How Do I Force an Excel Spreadsheet to Open in an Application?

By Jacob Michael

Use another application to open Excel files by default.
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Excel spreadsheet files are typically opened in Excel, but other programs, such as OpenOffice or Excel Viewer can open Excel-format files. If you already have Excel installed on your workstation, double-clicking on an Excel file will open it in Excel instead of your preferred program. Rather than launching your spreadsheet application and opening Excel files manually, you can set that program to open spreadsheet files by default.

Opening A Single Excel File

Right-click the Excel file, select "Open With" from the contextual menu and click the program you wish to use with the file.

Click "Choose Default Program" if your program doesn't appear in the list and select your program.

Clear the "Always Use the Selected Program to Open this Kind of File" option if you don't want to change the default program for that type of type.

Click the "OK" button to open your Excel file in the selected program.

Change the Default Program for Excel Files

Hover the mouse cursor over the top-right corner of the Home screen, move it down, and then click “Search.”

Type “Default Programs” without the quotation marks into the search box and click the “Apps” button. Click “Default Programs” from the list of search results.

Click “Set Your Default Programs.”

Click the application you wish to use to open Excel spreadsheet files.

Click “Choose Defaults for this Program.”

Check the boxes next to the “.xls” and “.xlsx” entries. You can also check the boxes next to other Excel-compatible formats, such as Comma Separated Values files (.csv) and Excel templates (.xlt and .xltx).

Click the “Save” button. Your Excel files now open in the new application by default.