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Excel file is one of the most popular spreadsheets and it is developed by Microsoft. The file extension is accessible on various operating streams, like macOS and Windows. Furthermore, it is accessible on android operating systems, like iOS and Android. This ease of adaptability makes it even more popular.

The file comes with various features and these features make it an essential tool for both personal and professional uses. Many businesses find it useful for various accounting and inventory purposes also. The tool can be used for various calculations. It can also be used for graphic purposes via its numerous graphics tools.

Some other tools accessible on this platform are below:

  • It features a macro programming language referred to as Visual Basic for Applications
  • Pivot tools
  • It also features various graphic tools
  • Furthermore, it has calculation tools

The first version of the file was created in 1993 and named as version 5. This was the version of the spreadsheet that came after Lotus 1-2-3, which was formerly the standard spreadsheet. The excel files do not come as a single file; rather, they come as a part of the Microsoft Office suite.

The file was first released in 1987 and it gets a regular update from the company. The macOS version of the file was first released in 1865, September 30 to be precise. The Mac version also gets a regular update by the company. It is proprietary commercial software with incomparable features and functions. Furthermore, Microsoft Corporation released the android version of the file at a much later date and this version equally gets a regular upgrade from the company.

Basic operation

As hinted earlier, an excel file is a spreadsheet and it uses a grid of cells and each cell bears a number. The arrangement of the cells is in columns and rows. The columns bear alphabets, while the rows bear numbers. The spreadsheet can perform various functions and you can use it to display data in the form of a graph, chart or histograph. However, the spreadsheet has a rather limited 3D graphical display. You can use it to section data so that you can easily view how it depends on various factors for varieties of perspectives with the aid of scenario manager and pivot tables.

The Visual Basic for Applications also has a programming aspect. The programming aspect allows the end-user to solve mathematical physics, differential equations and also handle various numerical methods. The interactive features of the excel file also make it even more functional. You can use the excel files to also create show slides; you can equally send any document you have created on the excel spreadsheet via email very easily. Be that as it may, you cannot use them as a database.


The excel file has various add-ins that make the spreadsheet even more functional. Some of the add-ins are highlighted below:

  • Solver add-in: It functions for solving equations and for optimization.
  • Euro Currency Tools: It can format and convert euro currency
  • Analysis ToolPak VBA: It functions for the Analysis ToolPak.
  • Analysis ToolPak: It offers various tools for data analysis that can carry out various engineering and statistical analysis; some of the analysis include regression analysis and analysis of variance.

Password protection

After creating an excel file, you can decide to password-protect it so that no other person will have access to the file; this is very important if the file contains very important information that you do not want a third party to access. Microsoft Excel offers various types of password protection; you can check below for the types:

  • Password to protect workbook sharing
  • A Password to protect your excel workbook
  • Password to modify any excel document
  • Password to open any excel document.

If you do not want to password the workbook or document anymore, you can easily remove the password any time you feel like removing it. Removal of a password is very easy on any version of Microsoft excel for that matter. However, it is not possible to remove the password to open a document; you can use this particular type of password mainly to share the work on a given document. An excel document under the protection of password does not need encryption.

Microsoft Excel File extensions available

The excel files come with different extensions, but they all work for the same purpose. Check the highlights below for the available extensions:

All the available formats here.

The XLSX is the current default extension for an excel file; this came in 2007. However, XLS was the first excel file extension to be used and it ceased in 2007. The two of them are different in some ways. The XLSX is an XML-based file format, while the XLS is a proprietary format from Microsoft. Be that as it may, many of the newer versions of excel documents are accessible and can also be saved using the XLS extension. The use of the XLS extension improves compatibility to other excel extensions and several other Microsoft extensions.

XML is an extensible markup language. It has a strong relationship with HTML, which is the acronym for Hypertext Markup Language. This latter extension is a web page extension. Check below for some of the advantages of the XML extension:

  • It ensures easier detection of tiles that contain macros.
  • It ensures a better and faster recovery of information from any of your files already damaged.
  • The file size is small and this ensures easier transfer and storage.

The XLTX or the XLTM is excel file extensions for a template file. They come with excel files that you store as a template file, which are files that you can use as starter files when you open a new excel workbook. The templates contain saved settings and you can check the highlights below for some of the default settings:

  • The number of sheets in each workbook
  • Custom toolbars
  • Graphics
  • Formulas
  • Formatting

XLTM and XLTX have several features in common, but the two of them differ in that the XLTM extension can store XML macro code and VBA.






What is a File Converter

A file converter is a simple tool that allows the individual to easily compress and convert one or more files with the aid of the contest menu on both mobile devices and desktop computers. Most of the available file converters out there are absolutely free and they mostly come with very light interface, which helps to keep the application pleasant to use. It is interesting to know that the file converter can be customized for easy addition or removal of conversion presets in the files context menus. The customization also makes it easy to edit the existing file to change the conversion options.

If you find your file in a particular format that none of the programs on your computer support or will open, you will find the file converter very useful in this situation. Some file converters are available for free use, while some other ones will cost you some money. The file converter will help to convert the file another format that can be easily opened on your computer. This is a common issue and can be easily resolved by using the file converter.

There are different types of file converters and we will consider some of them in the remaining part of this write-up.

Various types of file converters

Video converter

Video converters are reliable for converting video files from one format to another. Most of the video converters around the place support many popular video formats and they can convert these files to any of the supported formats, some of which are highlighted below:

  • WMV
  • SWF
  • MPG
  • MP4
  • MOV
  • MKV
  • V4V
  • FLV
  • F4V
  • DIVX
  • AVI
  • 3GP

You can also use the file converters to convert BD and DVD movies into any other convenient video format, be it AVI, FLV, MP4 or any other. What is more, video converters can work both on mobile devices and desktop computers.

Audio converter

Audio converters, as the name implies, is a program that can convert audio files from one form to another. Many of the available programs built for this purpose can convert audio files into any of the popular formats, like WMA, WAV, MP3, M4A, OGG, FLAC and so on. You can also trust some audio file converters to extract audio information from video files. Many of the available audio file converters are free to use; many of them are also available as web-based audio converters. As a result, they can be used right inside your web browser without downloading anything. You will, therefore, not end up adding more burdens to your device's storage. Bear in mind that both the web-based and the app-based versions of these audio converters are available both on mobile devices and desktop computers.

Image converter

Image converters are used to convert images from one format to another. There are different types of image converters available online today. You can access them both on your mobile device and desktop computers. Just like any of the file converters already discussed above, image converters can either be web-based or app-based. Many of the available image converters can be sued to convert both common and rare images from one form to another. These image converters are reliable of reconverting images to other formats, like WMF, TIF, RAW, PSD, PNG, PDF, PCX, JPG, ICO, GIF, EMF, BMP and so on.

Many of the available image converters come with the batch operation, which means you can easily convert many files into different formats at the same time. You can get any of the image file converters for free, but you may have to pay for some other ones.

Document converter

Document converters are other types of file converters worthy of consideration. If you have any document that you cannot access on your device and you want to open it, simply get any of the document converters to get the job done. Some document converters can be assessed for free online, while you will be required to pay for some other ones. Funny enough, the free ones can be as useful as the paid ones. The document converters can convert files like presentation, database, spreadsheet and even word processing; these files can be converted to several others. Many of the document converters out there can convert files from one form to another, like XLSX, XLS, WKS, TXT, TIF, PPTX, PPT, PDF, DOCX, DOC and so on. You can also use some document converters to convert image formats to text-based files, which will permit easy editing of the information; this is referred to as Optical Character Recognition.


Other types of file converters

Not all files are documents, images, audios and videos. There are some other types of files that may need to be converted from one form to another by using file converters. Some of the less popular types of file converters are:

  • Disc Image Converter, examples of which are IMG, ISO and so on.
  • Font converters, examples of which are DFONT, OTF, TTF and so on
  • Compressed File Converters, examples of which are CAB, 7Z, RAR and ZIP

There are several other rare file converters aside from the ones mentioned above. Many of them are available for free download, while some other ones are paid file converters. The cost is usually very low. Despite the rare nature of these other file converters, they are accessible both on mobile devices and desktop computers. They can also be accessed as web-based or software-based. It is also important to note that most software-based or app-based file converters are very small in size and will not occupy much space on your device when downloaded.



Before you download any of the file converters, first find out if the source is reliable or not. Some file converters may introduce malware or spyware to your device and this can spell doom for your security and privacy. It is also important to read up reviews about that file converter before you download it. The reviews will give you an idea about the reliability of the file converter. It is not advisable to download it if the reviews are not encouraging.


Windows 10 comes with many features that make it a far better Windows Operating System than many others before it. For example, its interface is user-friendly and looks far better than the previous version of Windows Operating Systems.

In this help article we will see what is file explorer and how to get help with file explorer in windows 10 not responding or other common issues that need help.

get help with file explorer in windows 10

Get help with File Explorer in Windows 10

File Explorer is a special program present in Windows 10 Operating System. It makes possible for the end user running this version of Windows to navigate from one file or folder to another.

In the following section we will see how to use it. This helps users know additional windows features.

The Files Explorer in this version of Windows has several features that are not found in any of the previous version. This is why the users need to get help.


Methods to launch File Explorer on Windows 10

There are many methods to follow when looking for help with file explorer in Windows 10. We will discuss some of the methods below:


Method 1

This method involves running the device troubleshooter to check if it can resolve the issue. Follow the steps below to do this:

type control panel

  1. Press the letter R and the Window Key. Then type Control Panel
  2. Later, type Troubleshooting in the search bar provided, then click on troubleshooting
  3. Next, you can click on hardware and Sound, after which you should click on Hardware and Devices.
  4. When the wizard pops up, you can follow the instructions to run the troubleshooter.


Method 2

Follow the instructions below for this second method:

task manager

  1. First of all, open the Task Manager wizard. You can also open it faster by pressing CTRL+Shift+ESC.
  2. When the Task manager pops up, navigate to and click File, then Run New Task.
  3. Next, check if there is a check mark against "Create this task with administrative privileges."
  4. If there is no checkmark there, simply add it.
  5. Then, type CMD and click on OK.
  6. Next, type the 4 commands below in front of the CMD prompt:
    1. dism/online/cleanup-image/restorehealth sfc/scannow powershell
    2. GShZCcCXUE2SmC5QxTfsXrTYSn2LvnPEQP {$_.INstallLocation - \like
    3. "*SystemApps*"} |Foreeach {Add-Apppackage-DisableDevelopmentMode
    4. \-Register "$($_.InstallLocation)\AppXmanifest.xml"}
    5. Afterward, close the CMD window.


Method 3

This is the quickest method to launch File Explorer in Windows 10. It involves pressing the Windows logo + E



Method 4

  1. You can simply type File Explorer in the search bar where you find "Ask me anything."
  2. After typing File Explorer, click enters and this will directly open the File Explorer.


folder option for file explorer in windows 10


Additional features of the File Explorer 

We will see in this section  some of the additional features of File Explorer:

  • Quick Access: This feature will list the files that you have recently accessed on your computer. It also provides fast and easy access to the files and folders that you use frequently.
  • One Drive: This feature makes it easy to upload and later access files and documents. These files can be accessed from any remote area. It works just like Google Drive.
  • File Sharing: With this Feature, you can select and share files very easily
  • Picture Tools: This feature is a reliable tool for basic image operations, like slideshow settings, background settings, and image rotation.
  • File Menu: With this feature, the end user can launch the Windows Powershell and the command prompt      
  • Search: This feature makes it possible to search various items that are related to the folders and its sub-folders that you are currently working on.
  • Custom Navigation: This feature permits you to open left-pane navigation in line with your specific need. You can do this using the "View” tab at the top.
  • This PC: This means the same thing as "My Computer." It is simply written in a different name in Windows 10.
  • Flat UI: The look is flat.


How to Get help with File Explorer in Windows 10

Get help

To get help with file explorer in windows 10 follow the steps below:

  1. To access the Quick Access feature, right click on the particular folder and then choose "Pin to quick access" option.
  2. You "can launch the File "Explorer faster than ever by choosing "Pin to taskbar" or "Pin to Start".
  3. You can choose "Unpin from Quick Access" if you need to remove associate degree items from the Quick Access menu.
  4. Some end users have complained about the File Explore hanging when they right-click in Windows 10. You can resolve the issue by fooling the steps we provide below:
  5. Click on Windows + X and then select "command prompt (admin)" and then write "netsh" after which you should hit enter and click on "Winsock reset".
  6. Next, restart your computer. This will get the issue fixed.
  7. If the above does not fix the problem, you can simply uninstall the windows update and it will resolve the issue.


How to uninstall updates

  1. In the Search box, type "Windows update" then select "Windows update settings.
  2. Next, type Update History and then uninstall updates
  3. Next, click on "select" and then click on uninstall.
  4. This will uninstall all the updates.

Are you still facing certain issues with the File Explorer despite all the methods described above?

You can follow the instruction below to resolve the issue:

command prompt

Run "sfc/scan now" and then "PowerShell" in the command prompt as the admin. This can help to fix the issue fast.


File Explorer help useful shorcuts:

  • Windows Key +E: This shortcut will open a new file explorer
  • Alt+Shift+P: This shortcut can hide or show the Preview Pane
  • Alt+P: This can hide or show the Preview Pane
  • Ctrl+N: This opens an entirely new window of File Explorer
  • Ctrl+E: This shortcut will activate the Search bar.
  • Alt+up arrow key: This shortcut helps you to go one folder in the folder tree.

You can open the File Explorer in Windows 10 easily. Simply pressing the F1 key when the window is still open.

This key is also for Excel, Word, Chrome and several other 3rd party apps. Which means it is not an exclusive function in Microsoft. The key is a support and quick help button.

Also, some PCs can open a browser window automatically with a Bing search. This is to teach you how to get help in file explorer with Windows 10.

This is how you do it.


Windows File Explorer not working or responding

If you get the error message file explorer not responding in windows 10 just restart doing the following steps:

  1. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc. This will start the Task Manager.
  2. Look for the windows explorer process.
  3. Right click on it.
  4. Select End task.
  5. In the upper left side of the screen go to menu File.
  6. Select run new task.
  7. Type Explorer.exe
  8. Click on Ok.

Find more in the official microsoft article here


Randomly popped up Virus

Sometimes the program is randomly popped up. It opens in many tabs with bing search engine. This is a known bug. Although this may look like a virus but don't worry, it's not a virus.

virus of many pop ups with file explorer

There is more about this issue in the windows official answer here


How to Scan your Windows

If you are still unsure about if you have a virus you can do a scan with windows defender.

  1. Launch the program
  2. Select a complete scan of all your drives.
  3. Click on Scan


How to reset the windows 10 file explorer

  1. Open file explorer with the keys Win+E.
  2. Click on File
  3. Now you have to select the option "Change folder and search options"
  4. Go to the View Tab
  5. Then, you have to click on Reset Folders.


How to Update  the File Explorer

A way to quickly fix any possible errors is to update it.

Just like windows 10 update works you have to do the following:

  1. Go to Start Menu
  2. Settings
  3. Update and security
  4. Windows Update
  5. Now Click on Check for updates to ensure you have the last version of all the programs.



Like Windows Vista, Windows 7 has the annoying habit of hiding file extensions in the explorer. Although, it is done primarily to avoid unnecessary change in file extension or deleting it by amateur users (making the file unreadable); this can be harmful as well.

It is dangerous because some scripts do not hesitate to impersonate common file types for you to run and cause damage to your system. It is, therefore, safer to constantly display all the file extensions, which allows you to know at any time what type of file you are dealing with.

If you are still wondering what a file extension is, then let me explain it quickly. A file extension is a suffix that is added to the file name to identify a format and therefore to associate it with the adapted program (if it is present on the system), for example, a file with the extension .txt (text) will open with notepad (default).

Normally, if you open an explorer (for example, say the documents folder), you will only see the file names and no extension following it. It is kept hidden from people who do not know much about the extension and can or delete it during renaming a file.



Windows 7 Show File Extensions


You can make Windows 7 and Vista always display your file extension by choosing the following option:

  1. Open an explorer window; by clicking the Start button and then Computer, for example (Click on the "Windows Explorer" icon, which is by default in the taskbar).
  2. Once the window is open, click on the "Organize" button and click on "Folder and search options."
  3. In the dialog box that appears ("Folder Options"), open the View tab
  4. In the Advanced Settings list, clear the Hide file extensions of the known type checkbox (uncheck the box)
  5. Confirm with OK. From now on, file extensions will always be displayed


They can be made visible through the registry section as well.


The solution with the registry

  1. Open the registry editor
  2. Open: "HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Windows \ CurrentVersion \ Explorer \ Advanced."
  3. Create (or modify) a new string value and name it "HideFileExt."
  4. Set it to "0."

When you do not see the extensions, an infected file may seem harmless to you, for example, a simple image (.jpg). Or it can be really an executable file (.exe) or other. By displaying the extensions, you find it easier.

Make sure once the file extensions are visible, not to tamper with them. In case you opt to change the extension, then ensure you maintain the file extension within the same or similar form of files.

For instance, in the event you change the extension of a document file and converted it to an image, you may end up with a file completely unusable! In case you have any doubt, make sure to have a duplicate copy of the initial file to prevent mishandling. It is better to use the visibility of the type to know the file type, particularly when received through an email or an unknown source (to ensure it is not a program that may be a potential virus) rather than changing it unnecessary. You can tamper with it if you have good knowledge of the file types or can seek the help of a veteran.


The extension of a file is a reference of the file type. This information is also know as format.

A file extension is a suffix added to the file name that determines the file format. Examples: the extension of an MP3 file is .mp3: song.mp3 (the .mp3 file extension tells us that the file is normally of type MP3); the extension of a Word document is .doc (or .docx for the most recent versions of Word): document.doc (this .doc lets you know that you normally have a Word document); the extension of a Gif image file is .gif: image.gif; the extension of a simple text file is .txt: document.txt; and the extension of a program or an application is .exe (it is necessary to be wary of this extension if it is an attachment of an email because it could contain a virus).

How to change a file extension name


Without installing any specific software

If you want to change the extension of one of your files without having to install software, there is a simple trick that will be effective on Windows. Here's how to proceed:

  • Open your file explorer, and display the file whose extension you want to change (for example let us change a .jpg to .png)
  • Select it, and then File> Options
  • In the menu that has just opened, go to the tab "Display," and uncheck the box "Hide extensions of files of known type," then click "Apply" to validate, and "OK" to close the window
  • Then go back to your file explorer, right-click on the file in question, and click on "Rename."
  • Change the extension of your file to replace it with the one of your choice (here we change a .jpg to .png)
  • Press the "Enter" key on your keyboard; a dialogue box will ask you to confirm your operation by warning you: your file may become unusable. Validate by clicking on "Yes."


Other methods of changing file extensions

There are several other methods of changing the file extension without much fuss. Some of the useful methods are:

Change the extension of a file in almost all software

  • Open a file in its default software
  • Click the Save As after clicking the File menu
  • You have to select a location to save the file
  • Give the file a name
  • Observe the dialog box that appears. In the drop-down menu choose a new file type.
  • Then Click the Save button. The original file will always be open in the software
  • You can easily locate the new file at the destination which you selected during saving

Making the file extension visible

In order to change the file extension, it is helpful when you can visualize straightaway the original file extension of the file without the need to click on anything. You can make Windows/Mac display the file extension of your file by following any of the below-mentioned procedures.


Make the file extensions visible in Mac OS X:

  • Select a Finder window ot You can also open a new one. Another option is to click on the desktop to switch the finder. 
  • In the finder menu click Preferences
  • Then click Advanced
  • Select and check the  "show all the file extensions"
  • The process is complete.

If you open a new Finder window. The files will now display their extensions


Make the file extension visible in Windows:

  • Open the control panel. Click on the Start menu
  • You will find Appearance and Personalization in the section of the control panel, just click on it
  • Click on the Options folder
  • Click the View tab. This tab is in the Options folder in the dialog box
  • Make the extensions visible.
    • Go to advanced settings, scroll down until you find the Hide Extensions option for known file types. Click the box to uncheck this option
  • Click Apply and then click OK
  • Open the Windows Explorer browser file. So, you will see the file extensions


For Windows 8 and Windows 10 follow the below-mentioned procedure to make file extension visible:

  • Open Windows Explorer
  • Click the View tab
  • Observe the View / Hide section. Check the box Name of file extensions in this section.
  • The process is complete.


The hidden default option for file extensions

Since Windows Vista, Microsoft has taken the habit of hiding file extensions in its explorer (file manager that can display and manipulate files and folders on the computer). The display of the files is, however convenient to know what the format of the file is (this makes it possible to be wary of the attachments which accompany the emails).

This allows novice users (who may not know what an extension is) to make errors when they want to rename a file. Indeed, if the file extension is deleted, the file will not work properly and cannot be opened in the usual software. This is to protect novice users from false manipulation! In the same way, Microsoft masks some files and folders of its operating system, but fortunately, there is a trick to display the hidden files or folders on Windows.


Think twice before changing the file extension

Be careful to transform the extension by staying in the same type of files. If you change (for example) the extension of an image file into a video file extension, you may end up with an unusable file! When in doubt, be sure to copy the original file to avoid mishandling.

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