Sep 21 2010

View Two Workbooks at the Same Time

Excel has a built-in way to be able to view two workbooks at the same time side by side. This can be useful when comparing similar values or graphs between workbooks without having to flip back and forth or without copying data from one workbook to the other.


Steps to Comparing Workbooks Side-by-Side

1. Open both workbooks you want to compare side by side.

2. Select Window–>Compare Side by Side with [workbook2]

3. There are two options for viewing the data of the two workbooks you are now comparing

  • Click “Synchronous Scrolling” to scroll through both documents at the same time. Uncheck for independent scrolling.
  • You can also reset the scrolling position to the starting position by clicking the button “Reset Window Position”.

4. When you are finished with your comparison, click Close Side by Side to return to the normal worksheet view.

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12 Comments on this post




    October 1st, 2010 at 10:53 am
  2. used tires said:

    This is definitely an awesome built in function in excel, and this would be an even better function if you have the luxury of having a fairly large sized LCD Monitor as well as the ability to run a higher resolution! :)

    Till then,


    October 5th, 2010 at 7:25 pm
  3. car battery said:

    Thanks, this is a very useful feature. I own one fairly good sized LCD monitor and one smaller one but even then it’s still better than lining up the workbooks side by side on the big monitor alone. In the future, I hope to buy a second monitor as big as the first one.

    October 8th, 2010 at 3:15 pm
  4. Online Penny Auctions said:

    there can be two solutions depending upon the data which needs to be compared. if small, copy data from 2nd sheet into the first sheet. be sure the formatting is same, coz when u copy paste, it should look exactly the same as in the original sheet. this way u can compare.

    October 21st, 2010 at 9:30 am
  5. hedging said:

    Open two different instances of Excel and from within the excel program use the file – open to open each file in two different windows…

    November 6th, 2010 at 6:18 am
  6. Epoxy floor paint said:

    Many thanks for such informative post. Its really time saving stuff you mentioned above in excel. Viewing to workbook in same time is really best way and can save a lot of time. I’m happy to knew about it..

    November 7th, 2010 at 1:56 pm
  7. Epoxy floor paint said:

    Thank you for your great post! It has been very insightful. I hope that you will continue sharing your knowledge with us.

    November 19th, 2010 at 2:29 pm
  8. Underfloor heating mats said:

    there is usually two solutions relying upon the information which needs to be in contrast. if little, copy data from 2nd sheet in to the very first sheet. make sure the formatting is very same, coz when u copy paste, it will need to glimpse exactly the same as inside the authentic sheet. this way u can compare.

    December 4th, 2010 at 10:52 am
  9. Entrepreneurship said:

    Is it possible to view two worksheets from the same workbook at the same time (something like using an arrange function with separate workbooks under the Window toolbar, but in this case from the same workbook)?

    March 21st, 2011 at 2:28 pm
  10. clara said:

    Hi any idea of how to perform it in case documents bear macros (function is automatically disabled) Thanks

    June 1st, 2011 at 9:29 am
  11. exshail said:

    Besides Download workbook navigation addins created for easy navigation for lots of workbook open from below site.­ins.aspx
    Some features:
    1. Index of all Sheet Names in separate worksheet with hyperlink.
    2. Sort sheets ascending or descending, Create\remove multiple windows.
    3. Syncronise all the sheets to view same area in the worksheet.
    4. Copy activesheet without truncated of cells having more then 255 characters.
    5. List Directory & filenames, External link, comments, define names, shapes with hyperlink.
    6. Display fullpath of Active Workbook in its Toolbar Button.
    7.Full Screen View.
    8.Can Shows Sheet name in window caption.

    November 26th, 2011 at 7:55 am
  12. Mindyour Ownbusiness said:

    2. Select Window–>Compare Side by Side with [workbook2]

    should be

    2. Select View->Window–>Compare Side by Side with [workbook2]

    February 2nd, 2012 at 9:10 am


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