How to Enable Autosave in Excel

You may lose hours of work if you don't have the Autosave option enabled in Excel and your computer crashes or the program freezes and you are forced to close it. If you turn on the Autosave feature, Excel saves your data periodically. You can configure the option and specify how often the program saves your spreadsheets. You can even change the folder used by Excel to store the backups. Excel also saves data about its state; it can remember if spreadsheets were opened in separate windows and which data was visible in each spreadsheet.

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The Excel Save options window.
credit: Image courtesy of Microsoft

Step

Click "File" and select "Options" to open the Excel Options window in Microsoft Excel 2010 and 2013. In Excel 2007, click the Office logo and then click the "Excel Options" button.

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The File menu and the Options item.
credit: Image courtesy of Microsoft
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The Save tab of the Excel Options window.
credit: Image courtesy of Microsoft

Step

Select the "Save" tab from the left pane to view all settings related to the Save function, including the Autosave feature.

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The Save AutoRecover Information box and Minutes field.
credit: Image courtesy of Microsoft

Step

Check the "Save AutoRecover information every" box to enable the Autosave feature. Choose how often Excel should save your workbooks and program state by changing the value in the "minutes" field.

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The Save Files in This Format and Keep the Last Autosaved... options.
credit: Image courtesy of Microsoft

Step

Select the format Excel should use when automatically saving your workbooks from the "Save files in this format" box. The default setting -- recommended for most users -- is "Excel Workbook (*xlsx)."

Step

Check the "Keep the last autosaved version if I close without saving" box to prevent Excel 2010 and 2013 from deleting the backup if you close the program without saving the workbook. This option is not available in Excel 2007.

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The autosave path and Save to Computer by Default option.
credit: Image courtesy of Microsoft

Step

Change the folder used by Excel to store the backups by entering a different path into the "AutoRecover file location" field.

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Check the "Save to Computer by default" box to avoid saving to OneDrive when you are logged in to Excel 2010 or 2013 with your Microsoft Live account. This option is not available in Excel 2007.

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Click "OK" to apply the new settings and close the Excel Options window. The settings are applied immediately; you don't need to restart Excel.