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How to compare two worksheets in same workbook or different workbooks?

Author: Sun Last Modified: 2022-01-05

In our daily work, we may encounter the job is to compare two sheets in a same workbook or different workbooks to find the differences between them. Here I introduce some tricks on solving this job in Excel.

Compare two sheets in the same workbook

Compare two sheets in two different workbooks

List all differences between two sheets in the same workbook

Highlight differences between two sheets in the same workbook

Compare and highlight the differences between two sheets good idea3

Compare and highlight the differences between two ranges in two sheets good idea3


Compare two sheets in the same workbook

In Excel, you can apply the New Window utility to compare two sheets in the same workbook.

1. Enable the workbook you want to compare two sheets within, and then click View > New Window. See screenshot:
doc compare two sheets 1

2. Then go to the task bar to display the new window of the current workbook. See screenshot:
doc compare two sheets 2

3. Go to the two sheets you want to compare from each window and arrange them side by side. See screenshot:
doc compare two sheets 3

4. Now compare two sheets as you need.


Compare two ranges and select and highlight the same or different values in Excel

In Excel, if there are two tables in a sheet or two sheets needed to be compared, generally, you will compare one row by one manually. But if you have Kutools for Excel's Select Same & Different Cells utility, you can quickly find the same rows or different rows, and, also, you can highlight them with background color or font color as you need. Free trial for full-featured 30-days!
doc select same difference
 
Kutools for Excel: with more than 300 handy Excel add-ins, free to try with no limitation in 30 days.

Compare two sheets in two different workbooks

If the two sheets you want to compare in two different workbooks, you can apply the View Side by Side utility to handle it.

Open the two sheets you want to compare between, and activate one sheet and click View > View Side by Side. See screenshot:
doc compare two sheets 4

Then the two sheets in two workbooks have been displayed horizontally.
doc compare two sheets 5

And then you can compare two sheets as you need.


List all differences between two sheets in the same workbook

If you want to list all differences between two sheets in the same workbook, you can apply a formula to a new sheet to solve it.

1. Open the workbook which contains the sheets you want to compare and create a new sheet. See screenshot:
doc compare two sheets 6

2. In the new sheet, select a blank cell, for instance, A1, and type this formula =IF(Sheet1!A1<> Sheet7!A1, "Sheet1:"&Sheet1!A1&" vs Sheet7:"&Sheet7!A1, ""), Sheet1 and Sheet7 are the sheets you want to compare with, and A1 is the first cell you want to compare. See screenshot:
doc compare two sheets 7

3. Then drag the auto fill handle over the range you need to compare between two sheets. See screenshot:
doc compare two sheets 8

Now the differences between two sheets have been listed.

doc compare two sheets 9
doc arrow down
doc compare two sheets 10


Highlight differences between two sheets in the same workbook

With the Conditional Formatting utility, you can highlight the differences between two sheets in the same workbook.

1. Select the range in one of both worksheets you want to highlight differences and click Home > Conditional Formatting > New Rule. See screenshot:
doc compare two sheets 11

2. In the popping out dialog, choose to Use a formula to determine which cells to format in the Select a Rule Type section, and type this formula =A1<>Sheet7!A1 in the Format values where this formula is true box, then click Format to specify formatting style to highlight the cells. See screenshot:
doc compare two sheets 12

Tip: in the formula, A1 is the first cell in your selection, Sheet7 is the sheet you want to compare with.

3. Click OK > OK, and now the differences have been highlighted.


Compare and highlight the differences between two sheets

If there are two similar worksheets which are in the same structure but have different rows and columns, to compare and highlight the difference between them, you can use Kutools for Excel’s Compare Worksheets feature.

Kutools for Excel, with more than 300 handy functions, makes your jobs more easier. 

After free installing Kutools for Excel, please do as below:

1. Open the main worksheet you want to use as based sheet, cluck Kutools Plus > Worksheet > Compare Worksheets > Compare Worksheets.
doc kutools select same different cells 2

2. In the Compare Worksheets dialog, the current sheet is under Main worksheet section, go to Lookup section, click the browse button to choose the second sheet that you want to use compare with the current sheet. as long as you add the second sheet, the two sheets are placed side by side in the window.
doc kutools select same different cells 2
doc kutools select same different cells 2

3. Click Next, in this step, specify the settings for highlighting differences. Click Ok to start comparing sheets.
doc kutools select same different cells 2
doc kutools select same different cells 2

Optional: if you want to reedit the one worksheet based on another worksheet after comparing, click Kutools Plus > Worksheet > Compare Worksheets > Enable Compare Worksheets.
doc kutools select same different cells 2

Then after you reediting the data to the same with the same cell in another sheet, the background color marker will disappear.
doc kutools select same different cells 2

Attention: this feature compare two worksheets in different workbooks.


Compare and highlight the differences between two ranges in two sheets

Actually, here I can introduce you a handy tool – Kutools for Excel’s Select Same & Different Cells to quickly compare two sheets in a workbook and highlight the differences.

Kutools for Excel, with more than 300 handy functions, makes your jobs more easier. 

After free installing Kutools for Excel, please do as below:

1. Click Kutools > Select > Select Same & Different Cells. See screenshot:
doc compare two sheets 14

2. In the popping dialog, click Browse button doc select button in the Find values in and According to box to select the two ranges you want to compare with, and check Single cell and Different values options, and specify the background color and font color to highlight the differences. See screenshot:
doc kutools select same different cells 2

3. Click Ok, a dialog pops out to remind you the different cells have been found, and click OK to close it, the differences have been highlighted and selected as well.
doc kutools select same different cells 3


quickly select duplicate or unique values in an Excel range

In Excel sheet, if you have a range which includes some duplicate rows, you may need to select them or outstanding them, but how can quickly solve this job?If you have Kutools for Excel, you can use the Select Duplicate & Unique Cells utility to quickly select the duplicate ones or unique values in the range, or fill background and font color for the duplicates and unique values.  Click for 30 days free trial!
doc highlight duplicate across columns 6
 
Kutools for Excel: with more than 300 handy Excel add-ins, free to try with no limitation in 30 days.

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Comments (4)
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This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Very helpful, thank you! Specifically showing both "List all differences between two sheets in the same workbook" AND "Highlight differences between two sheets in the same workbook". Very very helpful once I slowed down long enough to comprehend the information being given. Thank you!
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
I need a direct method to compare two workbooks. One is an autosaved copy, I need to know if I need to save it or if the original is all I need.
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
WHY IN EXCEL 2007 IN MY OFFICE NOT WORK THE A1<>SHEET!A1 NOT WORK
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
In my Excel 2007, the formula =IF(Sheet1!A1<> Sheet7!A1, "Sheet1:"&Sheet1!A1&" vs Sheet7:"&Sheet7!A1, "") also work, maybe that is something wrong while you copy the formula?
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