How to compare 2 Excel files for changes
Thread poster: Alexandre Chetrite

Alexandre Chetrite
Local time: 09:35
English to French
Feb 14, 2011


I have hust received my translation modified by an editor (Excel format) and I wish to see the differences between my original translation, and the editor changes.

How can I do this in Excel?

I thought the editor would highlight the lines where changes have been made but he didn't and I do not wish to scan the 1410 Excel cells manually for changes.

All I need is for the edited cells to be highlighted, along with my original translation next to it.

Good day.


Daniel Grau  Identity Verified
English to Spanish
This is what I'd do Feb 14, 2011

Export each Excel sheet (in the old and new file) to a Word file. To do this, select the cells with data, copy to them to the clipboard and paste each sheet in a Word document. Don't select the whole sheet, as you will end up with a very large table. You should repeat this for each sheet in each Excel file (check the row of tabs at the bottom).

Once you've done this (you'll have OLD.doc and NEW.doc), in Word choose Tools > Track Changes > Compare Documents (pay attention to which should be the new and the old file). The result will be your visual guide.

If the original tables are complex, I would advise not to reverse the process to get your Word edits back into Excel, as they won't paste correctly. Instead, enter any changes directly in Excel.




Selcuk Akyuz  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:35
Member (2006)
English to Turkish
+ ...
Notepad++ Feb 14, 2011

You can select all text, copy and paste into a new file in Notepad++ for each file (old and new versions) and then easily see the changes using the Compare function. All differences are highlighted.



István Hirsch  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:35
English to Hungarian
in Excel Feb 14, 2011

If you can copy the two different versions into column A and B (aligned), resp., write in cell C1:


OK, then click twice on the „filling plus” when it appears over the lower right corner of C1.

As a result, you will get „!” in lines where the two versions are different.

[Módosítva: 2011-02-14 13:57 GMT]


Paula Hernández
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:35
English to Spanish
+ ...
Or... Feb 14, 2011

Use Excel compare:


784512 (X)
Local time: 09:35
German to English
+ ...
Perhaps a better method.... Nov 17, 2012

In my case, I had full worksheets that had been corrected that needed to be shown with track changes to my client, so adding in additional columns etc. would have been too messy and complicated.

So, instead, I developed this method. Maybe it will help others in the future.

The Translator's Teacup Tech Tip: Compare two Excel documents without an add-on


jambo and jambo
United Kingdom
Dedicated tool Aug 1, 2013

I use dedicated tool to compare excel files.

Excel Diff


Compare Excel online Aug 11, 2014

I have found tool to compare excel sheets online .

[Edited at 2014-08-11 15:49 GMT]


Daniel C Pryor
United States
thank you Sep 7, 2015

amit1870 wrote:

I have found tool to compare excel sheets online .

[Edited at 2014-08-11 15:49 GMT]

Thanks so much for this, a really helpful tool for those of us who don't like using excel 2013.


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How to compare 2 Excel files for changes

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