When you use Excel 2003 you may encounter the “too many cell formats” error, just after you try to open a file.
This happens because Excel 2003 has a limit on the number of different file formats. It can display maximum 4000 combinations.
To say that two cells are the same formats, they need to have same:
Take a look at the cells in the image below.
Each of these twelve cells has the same cell format.
And now another example.
Solution to the problem
There is a solution to this problem.
First, you need to download the OpenOffice application from openoffice.org.
Next, install the application and open it.
Go to File >> Open.
Select Excel file that returns “Too many different cell formats” error. Save the file using a different name and same extension.
Now, try to open the file with Excel 2003 and you shouldn’t get the error message.