Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 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: Always Open at 100% Zoom.

Always Open at 100% Zoom

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated March 16, 2013)

If you work with workbooks first worked on by your colleagues, you may be frustrated by the zoom factor applied to those workbooks by those others. For instance, if your colleague (Wanda) has a huge monitor, it wouldn't be uncommon for her to reduce the zoom factor on Excel to 75% or even 60%. The purpose, of course, is so she isn't overpowered by things that look very large at the full zoom factor.

The problem is that the zoom factor is saved with the workbook. Thus, when Wanda saves the workbook and hands it off to you, when you open it, the workbook is still displayed at whatever zoom factor Wanda last used. If you don't have the same size monitor as Wanda, then the workbook may be almost illegible on your system.

There are only two possible solutions to this problem. First, you can simply adjust the zoom factor once you open the workbook. There are a multitude of ways to do this, but the easiest involve the Zoom setting on the Formatting toolbar, or using the scroll wheel on your mouse. (On some systems you may need to hold down the Ctrl key in order for the scroll wheel to adjust the zoom factor.)

The second workaround is to create a macro that gets saved with the workbook. The macro can run every time the workbook is opened, and thereby set the zoom factor. (This macro should be added to the This Workbook code window in the VBA editor.)

Private Sub Workbook_Open()
    ActiveWindow.Zoom = 100
End Sub

The only problem with a macro such as this, of course, is that whenever Wanda (your colleague) opens the workbook on her system, the zoom factor is also set and she'll get just as frustrated with you as you were with her.

Perhaps a solution is to create a more involved macro—one that checks the current screen resolution and then sets the zoom factor accordingly. For instance, the following macro could be used to make the adjustments based on resolution:

Declare Function GetSystemMetrics32 Lib "user32" _
    Alias "GetSystemMetrics" (ByVal nIndex As Long) As Long

Public Sub ScreenRes()
    Dim lResWidth As Long
    Dim lResHeight As Long
    Dim sRes As String

    lResWidth = GetSystemMetrics32(0)
    lResHeight = GetSystemMetrics32(1)
    sRes = lResWidth & "x" & lResHeight
    Select Case sRes
        Case Is = "800x600"
            ActiveWindow.Zoom = 75
        Case Is = "1024x768"
            ActiveWindow.Zoom = 125
        Case Else
            ActiveWindow.Zoom = 100
    End Select
End Sub

This routine checks the screen resolution and adjusts the window accordingly. Other resolutions and zooms may be added easily. To make the routine run automatically, just use a Workbook_Open event handler in the This Workbook code window to trigger the macro:

Private Sub Workbook_Open()
    ScreenRes
End Sub

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2668) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Always Open at 100% Zoom.

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

Ignore Setting on Misspelled Words not Persistent

When Word flags a word as misspelled, you have some options of how to handle it. This tip explains those options and provides ...

Discover More

Converting an Unsupported Date Format

Excel makes it easy to import information created in other programs. Converting the imported data into something you can use ...

Discover More

Comments in Text Boxes

If you use text boxes in your documents, you may sometime want to place a comment in the text box, the same as you can do ...

Discover More

Professional Development Guidance! Four world-class developers offer start-to-finish guidance for building powerful, robust, and secure applications with Excel. The authors show how to consistently make the right design decisions and make the most of Excel's powerful features. Check out Professional Excel Development today!

MORE EXCELTIPS (MENU)

Disabling the Insert Key

Tap the Insert key and you can start overwriting information already in a cell. If you don't want to do this, one way to ...

Discover More

Quickly Switching Between Spreadsheet Windows

Using the keyboard to switch between Excel spreadsheets.

Discover More

Moving from Sheet to Sheet with the Keyboard

Hate to take your fingers off the keyboard? Here's how you can move from worksheet to worksheet without touching the mouse.

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 for this tip:

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.

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.

Links and Sharing
Share