelSave as is located in the worksheet's file tab. It can be accessed from the quick access toolbar or by pressing F12 and choosing "save as," or CTRL + S, which opens the save as dialogue box to save the file.read more button or press the F12 key.

F12 Key

Step 3: In the “Save As” window, we must click on the drop-down list of the “Tools” option and select “General Options.”

Excel Repair - General Options

Step 4: This will open up the “General Options” window.  In the below window, check the box “Always create backup.”

Create Backup Option

We can also choose the “Password to open” and “Password to modify” in the above window. So, if other than the user, anybody opens it, they must enter the password to open and modify the workbook.

Note: This setting applies only to this workbook. Any other workbooks remain the same.

Important Things To Note

  • If you have already struggled with corrupted files and cannot recover, you can use third-party software to repair your Excel workbook instantly.
  • We must always create a backup copy of anticipated corrupting files.
  • We must set the auto-recovery timing to have auto-recovery files at various stages of the workbook.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do you save a repaired Excel file?

After repairing the file, you should save it by pressing “Ctrl + S.” Then, double-click on the “This PC” option, select a save location and enter a new file name. Make sure to choose a different name than the one used for the corrupted Excel file. Finally, click on the “Save” button to complete the process.

2. How can I repair an Excel file for free?

To recover a corrupted Excel file, follow the below steps:
1. Begin by opening a new Excel sheet.
2. Select “File” from the top menu and click on “Open”.
3. Browse to find the folder containing the corrupted Excel file.
4. Once you have located the relevant file, select it from the Open dialog box.
5. Click on the arrow adjacent to the “Open” button and choose “Repair” to initiate the recovery process.

This will attempt to restore any data that was lost due to the corruption. By following these steps, you can recover your Excel files and avoid any potential data loss.

3. Why does Excel need repairing?

It is crucial to repair an Excel file to ensure that all the data can be accessed in case of any issues. File corruption can occur if a user does not follow proper shutdown practices. Other reasons why a user may need to repair an Excel file include malware attacks.

Recommended Articles

This article is a guide to Excel Repair. Here, we discuss how to repair corrupted Excel files in four ways: 1) Repair Manually, 2) Recover Data from Opened Workbook, 3) Setting Calculation to Manual, 4) Create Backup Copy. You can learn more about Excel from the following articles: –

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