How to Protect a Workbook in Excel 2011

When you are creating a workbook in Excel 2011 that you plan to share with other people, it may be important that people not be able to change the names of the worksheets contained within the workbook. One simple way to do this is by protecting the workbook. This requires anyone that wants to edit the workbook to know a password, which they will need to enter before they make changes.


How to Lock an Excel 2011 Workbook

The Protection feature in Excel 2011 actually allows you to specify between protecting certain elements of the current active worksheet, or protecting the structure of the entire workbook. We are just going to focus on protecting the entire workbook for the purposes of this tutorial, but you can easily apply this same procedure to the Protect Sheet option if you just want to protect one of the worksheets instead of the entire workbook.


Step 1: Open the workbook in Excel 2011.


Step 2: Click Tools at the top of the window.

click tools at the top of the screen



Step 3: Click Protection, then click Protect Workbook.

click protection, then click protect workbook



Step 4: Type your desired password into the Password field, then re-type it into the Verify field.

how to protect a workbook in excel 2011



Step 5: Check the box next to Protect structure and Protect windows (based upon your needs,) then click the OK button.

choose what to protect



Note that protecting the workbook is not going to prevent people from being able to change cell values. It only protects the structure of the workbook, and the existence and name of worksheets. If you want to protect the contents of the worksheets, then you need to protect the sheets as well.

You can remove protection of a workbook by clicking Tools -> Protection -> Unprotect Workbook at the top of the screen, then entering the password.

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If you need to print your spreadsheet in Excel 2011, using gridlines can make it much easier to read. Click here to learn how to print a spreadsheet with gridlines in Excel 2011. newsletter

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