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

Changing the Office Assistant

The Office Assistant is part of the Help system available in Excel. If you want, you can change which Office Assistant ...

Discover More

Summing Only Visible Values

When you use SUM to determine the total of a range of values, Excel doesn't really pay attention to whether the values ...

Discover More

Aligning Cells when Importing from CSV

When you import information from a CSV text file, Excel formats the data according to its default settings. Wouldn't it ...

Discover More

Comprehensive VBA Guide Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is the language used for writing macros in all Office programs. This complete guide shows both professionals and novices how to master VBA in order to customize the entire Office suite for their needs. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2010 today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

Selected Cells Not Shaded

Does the pale coloring scheme used to mark selected cells by Excel 2007 drive you nuts? You aren't alone. Here's an idea ...

Discover More

Controlling Display of the Formula Bar

The Formula Bar is a regularly used feature in the Excel interface. You can, however, modify whether Excel displays the ...

Discover More

Increasing Undo Levels

Excel maintains a record of most of the commands you execute so that you can later "undo" those commands, if desired. It ...

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 two more than 9?

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.