Tip of the week # 654
13 May 2021


Close all open files and desktop app (Microsoft Word and Excel) *

As promised last week, this tip isn't just for Microsoft 365 subscribers. But as I just found out something else that I am itching to share, I would like to know what version you are using as I don't want to alienate anyone, but I also don't want you to lose out. So, please drop me a line and let me know what version of MS Office you are using. (If you don't know ... go to the File tab and select Account. On the right hand side it should say something along the lines of Microsoft 365 Apps for business. If you don't see Account you're probably using version 2010. Or if your tabs are in caps - don't ask - you are using version 2013.)

Anyway, this week's tip ...

Are you a neat and tidy person and constantly close the files you finished working on? If not, you might spend quite some time at the end of the day closing all of them. Perhaps you click on the cross in the upper-right hand corner, but that closes them one by one. Or you might press CTRL + W? Again, this closes the files one by one, but also keeps the application open ... which might be what you want? (I know quite a few of my contacts out there like that! But I'm afraid I cannot name names. Thanks for the inspiration, though!)

So if you want to close all open files as well as the desktop app you can right-click the application icon on the taskbar and select Close all windows. Or why not add it as a button on your Quick Access Toolbar?

Here's how:

  1. Click on the drop-down arrow at the far end of the Quick Access Toolbar. (The one with the Undo, Redo and Save buttons on it.)
  2. Click on More Commands.
  3. In the Choose commands from drop-down list, select All Commands.
  4. Scroll down the alphabetical list and double-click on Close All.
  5. Click OK or press ENTER.

As the subject line implies ... I cannot find the Close All option for PowerPoint. Weird. I assume that's the same for all of you?

Bonus tip: In Excel if you hold down the SHIFT key when you click on the Close button (the cross) in the top right hand corner it also closes all windows and prompts you to Save, Save All or Don't Save, as normal.

Finally, there are a couple of other buttons I feel you might want to add to your Quick Access Toolbar, if you haven't already done so as I spoke about them in other tips ...

Related tips

  1. Attach a PDF version of an active document to an email message tip_574.php
  2. Attach a copy of an active document to an e-mail message - tip_453.php
  3. Selecting commands without using your mouse - tip_220.php
  4. Adding your favourite commands to the Quick Access Toolbar - tip_218.php
  5. Squeeze those last lines on a single page - tip_405.php
  6. Make it easier to schedule a meeting with someone outside your organisation - tip_648.php
  7. Make changes to your document from the Print Preview and Print page - tip_417.php
  8. Close a window without clicking in the upper-right corner - tip_272.php
  9. Customizing the Quick Access Toolbar - tip_227.php


* Unless stated otherwise this tip is written for Microsoft 365 desktop apps and Windows 10 users, but might also be useful in Office 2010, 2013 and 2016.