Today I'm going to talk about a great add-in for Excel 2013, which is part of Excel itself and is called Inquire. This Add-Inn hides tools that we have looked for in all previous versions of Excel but never found them. We then helped ourselves with some kind of a VBA solution, but never got even close to the elegance and simplicity of the Inquire Add-Inn. This is in fact an analytical tool, which does not deal with numbers and tables, but rather with the data. Here’s what it can tell you... How many cells with formulas are in this workbook. How many blank sheets, how many hidden sheets… How many connections between the sheets. How many links to other workbooks. How many differences are there between the two workbooks .The answers to all these questions, and many others are hidden in the INQUIRE tab, which can only be added to Excel by enabling the Inquire Add-In. Here’s how.
The procedure is very simple. File/Options/Add-ins, select COM Add-ins and tick the Inquire. At this point I should also mention that PowerPivot is also already included, as you can see in the picture below.
Now, let’s take a walk through the ribbon. The first command is called Workbook Analysis, and gives you an extremely detailed analysis of the active workbook. Sample can be seen on the picture below.
As you can see it’s a comprehensive report on what is going on with your workbook, but you can even export the data into Excel.
After that are three very useful commands. The first one allows you to determine to which other workbooks the current workbook is associated to.
The next command tells you whether the formula or function in a workbook relates to other sheets.
The following command however, allows you to see everything that is taken into account in a calculation of a cell. So which cells are precedents or dependents of a certain cell. In previous versions there were commands Trace Precedents, and Trace Dependents, but for cells outside of the current sheet those commands completely lost transparency. But now a report for the active cell looks like this:
Easy and transparent.
But we saved the best for last. The following command was absent but missed in every previous version of Excel - Compare Files, where you can compare two workbooks, and Excel tells you what is different. The appearance of the tool:
Now get this, it will even tell you the differences between the VBA modules. Superior!