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How to Turn On AutoSave in Word and Excel

AutoSave your files in Word and Excel

What To Know

  • On Windows: Click File > Options > Save. Tick the AutoSave box.
  • On Mac: Go to Word/Excel in the toolbar > Preferences > Save. Select the Turn on AutoSave by default box.

This article focuses on introducing the AutoSave feature and providing step-by-step instructions on how to turn on autosave in Word and Excel. This helpful feature automatically saves your work at set intervals, preventing potential data loss and allowing easy recovery of your Word or Excel files.

How to Turn on AutoSave in Word and Excel

It can be a lifesaver if your computer crashes or you accidentally close the Word or Excel files without saving them.

Note: If you don’t want to autosave your files, you can turn off autosave in Word and Excel. You can turn it off for a single file or completely switch it off.

What Is AutoSave?

AutoSave is a convenient feature in popular Office applications like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. It automatically saves your work in a few minutes as you edit it, so you don’t have to worry about remembering to save changes manually. You can even customize the time intervals for auto-saving to fit your needs. This feature minimizes the risk of losing your data due to software or system crashes, freezing apps, or other errors.

How to Turn On AutoSave (Windows and Mac)

You can turn on autosave in Word or Excel for an individual or all Office files to let it save changes automatically every time you make them. Here’s how.

How to Turn on AutoSave in Word

To turn on autosave in Word on Windows, use these steps:

  1. Open a Word document.
  2. Click File in the ribbon at the top.
  3. Select Options at the bottom left.
  4. Word Options window will open. Click Save in the left menu.
  5. Select the checkboxes next to the following options:
  • AutoSave files. It will automatically save your files to OneDrive and SharePoint and any changes you make.
  • Save AutoRecover information every x minutes. Set the interval to your desired time, like, 5/10/15 minutes.
  • Keep the last AutoRecovered version if I close without saving. It allows you to save your document automatically if you forget to save it. And it also allows you to recover the previous version of your Word document.

6. Select OK and Restart Word to save the changes and enable AutoSave in Word.

Tip: Word AutoRecover file location is: C:\Users\UserName\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Word\. You can change the default location if you want by clicking Browse.

How to Turn on AutoSave in Excel

To turn on autosave in Excel on Windows, use these steps:

1. Open an Excel workbook.

2. Select File at the top left.

3. Select Options.

4. In the Excel Options window, click Save.

5. Check the box next to the following options:

  • AutoSave files. To automatically save your workbooks to OneDrive and SharePoint and any modifications you make.
  • Save AutoRecover information every x minutes. The default is 10 minutes. Use the up and down arrows to set your desired time interval.
  • Keep the last AutoRecovered version if I close without saving. It saves your Excel workbook automatically if you forget to save it. And it also lets you restore the previous version of the Excel file.

6. Click OK and Restart Excel to save the changes and turn on AutoSave in Excel.

Tip: Excel AutoRecover file location is: C:\Users\UserName\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Excel\. If you want, you can change the default location by clicking the Browse option.

How to Turn on Word/Excel AutoSave on Mac

To turn on autosave in Word/Excel on Mac, use these steps:

  1. Launch an Office application for Mac like Word/Excel.
  2. Select Word/Excel in the toolbar menu.
  3. Click Preferences.
  4. In the Preferences settings, select Save.
  5. In the Save Options, check the Turn on AutoSave by default box.
  6. Quit and Restart your Office app for changes to take effect, and turn on Word/Excel AutoSave on Mac.

Tip: If you want to turn on AutoSave for a single file, open that file. Toggle the “AutoSave” button in the top left-hand corner. In the “How do I turn on AutoSave” pop-up box, select your OneDrive personal, school, or work account to upload the file. Keep working on your file, and Word/Excel will save your changes as you make them.

How to Recover the Unsaved Word/Excel File

If you closed Word or Excel file and didn’t save changes, you can recover the unsaved version by following the steps below.

  • Open Word or Excel file you wish to recover.
  • Select the File tab and click Info from the left menu.
  • Select the Version History button to view previous versions of the file.
  • Version History pane will open on the right side, showing you all its previous versions. It includes the date and the name of the person who modified it.
  • Click Open version next to the version you wish to restore.
  • Then, select the Restore button to save the file.

That’s how you recover the Word/Excel file if you forgot to save it and close it.

Tip: To keep the original file without overwriting it, click File > Save As. This way, you can create a copy of the Word or Excel file before making any changes. But, if you select File > Save or press Ctrl + S (Windows) or Command + S (Mac) shortcut keys, it will overwrite the original document. You can always undo changes by pressing Ctrl + Z (Windows) or Command ⌘+Z (Mac) on your keyboard.

Conclusion

By enabling AutoSave, you can have peace of mind knowing that your work is being saved regularly, reducing the risk of losing any unsaved changes. It’s always a good idea to keep a backup copy of your work, just in case.

I hope this article answered your query and helped you learn how to turn on autosave in Word and Excel on a Windows or Mac computer.