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Ash Burton

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How to Disable Animation in Microsoft Excel 2013 / Office 2013

Having just purchased a copy of Office 2013 (no, really) I've just started to use it for serious work and immediately found the new cell animations in Excel to be irritating.  What Microsoft don't seem to grasp is that the people really making Excel the powerhouse that it is are the hardcore users, you know the type - they're often management accountants, business intelligence developers, data warehousing types who handle large volumes of data constantly. Most businesses only have small number of these 'Excel Elite' who get called upon to solve problems, design spreadsheets and generally keep the whole Excel ecosystem afloat and what do they want?  They want simple, predictable behaviour, consistent across new versions and nothing that causes distraction or having to re-learn where to find features (Ribbon I'm looking at you). Excel 2013's latest addition to the 'irritation toolkit' is animated cell selection.  This feature genuinely benefits nobody and serves only to add lag to cell selection, even on new powerful new PCs since the animation needs time to complete otherwise you wouldn't see it.  So, how do you disable it?  Well, it's not as simple as a setting in Excel - this is a setting in Windows (I'm running Windows 8 by the way), the risk here is that you'll be disabling something else fancy that you do want but if you're a heavy Excel user this will be much more worthwhile I expect.

To disable cell selection animations:

  1. Go to Control Panel. 
  2. Search for "Performance" (actually, just "Perf" will do).
  3. Click on "Adjust the appearance and performance of Windows".
  4. Un-tick the "Animate controls and elements inside windows" option and click "OK".

Screenshots of the main screens are below should you have trouble finding the options...

Step 3

excel_animations_01

 

Step 4

excel_animations_02