Open your files automatically when you start Excel

Applies to
Microsoft Excel 2000

If you use a particular workbook every time you use Excel, you might want to open the workbook automatically every time you start Excel. To do this, save the file in the XLStart folder. Any workbook you save in the XLStart folder opens automatically whenever you start Excel. You might use the XLStart folder, for example, to store a workbook in which you record daily transactions of some kind.

 Note   In Excel, your system administrator can configure your user profile—a collection of user-specific settings such as custom dictionaries, custom templates, and other preferences and options—on a server so that it travels with you when you work on any computer. If your user profile has been configured to be located on a server, then your XLStart folder may be located on a server in the path:

Root\OS\Profiles\User_name\Application Data\Microsoft\Excel

Where Root is the server or drive from which other folders branch, OS is the operating system folder (such as Windows), and user_name is your user name.

In earlier versions of Excel, however, and Excel 2000 installations that have not been configured to travel with the user, the XLStart folder is located in the path:

<drive>:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office.

For more information, read the topic "About the location of your settings" in Excel Help.

The alternate startup file location

What if you have to record personal transactions in one file and corporate transactions in another file—a file used by other employees? Or, what if your company uses a custom workbook template, by default, for all new workbooks? Use the Alternate Startup File Location, which is found on the General tab of the Options dialog box (Tools menu), to define a secondary folder or location for startup files, much like the XLStart folder.

While this location is known as the "alternate" startup, Excel first checks the XLStart folder for any workbooks to open or for any custom default file templates and then checks any path listed as the alternate startup location. If any workbooks are stored in this location, they are opened; if any custom default file templates are stored here, then they are used.

If you work in a networked environment where every user must use the same default workbook, for example, you can store the template for the default workbook in a folder on a network drive, or you can store a copy of the template on each user's computer. On each user's machine you can specify the path to this folder on the General tab in their Options dialog box. This way, if you make a change to the template, you only have to update the template stored in the network folder, instead of changing the copy on each user's computer.

More information

Type alternate startup file location in the Office Assistant or on the Answer Wizard tab in the Excel Help window, and then click Search to read more about this feature.

To learn more about the XLStart folder, type xlstart in the Office Assistant or on the Answer Wizard tab in the Excel Help window, and then click Search.

The default templates described in this article are used by Excel to change the default settings in new workbooks and new worksheets. You can read more about creating and modifying these templates by typing default templates in the Office Assistant or on the Answer Wizard tab in the Excel Help window, and then clicking Search.