How can we improve Excel for Windows (Desktop Application)?

Recent Files pane in Excel 2013 was pretty good, but Excel 2016 broke it (Pin pinning recent files no longer sorts alphabetically)

In Excel 2013, you could pin recently opened files to the top of the list, and they would be sorted alphabetically. This way, you could easily get the same file by using keyboard shortcuts. For example, Alt-F-R-1 opened the first one on the list, alphabetically. The order stayed constant until you pinned or unpinned a file.

In Excel 2016, the files are listed chronologically, so Alt-F-R-1 opened the most recently used one. If you wanted to get a certain one, you have to wait to see where it is in the list. This is a TERRIBLE change. I keep opening the wrong file.

(2016-07-11 Dan [MS]: If you're interested in pinning recently used folders, please go vote on this other UserVoice idea, so that we can keep the two seperate: https://excel.uservoice.com/forums/304921-excel-for-windows-desktop-application/suggestions/15148899-enable-user-to-pin-folders-to-the-recent-lists-for)

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    Jon PeltierJon Peltier shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    completed  ·  Dan Battagin [MS XL]AdminDan Battagin [MS XL] (Admin, Office.com) responded  · 

    = 2016-12-09 =
    Hi all,

    The MRU should be sorting alphabetically again if you’re using build 16.0.7466.2038 or later. You can find your build number under File > Account.

    Cheers,
    Dan [MS]

    = 2016-09-22 =
    Hello,

    I noticed a few reports of folks not seeing alphabetized MRUs anymore so I followed up with the Office team (it’s shared across Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.) that owns this.

    Turns out that they rolled it out in July (and then we posted here that the work was completed) but then ran into some bugs and so disabled the feature on the MRU-service side.

    That bug has been fixed, and they are planning to roll it out again in October.

    Cheers,
    Dan [MS]

    = 2016-07-11 =
    Greetings,

    Good news on the recent files front – pinned files are now sorted alphabetically, as they were in previous versions of Office (and Excel).

    To see this new behavior, you’ll need to be running build 16.0.7030 or later if you are an Insider (as of 11 July, all insiders should have the ability to run that build), or build 16.0.7070 or later if you’re not an insider (we’re in the rollout process now for non-Insiders). Note: these build numbers are for O365 subscribers.

    Lastly – if you voted for this idea because of the ability to pin folders – we’ve separated that out (so that this just covers one idea). Please go vote for this idea if folder pinning is important to you: https://excel.uservoice.com/forums/304921-excel-for-windows-desktop-application/suggestions/15148899-enable-user-to-pin-folders-to-the-recent-lists-for

    Cheers,
    Dan [MS]

    ===older====
    Thanks for calling this out Jon. We’ll be sure to keep an eye on this, and we’ll talk with the team that owns the recent files list across the Office apps. As always, we’ll spend more time on ones with more votes, so please keep voting for the things you care about most!

    Best,
    John [MS XL]

    146 comments

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      • PaulPaul commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Absolutely asinine that someone felt this was a good decision in the first place. That it is still not resolved 17 months later indicates the programmers clearly don't use the software themselves. It seems we are going through a period in software usage where programmers have no compassion for intuitive and usable features. Almost like the industry thinks humans should work for the software rather than having software make usability as easy as reasonably possible.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        This is NOT completed. I am using the latest version with Version 1609 (Build 7369.2118). Please bring this back. For those that have a lot of pinned sheets, this is terrible to sort through!

      • DJSDJS commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        My company just changed to Windows 10 and Office 2016. Recent files are NOT sorting alphabetically which is a REAL annoyance. If this fix was to roll out in October 2016 it's not working. Agree that sort by most recent is a TERRIBLE idea. Sorry for YELLING but it is very frustrating :(

      • BVBV commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Yes, sorting the pinned files alphabetically is very important. These are so hard to navigate by recency!

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I cannot find how to see all files or at least 50 files in default folder when I click open and I must select "this PC" what other PC would I want? Home PC no Server and NO ONEDRIVE!

      • Randy AkinsRandy Akins commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Just downloaded and installed Office 2016 64bit, sorts recent files list by most recently opened. Need it sorted alphabetically (which is what I'm used to in 2013) or let me create my own file order. If and when it's fixed, will it be fixed in both 32 bit and 64 bit?

      • SamSam commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Your statement about this being fixed in later builds is a lie. I'm running the latest build and I still can't pin a file in a consistent place. PLEASE FIX THIS PROBLEM!!!

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Hi Dan,

        Sorry, but I am not seeing it. I am running Excel 2016 MSO (16.0.6925.1044) 32-bit and storing my files on my HD. I keep seeing messages like yours that say the Pinned list has reverted to an alphabetical listing, something I would love. However, as you can see below, nothing has changed since I logged the original ticket years ago. What am I missing?

        Best,
        Jim

      • SeahorseSeahorse commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        What am I missing? Mine don't sort in any logical order whatsoever and it's confusing. One of my most used files that used to be near the top of the list now is somewhere near the bottom. Another frequently used file is in the middle. My suggestion would be to let us organize the list the way we want it with drag and drop.

      • BerndBernd commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Does anybody know when build 16.0.7070. for Office 2016 on Windows Desktop will bei available for EAS-Customers? (... they are planning to roll it out again in October)

      • Jan AuzinsJan Auzins commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        And by the way, I don't think this should have been down as a 'user improvement', it was a bug that was introduced by the development team which took away some previous useful functionality.

      • Jan AuzinsJan Auzins commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Finally a fix! 13 months after it was first brought to MS attention. Well done I say.

      • 2016 terrible2016 terrible commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        How about if I "pin something down" then it is PINNED DOWN? It doesn't move. It doesn't sort. It doesn't do anything unless I tell it to. I should be able to put them in the order that I SPECIFY. So disjointed with every single version of offcie since 2007.

      • Jan AuzinsJan Auzins commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        We were told that this problem would be sorted out in October. It is now November 4th and still not working! What is going on?
        I am on 16.0.7329.1017 32 bit. How much longer?

      • T'PauletT'Paulet commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        It is now November 2016. I am running 16.0.7329.1017 32 bit. Still not sorting alphabetically.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Or, even better, allow users to choose between sorting pinned documents alphabetically or by most recent open date.

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        On the Pinned Files list, to OPEN a recurrent one that you have pinned, give option to sort them from last used (By date) or Alphabetically by name as it is, but give the option to sort

      • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Terrible, terrible idea. Why do MS insist on changing features like this when they work perfectly well in the first place? Please just sort this out and revert back to alphabetized pinned files.

        I'm an O365 business subscriber running version 16.07.7167.2055 and the pinned files are not alphabetized.

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