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Getting the most out of Big Data in Excel

If you're trying to process a very large data set in Excel 2010, and it's freezing up on you, try going stronger in one of two ways.

64 bit Office

1. Look under File . . . Help . . . in the About Microsoft Excel section. If you have a 32 bit version of Excel, consdering installing the 64 bit version. The 32 bit version can only make use of 2 GB of RAM. If you have a 64 bit OS, the 64 bit version of Excel can take advantage of a far larger amount of RAM. The functionality of filtering data, copying and pasting it, and autofilling columns should be greatly improved.


2. Also consider installing the PowerPivot add-in for Excel 2010, available here. Excel 2010 normally supports a maxium of 1,048,576 rows, but with the PowerPivot add-in users report smooth functionality with at least 4 miilion rows and possibly as many as 7 million rows.

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