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How to open a separate Excel file on the second monitor

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  • Sep 5th, 2020 8:48 am
[OP]
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Jun 14, 2018
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How to open a separate Excel file on the second monitor

I just bought a second monitor to use for WFH, and I'm having issues with opening up a second Excel file separate from the first file in order to view the files on each screen. As it stands, I open the second file and it's stuck to the first file. I can't drag the second file away from the first. I googled it up and did see that I can hold "Shift" and double-click Excel, which will open a new sheet on a separate window and I can just open the file that I need from there, but is there a way that I can just double-click the Excel file that I want and a separate one just opens up without me having to go through the other extra steps? That's what I currently have with the two monitors at work, so I figure there must be a way here. Any help would be appreciated.
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You have to open a new instance of Excel. I find that the easiest way to do this is to pin Excel to your taskbar, right click on the icon, and left click on "Excel". A 2nd instance will open up. When I try to do this from the start menu I don't see this option.

If you have Excel open already with one spreadsheet, click on the "New" icon and a 2nd instance of Excel will open up. Use this 2nd instance to open the 2nd spreadsheet.

It took me so long to figure this out.
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[OP]
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ds2chan wrote: You have to open a new instance of Excel. I find that the easiest way to do this is to pin Excel to your taskbar, right click on the icon, and left click on "Excel". A 2nd instance will open up. When I try to do this from the start menu I don't see this option.

If you have Excel open already with one spreadsheet, click on the "New" icon and a 2nd instance of Excel will open up. Use this 2nd instance to open the 2nd spreadsheet.

It took me so long to figure this out.
Thanks for the response.

I don't doubt that what you're saying works, but when I use Excel on the work computer, I just have to click on the specific file and it will open on a new window separate from the other file already opened and allow me to drag it to the other monitor. That's what I'm looking to have happen for these monitors at home as well.
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Which version?
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thriftshopper wrote: Which version?
Right now at home, I'm using Excel 2010. Not sure which version of it is on the work computer, but I'm assuming it's the same. This is a work computer that they gave to me, so I don't think it's a different version.
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Hmm, I have the newest version of Excel (365) on my personal computer and it seems to work well (just click on the file and will open on separate window for me to drag this file only to the other screen). Guess it must be the older versions of Excel don't allow you to do this.
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Not an older version issue perhaps, but how you open Excel.

I tested (only have Office, and hence Excel 2007 and 2010). Opening 2007 from the start menu on the computer I am using opens a window, so if I do it twice, I have two windows, 3x 3 windows, etc..

If I click on xls files to open them, then there are all open only on the one window.
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thriftshopper wrote: Not an older version issue perhaps, but how you open Excel.

I tested (only have Office, and hence Excel 2007 and 2010). Opening 2007 from the start menu on the computer I am using opens a window, so if I do it twice, I have two windows, 3x 3 windows, etc..

If I click on xls files to open them, then there are all open only on the one window.
I don't have any issues having new worksheets opening on separate windows if I go [Start Menu --> Excel] twice, but I'm talking about saved files that you've already been working on for a while. If you just click on the files (for instance if there are saved on the desktop), will your two files open on two separate windows thus allowing you to drag one of the files to the other monitor?
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MarinersFanatik wrote: I don't have any issues having new worksheets opening on separate windows if I go [Start Menu --> Excel] twice, but I'm talking about saved files that you've already been working on for a while. If you just click on the files (for instance if there are saved on the desktop), will your two files open on two separate windows thus allowing you to drag one of the files to the other monitor?
There's the rub. If you do the second method, the opened files appear in one window - and I haven't found the function to make two or more windows out of two or more opened files. If you open a new session of Excel, then open a file, do the same again and open another file, etc., you get them on separate windows. I haven't used Excel for work in over 20 years. I don't recall having this problem with pre-2007 versions. So many things have changed I forget (started out on Excel in the mid/late '80s, and actually used Lotus 1-2-3 before that).
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thriftshopper wrote: There's the rub. If you do the second method, the opened files appear in one window - and I haven't found the function to make two or more windows out of two or more opened files. If you open a new session of Excel, then open a file, do the same again and open another file, etc., you get them on separate windows. I haven't used Excel for work in over 20 years. I don't recall having this problem with pre-2007 versions. So many things have changed I forget (started out on Excel in the mid/late '80s, and actually used Lotus 1-2-3 before that).
That's what I'm getting at. On my computers at the work office (and on my personal laptop), I literally just click on the saved files on my desktop and they will automatically open in separate windows. I don't have to go through the Start Menu and open new worksheets route. I'm trying to get that for the Excel on my work laptop.
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MarinersFanatik wrote: I don't have any issues having new worksheets opening on separate windows if I go [Start Menu --> Excel] twice, but I'm talking about saved files that you've already been working on for a while. If you just click on the files (for instance if there are saved on the desktop), will your two files open on two separate windows thus allowing you to drag one of the files to the other monitor?
This was the problem I was having too. Double clicking on XLS files would open in the same instance of Excel. Microsoft implemented this after version 2013 (before Office 2013, double clicking on an XLS file would open in a new instance of Excel). So, the solution I provided is what I found out.

If you want it looks like you can fix this by updating your registry -> https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/office ... w-instance. I never thought Microsoft would provide a solution to something by telling people to edit the Windows registry.
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[OP]
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Jun 14, 2018
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ds2chan wrote: This was the problem I was having too. Double clicking on XLS files would open in the same instance of Excel. Microsoft implemented this after version 2013 (before Office 2013, double clicking on an XLS file would open in a new instance of Excel). So, the solution I provided is what I found out.

If you want it looks like you can fix this by updating your registry -> https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/office ... w-instance. I never thought Microsoft would provide a solution to something by telling people to edit the Windows registry.
Not sure your link is what I'm looking for.
This method works only when you use the Excel icon to open the application. If you use File Open within the Excel application or double-click a file in Windows Explorer, the files will still open in the same instance as designed.
I'm trying not to go through the troubles of clicking on the Excel icon and then opening the file from that fresh worksheet. I'm looking to just double-click a file anywhere (desktop, C: drive, etc) and it will default open on a different Excel window that allows me to drag that file only to the 2nd screen.
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MarinersFanatik wrote: I'm trying not to go through the troubles of clicking on the Excel icon and then opening the file from that fresh worksheet. I'm looking to just double-click a file anywhere (desktop, C: drive, etc) and it will default open on a different Excel window that allows me to drag that file only to the 2nd screen.
Ah. Sorry. I was looking at Symptoms. I didn't read that note. When MS implemented this I thought there would be an option for this. I have no clue why MS thought everybody would want to double click and open all of their spreadsheets in a single instance of Excel. I guess we may just be stuck with this "feature".

Symptoms
In Microsoft Excel 2013 and later versions, when you open multiple spreadsheets, they all open in the same instance of Excel. However, in some situations, such as when you're working with large Excel spreadsheets, you may want to open each one in a new instance. This article explains how to do that by configuring a registry key.
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It seems that they took out the option to "show all Windows in the taskbar" in Office 2013. A workaround would be to change your taskbar settings to Never Combine.

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