C.1. File Menu
The File menu has everything you need to open , save, and print workbooks. It also has a few extra frills for converting your data into a Web page and sending Excel files and data by email.
This command is the first step in creating a new, blank workbook. When you select New, Excel shows the New Workbook task on the right side of the main window. The links in this window help you create a new blank workbook (click the "Blank workbook" link) or one based on an existing template. For information about using templates, see Chapter 15.
Choose File Open to launch the Open dialog box, where you can browse to an existing Excel workbook file (.xls) and load it up. The Open dialog box also has a "Files of type" list where you can choose a different format (for example, to import the Lotus 1-2-3 spreadsheets you created in 1995). For the full scoop on opening and importing, see Section 1.5 (Chapter 1).
This command closes the workbook in the current window. If you have at least one workbook still open in an Excel window, the Excel application sticks around. (Use the File Exit command to close everything at once.) Excel prompts you to save your workbook if you've made any changes since the last time you saved it.
Save your current workbook by choosing File Save. If youve previously saved the file, Excel quietly updates the existing file. (Choose File Save As to create a copy with a new name instead). If you're trying to save a new workbook, Excel shows the Save As dialog box, which lets you pick a file name and folder to store your new work.
This command shows the Save As dialog box, where you can choose a file name and folder location for your workbook file. If you've saved the file previously and choose File Save As, you create a new copy of the file. For information about extra features (like saving a file with a password), see Chapter 1).
Excel can translate your worksheet data into an HTML file that Web surfers can view in a browser. Start this process by choosing File Save as Web Page. For information about the many HTML-conversion options that Excel gives you, see Chapter 24.
Workspace files (which end in .xlw) store information about all the documents you currently have open and their onscreen coordinates inside the main Excel window. The Save Workspace command lets you create these files. You can open the workspace file later on as a quick way to resume where you left off. When you do so, Excel automatically opens all the referenced workbook files. For more information about workspaces, see Section 6.1.6 (Chapter 6).
Choose File File Search to open the Basic File Search task on the right side of the main Excel window. You can use this task to hunt for Excel files on your computer. Page Section 1.5.1 (Chapter 1) describes the process.
Choose Do Not Distribute or Restrict Permission As from this submenu to prevent sensitive documents from being forwarded, copied , or edited by unauthorized people. You can even create time-limited workbooks that expire automatically (becoming inaccessible to others) after a certain period of time. There's a significant catch, howeverthis feature doesn't work unless you install the Information Rights Management (IRM) program on your computer and on the computer of everyone else who needs to use your documents. You also need to set up an IRM server on your network to dole out permissions and keep everything running smoothly. If this sounds complicatedwell, it is. Most people take the low-tech alternative and password protect their documents (see Section 1.4.2 in Chapter 1). For more information about setting up a network with IRM, see the overview at www.microsoft.com/office/editions/prodinfo/technologies/irm.mspx. For more technical details, see www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/technologies/rightsmgmt.
Planning to export your worksheet data to an HTML document by using File Save as Web Page? Then use this command first to get a preview of what it'll look like after the conversion takes place. The preview loads up in the default Web browser for your computer (typically, Internet Explorer).
The Page Setup dialog box (File Page Setup) lets you configure various details about your printout, including margins, paper size , and headers and footers. For a step-by-step look at these options, check out the printing information in Chapter 6.
You can use this submenu to specify a specific portion of your worksheet to print out. To do so, select the cells that you want to see in the printout, and then select File Print Area Set Print Area. (You can then print this area at any time by selecting File Print.) To undo this setting, so that you can print out everything in your workbook, select File Print Area Clear Print Area.
The preview window (File Print Preview) shows what your worksheet will look like when you print it. This preview window is a great tool for seeing the page-by-page breakdown of your data, and it also lets you change margins on the fly. To get back to the ordinary Excel window so you can keep modifying your data, click the Close button in the toolbar at the top of the Print Preview window.
The Print dialog box (File Print) lets you choose your printer, the number of copies you want, and the quality of your printout. (See Chapter 6 for a detailed description of Excel printing.) If you want to print your document with a single click, use the Print icon in the Standard toolbar. It sends your document straight to the printer, without showing the Print dialog box.
This submenu provides several options that let you email your Excel workbook file. Chose File Send To Mail Recipient to send your data in the body of an email message, or File Send To Mail Recipient (As Attachment) to send your workbook as a separate attachment. You can also use the other Send To options to manage the review process of a document. For more information about setting up a review chain and using Excel's reviewing features, see Chapter 21.
The Properties dialog box (File Properties) provides some basic information about the current workbook. Select the Statistics tab to see information about when the document was created, printed, and last edited. Choose the Summary tab to set or review general information like the document's author, title, and description. (This information isn't actually used by Excel, but it's handy if you're trying to identify a mysterious workbook file that you've just discovered .) If you want to get a little more fancy, you can use the Custom tab to attach any miscellaneous piece of information you want to the document. For example, you can add a Document Number property that's used for a document-tracking system, or a Fudge Factor property that stores a number from 1 to 10 that indicates how reliable your numbers are.
This command closes Excel (and it prompts you to save any workbooks that have unsaved changes). File Exit closes all the Excel workbooks you have open. To shut just one at a time, use File Close.