Disabling Page Layout View

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 20, 2022)

7

Chris notes that Excel supports both Normal and Page Layout views. He wonders if there is a way to disable Page Layout view so the user of a workbook cannot select it.

Excel makes these two views (Normal and Page Layout) available from the View tab of the ribbon. One might think that the solution is to simply modify the user interface so that the Page Layout tool is no longer available on the ribbon. This, unfortunately, is easier said than done.

If you are using Excel 2007, the user interface is notoriously hard to change. It requires writing XML code and making sure that the code is executed every time the workbook is opened. If you like notoriously hard things, you can find a bit about how to start at this page:

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa338202.aspx

If you are using Excel 2010 or a later version, then modifying the user interface is a bit easier. You can do it by following these steps:

  1. Click the File tab and then click Options. Excel displays the Excel Options dialog box.
  2. At the left side of the dialog box click Customize Ribbon. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Excel Options dialog box.

  4. In the right column of the dialog box, click the small plus sign at the left of the View tab entry. Excel shows you the options that are under the View tab.
  5. Click once on the Workbook Views option.
  6. Click the Remove button.
  7. Click OK.

That's it. Now, if you go look at the View tab, you'll notice that the user can no longer switch to Page Layout view. In fact, the user cannot pick any view other than whatever view you happen to be in at the current time. This change affects only the current machine, for all workbooks, and cannot be tied to any particular workbook. (The reason is that while you can modify the ribbons a bit in Excel 2010, you cannot modify them in macros. It's a big pain and you need to go back to writing XML code like in Excel 2007.)

Perhaps a better solution is to create a small macro that will make sure that the worksheet is always being displayed in Normal view. This is easy to do; just right-click on a worksheet tab and choose View Code from the resulting Context menu. In the code window, enter the following:

Private Sub Worksheet_SelectionChange(ByVal Target As Range)
    ActiveWindow.View = xlNormalView
End Sub

This code causes Excel to switch to Normal view every time someone changes what is selected on the screen. Someone could use the tools on the View tab of the ribbon to switch to Page Layout view, but as soon as they select a different cell the macro kicks in and switches back to Normal view.

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 (12139) 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

Copying Files or Folders

A common operation within Windows is to copy files and folders from one location to another. Here are the two major ways ...

Discover More

Squaring Table Cells

Inserting a table is fast and easy in Word. You may want to make sure that the cells in the table are as square as ...

Discover More

Converting UTC Times to Local Times

Dates and times are often standardized on UTC time, which is analogous to GMT times. How to convert such times to your ...

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)

Disabling Shift+Ctrl

Both Excel and Windows have scores of defined shortcut keys. This can be great for productivity, but it can be a real ...

Discover More

Problem with Missing Context Menu Option

When you right-click a cell, does it seem that the Context menu is missing an item or two? Here's how to get those items ...

Discover More

Saving Excel Configuration Settings

Excel lets you change lots of settings that affect the configuration of your system. At some point you may want to save ...

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}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) 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 nine more than 9?

2022-01-01 14:50:29

John Mann

@J. Woollwey
Thanks for that. I had searched all over after orriginally add my comment to the original tip, then when it popped recently I tried again, but somehow managed to miss those steps - maybe searching for the wrong thing or in the wrong place.

While it wasn't a major deal for me, I do like to keep things as installed plus my mods, rather than minus my mods. Most of what I use from the view tab is accessible elswhere - commands add to my bloated QUAT or already on the status bar at the bottom. From time to time I do like to look around at the things I'm not using regularly - sometimes that serves to point out something useful which my 80yr old brain had forgoten.

Thanks again, and a happy new year.


2022-01-01 11:05:48

J. Woolley

@John Mann
1. Click the File tab, then click Options to open the Excel Options dialog box.
2. At the left side of the dialog box click Customize Ribbon (see Figure 1 below) .
3. In the right column of the dialog box, expand the View tab, then select (but don't expand) Sheet View.
4. In the left column of the dialog box, pick "Choose commands from: Main Tabs," then expand the View tab.
5. Select Workbook Views, then click the Add button.
6. Click OK.

Figure 1. 


2021-12-31 14:24:26

John Mann

I'm still wondering if anyone knows how to reversed this tip. After removing the "Workbook Views" option from the "View" menu o fthe tab, I"ve stil not found a way to put it back.

I'm using Excel 2020 in Windows 10. I prefer modifying my ribon or QUAT by adding stuff, rather than removing things.

Thanks for any sugestions.


2021-12-05 13:27:38

Kenneth B Weatherford

When I try to create a header row in Excel and click on the Print Titles from Page Setup, I get a popup for printers. I don't get the A-Z sort to set up header row.


2019-04-27 18:49:17

Williams

How can I re-enable a previously disabled page layout view in excel 2013?


2017-01-22 11:08:55

John Mann

Further - how do I UNDO the removal after experimenting with this tip?


2017-01-22 11:00:53

John Mann

Disabling the views option in the ribbon doesn't disable the three little view icons on the status bar just left of the zoom control at the right hand end. I suspect many users would tend to use those to change to page layout rather than squidging around in 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.