If you have an old Excel spreadsheet, Excel opens it in normal view, which might be risky at times when it is downloaded from an unknown source. As many people Unblock the downloaded file without opening it, it might get you into trouble at times. That is why you can enable this setting to always open old Excel spreadsheets in Protected View. It is possible to do that using the in-built setting, Local Group Policy Editor, and Registry Editor.
How to make Excel open OLD spreadsheets in Protected View
To always open old Excel spreadsheets in Protected View, follow these steps:
- Open Microsoft Excel on your computer.
- Click on the Options menu.
- Switch to the Trust Center tab.
- Click the Trust Center Settings button.
- Go to the File Block Settings tab.
- Tick all the checkboxes related to old Excel versions.
- Click the OK button.
To know more about these steps, continue reading.
First, you need to open Microsoft Excel and click on the Options menu visible in the bottom-left corner. Then, go to the Trust Center tab, click on the Trust Center Settings button, and switch to the File Block Settings tab.
After that, make sure that the Open selected file types in Protected View option is selected. If so, tick all the Open checkboxes that are related to the old version of Excel.
For example, you need to tick the Excel 2007 and later Workbooks and Templates, Excel 97-2003 Workbooks and Templates, etc.
Finally, click the OK button to save the change.
Open old Excel spreadsheets in Protected View using Group Policy
To open old Excel spreadsheets in Protected View using Group Policy, follow these steps:
- Search for gpedit and click the search result.
- Navigate to File Block Settings in User Configuration.
- Double-click on the Excel 2007 and later workbooks and templates setting.
- Choose the Enabled option.
- Select the Open in Protected View option.
- Click the OK button.
- Repeat these steps for other older versions of Excel.
Let’s delve into these steps in detail.
To get started, you need to open the Local Group Policy Editor. To do that, search for gpedit in the Taskbar search box and click on the individual search result.
Then, navigate to the following path:
User Configuration > Administrative Templates > Microsoft Excel 2016 > Excel Options > Security > Trust Center > File Block Settings
Double-click on the Excel 2007 and later workbooks and templates setting and choose the Enabled option.
Then, select the Open in Protected View option and click the OK button.
Next, you need to repeat the same steps for all the older versions of Excel that are mentioned in the same path.
Always open old Excel spreadsheets in Protected View using Registry
To always open old Excel spreadsheets in Protected View using Registry, follow these steps:
- Press Win+R > type regedit > click the OK button.
- Click the Yes button.
- Navigate to Microsoft\office\16.0\excel in HKCU.
- Right-click on excel > New > Key and name it as security.
- Right-click on security > New > Key and name it as fileblock.
- Right-click on fileblock > New > DWORD (32-bit) Value.
- Set the name as xlsxandxltxfiles.
- Double-click on it to set the Value data as 4.
- Click the OK button and restart your PC.
Let’s check out these steps in detail.
You need to start the process by opening the Registry Editor on your computer. For that, press Win+R > type regedit > click the OK button and click on the Yes option.
After that, navigate to this path:
Right-click on excel > New > Key and name it as security.
Then, repeat the same steps and create a sub-key under the security key, and set the name as fileblock. Following that, right-click on fileblock > New > DWORD (32-bit) Value and name it as xlsxandxltxfiles.
Next, double-click on it to set the Value data as 4 and click the OK button.
Once done, you can set the REG_DWORD value for other older versions of Excel as well. For that, you need to use these names: xl9597workbooksandtemplates, xl95workbooks, xl97workbooksandtemplates, etc.
Finally, restart your PC to get the change. Alternatively, you can sign out and re-sign in to your account as well.
Read: How to ALWAYS open OLD PowerPoint presentations in Protected View
How do I open an Excel file that won’t open in Protected View?
To open an Excel file that won’t open in Protected View, you need to unlock it first. Generally, it happens when you try to open a downloaded file in Excel. In such situations, you can right-click on the file, select Properties, and tick the Unlock button.
Read: How to open OLD Word documents in Protected View
How do you open an Excel sheet that is protected?
To open an Excel sheet that is protected, you must unlock it first. For that, you can right-click on the file and tick the Unlock checkbox. Second, you can double-click on the file and click on the Enable Editing button. Then, you can open and edit the protected view without any restriction.
Also read: How to always open PDF files in Protected View in Word.