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Excel Add-In Keeps Disappearing After Installation! Now What?

Learn how to resolve this annoying issue!

In newer versions of Excel, it is not uncommon that after successful and correct installation, an add-in can disappear after Excel is restarted. How annoying!


If correctly installed, all Excel add-ins should be available in the ribbon in all Excel documents. However, some security restrictions in newer Excel versions might be causing the tab to disappear after restarting.


This has also happened to some of our customers when installing Pine BI for the first time. So, in this blog post we'll show how to make sure your Excel Add-In stays in the Ribbon, by using Pine BI as an example.


Thankfully, there are several easy ways to fix this annoying problem and continue with our work. Each one of the options below might resolve the issue by itself, but there is no way to tell from the beginning which one is it going to be. So make sure to try all of them, if necessary!


Option 1: Use a Trusted Location


Try moving the add-in .xlam (or .xla) file to a Trusted Location on your computer or making the folder where the add-in is stored a Trusted Location. To do that, follow these steps:


1. Go to File > Options > Trust Center

2. Click on Trust Center Settings

3. Go to Trusted Locations

4. Here you can see where are the trusted locations on your PC. You can manually move the add-in there, or alternatively you can make the folder where it is saved a Trusted Location. To do that, please click on Add new Location... at the bottom:

5. Click on Browse and navigate to the folder, where the add-in is saved

6. Click OK on all the windows, then restart Excel


Option 2: Unblock the Add-In


Sometimes, Windows decides to block the .xlam add-in file for additional protection. To unblock it, follow these steps:


1. Right click on the add-in .xlam file and go to Properties.

2. At the bottom of the General tab you should see a Security section. Check the box that says Unblock.


3. Then restart Excel completely


Option 3: Enable the Add-In in Excel


Excel might've automatically disabled the add-in due to group policy options. To enable it, please follow these steps:


1. Go to File > Options > Add-ins

2. At the bottom from the dropdown Manage menu, choose Disabled Items and click Go...


3. If your add-in is there, select it, then click Enable and then OK.

4. Then restart Excel


Don't Forget


If you move the add-in .xlam file to another location, you'd need to install it again in Excel. So, make sure to check after all this that your add-in is indeed installed and the checkbox is marked next to it from the Add-ins menu. This menu is opened through the following path:


1. Go to File > Options > Add-ins

2. From the Manage menu choose Excel Add-ins and click Go...

We hope that these tips will resolve this common issue. All of our customers, who have faced the disappearing Ribbon tab, have managed to resolve it with one of the options above.


If you are a Pine BI customer and are still having troubles after trying the options above, please write to us at contact@pinexl.com or through the Contact page for further support.


Best Regards,

The Pinexl Team

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