How to Open Excel Spreadsheets in Separate Windows (In Easy Steps)

January 8, 2024 1.1K views

Excel can be tricky, especially when dealing with many spreadsheets. In this guide, we'll help you open Excel files in separate windows on Windows 10, Windows 11, and Mac. We'll speak your language, share our experiences, and give you tips at every step. Plus, we'll introduce WPS Spreadsheet, a great free Excel alternative. It's all about making Excel easier for you, with answers to your common questions along the way. Let's dive in!

How to Open Excel Spreadsheets in Separate Windows 10

For Windows 10 users, here's a simple guide to opening Excel spreadsheets in separate windows.

Step 1:Open Excel: Launch Microsoft Excel on your Windows 10 computer. You can do this by clicking on the Excel icon in the Start menu or by searching for "Excel" in the Windows search bar.

Step 2: Open a Spreadsheet:

Open the first Excel spreadsheet you want to work on by clicking on "File" > "Open" and then selecting the file from your computer.

Open file

Step 3:Open a New Excel Window

Click on the "View" tab on the Excel ribbon, and then click on "New Window." This will open a new window with the same spreadsheet.

Click New window

Step 4:Go to View tab: Nagative to View tab > View Side by Side

Click side by slide

How to Open Excel Spreadsheets in Separate Windows 11

Windows 11 users, follow these steps to open Excel spreadsheets in separate windows:

Step 1: Open the First Excel File

Step 2: Open the Second Excel File

Open the second Excel spreadsheet you want to work on by clicking on "File" > "Open" and selecting the file from your computer.

open secone excel

Step 3: Arrange Windows Side by Side

Place your mouse cursor on the maximize button, located in the top-right corner of the Excel window. Do not click it yet.

place your mouse

A small menu will appear. Select the "Side by Side" option. This will arrange the two Excel windows side by side.

select type

Step 4: Select the Second Excel File for the Other Side

Click on the second Excel window to make it the active window.

click second excel

Now, you will see both Excel windows side by side.


How to Open Excel Spreadsheets in Separate Windows on Mac

And for Mac users, here's how to do it:

Step 1: Open both Excel spreadsheets.

Step 2: Click "Window" in the top menu.

Select windown

Step 3: Choose "Arrange" and select "Vertical."  ( You can choose horizontal)

Select Vertical

Step 4: Click "OK."


Now, your two Excel spreadsheets will be arranged side by side, sharing the maximum screen space for efficient use.

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Algirdas Jasaitis


How to open Excel spreadsheets separately in Office 2007 or 2010

In Excel 2010 and earlier versions, you had the Multiple Document Interface (MDI), where all workbooks opened within a single application window. This means they shared a common ribbon UI or toolbar.

How to open multiple instances of Excel spreadsheet?

To open multiple instances of Excel, simply right-click the Excel icon on the taskbar, then hold the Alt key while clicking Excel in the menu. Alternatively, you can use the mouse wheel by holding Alt and clicking the Excel icon in the taskbar, then clicking on the scroll wheel to open a new Excel instance.

How do I know which Excel files are in which instance?

To determine which Excel files are associated with each instance, open the Task Manager (Ctrl + Shift + Esc) and expand each instance. This will reveal the files nested within each Excel instance, allowing you to easily identify which files belong to each separate instance.


In this comprehensive guide, we've explored the process of opening Excel spreadsheets separately on different platforms, such as Windows 10, Windows 11, and Mac. Our step-by-step instructions aim to make managing multiple Excel files a breeze. We also introduced WPS Spreadsheet as a top-notch, free alternative to Microsoft Excel.

15 years of office industry experience, tech lover and copywriter. Follow me for product reviews, comparisons, and recommendations for new apps and software.