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Undoing Smart Tag Exclusions

Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2002 and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Undoing Smart Tag Exclusions.

Lora is using frequently uses the Smart Tags feature of Excel for financial symbols. In the Smart Tags context menu, she selected to stop recognizing a specific set of letters as a financial symbol, since the letters were the same as the initials of her assistant. Now that the assistant is no longer with the company, Lora wants Excel to recognize these letters as a financial symbol again.

Unfortunately, there is no easy way to do this. When you excluded the letters, they were added to a file called ignore.xml. You can locate this file using the Search feature in Windows, and then you can edit it using either Word or your favorite text editor, such as Notepad. You need to be careful, however; if you mess up the file by deleting something you shouldn't (or leaving in something you shouldn't), then the Smart Tags that you previously excluded may not work properly. For this reason, it would be prudent to make a backup copy of the file before you edit it.

Once the file is open, search for the letters you no longer want excluded. Delete the entire XML item tag to which the letters belong. You can then save the file and reopen Excel. If everything went well, the letters should again be recognized with a Smart Tag.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3094) applies to Microsoft Excel 2002 and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Undoing Smart Tag Exclusions.

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