[Solved!] Excel Dialog Box Is Hidden (3 Solutions)

The problem is if a dialog box is open in Excel, the program won’t close, and sometimes you can’t use other commands until you close the box. This can disrupt your workflow. It can make working with Excel frustrating. So, it’s important to fix these issues quickly for a smoother experience.

In this Excel tutorial, you will learn how to solve the hidden dialog box issues while working in Excel.

Here’s an overview of applying a Keyboard shortcut to display all the active windows and dialog boxes to find a hidden dialog box.

overview of Excel dialog box hidden

When and Why Is Dialog Box Hidden in Excel?

Dialog boxes in Excel can be hidden for various reasons. Here are some common situations where you don’t see them on the screen:

  1. While multitasking, dialog boxes may get lost behind active windows or applications.
  2. Sometimes dialog boxes might be positioned behind other open windows or applications.
  3. If you have recently changed your display resolution, it may put the dialog box off-screen.
  4. When using multiple monitors, you may lose the Excel dialog box on one of your screens.
  5. Graphic card problems can lead to incomplete rendering, making the dialog box partially or completely invisible.
  6. Ensure your macro or script code is correct. Sometimes, they may not open the right dialog box in Excel.

3 Ways to Solve the Hidden Dialog Box Issue in Excel

When using various command prompts in Excel, you might encounter situations where the Excel application becomes inaccessible due to a hidden dialog box. For example, you have opened a dialog box but cannot locate it on the screen.

Here are three ways to resolve the Hidden Dialog Box issue:

Checking Multi-Monitor Screen and Setup

In a multi-monitor setup, dialog boxes might open on a non-primary monitor. If the dialog box is still not visible on any monitor, check in the other monitor or consider disconnecting additional monitors for resolution. After disconnecting, the hidden dialog box will pop up on your primary monitor.

Using Keyboard Shortcuts

If you’re multitasking with many windows or dialog boxes, the Excel dialog box might get lost behind other open windows and seem hidden as it gets difficult to find them. By using some keyboard shortcuts, you can display all the windows and Dialog boxes on your desktop. And then you can easily find your needed dialog box.

There are two keyboard shortcuts:

  1. Pressing ALT+TAB each time switches between open windows and dialog boxes. It is useful if the dialog box is hidden behind others.
    using keyboard shortcut to solve hidden dialog box issue
  2. Press the WIN+TAB keys to access the Windows Task View feature. It will display all the opened windows and dialog boxes on your desktop.
    windows task view feature

Restarting/Reinstalling Excel

If the above-mentioned troubleshooting methods do not solve the hidden dialog box issue, you can try restarting or reinstalling the application. Sometimes restarting Excel or reopening the Excel file can solve the problem smoothly.

If you can not close your Excel application normally. Try to close it forcefully using the following steps:

  • For Windows: Press CTRL + ALT + DEL > Choose Task Manager > Processes tab > Microsoft Excel > End Process.
  • For Mac: Applications > Utilities > Activity Monitor > Microsoft Excel > X button.

If the hidden dialogue box issue is persistent in Excel, which could be caused by file corruption, it is recommended to reinstall Excel by downloading a new copy or installing an updated version to avoid software bugs.
To reinstall Excel:

  1. Uninstall Microsoft Office from your computer:
    • In Windows, go to Control Panel > Programs > Programs and Features > find Microsoft Office > Uninstall.
    • In Mac, Open Finder > Applications folder > Microsoft Excel > Right-click and select Move to Trash > Empty the Trash.
  2. Restart your computer.
  3. Reinstall Microsoft Office by downloading the installer from the official Microsoft website.
    Or, by using the installation disc that came with your purchase.
  4. Open Excel again to see if the dialog box is now visible.

Reinstalling Microsoft Office may take some time and will require you to activate the software again, so make sure you have your activation key or Microsoft account login information on hand.

Keep in mind that restarting or reinstalling Excel is a drastic solution and should only be done as a last resort. Before attempting this, make sure you have backed up all important files and data, as uninstalling Microsoft Office will remove all Office applications from your computer.


Hidden dialog box in Excel can be quite troublesome sometimes. It is often very frustrating if the problem is not solved by any means. In this article, we have provided logical explanations of the cause of the problem and how to solve it. Hope this helps you and saves you from trouble. If you have any questions, feel free to let us know in the comments.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I unhide multiple hidden dialog boxes at once?

No, you need to address each hidden dialog box individually.

2. Can I reset dialog box positions in Excel?

Yes, you can reset the positions of dialog boxes by deleting the Excel settings file. However, be cautious as this will reset other customization options as well. Check these steps:

  1. Go to your file location: C:\Users\YourUsername\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Excel\
  2. Replace ‘YourUsername’ with your actual username.
  3. Find the Excel15.xlb file and delete it.

This applies to Excel 2013 and later versions.

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Md. Abu Sina Ibne Albaruni
Md. Abu Sina Ibne Albaruni

Md. Abu Sina Ibne Albaruni holds a BSc in Mechanical Engineering from Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology. He is a dedicated employee of the ExcelDemy project. He has written quite a large number of articles for ExcelDemy. Besides, he has expertise in VBA. He efficiently automates Excel issues using VBA macros and actively engages in the ExcelDemy forum, offering valuable solutions for user interface challenges. His areas of interest in work and study span MATLAB, Machine Learning,... Read Full Bio

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