There are instances that data on an Excel workbook needs to be shared so that other users can make their inputs or suggestions. Once all of the data from other users have been entered in their own copy of the workbook, then everything is usually combined together in one Excel spreadsheet. The instructions outlined here describe how to merge workbooks in Excel for computers that have the Windows XP operating system.
- Access the workbook that you wish to share. First and foremost, identify the data that you wish to share with other users. Of course, this data should have been already stored in the Excel spreadsheet program.
- Make copies of the original Excel spreadsheet for distribution. Click on the Tools tab of your original Excel spreadsheet. Select the option Share Workbook for the small pop up window of the same title to appear. Click on the Editing tab and click on the empty square box right beside the option Allow changes by more than one user at the same time. Now, go to the Advanced tab by clicking on it once. Under the Track changes section, click on the radio button alongside the item Keep change history for: and input the number of days you will allow for other users to make their inputs on the data. Click OK on the Share Workbook window and then OK once more on the prompt box that appears immediately after for the changes to take effect. Now, ascertain the number of people who will need a copy of the original Excel spreadsheet, as each has to be given their own copy complete with a unique file name. This is to make sure that all holders of the shared workbook get to make necessary changes on the spreadsheet and be able to save these for others to view as well. To do so, click on the File tab of the Excel spreadsheet, and select Save as to make the necessary number of copies for distribution. Again, each copy has to be named uniquely.
- Finally merge workbooks in Excel. To do this, you will need to access the original Excel spreadsheet once more. Now, click on the Tools tab once more, but select the option Compare and Merge Workbooks this time. You will be directed to the window entitled Select Files to Merge into Current Workbook. Locate the workbook that contains the additional inputs by highlighting it. After you're done doing this, click on OK.
Simply repeat the procedures described in step 3 if you are going to merge more than one workbook at a time.