As a follow-up to our last post on why you should Share an Excel workbook, this post will cover some of the main reasons why you should not Share an Excel workbook. Sharing is a very valuable function in Excel, but in some situations, it is better to simply turn the Sharing off. While Sharing does open up many opportunities for collaboration with your team, it also restricts many key functions in Excel.
1. You Need to Insert an Object
One of the shortcomings of the Sharing function is that it disables many critical functions. You’ll find that once you share an Excel workbook, most of the options on the Insert Tab are disabled. So, this means that you can’t do things such as insert shapes, pictures, or even hyperlinks. In effect, when you Share an Excel workbook, your options are limited mostly to simply entering data into the spreadsheet. If you need to insert an object in a Shared workbook, you will first need to disable Sharing, insert your object, and then re-enable Sharing.
2. You Need to Create a Pivot Table
Creating Pivot Tables (or Charts) is also disabled when you Share an Excel workbook. You will still be able to view and manipulate Pivot Tables that you created before you enabled Sharing. However, you won’t be able to create any new ones. So, before you Share an Excel workbook, you need to make sure that you don’t need to create any additional Pivot Tables.
3. You Need to Import Data
Another function that is disabled when you Share an Excel workbook is the suite of Data Import options. Once the file is Shared, you won’t be able to pull data into Excel directly from text files, databases, the Internet, etc. You will still be able to use the Copy/Paste functions, however, depending on the type of data that you’re working with, this may create more problems than it solves. So, if you have a large volume of data that you need to pull into a spreadsheet, import the data before you enable Sharing.
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