Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: Bogging Down with Calculated Items.

Bogging Down with Calculated Items

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 15, 2016)

2

Torben wrote about a problem he was having with PivotTables in Excel. It seems that whenever he adds calculated items to the PivotTable, Excel takes a performance hit. If his dataset contains even a few thousand records, Excel even hangs.

PivotTables put a huge strain on Excel, as it slices, dices, and analyzes the data to create the table. The amount of strain experienced depends on many different factors, such as size of the dataset, the data in the PivotTable, etc. These factors can seemingly conspire against you, leaving you with a system that is sluggish at best.

There are ways, however, to change how Excel works with data to create the PivotTable. If you modify the settings that control this process, you may notice an improvement in Excel's responsiveness. There is no guarantee that these changes will cure all PivotTable problems, but they offer a good place to start. The changes you can make are covered in a Knowledge Base article, located here:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/273583

Read through the article and try some of the suggestions—you never know; it could make your PivotTables easier and faster to work with. (Even though the article specifically says it is applicable to Excel 2000, the concepts it suggests can be easily used with later versions of Excel.)

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (8072) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Bogging Down with Calculated Items.

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

Selective Formatting in Replacements

Do you need to replace text with a term or phrase that uses multiple formats? You can perform this seemingly complex task ...

Discover More

Changing Sections

When you divide your document into sections in order to change page layout attributes, you need to give some thought to ...

Discover More

Adding Phrases to the Grammar Checker

Word's grammar checker dutifully tries to mark all the questionable grammar in your sentences. If you are tired of a ...

Discover More

Program Successfully in Excel! John Walkenbach's name is synonymous with excellence in deciphering complex technical topics. With this comprehensive guide, "Mr. Spreadsheet" shows how to maximize your Excel experience using professional spreadsheet application development tips from his own personal bookshelf. Check out Excel 2013 Power Programming with VBA today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

Updating a PivotChart Automatically

If you expect your PivotCharts to update automatically when you update a PivotTables, you may want to alter, slightly, ...

Discover More

Counting with PivotTables

One of the ways you can use PivotTables is to generate counts of various items in a data table. This is a great technique ...

Discover More

Counting Ports of Call with a PivotTable

A PivotTable is a great way to aggregate and analyze data. Sometimes, though, it can be difficult to figure out how to ...

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 five more than 4?

2018-08-27 03:55:09

Peter Atherton

Louise

Power Pivot is the big thing (2016), try this link

https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Data-Analysis-Expressions-DAX-in-Power-Pivot-BAB3FBE3-2385-485A-980B-5F64D3B0F730


2018-08-26 12:26:13

Louise

The link to this article no longer works.


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.