Question: What is an XLSX File?
Did you find an XLSX file on your computer and wonder what program should open it? Maybe someone emailed you an XLSX file but you're not sure how to use it. Perhaps you tried to open the XLSX file but Windows told you that it could not open it.
Before you can open an XLSX file (assuming it's even a file format that's intended to be viewed or edited), you'll need to determine what kind of file the .XLSX file extension refers to.
Answer: A file with the XLSX file extension is an Excel Microsoft Office Open XML Format Spreadsheet file.
Other types of files may also use the XLSX file extension. If you know of any additional file formats that use the .XLSX extension, please let me know so I can update this information.
How To Open an XLSX File
The easiest way to open an XLSX file is to double-click on it and let your PC decide which default application should open the file. If no program opens the XLSX file then you probably don't have an application installed that can view and/or edit XLSX files.
Warning: Take great care when opening executable file formats received via email or downloaded from websites you're not familiar with. See my List of Executable File Extensions for a listing of file extensions to avoid and why.
Microsoft Office Excel (version 2007 and above) is the primary software program used to open XLSX files and edit XLSX files. See this list of Free Microsoft Office Alternatives to find several free spreadsheet programs that can use XLSX files, such as Kingsoft Spreadsheets and OpenOffice Calc.
If you know of any additional programs that open XLSX files, please send me a quick email and let me know the name of the program so I can update this page.
Tip: If you have an earlier version of Microsoft Excel, you can download the free Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack to open, edit, and save XLSX files in your older version of MS Word.
If you find that an application on your PC does try to open the XLSX file but it's the wrong application or if you would rather have another installed program open XLSX files, see my How To Change the Default Program for a Specific File Extension guide for making that change in Windows.
How To Convert an XLSX File
There are two main ways to attempt to convert an XLSX file to another file type:
- Open the XLSX file in its default program and choose to save the open file as another file format.
- Use a File Conversion Online Service or Software Program to convert the XLSX file to another file format.
The first option involving opening the XLSX file in its native program is preferable because it's both easier and will probably result in a more accurate file conversion. Of course if you don't have a program that opens XLSX files, a third-party file conversion tool (the second option) could be very useful.
Important: You cannot usually change a file extension (like the XLSX file extension) to one that your computer recognizes and expect the newly renamed file to be usable. An actual file format conversion using one of the methods described above must take place in most cases.
Still Having Problems Opening or Using an XLSX File?
See Get More Help for information about contacting me on social networks or via email, posting on tech support forums, and more. Let me know what kinds of problems you're having with opening or using the XLSX file and I'll see what I can do to help.