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Going, going, gone! Yes, it’s true that the Chart Wizard was removed from the product when we shipped Excel 2007, and we didn’t bring it back in Excel 2010. For those of you upgrading from Excel 97-2003, this may come as a big shock. The Chart Wizard provided a useful four-step process that you could simply follow to create a chart with a finishing touch. Unfortunately, it didn’t make sense to update the Chart Wizard to incorporate the many changes that were made when the chart engine was rebuilt for Excel 2007. Instead, the ribbon became the new place to go for all your charting needs.
At first glance, it may seem that you are left with just a bunch of chart type buttons on the Insert tab of the ribbon. Not true. These buttons are just the starting point.
It’s a bit of a shift, but once you get used to the ribbon, it’s really quite simple. You may actually appreciate the fact that you’ll have many more options available at your fingertips.When you click anywhere in your chart, you’ll notice that the Chart Tools are added to the ribbon. You’ll get three additional tabs that provide an assortment of chart design, layout and formatting options.
You may want to take a few moments to explore the available options. In the Data group on the Design tab, for example, you’ll see that you can still switch data series over the axis the same way you could on step 2 of the Chart Wizard.
This table shows you where you’ll find all of the options you used in the Chart Wizard:
I especially like the predefined chart layouts and chart styles on the Design tab that provide instant professional results. On the Layout tab, I can add all sorts of chart elements or change the way they are displayed in the chart. It’s all there (and then some), trust me! Living up to its name, the Format tab provides many ways to format a chart using special effects that have never been available in earlier versions of Excel, such as the bevel effects shown in the chart below. It takes a bit of practice, and you may think it’s not really that useful, but once you get the hang of it, I know that you’ll be proud to show off your professional-looking results.
I also want to point out that you can right-click on any chart element for quick access to specific features that can be applied to that element (for example, you can get to the Format Axis dialog box when you right-click any chart axis). I’m a habitual right-clicker, because it’s a little faster than finding the options I need on the ribbon. And whenever I point this method out to my peers, this is their typical response: ”That’s just too easy!”
For more information on creating charts in Excel 2010, check out the article "Create a chart from start to finish." And check out the blog post on our eight best tutorials on Excel charts.
--Frederique Klitgaard, writer for Office.com
More info on Excel charts:
Combining Chart Types, Adding a Second Axis Create a chart from start to finishFree training: Take the next steps in growing your Excel skills (Lesson 2) Go beyond the basic chart type Use sparklines to show data trendsLine or scatter chart?Format column sparkline charts using the date axis and cell merging
Overall some nice new display options, but the error bars are crap. As a scientists these are important to me.
The most useful option (custom) is buried at the end of all the options, and it applies them to both x and y axis by default.
Whoever designed this doesn't seem to understand the point of error bars.
And as for what happens with logged axes when the error bar goes below zero, I can't believe this "feature" got through quality control/beta testing etc.
Amy Miller you are my hero! I opened one of my reports, followed along and now I'm chart smart. You just took away my chart pain and in only about 5 minutes.
Diana, so glad we could help! I must give credit to Frederique, who wrote the post (her name is at the end). But in any case, I'm thrilled we were able to help you so quickly!
what happened to the chart window option? used to be able to select a chart, right click and select chart window. then you could make the window as large as you wanted and when it was closed, the chart would be restored to its original size.
this was very useful when looking at chart that are part of a dashboard.
PLEASE bring back the Chart Wizard. I teach ICT to both primary and secondary students, and it was so easy to teach them using the Wizard. They don't want all the complicated options, just need to know how to create and label charts.
Yes, the options are there, but they are very hard to find and very hard to read.
I write instructions for the kids. In 2003, they could follow them, but in 2007 (and now in 2010) it is too hard for them.
IT Teacher - DET NSW
Look at your comparison chart between a Wizard and 2010. Which column looks more complicated? I think the new ribbon method does and my experience so far backs me up. You guys need to use common sense when changing products. Ribbons are not easier or more intuitive.
I have to say that I do not see what the problem is. I make loads of charts in my job and do not agrees that making a chart is more difficult using the ribbon than using the chart wizard in 2003. The new version automatically selects the table if it is the only one on the spreadsheet. If it is not, you just insert chart, select data and there you go. If I need to make any changes, I tend to right click on eitherh axis, data or chart and select from teh context menu, so mist of my adjustments, avoid using the ribbon, although I am happy to use the ribbon if I need to.
As to training others to make charts in 2007 or 2010, I have not come across any problems yet and this is with users of mixed abilities.
The ribbon is the best thing that happened to charts.
Hrmm that was weird, my comment got eaten. Anyway I wanted to say that it's nice to know that someone else also mentioned this as I had trouble finding this same info elsewhere. This was this first place that told me this answer. Thanks.
i need to buy a excel book
I miss the Wizard! When I "click anywhere on the chart" as the article above suggests, I do not get the "Chart tools" ribbon to appear aywhere that I can see. . At least the Wizard let you do the simple but important tasks of setting the increments on the axis, adding titles or adjusting names in the Key. If you remove the wizard and don't make these kind of operations intuitive you've reduced functionaliity. Why? I would bet it wasn't a planned change but one forced on the developers by an impossible deadline so they had to abandon updating of the wizard. Why else would you drop such a useful part of the program.
bring back the chart wizard! I HATE HATE HATE the ribbons in the Office products. I used to know where everything was and how to use all the features. Now I have to spend exponentially more time just trying to find the functionality that I want to use. Why does Microsoft always have to break what works just to give a subset of users a different interface???
I'm surprised that you killed the wizard. But I'm not surprised to find that in his absence it is much more difficult for squibs such as myself to get any magic done. I'd say there are far too many dementors running amuck in Redmond.
Good Afternoon. To whom may be able to help: what I cannot find in the new version is the "ADD SERIES" which formerly was under "Source Data" option under the right clock drop-down. I believe this was also under ChartWizard step 2, "Series" tab. thank you in advance.
Please bring back Chart Wizard. I'm not an advanced Excel user and I like to make quick, simple charts. The ribbon is a confusing mess for anyone who wants to "get in and get out". The chart wizard was great when you wanted to get a quick look at your data. Now, I have a hard time just figuring out how to label a chart. You guys made a huge mistake removing the Chart Wizard.