Excel (Copy)

Copper Contributor

After closing a worksheet, the next day when I go back to this sheet it has a second file with the same name ,but it says (Copy). Why is this happening?


Thank you,

Jim Kirk

1 Reply


The issue of Excel creating a second file with the same name but appended with "(Copy)" typically occurs due to several reasons, such as automatic backup settings, accidental saving, or auto-recovery features. Here are the most common reasons and how you can address them:

Possible Reasons and Solutions

1. Auto-Recovery and Auto-Save Features

Excel has auto-recovery and auto-save features designed to prevent data loss in case of a crash or unexpected shutdown. If Excel detects that the file wasn't saved properly, it might create a copy of the file.

  • Solution:
    • Ensure you are properly saving and closing the file before exiting Excel.
    • Check your auto-save settings by going to:

File > Options > Save

Adjust the auto-save interval to a suitable time frame. Also, ensure that the "Keep the last AutoRecovered version if I close without saving" option is enabled.

2. Manual Copy or Save As

If you manually create a copy of the file or use the "Save As" function, Excel will append "(Copy)" to the file name to differentiate it from the original.

  • Solution:
    • Be cautious when using "Save As" and ensure you are not inadvertently creating a copy.
    • Verify the file path where you are saving the file.

3. Shared Network Drives

If multiple users are accessing the same file on a shared network drive, and one user has the file open, another user trying to open it might trigger Excel to create a copy to prevent conflicts.

  • Solution:
    • Ensure that only one user at a time is accessing the file if it's stored on a shared network drive.
    • Use a collaboration tool like OneDrive or SharePoint, which better handles concurrent access.

4. File Corruption or Issues

Sometimes, file corruption or issues with the original file can lead Excel to create a copy to preserve data.

  • Solution:
    • Check the integrity of your files. You might need to repair the file:

File > Open > Browse > Select the file > Click on the arrow next to the Open button > Open and Repair 

5. Temporary Files

Excel creates temporary files while you work on a document. These files are usually hidden and cleaned up when you close Excel properly. If Excel crashes or isn't closed properly, these temporary files might remain.

  • Solution:
    • Ensure Excel is closed properly.
    • Clean up temporary files manually if needed:


Go to the temporary files directory and delete unnecessary files.

Steps to Identify the Issue

  1. Save Properly: Make sure you save your work and close Excel properly.
  2. Check Auto-Save Settings: Verify your auto-save settings.
  3. Monitor Shared Access: Ensure no one else is accessing the file simultaneously if on a network drive.
  4. File Integrity: Use the "Open and Repair" feature if you suspect file corruption.

By following these steps, you should be able to identify and resolve the issue of Excel creating unwanted "(Copy)" files. The text and the steps are created with the help of AI.


My answers are voluntary and without guarantee!


Hope this will help you.


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