Solver is a powerful tool that is a standard Excel® Add-In. It can produce solutions to many different kinds of problems, among which are the following:

• Linear programming • Nonlinear programming • Nonlinear regression • Nonlinear sets of equations

Solver can also be used for simpler problems such as solving one nonlinear equation (such as those discussed in Chapter 1). It is a much more powerful tool than Goal Seek and might be used in instances where Goal Seek fails. For most problem types (except most notably linear programming), there is no guarantee that Solver will find a solution. An initial guess must be provided, and then Solver attempts to find better and better estimates for the unknowns until it finds conditions that indicate that a solution has been found, or it gives an error message stating failure.