20 thoughts on “Where are the Excel 2003 commands in Excel 2007

  1. Hi Ron

    This is extremely useful. I am just about to load my copy of XL2007 and I am sure that this will save me a lot of time in hunting around where to find things.
    Many thanks for sharing this with us.


  2. Yep good work Ron!
    Do you have these as a list? Maybe folks would like to print them out and stick it to the wall?

  3. So what do you all think ? Excel 2007 best thing since canned beer, or just another Clippy ?

    Best wishes Harald

  4. Hi Harald,

    My bet is on Clippy. Well, not quite. The newer interface is like having a lot more toolbars visible at the same time. That aids “discoverability.” MS has also automated some of the capability embedded in the old “apply” buttons. That makes it easier to experiment. And, of course, the packaging is “jazzier.” Just look at how many people go “Ooh, I like that” without even touching the UI.

    But, the price one has to pay for these “advantages” is simply too high:
    * No customizability — at least not at the user level.
    * Only one “toolbar” visible at a time, though, granted it has a lot more buttons than most of the pre-2007 toolbars.
    * No floating toolbar capability.
    * No tear-off palettes.
    * And, unless MS has fixed this, several instances where double-click used to work, it no longer does. One has to use right-click and select from the context-menu.

    Bottom line. The new UI requires a lot more mouse movement, more clicks, and a lot more eye movement. Essentially, the more you know about Office, the more the new UI hurts your productivity.

    The sad part is that MS could have made this a truly dramatic productivity aid. If the UI adapted itself to the user, if it could be customized, if it could be moved so that it was closer to where one was working, if…, if…

    Instead, for whatever reason — MS’s arrogant belief in the intrinsic stupidity of its customers — its commitment to meeting deadlines even if it has to release a crummy product — its mindless worshipping of data without any understanding of statistical analysis techniques — its belief that nothing it releases should be benefit a customer until version 3.0 — or whatever — we are stuck with this regressive UI.

    Think of what Henry Ford is supposed to have said about colors and customer choice. That’s what MS has done with the new UI. Taken us back to the days of the Model T.

  5. I almost hate to say it, but Excel 2007 is growing on me. I’m definitely beyond the “hate it” stage, and I’m close to entering the “kinda like it” stage. Sure, I miss some of the customization stuff Tushar mentioned, but overall, I think the new features outweigh the problems. It does take getting used to, no doubt. I’ve been using it every day while doing my “Excel Bible” revision, and I’m starting to know where the commands are.

    I continue to use a lot of my old memorized keyboard shortcuts (Alt+EST, Alt+IR, etc.). I suspect the double-click problems will be fixed in the B2 refresh.

    One thing that I really like is the new fonts. They make a huge difference in the readability. Workbooks that use Arial now look old-fashioned to me. I’ve been using that Merge Styles command a lot to update the look of my old files.

  6. Tushar, John –

    “And, unless MS has fixed this, several instances where double-click used to work, it no longer does. One has to use right-click and select from the context-menu.”

    At least earlier in the beta process, this is “by design”. Double clicking is intended to activate the tab that Excel thinks is the one most likely wanted by the user. It is not intended to bring up the Format Whatever dialog, unlike earlier versions of Excel.

    – Jon

  7. Tushar,

    I agree with you 100%… the price is too high…especially the fact that I cant rigth click and customise…toolbars… hurts like hell… My Excel (2003) has atleast 4-5 custom toolbars – some related to addins and some just to bring out features that arent readily vistble….

    In 2007 I just get 1 lousy tool bar to customize…..and no tear off pallets…no way to customise buttons …havent figured it out as of now…

    I also havent figured out the following w.r.t the UI

    1) I loaded my old XLB file in Excel 2007 … I got my custom toolbars in Addins section… now I want to delete a few … I just cant do it now..can I…
    2) Where is the XLB file for Excel 2007 ?

    John …..I can list only 4 things that I look forward to using in Excel 2007
    a) More rows / More columns
    b) Filter by colour / Sort by colour – But this can be done with an addin in 2003
    (Also I cant filter for more than one colour in 2007…can I ?)

    c) Mutli level(more than 3) sort – Can be done with DigDB or Data –> Import–>External data –ExCel… etc(workaround)
    d) Improved Pivot features (filer/sort etc)

    Things that I hate about Excel 2007
    a) Cant select more than 8000 odd discontinuous cells from a filtered table (limitation since Excel 97)
    b) Cant do a advance filter with copy to destination pointing to a seperate sheet((limitation since Excel 97)

    c) Pasting more than one item per filed on filtered cells overwrites without warning….((limitation since Excel 97)

    c) Cant refer to a range of cells in a different work book in list validation (name workaround)
    (limitation since Excel 97)

    In fact the Validation interface is untouched…since 97 no improvements at all…
    Copy paste on validated cells — clears validation without warning….

    d) Cant do a file search…. from the task pane… in fact there is no task pane at all..

    e) Cant Compare 2 workbooks side by side (syncronised scrolling ) – as in 2003

    ….the list goes on and on and on…..


  8. Hi Ron,,

    Forgot to thank you for link….Was busy cribbing about the UI

    What about Close all (Shift + File), Copy Picture (Shift +Edit)….


  9. Ron – Nice work :)

    As for the discussion about the 2007 UI etc I can only conclude one thing and that is that we have helped MSFT to get a monopoly for the Office suite and 2007 is the outcome of it.

    Kind regards,

  10. “Sure, I miss some of the customization stuff Tushar mentioned, but overall, I think the new features outweigh the problems.”

    Well, it’s a curate’s egg alright.

    Just think how much better it would have been if they had simply given you the new features (more rows, more columns) without the problems?

    For me the two are independent: advances in some areas are absolutely no justification for backwards steps in another.


  11. Hi Sam

    >What about Close all (Shift + File), Copy Picture (Shift +Edit)….

    >And what about Type a question for help !!

    I will update the page with more information soon

  12. LOL.

    I wonder if it worries more than myself that most of my users, for which Excel is Open, Save, Autosum and Bold, will adapt to the new version within an hour, while I, “our so called expert”, will be useless for months :-)

    And yes, thanks Ron. Great work.

    Best wishes Harald

  13. hi Tushar and others
    can you pl help me !
    1. how do i load my .xlb file in the 1st place ?
    2. my Add-ins tab is simply not showing up – how do i make it show ? i’v done installing all add-ins, various changes in trust center, but still nothing

    excel dev team had made a serious mistake this time and my workplace management made a bad discision for us to go for it strictly and crap good ol’ 2003 – this is too much buulying for me for a day !

    till y/day, i thought i knew all around excel and today i’m simply stuck with my custom tool bars gone and cant figure to load ’em up

    thanks !

  14. Office 2007 has wrecked Excel for my use. I spend half my time coloring things and moving them around. Instead of having a tear-off palette like Excel in 2003 (two clicks to color a cell), I have to go through five clicks plus a lot of mouse movement to and from the ribbon menu for every cell. Not only does this take twice as long but I lose focus and no longer get to interact with the data directly. It is through a damn menu structure now. Doubling the time it takes me to do my work is not an improvement. The new features of Excel are good, but if I can’t use the tool, they aren’t good for me.

  15. Ron & mpemba have it right. Excel 2007 is small step forward in some ways and a huge step backwards in innumerable other ways. I have been using it for about 6 months and the more I am forced to use it, the more shortcomings I discover. Rarely do I discover an improvement.

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