PerfectXL Explore

General Spreadsheet Characteristics

Curious to see what your spreadsheet’s all about? PerfectXL Explore gives you a great starting point. An overview of worksheets, input sources and potential risks are all part of our general spreadsheet characteristics section. It also gives you an insight into the amount of formulas used in your spreadsheet.

Spreadsheet Portfolio Management

Upload as many Excel files as you want and PerfectXL Explore will analyze them for an overview of general spreadsheet characteristics. You can either drag and drop a spreadsheet from your computer or choose to upload a file manually. PerfectXL Explore’s portfolio gives you an excellent overview of the spreadsheets you’ve uploaded (and analyzed) over time. You can assign custom categories to any spreadsheet to retrieve them more easily, like ‘important’, ‘to do’ or ‘new report’. Or you can filter your list by the spreadsheet analysis (upload) date, the amount of worksheets, the amount of risks or the amount of high risks.

Portfolio Management Spreadsheets // General Spreadsheet Characteristics // PerfectXL Explore

Spreadsheet Key Indicators

Key indicators give insight in the major aspects of your spreadsheet. How many formulas does it contain? Is the spreadsheet safe enough to use? Are there any (high) risks to take into consideration? The key indicators also provide you with general information like the document size and the amount of worksheets and more specific information, like the amount of calculations and the longest formula.

Spreadsheet Characteristics

The spreadsheet characteristics overview sums up the characteristics of the entire sheet, but also of each worksheet separately. Additionally the user is provided with information about the cells and external sources.

General Spreadsheet Characteristics // PerfectXL Explore

Workbook Characteristics

The Workbook Characteristics overview informs you about the file size, first creation, last modification, number of references, number of calculations and the number of charts.

Characteristics per Worksheet

This table lists the worksheets of your spreadsheet in rows and shows the amount of non-empty cells, unique formulas, risks and high risks per worksheet and whether or not a sheet is hidden in the columns.

Cell Characteristics

The amount of non-empty cells, text cells, number cells, date cells and formulas. The percentage of formulas in non-empty cells and the number of external references.

External Sources

A list of all formula references to sheets in spreadsheets other than the one that’s being analyzed.

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Read more about how to explore your Excel files

On this page you will find a step-by-step walkthrough of the PerfectXL Explore Tool. This page will give you information on how you can use explore to gain a better understanding of complex Excel files.

This is the technical page for PerfectXL Explore. Here you will find information like system requirements, release notes, and answers to most questions about our software. If you have more questions please use the form at the bottom of the page.

In this video we’ll show you how to run a quick basic check of the input sources of your Excel files and how to determine if there is any unknown input. We’ll also show you a powerful way to visualize your spreadsheet’s information flow to help determine the function and dependability of each worksheet.

When we read a book or a report or a website, we read from top to bottom and from left to right. Keep this in mind when you create an Excel file. Try your best to follow that structure both within each worksheet and between them. We advise you to distinguish separate input & output sheets as well as sheets for calculations, documentation and dashboards.

Numbers without meaning are worthless. Excel is a program for numbers, but it is only useful if it is clear to the reader or user what these numbers mean. So, make sure that you provide textual information for all data and formulas, let’s call these pieces of text information labels.

Treat transferring a spreadsheet like you would treat the process of renting your house via Airbnb. Most people realize it will stay neater if you clean it first. Mess stimulates mess, and neatness stimulates neatness. Remember that in an average spreadsheet there will be 12 different users that have to use it after you! What do you think happens when this chain starts with a messy file?

Garbage in, garbage out. So pay serious attention to cleaning your input data as it is the foundation of your spreadsheet and if possible, do it in such a way that it becomes an automated process for the next time you use the same spreadsheet.

Understanding the workings of a spreadsheet is key to correctly interpreting its results. Spreadsheet visualization is an essential feature of PerfectXL Explore. It allows you to create a graphical model of the general flow of information, which also shows of risks, input & output and data & formula flows.

Be honest with yourself, how much time does it take you to spit through an Excel file? The opportunities in Excel are endless but this comes with a downside. PerfectXL has the solution. Starting now you can gain a better understanding of your spreadsheets, to help you in improving, documenting, and cleaning up your files. Here are 9 tasks that PerfectXL Explore makes easy.