Save Prompt Without Any Changes

Sometimes when you open an Excel file and then close it without making any changes on it. But to your surprise, Excel pops a dialog asking whether you’d like to save changes. What changes? You didn’t make any. So why do you see this save prompt without any changes? Here is why…

There may be a couple of reasons for your worksheet to display save prompt without any changes:

  1. Your workbook contains volatile functions:

There may be calculations going on in your workbook without you realizing it. That is probably because there is Volatile Functions in your workbook. Volatile functions are the functions that makes calculations based on external sources like other ranges or current time, etc.

This means Excel needs to recalculate these functions each time a trigger event (like calculating a worksheet/workbook, opening a workbook, etc.) happens. Since a calculation is made, Excel will evaluate it as a change and ask you whether you’d like to save before closing, in case you want to keep the results.

If you don’t want this to happen in a particular workbook, you should check that workbook for volatile functions and remove or replace them with non-volatile functions. That will likely solve your “save on close” problem.

It is also advised by many experts to avoid using volatile functions when possible. They have much more serious side effects such as, when used in big quantities, possibly slowing your workbook significantly.

  1. File is opened with a newer version of Excel:

Opening a file that contains formulas with a newer version of Excel will cause your formulas to recalculate. This also means it will be opened slower than usual for the first time.

  1. Linked formulas to other workbooks with volatile formulas:

When your worksheet has linked formulas to other workbooks with volatile formulas, it is the same as first issue. Therefore your workbook will be evaluated as recalculated.

  1. Linked Pictures:

Excel will evaluate your workbook as updated when opened, if you have linked pictures in it.

  1. Iterative Formulas:

If you have iterative formulas, since they are similar to volatile formulas in a way, your workbook will be evaluated as changed when opened.

  1. Charts that are linked to other workbooks:

If you have charts in your workbook which has their source data in another workbook, they will cause your workbook to be evaluated as changed when recalculated.

  1. VBA codes that updates the workbook:

If you have any VBA code that is triggered with the opening of the workbook and updates anything, you will be asked whether you would like to save changes.

If your workbook has any of these conditions, you will see a save prompt without any changes made to your workbook each time you try to close it, regardless of any change you did or not.

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