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Ed Hansberry

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  1. 287 votes
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    Hello All – If you haven’t already heard Coauthoring in Excel is live in production. In July we released co-authoring in Excel for Windows Desktop to all customers in our monthly (cc) current channel. Check out the details and the requirements for collaborating with others in the below support article and let us know how it goes. We’d love your feedback.

    https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Collaborate-on-Excel-workbooks-at-the-same-time-with-co-authoring-7152aa8b-b791-414c-a3bb-3024e46fb104

    Thanks, Scott (Microsoft Excel PM)

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    @eric Johnson, the reason it requires the cloud is a TON of work is being done by the server, not the Excel clients.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    @anonymous - it depends. If you are in the semi-annual (targeted) channel, you'll get an update in March that should have it.

    If you are in the semi-annual channel (i.e. non-targeted) you won't see it until July.

    See https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/deployoffice/overview-of-update-channels-for-office-365-proplus for more info on when each channel gets the new goodies.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    @caleb - this has been available to the Monthly Targeted channel (formerly insider slow) for at least 3 months. I am not sure if it is on the deferred channel yet.

    Insider Fast has had it since February.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    We'll Excel Help, since the MS Sharepoint/OneDrive servers are doing A LOT of the work to make collaboration in Excel possible, leaving it on your network won't help. We moved all of our files to OneDrive any teams which uses sharepoint for files. We have collaboration, file versioning, and no worries on backups.

    And we like to think of ourselves as normal people.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    @Anon - stuff stays in fast ring as long as it takes. This was a pretty big/invasive feature to the product so took a lot of testing. I suspect it will stay in slow ring for a while too as they add more users to it and hammer out more stuff. Excel still isn't aggressive enough in pushing the final changes back to the server before closing. I can have a large file, click save then close and my changes are stuck on my machine. I notice when I open the file again and Excel tells me there are unsaved changes to save.

    That has to be fixed before it rolls out to the deferred/stable channels.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    Mike, understand that, but I would say short of Windows, Excel is the most complex product MS makes. Data tables, Power Pivot, Power Query, Consolidation tools, the other Data tools (remove dupes, data validation, etc.) filtering, forecasting tools, outlining tools, watch window, auditing tools, charting tools, conditional formatting, etc.

    Just consider the complex calculation engine Excel has. See http://www.decisionmodels.com/calcsecrets.htm for more on this (including the sublinks), but now imagine making this work with multiple people simultaneously to both minimize the impact of someone keying data or editing formulas without grinding everyone in the file to a halt, or locking up the file. That is just one aspect of it. PPT and Word have nothing like this, and yet this is the very core of Excel.

    Excel is a magnitude more capable than any other Office app, and at least an order of magnitude more complex.

    Additionally, it appears to support local 3rd party addins when collaborating without affecting others in the file at the same time.

    I also wish this had arrived 18 months ago, but I fully understand that if it ONLY got the same due diligence that Word and PowerPoint got, we'd be 2020 or later getting this feature. I suspect it got far far more diligence just to get it where it is today.

    Give the team credit where credit is due. For those that see Excel as Microsoft's version of Google Spreadsheet and just grasp the spreadsheet with some formulas are truly missing so much of what is really underneath the hood.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    Mike, it is a bit easier to do on Google Spreadsheets since that product has perhaps 20% of the functionality of Excel. I've used both Google Docs and Office for many years, so understand the differences.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    That said Brian, it used to be on the roadmap, and no longer is. https://products.office.com/en-us/business/office-365-roadmap?filters=excel

    I'm not sure how much stock I'd put in a promise from May 2016 10 months later.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    I'd be happy if the desktop editing was limited. Meaning some more advanced features like PowerQuery, PowerPivot, array formulas, and some other items were blocked during a co-authoring session. It just needs to be more powerful than the online version. For example, when building a model with someone else, the inability to set up conditional formatting is a show stopper for us as that gives visual indicators that something is wrong or missing in the model when it ultimately goes to end users to use.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    Thanks for the info Mike. I am going to report this through the happy/sad face utility in Excel as a bug. I suggest you do the same since our OneDrive scenarios are different. It must be a glitch in Excel.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    Mike, are you by chance using the NextGen client for Sharepoint sites that was released in preview in Sept? I am seeing the same behavior. I think it is the OneDrive client causing this issue, not Excel itself.

    My current workaround is to open the file, and if I'll be editing, I immediately save it. If it saves, I am ok. If not, I close and reopen until it will save and I don't lose work.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    @dan - a year later, any updates? Is this going to happen? I know that the old "shared file" method for your local network was iffy at best and excluded files with Tables among other things. so wondering if this is even possible. Hoping it is, because we really need it. The Excel Cloud version is too anemic to even open many of our files - due to size or embedded images.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    It bothers me that this isn't listed on the Office 365 Roadmap page. http://fasttrack.microsoft.com/roadmap?filters=excel

    In fact, if you filter by Excel, there are no new features for O365 users in an O365 environment. I know the Excel team is adding features like recent Power Query enhancements, but that isn't specific to O365 business clients like this requested feature is given you need Sharepoint in the middle coordinating the collaboration.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    This is so badly needed. Word and PowerPoint already have this. And please - don't exclude files with tables in them. The "SHARE" feature in Excel used to be pretty good until 2007 when tables were introduced, and using that awesome feature eliminated the ability to share files.

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  2. 6 votes
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  3. 19 votes
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    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    Not sure how this would work. Unless you are talking about queries that take hundreds of hours (in which case, Excel is the wrong tool anyway), like the distributed computing projects that are online, anything you did locally on your LAN would be slowed down by the LAN itself. You'd need a server to parse out the queries into chunks, but then why not let the server do the work for you?

  4. 428 votes
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    Hi Ken,

    Thanks for logging this one, and thanks to others for voting this up.. We’ve actually had this on our list to get to for some time and have been balancing doing this against other… The more the community helps us rank it higher, the better the signal on overall importance… so, for those that haven’t voted for this but want it, do vote!

    thanks
    ash [MS XL]

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  5. 2 votes
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    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    This was added to Excel 2016 months ago if you have an Office 365 subscription. If not, it will likely be in Excel 2018 or 2019, whatever they call it. My guess is when Excel 2018 hits the streets, everyone with Office 365 will have already had those features since O365 updates every month.

    https://support.office.com/en-us/article/set-pivottable-default-layout-options-efd8569c-f07a-43c1-9db2-4f2912a0f94e

  6. 316 votes
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  7. 14 votes
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    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    This would be very helpful, and aid in building models in Excel before putting in Power BI. The CROSSFILTER function allows it, but is unnecessary in Power BI and adds work.

    Ed Hansberry supported this idea  · 
  8. 112 votes
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    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    This already works on files with Sharepoint. Hoping a OneDrive solution is on the way.

    Ed Hansberry supported this idea  · 
    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    I should be able to subscribe to any file in OneDrive, OneDrive for Business, or any Sharepoint site in Office 365 to get an email the next morning when the file was updated.

  9. 116 votes
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    23 comments  ·  Excel for the web » Collaboration and Sharing  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    @tim - they are not locking the offline file. Excel for PC and Mac both support collaborative editing with the online version now, as do the iOS and Android versions.

    This wasn't true 60 days ago, but MS rolled that out for Excel in Office 365 just recently.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    @tom - I know of no way to force Excel online use, but you could be creative with a formula. The Function INFO() doesn't work in Excel online, so if you put that in a file, like =info("Directory") Excel desktop will return the user's directory, but Excel Online will report #Value!. Wrap that in an ISERROR() function, you could have a warning at the top of the file.

    =IF(ISERROR(INFO("Directory")),"","Please close this file in Desktop excel and use Excel Online. Thanks.")

    That will be blank in Excel Online, but show the warning in Excel desktop. Add some red conditional formatting for even more attention.

    That said, Excel in the Fast Ring currently supports real time collaboration, so hopefully this will be temporary for you. But I don't know when Excel in the Current or Deferred channels will get this new feature that is in beta right now.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    Hubert - just create a single cell watch window. Excel Online will mandate the file be opened in Excel. It won't even try.

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  10. 4 votes
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  11. 13 votes
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    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    Also, can we get a Group name the query is in? It would help in visualizing since I usually try to group queries by Source, Intermediate, and Final.

    And maybe color code the "loaded/not loaded" boxes. For example:
    Loaded to worksheet - green
    Loaded to data model - blue
    Loaded to both - Yellow
    Not loaded - white

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  12. 32 votes
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    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    @lynn - when you enable the legacy connection in Options, go to the Data ribbon, Get Data. There will now be a LEGACY WIZARDS menu with the options you checked.

    On PowerQuery - it is much MUCH easier than learning and using the old legacy connections. You do NOT have to be a database admin. When you have 10min, try the PQ 101 tutorial. https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Power-Query-101-008b3f46-5b14-4f8b-9a07-d3da689091b5

    You'll wonder how you ever worked without it.But until you do, the legacy wizards are there for you.

  13. 499 votes
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    Great suggestion E Bow. Thanks for taking the time to tell us about changes you’d like to see – we’re listening. We’ll take a look at this one. As always, folks should keep voting for the things they like the most – we’ll generally be prioritizing things according to the number of votes they get.

    Cheers,
    John [MS XL]

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    @oz - how would being in another app, like Chrome or Outlook, be affected if Excel, on another screen or window, still visually show the selected cells? I often highlight relevant cells and would like to compose an email based on that info, but cannot because the highlight vanishes until I return to Excel. it forces me to color those cells, then uncolor them when done.

    But I am genuinely curious as to how the highlight continuing on even when the app is not in focus is a disruption to your work flow.

    This seems to be an MS only thing. Other apps retain selection visually when you switch away.

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  14. 2 votes
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  15. 2 votes
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  16. 2 votes
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  17. 343 votes
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    Thanks for the feedback! We’re seeing a number of different posts about lookup functions – we’ll be taking a close look at this area and thinking it through. We’ll prioritize the asks according to votes along with other requests on the site. So I encourage people to keep voting if it’s something they really want to see the priority raised on.

    Best,
    John [MS XL]

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    FWIW, you can do the multilookup today. http://www.exceltactics.com/vlookup-multiple-criteria-using-index-match/4/

    It is just a convoluted set of Index, Match, and entering as an array formula. A pain to build, but works beautifully and no VBA required.

    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    Include the ability for a negative offset to the lookup column doesn't have to be the first column.

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  18. 2 votes
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  19. 139 votes
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  20. 30 votes
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    Ed Hansberry commented  · 

    Yes! A form of tab-grouping.

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