How To Save Excel File to A USB Drive

Dear Computer Lady,

I am not familiar with exactly how to use a data disk.

I have a Microsoft spreadsheet file that I would like to put on a disk.

If I do and make changes to the file how do I get the changes to the disk on the disk?

I have Windows 7. Helen

Dear Helen,

From your question, I am not sure if you are trying to use a USB data stick, or a CD. (The CD, would be a disk, while the USB device is a data stick)

I am going to guess that you are trying to use a USB data stick (also called a flash drive or thumb drive) because this is easier to use for backing up a file that you are making changes to.

The first step is to insert the USB data stick into a USB port on your computer. Wait a second, and a small dialog box will appear asking you what you want to do with the device.

Click “Open folder to view files” and a window will open showing you the contents of your flash drive.

The second step is to open the folder containing your spreadsheet. We will use your “My Documents” folder for this example, but you can actually use any folder.

To open the “My Documents” folder, click on “Start” then click on “Documents” in the right column of the start menu.

You now have two windows open on your screen, one for the data stick, and another for your document.

Move the two windows around so they are side by side. You can do this quite easily by right clicking on the taskbar, then click “Show Windows Side by Side”.

Now, simply drag your spreadsheet file from your Documents window to the data stick window.

Once the file has finished copying, you can close both windows and remove the data stick.

When you make changes to your spreadsheet, simply insert your data stick and repeat the steps above.

If you are like me, and never remember to make another copy after making changes, you might want to think about one of the online backup services like Carbonite or Mozy. They will automatically backup a new copy of any file that you make changes to, and you don’t have to remember to do it.


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Elizabeth Boston is a Web designer, Social Media Consultant and managing editor of, “Ask The Computer Lady”.
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