Displaying Excel's Developer Tab

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 12, 2017)

2

The user interface in modern versions of Excel—first introduced in Excel 2007—can be confusing, especially to those who have long used the interface of previous versions of the program. The new interface uses a "ribbon" type of interface, visible at the top of the screen. The ribbon is made up of different tabs, each of which contains a collection of related tools. The tabs that are visible often depend on what you are doing in Excel at the moment.

One tab that is especially necessary for advanced users is the Developer tab. This tab contains a variety of tools that allow you to "develop" and customize Excel. Of particular importance is the fact that the Developer tab contains tools that allow you to create and access macros.

The Developer tab is not contextual in nature; it should always be visible on the ribbon. If it is not visible, that means you have not configured Excel to display it. (The Developer tab is not visible in a default installation of Excel.) To display the tab if you are using Excel 2007, follow these steps:

  1. Click the Office button and then click Excel Options. Excel displays the Excel Options dialog box.
  2. Make sure that Popular is selected at the left side of the dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Popular options of the Excel Options dialog box.

  4. Ensure the Show Developer Tab in Ribbon check box is selected.
  5. Click OK.

If you are using Excel 2010 or a later version, the steps are different:

  1. Display the File tab of the ribbon.
  2. Click Options. Excel displays the Excel Options dialog box.
  3. Click Customize Ribbon at the left side of the dialog box.
  4. Using the Customize the Ribbon drop-down list (right side of the dialog box, near the top), choose Main Tabs. (See Figure 2.)
  5. Figure 2. The options for customizing the ribbon.

  6. At the right side of the dialog box make sure a check mark appears in the checkbox to the left of the Developer option.
  7. Click OK.

The Developer tab should now be visible on the ribbon.

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the ExcelTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (6747) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Hiding the Reviewing Toolbar

Does the Reviewing toolbar keep popping up whenever you create a document? Here's a possible reason, along with what you ...

Discover More

Displaying Spaces in a Document

Seeing where every space is within a document can be very helpful in polishing your editing. Here's how to make those ...

Discover More

Adjusting Row Height when Wrapping Text

If you have some cells merged in a worksheet, and you wrap text within that merged cell, Excel won't automatically resize ...

Discover More

Professional Development Guidance! Four world-class developers offer start-to-finish guidance for building powerful, robust, and secure applications with Excel. The authors show how to consistently make the right design decisions and make the most of Excel's powerful features. Check out Professional Excel Development today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

Adding a Little Animation to Your Life

Tired of the same old boring Excel look? You can add some life to your worksheets by introducing some animation. Here's ...

Discover More

Specifying the Behavior of the Enter Key

You type information in a cell and press Enter. What happens then? Excel allows you to specify exactly what should ...

Discover More

Enabling Circular References by Default

Some formulas require the use of circular references in order to determine a result. If you want to make sure that ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 3 + 2?

2018-06-14 02:04:34

Mrid..zy

Hi Mr Wyatt,

As you suggest I enabled Developer option in ribbon
but still few tools (VB, Macros) are not working, are disabled.
I am using 32 BIT Office 2013.

while in other system 62 Bit Office 2013 those are working fine

Pls help

Thanks!


2017-08-12 20:38:33

Alex B

Using Excel 2010 or a later version, step 1-3 can be achieved,
by right-clicking any tab on the ribbon, and then clicking Customize the Ribbon.


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the ribbon interface (Excel 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.