How to enable macros in Microsoft Excel

Microsoft Excel is by far the most popular application for creating spreadsheets. Now Excel files seem innocuous enough at first with rows and columns full of data, but experienced Excel users know that the application has some incredibly powerful tools that perform some extremely advanced functions. One of the ways to do this is by enabling macros in Excel to reduce manual data entry and allow Excel to do what it does best. In this guide, we will tell you what macros are, how to enable macros in Microsoft Excel, and how to use them to improve your workflow.

What is a macro in Microsoft Excel?

Before we tell you how to enable macros, it is important to know what a macro consists of Microsoft Excel. In simple terms, a macro allows you to automate repeated tasks such as calculating the sum total of students’ grades in different subjects. For example, you have a spreadsheet that consists of a list of students with their scores in different subjects. Now instead of calculating the total grades for each student one by one, you can record a macro performing the assignment on one student and then you can easily automate the same with other students just by running the macro.

Security risks of running macros

Of course, macros are really useful and make our lives easier by automating repeated tasks, but there are huge security risks when running macros from unverified sources. While it should be absolutely fine to run a macro that you created yourself, the same cannot be said for the ones you download online. You must understand that a malicious macro can even delete important files stored on your computer. There is always a security risk involved when you turn on the enable all macros setting. This is why it is always recommended to enable macros whenever necessary and naturally, you should keep them disabled when not in use.

How to enable macros in Microsoft Excel

Now, let’s learn how to enable macros in Microsoft Excel. Follow these steps.

  1. Considering that you have already created a spreadsheet in Excel, click Archive And go to Choices.
  2. Click Customize the ribbon and under Main Tabs, check Developer. By doing this, the Developer tab will appear on the main screen.
  3. So once done, click Trust Center > Trust Center Settings > Macro settings. This is where you choose the fourth option, Enable all macros which always allow you to run macros. However, make sure that whenever you don’t need it to use macros, you choose the second option: Disable all macros with notification.
  4. Now, go back to the main page and click the Developer.
  5. After this, you click Record macro > enter the macro Name > enter your shortcut key > choose where you want to store the macro, that is, in the current workbook or as a common macro in your personal workbook> Press OK.
  6. You can then start recording the commands. Once done, press Stop recording.
  7. Similarly, if you are using MS Excel on a Mac, you need to repeat the same steps mentioned above. Also, the nice thing about enabling macros while using Excel on a Mac is that the Developer tab is already present in the toolbar at the top. different to Windows 10, you don’t need to dig into the settings and specifically enable it.
  8. So now whenever you run the macro by pressing the assigned shortcut key while working on your spreadsheet, the same task as you recorded earlier will be performed. You can do this as many times as you want.
  9. To check all your stored macros, you will need to click Macros. Once you do this you can access a bunch of other macro related settings like edit, delete, run, etc.
  10. Also, for quick access to macro security settings, click Macro security And as we suggest, once you are done using macros, check the second option.

This is how you can enable macros in Microsoft Excel. What are your favourite macros? Let us know in the comments.

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