How to Unhide a Hidden Workbook in Excel: A Step-by-Step Guide


Michael Collins

Unhiding a hidden workbook in Excel is a simple process that can save you from a lot of frustration. If you’ve ever accidentally hidden a workbook or have been given a file with hidden workbooks, this guide will help you quickly unhide them and get back to work.

Step by Step Tutorial on How to Unhide a Hidden Workbook in Excel

Before we dive into the steps, it’s important to understand that this tutorial will teach you how to make a workbook visible again in Excel. This could be handy if you’re collaborating with others who have hidden workbooks for privacy or if you’ve done so yourself and can’t remember how to reverse it.

Step 1: Open Excel

Open the Excel application on your computer.

When you open Excel, you’ll see the Home screen with recent documents. If the hidden workbook is not listed here, you’ll need to open the workbook that contains the hidden sheet(s).

Step 2: Find the "View" Tab

Click on the "View" tab in the ribbon at the top of Excel.

The "View" tab is where you can manage different aspects of how you see workbooks and worksheets in Excel.

Step 3: Click on "Unhide"

In the "Window" group, click on "Unhide."

A small window will pop up listing all the workbooks that are currently hidden.

Step 4: Select the Hidden Workbook

Select the workbook you want to unhide from the list.

If the workbook you want to unhide is not listed, it could be that it’s not open or hidden in a different way.

Step 5: Click "OK"

Click "OK" to unhide the selected workbook.

After clicking "OK," the previously hidden workbook should now be visible and accessible.

After completing these steps, the previously hidden workbook will be displayed alongside any other open workbooks. You can switch between them using the "Switch Windows" button on the "View" tab.

Tips for Unhiding a Hidden Workbook in Excel

  • Always save your work before attempting to unhide workbooks, just in case something goes wrong.
  • You can only unhide workbooks that are currently open in Excel. If the hidden workbook isn’t open, you’ll need to open it first.
  • If you have many workbooks open and are unsure which one contains the hidden workbook, try unhiding workbooks in each open file until you find the right one.
  • Remember that unhiding a workbook does not unhide any hidden sheets within the workbook. You may need to unhide those separately.
  • If you can’t find the "Unhide" option, you may be using an older version of Excel or a different spreadsheet program that uses a different process.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I hide a workbook in Excel?

To hide a workbook, go to the "View" tab, click on "Hide" in the "Window" group, and the current workbook will be hidden.

Can I unhide multiple workbooks at once?

No, you can only unhide one workbook at a time.

Why can’t I see the workbook I want to unhide?

Ensure the workbook is open in Excel. If it’s not open, you won’t be able to unhide it.

What’s the difference between hiding a workbook and a worksheet?

Hiding a workbook makes the entire workbook disappear from view, while hiding a worksheet only makes that specific sheet within a workbook invisible.

Can I prevent others from unhiding a workbook?

You can protect your workbook with a password to prevent unauthorized users from unhiding it.


  1. Open Excel
  2. Click on the "View" tab
  3. Click on "Unhide"
  4. Select the hidden workbook
  5. Click "OK"


Unhiding a hidden workbook in Excel is an important skill to have, especially if you work with large and complex files. Whether you’re a data analyst, an accountant, or someone who uses Excel for personal projects, knowing how to manage your workbooks’ visibility can save you time and prevent confusion. By following the step-by-step tutorial and tips provided, you should be able to quickly and easily unhide any hidden workbooks in your Excel files. Additionally, familiarizing yourself with the frequently asked questions section can help you troubleshoot any issues that might arise during the process. Remember, Excel is a powerful tool, and mastering its features, like unhiding workbooks, can greatly enhance your productivity and efficiency.