DEV Community

Cover image for Sideload Excel Add-In on MacOS Sierra
Kagunda JM
Kagunda JM

Posted on • Originally published at

Sideload Excel Add-In on MacOS Sierra


In a previous post we looked at the process of generating an Excel add-in and using mkcert to create private certification authority (CA) trusted by browsers. In this post, we continue the journey of developing office add-in by looking at the steps involved in side loading our add-in in an Excel host.


The add-in how to guide for iPad and Mac sets out the following prerequisites:

  • A Mac running OS X v10.10 "Yosemite" or later with Office for Mac installed.

  • Excel for Mac version 15.19 (160206).

  • The manifest .xml file for the add-in you want to test.

In this post, we will utilize the following:

  • A Mac running macOS High Sierra v10.13.3

  • Excel for Mac version 16.16.5 (181209)

  • Manifest.xml for the Excel add-in that we created in the previous post

Steps to sideload our Excel add-in

  • Open Terminal window and verify that wef folder exists on your computer by running the following /Users/${USER}/Library/Containers/

  • If a No such file or directory message is displayed, then run the following commands from the terminal to create the folder and navigate to the newly created folder mkdir /Users/${USER}/Library/Containers/ and cd /Users/${USER}/Library/Containers/

  • Copy manifest.xml file of your Excel add-in to the wef folder. If you followed the previous post on generating an office add-in, then your copy command will be similar to the following: cp ~/office-js/expense-updater/manifest.xml .

If you are testing more than one Excel add-in, rename the add-in manifest.xml file while copying to avoid overwriting a manifest file for another add-in. cp ~/office-js/expense-updater/manifest.xml ./expense-updater.xml

  • Change directory to the root of your Excel add-in and start your add-in server cd ~/office-js/expense-updater && npm start

  • Close the Excel application if it is already running. Make sure your completely quit the application.

  • Open your Excel workbook

  • Choose Insert from the menu

  • Click on the drop-down arrow next to My Add-ins and select your Excel add-in.

alt="macos side load excel add-in"

  • Your Excel add-in will now load and a callout will be displayed


  • Click on the Got it button to dispose the callout.

  • Click on your Excel add-in button to sideload the add-in.

alt="macos excel add in sample"


Top comments (0)