Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. 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: Copying a Worksheet.

Copying a Worksheet

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 9, 2016)

3

There are many times I have needed to duplicate a worksheet. Often it is because I have spent quite a bit of time developing a worksheet and I want to use it as a starting point for another. Excel lets you copy worksheets in the following manner:

  1. Right-click on the worksheet tab of the worksheet you want to copy. Excel displays a Context menu.
  2. Choose Move or Copy Sheet from the Context menu. Word displays the Move or Copy dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Move or Copy dialog box.

  4. If you want to copy the worksheet to another workbook, select that workbook's name in the To Book pull-down list. (The target workbook must be open within Excel.)
  5. In the Before Sheet list, select the worksheet that should come after the worksheet you selected in step 1.
  6. Make sure the Create a Copy check box is selected.
  7. Click on OK. The worksheets are reordered.

There is a faster way to copy worksheets in the same workbook. All you need to do is hold down the Ctrl key as you drag a worksheet tab to a new position in the workbook. Excel automatically copies the worksheet to the new position, leaving the old sheet intact.

There is also a "gotcha" here that you need to be aware of: Excel can sometimes balk if you try to copy a worksheet from a workbook saved in Excel's native format to a workbook that is saved in the older (pre-2007) format. This is because Excel can handle, currently, many, many more rows and columns in a worksheet than it could in earlier years. That means that when you try to transfer, Excel needs to let you know that it will truncate some data that may be in areas not supported in the earlier-formatted workbook.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (12359) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Copying a Worksheet.

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. ...

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Comments

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What is 6 - 3?

2016-10-30 03:45:02

Jeff Hill

I move & copy sheets in excel 2007 regularly and distribute a workbook with several sheets to people who are still using excel 2003. Not really suitable for pdf. What is the best way to copy a sheet or sheets [values only] from a excel 2007 to an excel 2003 workbook?


2016-04-11 12:10:21

Ann

Another advantage of using the Crtl key to copy worksheets is that it maintains formatting better.


2016-04-09 05:04:58

Petros

VBA code stored in worksheets (document modules) can be read from workbooks with unprotected structure (Review>Protect Workbook), even if the VBA project is password locked or unviewable. Read about the hack here:

http://www.spreadsheet1.com/read-document-vba.html


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