Take a Tour of the PowerPivot UI

Looking for help with Power Pivot in Excel 2013? Go to Power Pivot Help on Office.com.

This topic takes you through the key areas of the PowerPivot for Excel user interface. This topic includes the following sections:

  • Opening Excel and Launching the PowerPivot Window

  • Adding Data to the PowerPivot Window

  • Exploring the PowerPivot Window

  • Exploring the PowerPivot Tab and Feld List in Excel

  • Next Steps

For a detailed tutorial, see PowerPivot for Excel Tutorial Introduction.


Some parts of the PowerPivot window differ depending on which version of Windows you are running. This topic and the rest of the PowerPivot for Excel Help topics focus on the user interface in Windows Vista and Windows 7. If you are running Windows XP, read through this topic first and then see The PowerPivot UI in Windows XP.

Opening Excel and Launching the PowerPivot Window

Follow these steps to get started:

  1. Open Excel 2010 on a computer that has PowerPivot for Excel installed. For more information about installation, see Install PowerPivot for Excel.

  2. On the Excel ribbon, click the PowerPivot tab.


  3. On the PowerPivot tab, click PowerPivot Window.


When you have the PowerPivot for Excel add-in installed, you can work with data in both an Excel worksheet and in the PowerPivot window that you just opened. The worksheet window includes familiar Excel features, as well as a PowerPivot tab and a PowerPivot field list. The PowerPivot window includes lots of functionality specific to adding tables of data and creating relationships between those tables. There is only one application running and all the data that you work with is stored in the same workbook file. However, the application windows are independent, with the PowerPivot window opening over Excel, and the windows are listed as separate items on the Windows taskbar. We will work in the PowerPivot window for now and come back to the Excel window and PowerPivot tab later in the topic.

Adding Data to the PowerPivot Window

You will now paste data into the PowerPivot window, which enables you to see areas of the UI that are enabled only if data is present:

  1. Select and copy the data from the following table, including the table headings.








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  2. In the PowerPivot window on the Home tab, click Paste.

  3. In the Paste Preview dialog box, click OK.

In addition to pasting data, there are many other ways of getting data into the PowerPivot window. For more information, see Add and Maintain Data in PowerPivot.

Exploring the PowerPivot Window

The PowerPivot window is open over the Excel window, with the data that you just pasted. To toggle back and forth between the two windows: click the Excel button on the Quick Access Toolbar in the PowerPivot window or PowerPivot Window on the PowerPivot tab in the Excel window. You can close the PowerPivot window without closing Excel: In the window, on the PowerPivot button, click Close.

The PowerPivot ribbon includes the following tabs:

  • The Home tab, where you can add new data, copy and paste data from Excel and other applications, apply formatting, and sort and filter data. For more information about this tab, see PowerPivot Window: Home Tab.


  • The Design tab, where you can change table properties, create and manage relationships, and modify connections to existing data sources. You can also add columns, and change when column values are calculated. For more information, see PowerPivot Window: Design Tab.


  • The Advanced tab, where you can create new perspectives, enable the visualization of implicit measures in the calculation area, and set properties that improve the report design experience in reporting applications like Power View. For more information, see PowerPivot Window: Advanced Tab.

    Advanced tab in PowerPivot window

  • The Linked Tables contextual tab, where you can work with tables that are linked to tables in Excel. For more information, see PowerPivot Window: Linked Tables Tab.


    The Linked Tables contextual tab is available on the PowerPivot ribbon only if you select a PowerPivot table that is linked to an Excel table. For more information about what linked tables are, and how you can use them to refine your data, see Add Data by Using Excel Linked Tables. Take a few minutes to look around and get a feel for the features. For example, sort the data in the table, add or hide columns.

Exploring the PowerPivot Tab and Field List in Excel

You can get back to the Excel window like we described earlier, but follow these steps this time:

  1. Make sure that you are on the Home tab in the PowerPivot window.

  2. Click PivotTable.

  3. In the Create PivotTable dialog box, click OK.

You are now back in the Excel window, with the PowerPivot tab selected and the PowerPivot Field List visible. For more information, see PowerPivot Field List. The PowerPivot tab in Excel provides tools for working with PivotTables, measures, and linked tables, and for opening the PowerPivot window. For more information, see PowerPivot Tab Overview.


The PowerPivot Field List provides tools for working with field lists and Slicers, which enable you to filter the data in a PivotTable. Add fields to the PivotTable by selecting them from the field list, as shown in the following graphic.


The fields are added to the PivotTable and displayed in the worksheet. For more information, see Create and Change the Field Layout in a PivotTable or PivotChart Report.

Next Steps

Now that you have an understanding of the PowerPivot for Excel user interface, see PowerPivot for Excel Tutorial Introduction for a detailed tutorial.

See Also


PowerPivot for Excel Tutorial Introduction


Introducing PowerPivot for Excel

Learn About PowerPivot Capabilities

Watch Videos About PowerPivot Tasks

Get Sample Data for PowerPivot