How to Fix Excel not Responding and Recover Unsaved Document

Abby Haines updated on Feb 25, 2019 to File Recovery | How-to Articles


Is your Excel is not responding? This page offers quick fixes to this problem and shows you how to recover an unsaved excel document using EaseUS recovery software. Just try it when your Microsoft Excel 2016, 2010, 2007 or any other versions crash, hang, freeze or stop working when you are opening or editing a file.

Just as in the case when Microsoft Word doesn't respond, Microsoft Excel may also crash, hang, freeze and even stop working while opening or even editing a file. 

Along with this problem, you will usually see a dialog box that prompts you with a 'Microsoft Excel is not responding' error message.

Microsoft Excel is not responding

As you can see in the above screenshot, Microsoft offers you three solutions - to restart the program, to close the program or wait for the program to respond. But, most users especially those who didn't save their document will not try these methods to fix the "Excel is not responding" issue because they're worried about a data loss disaster. In this case, most importantly, we will show you how to recover an unsaved excel document. Since Mac users can also encounter the issue, the tips on how to recover unsaved Excel file on Mac is are also provided.

How to recover lost or unsaved Excel files when Excel is not responding 

Method 1. Try MS Office Application Recovery 

This is a handy solution that you can try to fix "Microsoft Excel is not responding" error and recover unsaved Excel file.

1) Go to Start > All Programs > Microsoft Office Tools > MS Office Application Recovery.
2) Choose the document that is not responding when you see a list of currently running Office applications.
3) Click the option "Recover Application" and recover the document you were working on.

Method 2. Try AutoRecovery

1) Launch Microsoft Excel application, click File > Tab Recent, check recent used Excel documents and find the exact one - unsaved Excel document.
2) Click "Recover Unsaved Workbooks" and then wait till the Excel document is retrieved.
3) The "Open" dialog will pop up, open the exact lost Excel document and click "Save As" to save the document into a safe spot on PC.

Method 3. Try EaseUS recovery software to recover lost Excel document 

If you accidentally deleted or lost Excel document on your computer, you can turn to professional file recovery software for help. EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard can retrieve your Excel files within just 3 simple steps.

First, Download and install EaseUS data recovery software on your PC. If you use a Mac computer, please choose the Mac version. Then follow the steps below:

Simple steps for Excel file recovery are as follows:

Step 1. Specify a location

Run EaseUS Data Recovery Software, firstly, you're asked to choose a location to start. Choose the drive X: or perhaps a specific folder on Desktop or somewhere else, and then click "Scan".

select the excel file location

Step 2. Scan data

During the scan, you'll see more and more data showing up very quickly in the "Deleted files" result. That's part of what the software has found and displayed.

scan excel files

Step 3. Preview and recover

To quickly find the Excel files in the massive data in the scan results, click on the "Filter" on the top area and choose "Documents". Or, search .xls or .xlsx in the Search box. Select the desired files and click "Recover".

select excel files and recover

Remember, EaseUS disk data recovery do help to recover lost Word document in many data loss situations. But it may not work to recover the unsaved data in some situations. So, please download the trial version to check if it helps first before purchasing a license code.

How to permanently fix "Excel is not responding" problem

Microsoft has analyzed all the possible causes for the "Excel is not responding" problem and created several solutions to resolve the issue. Try them one by one in case the error happens again.

  • 1. Install the Latest Updates
  • 2. Check to make sure the Excel is not in use by another process
  • 3. Investigate possible issues with add-ins
  • 4. Repair your Office programs
  • 5. Check to see if your antivirus software is up-to-date or conflicting with Excel

Follow the above troubleshooting steps, then you will successfully Excel not responding error and get the application work properly. For more details, you can refer to excel not responding, hangs, freezes or stops working provided by Microsoft for help.


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Frequently Asked Qusetions

1. Why cannot I recover 2GB data for free?

It is recommended to check the version installed is Free or Trial because they are different versions.

Trial has data preview function but cannot save any files, while the Free version enables to recover 2 GB files. The default free space is 500 MB and you may share the product on social media to get another 1.5 GB.

2. Why cannot the recovered files be opened?

A file is saved as 2 parts on the storage device: directory info (which is comprised by file name, time stamp and size info, etc.) and data content.

If the files with original file names and folder structures cannot be opened, one possible reason is the corrupted directory info. There is still a chance to recover the data content with the RAW Recovery method in our software.

3. Why isn't it suggested to recover the files back to the original drive?

The storage structure of the lost files would be altered or damaged by any changes on the drive. If you save the recovered files back to the same drive, the original data structures and data content would be corrupted or overwritten, which causes permanent data loss. So you should prepare another disk to save the files.

4. How can I check whether my data is recoverable or not before purchase?

The Free version helps you save 2GB files to better verify the recovery quality of our product before purchase.

5. How long does it take to scan the drive?

It strongly depends on the capacity of your hard drive and the performance of your computer. As reference,most drive recoveries can be completed in around 10 to 12 hours for a 1-TB healthy hard drive in general conditions.

About Data Recovery Wizard

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