How to Increase Excel Row Limit (Using Data Model)

Excel has a row limit that is 1,048,576 according to Microsoft Support (2021). If it is not enough for you, if your data exceeds the limit, then your file will not be opened. A message saying “File not loaded completely” will be popped up. In this article, you will learn about this fact, and last, I will discuss a way to increase your worksheet capacity, i.e., to increase the Excel row limit.


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Download the following Excel file for your practice.


What Is the Row Limit in Excel?

Every workbook has a limited memory to function well without any malfunction or crash. When your data exceeds the limit of 1048576 rows, you can use new sheets for these extra data. Now you will learn how to check the limit of rows in your Excel program.

Just hold the CTRL+Down Arrow key simultaneously and it will direct to the last row. Now you can easily see the total number of rows.

In the same way, you can check the total column number. Just hold the CTRL+Right Arrow key.


Why Does MS Excel Have a Row Limit?

Though the most updated version of Excel is cloud-based, you can’t exceed the row/column limits. You can cite the following reasons for these limitations.

  • Excel is Not a Database:

Though Excel provides many features, it is not a real database. Microsoft has other databases like SQL Server or Access for your large data analysis.

  • Purpose Built:

At the initial, they built Excel as an all-purpose analysis tool, but, for this, it’s had to sacrifice efficiency at several scales. You can not be good at everything. They built Excel to provide use cases from project management to finance, to basic statistics and organization.

  • Optimization:

It is unlikely that Excel could function properly with all of its features with such huge data sets that exceed the current row limit. You may have faced the problem of slowly running the system when you work with a large dataset in Excel. For this reason, they optimize Excel to work with your local resources, not the cloud resources.


Is There Any Real Way to Increase the Row Limit in Excel?

Apparently, no way. You can’t cross the Excel row limit. However, you may insert your data into the data model, and then applying Power View or Power Pivot option you can handle more than 1048576 rows.


Increase Excel Row Limit Using Data Model

As has been told before, there is no direct way to increase the Excel row limit. However, by using Data Model, you will learn a technique to use Excel’s memory for your extra data.

Let’s introduce our dataset first. I guess you are here because you are trying to deal with data that have more than 1048576 rows! However, we will use a brief dataset for the sake of easy demonstration. You can use these steps for your gigantic data too.

So, here we have 3 datasets. The first includes the student’s class test marks, the second contains the students’ mid-term exam marks, and finally, the third dataset contains the final exam marks.

Increase Excel Row Limit Using Data Model (Sample Dataset)

Our goal is to connect these 3 datasets and then create a relationship among them. Just follow the steps below to make a Data Model.

Steps:

  • First, click anywhere in the first dataset. Then go to the Insert tab and click on the Table option. A window will pop up.

Increase Excel Row Limit Using Data Model

  • Next, check the data locations of your first dataset and mark the My table has headers checkbox, and then press OK.

  • Select a new table, and insert the table’s name in the Table Name under the tools group by selecting the new table.

Extend Row Limit Using Data Model

  • The 1st dataset is converted to a Table object. Repeat the above steps to convert the other 2 datasets into Table objects.

Extend Row Limit Using Data Model

  • Now, go to the Data tab. Then click on the Relationships button. A Manage Relationship window will pop up.

Extend Row Limit Using Data Model

  • Click New. The Create Relationship Dialog box will pop up.

Extend Row Limit Using Data Model

  • Expand the Table and Related Table dropdown. In this example, select CT_Marks for Table and Mid_Term for Related Table. Then, for both Column and Related Column, select ID. Now with all these 4 settings, click OK and a relationship between the table CT_Marks and Mid_Term will be created.

Create Relationship Dialog Box

  • Again, the Manage Relationship dialog box will pop up.

Manage Relationship Dialog Box

  • By repeating these steps, we can relate the table Final with the table CT_Marks.

By doing this, all 3 tables will be related.

Now, we will create a PivotTable that analyzes the table objects.

  • First, click on Insert tab > PivotTable. A pop-up window will appear.

Increase Excel Row Limit Using Data Model (Pivot Table)

  • Now, check the Use an external data source > click on Choose Connection. An Existing Connection window will appear.

  • Click on Tables > select Tables in Workbook Data Model > click on Open. A window will pop up.

Workbook Data Model

  • After that, select New Worksheet > press OK.

Increase Excel Row Limit Using Data Model

Finally, the PivotTable Fields pane will show table objects. And we can modify the PivotTable to analyze the table objects as we needed

Now, if we want to calculate the total CT marks for all students, here it is.

PivotTable Table Application

Remarks:

Using Data Model, we can analyze data from several tables of the same sheet or different sheets. It is a great help in the situation of a large amount of data in a model or table.

Read More: How to Group Rows in Excel Pivot Table (3 Ways)


Conclusion

In this tutorial, I have discussed 1 way to increase the Excel row limit. I hope you found this article helpful. You can visit our website ExcelDemy to learn more Excel-related content. Please, drop comments, suggestions, or queries if you have any in the comment section below.


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