How can I recover an Excel password

Office Excel: remove password

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In Microsoft Excel there is the so-called "sheet protection". This enables you to assign a password to a sheet in the Excel program. But of course a protected file cannot be opened again without a password - a problem if you forget the password. In our guide you will find out how you can remove the password anyway. The instructions work for all versions of Excel including Excel 2016. It may no longer work for Excel 2019. However, there is currently no alternative solution for the latest version of Excel.

Note: This password protection concerns individual Excel pages. If you have assigned a password to an entire Excel file, there are hardly any legal programs to break the protection. Because all of these programs can also be used as general password crackers.
If you forget your password frequently, a password manager can help you: this is how you manage your passwords.

Danger: You may only use the following instructions for your own files. Otherwise you could be liable to prosecution.

Remove password for sheet protection in Excel

You need the program for these instructions 7-zip, which you can download from heise download, for example: https://www.heise.de/download/product/7-zip-13139

Then follow our step-by-step instructions or take a look at the quick start guide.

quick start Guide

  1. Click the right click on the excel file and then in the menu "7-zip" on "to open".
  2. Then double click on "xl".
  3. Open the folder "worksheets". It should contain several files named"sheet []. xml". Instead of [] you will find a number. Select the Excel sheet (" Sheet ") whose password you want to delete, for example"sheet1.xml". Drag this file on your desktop.
  4. Then click right click on the file and choose under "Open with" the option "editor". This opens the file in Word Editor.
  5. Press the key combination [Ctrl]+[F] and search for "protection". This should be in the Beginning of a command that looks something like the following.

    To make this clearer, line breaks have been inserted here instead of spaces. Instead of [string] you have an actual string that specifies the hash value of your sheet.


  6. Clear You the entire command of "" Until next time "/>".
  7. to save and close the file.
  8. Move Put the sheet []. Xml file back into the folder opened with 7-Zip "worksheets".