Merging Copies of a Shared Workbook

Use the compare and merge workbooks command in Excel to view and accept or reject all changes simultaneously.

Merging copies of a shared workbook

Turning on the Track Changes feature automatically shares your workbook. When multiple users collaborate on the same shared workbook, you can use the Compare and Merge Workbooks command to view all of their changes at once and address them by accepting or rejecting them.

Each person you collaborate with must save a copy of the shared workbook using a unique file name that differs from the original. For example, if the original file name is Agenda, your collaborators could use the files names Agenda—Ana's Changes or David Agenda Feedback.

You can only merge copies of the same shared workbook. All of the copies you plan to merge should be located in the same folder.

To add the Compare and Merge Workbooks command:

The Compare and Merge Workbooks command is not available on the Review tab but can be added to the Quick Access toolbar. Start here if you have not already added the command.

  1. Click the File tab.
  2. Choose Options.
  3. The Excel Options dialog box will appear. Select Quick Access toolbar.
    Selecting the Quick Access toolbarSelecting the Quick Access toolbar
  4. Under Choose commands from, click the drop-down menu and select All Commands.
  5. Find and select the Compare and Merge Workbooks command.
  6. Click Add to add it to the Quick Access toolbar.
    Adding the Compare and Merge Workbooks commandAdding the Compare and Merge Workbooks command
  7. Click OK.
  8. The Compare and Merge Workbooks command will be added to the Quick Access toolbar.

To compare and merge workbooks:

  1. Open a copy of the shared workbook.
  2. Click the Compare and Merge Workbooks command on the Quick Access toolbar.
    Compare and Merge Workbooks commandCompare and Merge Workbooks command
  3. If prompted, allow Excel to save your workbook.
  4. The Select Files to Merge into Current Workbook dialog box will appear.
  5. Select another copy of the same shared workbook you want to merge. To select multiple copies, hold CTRL or SHIFT on your keyboard while clicking the file names.
    Selecting files to merge into the current workbookSelecting files to merge into the current workbook
  6. Click OK.
  7. The changes from each copy of the shared workbook will be merged into a single copy. All changes and comments can now be addressed at the same time.
    Worksheet after merging changesWorksheet after merging changes

Each color represents changes from a different user, so you can tell at a glance who made the change.