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How to Unlock Excel File Free – Macro/XML

Locked out of encrypted Excel file? Actually unlock password protected Excel file is not difficult, but it is also not so easy as you think. Now let me tell you two free methods for you to make your Excel file unlocked.

1. Unlock MS Excel (Office) 2007 or lower versions: Macro Command

Create a Macro in Excel is an option to unlock password protected Excel sheet. Users can unprotect Excel sheets with a simple syntax. And it can be done through the visual basic editor of Excel.

After unlocking, all the official calculations and tasks can easily be performed. This option will help the user to maintain privacy.

Step 1: Open the password protected Excel sheet and enter Macros.
If you are using Excel 2007, the step could be changed to View-> Macros.


Step 2: Click on the “Record Macro->OK” and next click “Stop Recording” from the same menu.


Step 3: Enter “View Macros” and you will find a Macro with a default name E.g. Macro1. Select the macro name and click on Edit.


Step 4: Now a Visual Basic Editor opens up, replace the default code and paste the following code.

The code is written with syntax:
ActiveSheet.Unprotect (“MyPassWord”)
ActiveSheet.Protect (“MyPassWord”)

For more details, I suggest you type “worksheet.protect” and “worksheet.unprotect” in the help file of visual basic editor.

Also try this syntax:

ActiveSheet.Protect PassWord:=”MyPassWord”, DrawingObjects:=True,
Contents:=True,  Scenarios:=True, AllowSorting:=True, AllowFiltering:=True, AllowUsingPivotTables:=True

Step 5: Click View -> Macro -> View Macros -> Run.


At last you will get the password of the protected Excel document. This has been tested in Microsoft Excel 2003 and 2007.

2. Remove Password Protection from Excel 2007/2010/2013/2016 – XML File

Since Microsoft Office 2007 is released, the Excel file type has included .xlsx, .xlsm, xltx, etc. The new file are essentially packages that contain XML files. Therefore, if you take an XLSX file and change the extension to zip, you’ll be able to see all the xml documents that make up your Excel file. You can remove spreadsheet protection simply by applying a simple edit to the xml within the Excel file.

Modify xml file to unprotect Excel workbook or sheet, take Excel sheet as example.

Step 1: Make a backup of excel file.
The backup promises to keep the original Excel file even though you remove Excel file password unsuccessfully.

Step 2: Change excel file type to zip file.

Step 3: Extract the contents of the zip file.

Step 4: Find xml file in the zip extraction file and open xml file (found in the ‘xl\worksheets’ directory).
Open the target sheet’s xml document using an XML editor (For example, XML Marker).

Step 5: Find the ‘sheetProtection’ tag and remove the entire line.

Step 6: Save the edited xml file and replace the old xml file in the original zip file.

Step 7: Change the extension back to xlsx.
Enjoy your unprotected excel worksheet now.

, you could recover excel file password with

If they looks difficult for you to use, you could recover Excel file password with third-party software, such as easy-to-use Excel Password Genius, which is aim at helping computer novice to recover forgotten excel xls/xlsx file password in simple way.

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One Response to “How to Unlock Excel File Free – Macro/XML”

  • Lesie says:

    Good! Free and effective ways even though it is not easy to do for everyone. It will be perfect if there is a software recovering password.