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Archive for the ‘MS Excel’ Category

Mouse Free Borders

Friday, April 21st, 2006

Mouse Free Borders

Do you use the Format Cells window to create custom cell borders in MS Excel?

Do you prefer the keyboard to the mouse?

Maybe, in an effort to combine these two things, you’d be interested in a list of keyboard shortcuts to apply and remove individual cell borders?

If it sounds like a good idea to you, then read on.

Obviously, our tip starts after you’ve highlighted

Randomness in MS Excel

Friday, April 14th, 2006

Randomness in MS Excel

Ever need random numbers in Excel for data analysis?

Or, maybe you just need random numbers to fill cells while you work out formatting issues. You certainly don’t want to sit and make up data for this purpose. That takes way too much time.

You just know there is and I can definitely say that you’re correct. There is a much better way to fill those… Continue reading

MS Excel AutoFilter Part 2 – Top 10 and Custom Filters

As promised on Tuesday, we will finish our discussion of Excel’s AutoFilter function. Specifically, we need to cover two items in the AutoFilter pull down lists: “Top 10″ and “Custom.”

So, let’s get right to it.

To begin, I think we should discuss Top 10.

This is pretty much what the name implies. It’s a listing of the top… Continue reading

I Thought Filters Were For Things Like Fish Tanks and Coffee Makers…

Have you ever found yourself lost while working with a huge list or set of data in MS Excel?

Did you find that you were continually scrolling through data looking for a particular value?

I bet more than once you caught yourself wishing for a way to just see what you want and get rid of the rest.… Continue reading

Changing the View, Not the Selection

Friday, April 7th, 2006

Changing the View, Not the Selection

I’m sure just about everyone has used the arrow keys in MS Excel to move through their worksheet.

But, sometimes you want to quickly zip out to another part of the worksheet to see something without moving the cell selection and losing your current place. What do you do then?

I’m betting that many of you take your hands off the keyboard, use the… Continue reading

Format Painter Made More Useful

Friday, March 31st, 2006

Format Painter Made More Useful

Do you use the Format Painter in MS Excel to transfer cell formatting from one cell to another?

It’s a good use of the Format Painter function. It’s certainly much easier than starting from scratch with all of the formatting each time. I mean, if you already have cells established with the necessary formatting, why do the work twice?

So, I propose to you one… Continue reading

Quick and Spiffy Tables in MS Excel

Friday, March 31st, 2006

Quick and Spiffy Tables in MS Excel

Do you usually use MS Excel for table work? Looking for something to help give you a quick and easy visual “edge” when it comes to the presentation of your tables?

If any of that sounds like a good idea, you might be happy to know that Excel has an AutoFormat function just for such a purpose.

In other words, you can quickly… Continue reading

MS Excel Default Font Fun

Friday, March 31st, 2006

MS Excel Default Font Fun

Do you constantly find yourself changing the font size or type in Excel worksheets?

Is it getting annoying to repeat yourself time after time after time?

I bet a few of you even tried looking in the Format menu for something equivalent to the Font choice found in MS Word.

Didn’t find it, did you?

Nope, that’s because it’s not there.

You can find font… Continue reading

Worksheet or Workbook?

Friday, March 24th, 2006

Worksheet Or Workbook?

Did you know that when you do a Find / Replace in MS Excel, you can control how much of the file is searched?

Yep, that’s right. You can choose to work on a single worksheet or on the entire workbook. It’s all up to you. You just have to know where to look for the setting.

To begin, you need to run the Find / Replace… Continue reading

Single Worksheet Templates

Thursday, March 9th, 2006

Single Worksheet Templates

I’m sure you’ve used templates in MS Excel that were entire workbooks, but have you ever wanted just a single sheet for a template?

You know, instead of opening a workbook template, just insert a sheet into another workbook?

Sounds like a good idea to me! After all, I’m willing to bet that someone out there uses a template to copy and paste a single sheet into… Continue reading

File Open With Startup

Thursday, March 9th, 2006

File Open With Startup

Do you have a workbook that must be opened first thing everyday when you start up MS Excel?

Wouldn’t it be nice if Excel would simply open that file for you when you first start the program?

If you’re thinking that this would save you time each day, then maybe this is the tip you’ve been waiting for.

There’s no special setting in Excel and nothing… Continue reading

Printing the Grid

Thursday, March 9th, 2006

Printing the Grid

While going along the same lines as yesterday’s MS Office tip pertaining to displaying gridlines, I think it might be a good idea to discuss printing gridlines.

I mean, it seems inevitable. Whatever your system is trying to print (gridlines or no gridlines), you’ll want to do the exact opposite.

The question is where are the controls to these things? You just have to know that cell… Continue reading

The Clean Sheet

Thursday, March 9th, 2006

The Clean Sheet

Are there times when you find MS Excel’s gridlines more distracting than helpful?

Wish there was a way to get rid of them and to view a clean worksheet?

If you answered yes, then I’ve got the information you’re looking for.

Gridlines in MS Excel are controlled through the Options window (Tools menu, Options choice).

Once in the Options window, you’re looking for the View tab.

One Screen at a Time

Friday, March 3rd, 2006

One Screen at a Time

Tired of scroll bars and scroll wheels? Looking for a quick way to move through an MS Excel worksheet without the mouse? Maybe something a little quicker than the “one row or column at a time” method the arrow keys have to offer?

Well then, we’re all in luck, because that’s just what I have to offer today.

Many of you know that the Page

Wrong Way

Friday, February 24th, 2006

Wrong Way!

Have you ever found yourself happily working along in MS Excel only to realize that you’ve set the data up totally wrong?

You know, what should be vertical is horizontal and vice versa.

What do you do?

Start retyping?

I hope not!

Do you start copying and pasting each cell’s contents to its new location? Or maybe you just drag each item to its new home?

Either way… Continue reading

Make It Fit to the Page

Friday, February 24th, 2006

Make It Fit to the Page

Have an Excel worksheet that is sized just barely over the width of a page? I bet that’s exactly the worksheet you need to print in one page, so I’d say that extra width is a problem.

What did you do?

Maybe you went back to the worksheet and started adjusting column widths down or maybe you started changing the margins to accommodate your… Continue reading

File Name Location: A Mystery No More

Friday, February 17th, 2006

File Name Location: A Mystery No More

How much time have you wasted looking for the location of a particular MS Excel file? I mean, you’ve got the printout, but you need to make some changes and can’t seem to remember where it is, let alone what it’s called.

Ever sit back in your chair wishing that you’d thought to write it down on the printout?

What if I told… Continue reading

Same Info – Many Cells

Friday, February 17th, 2006

Same Info – Many Cells

Ever have the same info to enter into multiple cells in MS Excel?

What did you do?

Did you type the data into one cell then copy and paste it everywhere else in the worksheet?

A bit of a pain wasn’t it?

How about a way to get the data into all those cells simultaneously? A method that doesn’t require all the copy / paste… Continue reading

Tracing the Path

Thursday, February 9th, 2006

Tracing the Path

Do you use complicated Excel formulas? You know, where a formula references cells that in turn reference other cells. It leads to a big chain reaction of values. One wrong or inadvertent change to a cell’s value and you could cause a multitude of errors in the values reported.

Ever find yourself wondering just where did that value really come from? I mean, which cells in the… Continue reading

Mouseless Smart Tags

Friday, February 3rd, 2006

Mouseless Smart Tags

Do you find yourself frequently using Office XP’s smart tags? You know, the little icons that appear in files when the program is offering paste options, or when the AutoCorrect feature started making changes?

If you’ve got them and you use them, you know what I’m talking about.

Anyway, the real question is: “Do you use them less often than you’d like because you need to… Continue reading

Black and White Charts

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Black & White Charts

Yesterday we discussed setting default colors in MS Excel when creating charts, while avoiding all the manual settings we used to complete the task.

But, what happens when you’re going to print the chart and you don’t have a color printer? Or, maybe you do have a color printer but are then going to turn around and copy the chart in black and white.

Ever feel… Continue reading

Custom Chart Colors – Permanently

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Custom Chart Colors – Permanently!

Do you find that when you make a chart in MS Excel that you’re constantly clicking into the chart to change the colors of the bars, lines, etc?

How would you like to change the default colors Excel uses for charts, eliminating all that color switching you’re constantly working on?

Sounds like a good plan to me! I’m always changing those colors so if I… Continue reading

All By Itself

Friday, January 20th, 2006

All By Itself

If you use Excel to create charts, then I’m sure you’ve noticed that in the last step of the Chart Wizard, you can choose to create your chart on its own page OR as an object embedded in a worksheet with data and other charts.

I’m sure that most of the time we tend to put the chart within a worksheet. That choice tends to give us… Continue reading

Create It My Way

Thursday, January 19th, 2006

Create It My Way

Do you have settings in MS Excel such as formatting or choices from the Options window that you’re constantly changing because Excel’s blank workbook never seems to have things “the way you left them”? For example, Monday’s setting for accepting labels in formulas. Excel’s default is to not have that option checked.

Wouldn’t it be nice to make these changes just once so that all new… Continue reading

Need a Little Backup?

Friday, January 13th, 2006

Need A Little Backup?

Do you have important Excel files that would create nothing short of chaos and disaster for you if you were to lose those files?

Now I’m sure that you regularly make copies of these files just in case – but wouldn’t it be nice if Excel could help us out a bit on this score?

Yeah – I thought so too so I did… Continue reading

Now Who Told Excel To Paste That Data?

Thursday, January 12th, 2006

Now Who Told Excel To Paste That Data?

Have you ever found yourself asking that question? (Or, in my case, asking the computer the question in my “I’m not amused, just annoyed” voice).

You may have, especially if you work with hidden cells. (You know, hidden rows and columns with data in them that’s necessary but not to be displayed.)

When you select a range of cells to copy that… Continue reading

Convert It To A Value

Monday, January 9th, 2006

Convert It To A Value

Do you have an Excel formula in a single cell that needs to be converting to its value?

No problem. Simple select the cell and press F2 then press F9.

Voila! The cell contains the value of the formula not the formula itself.

Unfortunately, you’ll find that this little trick doesn’t work on multiple cells – so now what?

Tackling this one isn’t as difficult… Continue reading

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