Kent's Repository A Compilation of Life's Problems and Solutions and other things…
Browsing all posts in: Microsoft

Manually remove sheet protection from an Excel workbook

March 9

For Excel version 2010 and below, an easy VBA macro can be used to generate a compatible password to “un-protect” a worksheet. The macro that is floating around the internet does not actually reveal the password, but generates another password that will authenticate the same way to Excel. This was possible due to a weakness in the excel password system where it hashed passwords into a weak algorithm (Explanation Here).

For later version of Excel, “un-protecting” a worksheet became a little tougher, but still doable. The reason it’s possible to remove the sheet protection is because protection does not equal encryption, a protected sheet is not encrypted. Encryption is a totally different animal and not one that I have an easy answer for. But if you’re just looking to remove sheet protection, then chances are it can be done.

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Do you use Office 365 at work? Be mindful of the emails you send

February 20

Long story short, Microsoft is going to make it possible that your deleted e-mails never disappear and can always be recoverable. That being said, all you need to remember is that Work E-Mail is for Work!

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Microsoft Office Freezing or Lagging?

July 20

If your Microsoft Office products are freezing, lagging or behaving strangely, the issue may be with hardware graphics acceleration. We’ve seen issues involving Windows 8 and Nvidia Graphics chipsets, in all cases, disabling hardware graphics acceleration in the Microsoft application solved the problem. It’s possible that a drive update will be released to fix these issues but in the mean time, here is the solution.

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Office 365 Hosted Exchange & Distribution Groups (Security Flaw or Feature?)

July 15

Office 365 is the best thing to happen in the Hosted E-Mail business since well….I don’t know, I’m not a writer and I can’t come up with a clever comparison right now, just know that it’s a GREAT THING for many different reasons.

However, depending on your environment, some default features may be considered big security flaws by some. Most recently, we discovered that by default, regular users can create Global Exchange Distribution Groups which not only propagate to the GAL but can also encumber a routable e-mail address.

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Microsoft to offer free Windows XP Migration Software (easy way to move your files)

April 1

With Windows XP support ending on April 8th, 2014, Microsoft is offering free migration tools for those still unfortunate enough to be using Windows XP. Whether by choice, necessity or laziness, those still on XP should consider upgrading. In my experiences, if you have at least 2 GB. of memory, anything that is running Windows XP will support Windows 7, in most cases you will even see some performance improvements. You may experience issues with using legacy (really really old) software/hardware but in typical cases you’ll be just fine.

Visit for free migration software and additional migration information

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Useful Excel Functions: Unhide all hidden worksheets

December 2

This one comes to you compliments of

The following short VBA code also can help you display all of the hidden sheets at the same time.

1. Hold down the Alt + F11 keys in Excel, and it opens the Microsoft Visual Basic for Applications window.

2. Click Insert > Module, and paste the following macro in the Module Window.

Sub UnhideAllSheets()
Dim ws As Worksheet
For Each ws In ActiveWorkbook.Worksheets
ws.Visible = xlSheetVisible
Next ws
End Sub

3. Press the F5 key to run this macro. And the hidden sheets will be displayed at once.

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Multiple Exchange Accounts in Microsoft Outlook

November 25

With Outlook versions before 2010, you were limited to having 1 Exchange Type Account (mailbox) per profile. In this case, adding additional mailboxes was handled exclusively through the “add additional mailbox” option in the exchange account settings. However, this would only work if both accounts existed on the same exchange organization.

Beginning with Outlook 2010, you are now allowed to add multiple exchange accounts, this solves the problem of having multiple exchange accounts, on different organizations. However, adding multiple delegate email addresses for each exchange account now becomes a problem. Adding additional or delegate mailboxes for the first exchange account that was added in the profile works fine, however the “add” button in the additional exchange accounts is grayed out or disabled.  Here is a solution courtesy of and Microsoft


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Useful Excel Functions: Substitute Multiple Characters

November 5

Normally, the excel substitute() function is limited to finding 1 string and substituting said string for another string. This Excel User Defined Function allows you to substitute multiple sets of strings/characters. I created a sheet with 2 columns (as named ranges), “CleanOLD” and “CleanNew” and used the following formula =SubstituteMultiple(TRIM(CLEAN(A1)),CleanOld,CleanNew)

Excel Multiple Substitute

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Window/Orphan Control: Obscure Microsoft Word option

June 21

A user called in today with a Microsoft Word issue, we don’t usually support Microsoft Word but most “issues” end up being very simple fixes. The issue today was that he user was unable to start the beginning of a paragraph at the end of a page, without the entire paragraph being shifted to the next page. Not ever having encountered the issue myself, I suggested two fixes

1. Shift Enter instead of “enter” at the EOL of the previous paragraph. This inserts a line break instead of a paragraph break.

2. The old Microsoft Word “Make-it-Fit” tool, which for-whatever-reason, Microsoft has made difficult to find. It looks like it’s been renamed to “Shrink to Fit”

Apparently option #1 worked but it caused issues with the user’s formatting, option 2 did not do much. The user was able to stumble upon a “paragraph” option in word which I’ve never used before, the solution was “Window/Orphan Control”. Here are some links that explain options 1-3:

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Cached/Saved credentials in Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8

June 7

Recent Microsoft operating systems have changed the way “cached” or “saved” credentials are stored. A cached credential is generated whenever the user selects “remember my password”. Normally, this feature works great, however, sometimes when a network/resource password is changed, Windows will still send the older locally cached/saved credential instead.

Under ideal conditions, Windows will see that the credential is no longer valid and prompt the user for new credentials. On the other hand, under certain conditions (not sure what these are), Windows refuses to acknowledge the “this password is incorrect” server response and it attempts to authenticate repeatedly with the outdated/old credential. Depending on your network’s security settings, this behavior could cause your account to become disabled or locked-out. To remedy this, a user must manually remove or update their cached credentials, the best course of action is to remove the cached credential. Instructions on how to remove cached credentials are below, courtesy of

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