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Favourite Free Excel Add-ins

Microsoft Excel has many powerful features, but it's not perfect. To add to its capabilities, I use a few free add-ins that make Excel even better, and asked other people what free add-ins they use, and would recommend to others.

Favourite Free Excel Add-ins

On this page, there's a list of free Excel add-ins, that I and other Excel spreadsheet users recommend. Maybe you'll see a few add-ins that you can download and install, and make working in Excel a bit easier.

Add-in Notes

Installation: After a recent Microsoft update, some Excel add-ins (mine and others) are not loading correctly. To show the add-ins, follow the instructions on my Excel Add-ins page.

Terms of Use: Please read the terms of use for these utilities, before you install them. Some are free for personal use, but might require a licence for commercial use. Also, some free add-ins might be discontinued, or change to paid versions only. If any of these are no longer free, please let me know and I will remove them from the list.

Contextures Free Excel Add-ins



Pivot Power Free Add-in

Use the Excel Pivot Power Free add-in to automate basic pivot table tasks, such as formatting and changing the value fields to a different function.

For example:

  • save and apply pivot table settings
  • change all values to the Sum function.
  • Apply number format to all values
  • and other time-saving features

Cost: FREE




Excel Free Backup Tool

Use the Backup Free add-in to quickly save a copy of your active file, in the current folder

  • back up your changes, while you work
  • make backup copies as needed, to save multiple versions
  • you can even make a PDF copy of your workbook, if needed
  • does not save your active file -- just creates a separate backup file

Cost: FREE

More Free Excel Add-ins

Here's a list of free add-ins from other Excel developers, that people recommended in my Contextures blog comments. I have used some of these add-ins, but not all of them.

I haven't heard reports or any problems with the following add-ins, but like everything else on the internet, use your best judgment, and download and use these add-ins at your own risk!

Some add-ins might have a Mac versions, but most are for Windows.





Andrew Engwirda

• Tools for working with code in the VBE - for example, Compare Code, Macro Comments, Multiple Find and Replace, and many more VBE tools
• Andrew has other free tools, including Custom Lists and XL Help Files Maker

ASAP Utilities

ASAP Utilities

• Home & Student edition is free
• Over 300 tools and utilities, including Split range into multiple worksheets, merge or import multiple files, and many more!


Jan Karel Pieterse

• Copies open workbooks at regular intervals, and does not overwrite the master file

Ribbon Editor

Andy Pope

• VBA add-in designer to help with the construction of Ribbon interfaces
• Andy has many more Excel add-ins, so take a look at those too!

Excel Contact Tools Max Schmeling • Save time when working with contact details (e.g. that of your co-workers) in the Active Directory.
• Open Source, on GitHub
Excel Essential Tools Max Schmeling • Extends default functionality of Excel with more than 50 tools. For example, workbook management, navigation, range editing, and many more
• Open Source, on GitHub


Bill Manville

• Looks for hidden links in a workbook, to find out why you are unexpectedly getting messages about link updating.
• This tool has saved me lots of time and aggravation!


Jan Karel Pieterse

• Makes it easier to search and replace throughout an entire workbook.
• Also lets you search and replace strings in objects such as headers and footers, chart titles, buttons and more

FRED Economic Data St. Louis Federal Reserve • With FRED add in, easily download and analyze economic data.
• For example, choose a data manipulation, specify date range, aggregate data, search for data, and browse popular data series
MenuRighter Doug Glancy • Excel addin that lets you modify right-click menus.
• See video demo in next section.
Name Manager Jan Karel Pieterse • Find names with errors and delete them, or track names that link to another workbook

Navigator Utilities

Navigator Utilities

• Navigate and audit workbooks. For example, identify errors, unprotect sheets, trace complex formulas

XLG Favourites

Ken Puls

• Adds submenu to File menu, to hold list of favourite files

Excel Navigator Dave Peterson, Ron de Bruin • Puts a new command on the Excel Ribbon, with a list of sheets in the current workbook
• Select a sheet, sort the sheets, select hidden sheet, hide active sheet
Excel Sheet Lister Dave Peterson Quickly select a sheet from this popup list that stays open while you work in Excel

Video Demo: MenuRighter

For an easy way to customize the right-click menu, get a copy of Doug Glancy's free Excel tool, the MenuRighter Add-in.

To see the steps for adding a command to a right-click menu, by using the free MenuRighter add-in, watch this short video.

For more instructions, and to download the MenuRighter add-in, you can visit Doug Glancy's website: MenuRighter Add-in.

Clean Up Add-ins Tab

If you open an old Excel workbook in which someone has attached a custom toolbar, that custom toolbar's tools will appear on the Add-Ins tab in your Excel Ribbon - making it hard to find the other commands on that tab.

Even after you close that workook, the commands will stay on the Add-ins tab, which clutters up your Excel Ribbon.

Fortunately, you can delete custom toolbars from the Ribbon, with an easy mouse shortcut.

To delete a custom toolbar from the Ribbon, follow these steps:

  • Right-click on any one of the custom toolbar's commands
  • In the pop-up menu, click the Delete Custom Toolbar command
  • Then, when the warning message appears, click Yes, to confirm that you want to delete the custom toolbar

Note: This does not delete the custom toolbar from that old workbook. It just deletes its commands from the Excel Ribbon.

My short YouTube video shows the steps:

Excel Add-in Tips and Links

For more tips and links, go to my Excel add-ins page. Topics include:

  • how to install and use Excel add-ins
  • what to do if an Add-in tab doesn't appear after you install it
  • how to save your own Excel file as an add-in
  • time saving Excel add-ins available to buy

Thanks to Contributors

Thanks to everyone who contributed to the discussion on my Contextures blog, and suggested Excel add-ins for this list:

More Links

How to Install an Add-in

Sheet Navigator Add-in

Tools for Managing Workbooks




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Last updated: December 23, 2022 3:55 PM