Synchronized Workbook and Worksheet Names

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 18, 2018)

If you work with older workbooks, you may notice something weird happening with them. I opened an old workbook recently, and it contained only a single worksheet. In this workbook, the name of the worksheet is always the same as the name of the workbook. If the workbook name changes (perhaps I rename it in Windows), the worksheet name also automatically changes to the same name.

This behavior is not something that is native to newer versions of Excel, but is with older versions. In very old versions of Excel (versions 2.1 and 3), there was no such thing as worksheets; there were simply spreadsheet files. Excel 4 allowed you to have multiple worksheets, but if you only had one of them, then the worksheet name would always equal the name of the workbook, by default.

When you open an older spreadsheet file in a newer version of Excel that does support worksheets, Excel will show a single worksheet that has the same name as the file in which it is contained. If you exit Excel, change the name of the file, and then open the file again, you should notice that the name of the worksheet has changed as well.

To change this behavior, just use the Save As command to save the workbook using the file format that is appropriate for your version of Excel. If you then rename the workbook, the worksheet name should not change.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (1950) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Removing Unused Styles

Got an older document that has a bunch of unused styles defined in it? You can get rid of those styles easily by using ...

Discover More

Relative VBA Selections

Need to select a cell using a macro? Need that selection to be relative to the cell you currently have selected? Here are ...

Discover More

Retrieving Drive Statistics

Need to gather some information about the drives on a system? It can be pretty easy to do using a macro, as shown in this ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

More ExcelTips (menu)

Creating a Copy without Formulas

Excel makes copying worksheets (duplicating them) rather easy. However, you may want a worksheet copy that differs from ...

Discover More

Viewing Same Cells on Different Worksheets

When switching from one worksheet to another, you might want to view the same portion of the new worksheet that you were ...

Discover More

Shortcut to Move between Two Worksheets

Moving between to adjacent worksheets is easy; Excel provides a shortcut key to do the trick. If you want to move between ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is six minus 1?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the menu interface (Excel 97, Excel 2000, Excel 2002, or Excel 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.