Excel is a versatile tool for data manipulation and visualization which is widely used for various purposes. However, facing problems while using it can be challenging, especially for those who depend on it for their work.

One such problem that Windows users are reporting is related to Excel files opening in the Notepad utility. This happens when Windows associates the .xlsx or .xls file extension with Notepad instead of Excel. Below, we have listed various fixes that you can try to fix this problem once and for all.

1. Use the “Open With” option

When Windows isn’t sure how to handle it, the easiest way to open a file in the app of your choice is to use the “Open With” option.

Simply right-click on the file you want to launch and choose > Open with Microsoft Excel. If you can’t locate Excel in the context menu, click “Choose another app” and then select Microsoft Excel.

You can also use the “Open With” option to set a default program if you want to make sure that all files of a particular format automatically open in Excel. Just right-click on the file, choose Open with > Choose another app. From there choose Excel and check the option “Always use this app to open files”.

2. Change Default Settings for File Types

When you double-click a file in Windows, the system knows which application to use to open it. By default, Excel files are configured to be opened with Excel. In some cases where these configurations have been changed, these files may open in Notepad instead.

To fix this problem, you can specify the types of files you want to open with Excel and set Excel as their default application through the Settings utility.

Hopefully, you will be able to open Excel files successfully in Excel.

3. Check File Extension Type

May be the system is opening the file in notepad also because the file extension type is not supported by excel.

To make sure there isn’t a problem with the file extension type, you can enable the “File name extensions” option in File Explorer and check the file type. Ideally, the extension should match Excel file types such as .xls, .xlsx, or .csv.

You can now try to open the file again. Hopefully this time it will launch in Excel.

4. Use Excel Repair Tool (if applicable)

If you are unable to open files with Excel and an error occurs whenever you try to do so, the file may be corrupt or damaged.

If this scenario is applicable, you may consider using third-party Excel repair tools to repair corrupt or damaged Excel files. There are many free options available online, and it is important to choose a reliable and trustworthy software application.

Once the tool is downloaded, select the corrupted Excel file and click on Repair button. The utility will begin to analyze and repair the file.

How to properly open and use Excel files on Windows

It’s not uncommon for users to encounter problems when trying to use Excel, but fortunately, most of these problems are easy to fix. Hopefully, the solutions we have listed above will help you access the target files with Excel in no time.

To avoid such problems in future, make sure that you always save your files with the correct file extension and keep your Microsoft Office suite updated.

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