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: Understanding Manual Calculation.

Understanding Manual Calculation

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 7, 2018)

3

When you change a value in any cell of a worksheet, Excel automatically recalculates all the other formulas within the worksheet. This means that Excel is always up to date, based on any changes you may have performed.

If you have an absolutely huge worksheet or a terribly slow computer (or both), then doing a calculation after every change can get very tedious. In these situations, you can actually spend more time waiting on Excel to finish calculating than you do on entering information.

The answer to this problem is to configure Excel so that all calculations are done manually. This is easy to do by following these steps:

  1. Display the Formulas tab of the ribbon.
  2. Click the Calculation Options tool, in the Calculation group. Excel displays some different ways you can have your worksheet calculated.
  3. Choose Manual.

Now, Excel does not calculate your worksheet automatically. Instead, you must press F9 whenever you want to update the results displayed within your worksheet.

You can also change the calculation setting in this manner:

  1. Display the Excel Options dialog box. (In Excel 2007 click the Office button and then click Excel Options. In Excel 2010 and Excel 2013 display the File tab of the ribbon and then click Options.)
  2. Click the Formulas option at the left of the dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The formulas area of the Excel Options dialog box.

  4. In the Calculation Options section of the dialog box, make sure the Manual radio button is selected.
  5. Click on OK.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (9999) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Understanding Manual Calculation.

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

Displaying Blanks when Summing to Zero

If you use fields to sum the information in your table columns, you might want to display a blank when the sum is zero. ...

Discover More

Converting Lists to Text

If you have a numbered list in a document, you might want to convert it to regular, non-dynamic text and not lose the ...

Discover More

Resetting Hyperlink to Original Color

When you click a hyperlink in a Word document, the color of the hyperlink changes. If you want to change the color back ...

Discover More

Solve Real Business Problems Master business modeling and analysis techniques with Excel and transform data into bottom-line results. This hands-on, scenario-focused guide shows you how to use the latest Excel tools to integrate data from multiple tables. Check out Microsoft Excel 2013 Data Analysis and Business Modeling today!

More ExcelTips (ribbon)

Changing the Ribbon's Size and Look

The Ribbon, while debatably handy, can be downright difficult to use for those with a sight impairment. Here are some ...

Discover More

Getting Rid of Numbered Columns

Excel normally refers to columns as A, B, C, etc. It also has a referencing format that allows columns to be referred to ...

Discover More

Controlling How Excel Interprets Percentages

When entering data in a worksheet, Excel tries to figure out how your entry can best be shown on the screen. When 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 four more than 2?

2014-10-01 03:28:44

Steven Piers

Perhaps you can add the option to press shift + F9, this will only recalculate the active sheet in stead of the total file.


2014-10-01 03:28:03

Steven Piers

Perhaps you can add the option to press shift + F9, this will only recalculate the active sheet in stead of the total file.


2014-07-28 08:58:57

Bryan

I've said it before (once on this tip, actually, before it was removed) and I'll say it again: if you have a slow worksheet, you can resort to manual calculation, but it would be far worth your time investment to do some research on the internet about how to speed up your worksheets. Sometimes something as easy as deleting empty rows can make the difference between insufferable and unnoticeable calculation lags.


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.