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: Setting a Default File Format.
by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 13, 2017)
Normally, Excel saves your worksheets in the workbook format that is appropriate for the version of the software you are using. This means that your worksheets are stored in a peculiar way that is understood by your version of Excel, but may not be understood by other programs—including earlier versions of Excel.
If you do a lot of work with people who use other versions of Excel or who use a different spreadsheet program, you may want to specify a different default file format for your files. Excel makes this easy; just follow these steps:
Figure 1. The Transition tab of the Options dialog box.
ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2968) 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: Setting a Default File Format.
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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.