Installing an Add-In in Excel 2007

In Installing an Excel Add-In I described the protocol for installing an add-in in Excel. The protocol I described was valid for Excel 97 through 2003, but the change in user interface which came with Excel 2007 was accompanied by a more tortuous protocol. It’s not really more complicated once you get used to it, but the first few times it’s an adventure.

This post has been updated to include Excel 2010 and 2013.

Excel 2007

To install an add-in in Excel 2007, click on the Office Button, the big round decoration in the top left of the Excel window. This opens the Office Menu. Click the Excel Options button at the bottom of this menu.

Office Button and Menu

Excel 2010

Click on the File tab of the Excel 2010 ribbon (below left). This pops up a pane of file-related functions (below right). Click Options near the bottom of the list.

File Tab

Excel 2013

As in Excel 2010 the File tab of the Excel 2013 ribbon opens a pane of file-related functions (below right). Click Options at the bottom of the list.

File Tab

Excel 2007-2010-2013

For all of these versions, the rest of the process is substantially the same.

The Excel Options dialog opens up. Click the Add-Ins item in the list along the left edge of the dialog to see the Add-Ins panel.

Excel Options: Add-Ins

Make sure the Manage dropdown at the bottom shows Excel Add-Ins, then press the Go button. Finally this brings up the familiar Add-Ins dialog.

Excel Add-Ins Dialog

If the add-in has been stored in one of the default add-in directories, it will appear in the list. Check the box in front of a listed add-in to install it, or uncheck the box to uninstall it. If the add-in does not appear in the list, click Browse, and use the Browse dialog to locate the add-in file.

This long protocol can be shortened in a couple of ways. One way is to add the Add-Ins command to the Quick Access Toolbar (QAT). Click the little dropdown button to the right of the QAT, and choose More Commands.

Customize QAT

Click on the left hand dropdown, and choose All Commands.

Customize QAT

Scroll down, select Add-Ins, and click the Add button.

Customize QAT

Press OK and the Add-Ins button appears on the QAT. It doesn’t look like much, just a greenish round button, but if you mouse over it, you can see the Add-Ins tooltip.

Customized QAT

If you remember the Excel 2003 accelerator keys, you know an easy way to open the dialog. Excel 2007 honors Excel 2003’s Alt-key menu shortcuts. In Excel 2003, you would hold Alt and press T for the Tools menu, then I for the Add-Ins command. In Excel 2007, therefore, you can hold Alt and press T then I (Alt-T-I) to quickly open this dialog.


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