What Is an XLAM File?

How to Open, Edit, & Convert XLAM Files

Picture of the XLAM file icon

A file with the XLAM file extension is an Excel Macro-Enabled Add-In file that's used to add new functions to Excel. Similar to other spreadsheet file formats, XLAM files contain cells that are divided into rows and columns that can hold text, formulas, charts, images and more.

Like Excel's XLSM and XLSX file formats, XLAM files are XML-based and saved with ZIP compression.

Note: Excel Add-In files that don't support macros might use the XLL or XLA file extension.

How to Open an XLAM File

Warning: Macros in an XLAM file may contain malicious code. Take great care when opening executable file formats received via email or downloaded from websites you're not familiar with. See my List of Executable File Extensions for a listing of other file extensions to avoid and why.

XLAM files can be opened with Microsoft Excel 2007 and newer. Earlier versions of Excel can open XLAM files too but only if the Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack is installed.

Tip: If the XLAM file doesn't open in Excel when you double-click or double-tap it, you can import the file manually using the Developer > Add-Ins > Browse... option at the top of Excel. See this Microsoft how-to to learn how to enable the Developer tab if you don't see it.

Another way to open the XLAM file is through the File > Options > Add-ins > Go... > Browse... button.

Note: If your file isn't opening with Microsoft Excel, double-check that you're reading the file extension correctly.

The XAML file extension looks an awful lot like XLAM files but they're actually Extensible Application Markup Language files that don't open with Excel.

If you find that an application on your PC does try to open the XLAM file but it's the wrong application or if you would rather have another installed program open XLAM files, see my How to Change the Default Program for a Specific File Extension guide for making that change in Windows.

How to Convert an XLAM File

There shouldn't be any reason to use a file converter to save an XLAM file to a different format, but please let me know if you have any relevant information about converting XLAM files that I could use to update this page.

See this Excel Forum thread on converting XLAM to XLSM if you want to do that. It involves editing the IsAddIn property to False.

More Help With XLAM Files

See Get More Help for information about contacting me on social networks or via email, posting on tech support forums, and more. Let me know what kinds of problems you're having with opening or using the XLAM file and I'll see what I can do to help.