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Archive for the ‘MS Excel’ Category



Print Preview While Editing in MS Excel

Thursday, December 3rd, 2009

Sounds unbelievable – how in the world will we preview the printed version of a worksheet while we edit?

We’re all very used to creating our worksheets then going to print preview. The process always seems to hold surprises. It doesn’t split from one page to the next in any way we had anticipated… the header is so large that it overlaps the worksheet content… the list… Continue reading

Highlight Everything Above in MS Excel

Wednesday, November 25th, 2009

Or down. Or left. Or right.

Yep, that’s what you can do with a few quick keystrokes in MS Excel. That is, if you know the “magic” combination.

Okay, so it’s not exactly magic, but it still could be a pretty useful skill and worth a look.

If you’ve ever had a cell selected in MS Excel and wanted to quickly… Continue reading

Combine Cell Data in Excel

Friday, November 13th, 2009

When we choose to store text data in MS Excel it’s very common that we will create a column for each piece… such as First Name, Last Name, Middle Initial… you get the idea.

Unfortunately, there’s also times when we look back upon our choice to keep the information separate and regret it. In this form the data just isn’t as useful as we thought it would… Continue reading

Autofit Columns and Rows in MS Excel

Thursday, November 12th, 2009

Have you ever been working in MS Excel and found yourself spending all kinds of extra time trying to manually adjust column width or row heights? Or are you one of the many people who simply skip a column whenever text gets too long? (By the way, that last one can really turn into a nighmare while editing!)

Well, here’s one of the many solutions to these… Continue reading

Color Excel Worksheet Tabs

Wednesday, November 11th, 2009

Okay, so maybe not exactly to “your life,” but would you settle for a little color added to your Excel worksheet tabs?

Yes?

Good!

Now of course, I’ve got to mention one small catch. This one wasn’t in Excel 97 or 2000. It seems to be an additional feature in the newer versions… and yes, that does include Excel 2007.

So, here’s the deal. You can now turn this:… Continue reading

Excel Scroll Bar Trick

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009

Do you use your mouse and MS Excel’s scroll bars a lot?

If so, are you tired of dragging the scroll bar, just trying to get a small movement, only to find that you’ve zoomed right by your intended location?

If that applies to you, then boy, do I have some good news! There’s more to controlling the scroll bar than just what appears to be random movement.

Here’s the… Continue reading

Change Bar Color in MS Excel

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2009

When you create charts in MS Excel that have only one series of data, especially bar type charts, do you find yourself bored with it?

I mean… they always seem to be created in the same color.

Borrrring!

If you’re looking to liven things up then why not do something about the color… or lack of it!

Now some of you may know that you can click on individual… Continue reading

Cut and Copy Formulas in Ms Excel

Wednesday, October 21st, 2009

So, we all know the difference between a cut/paste and a copy/paste, right?

I mean, it’s pretty obvious. One actually moves the cell contents and the other makes duplicates.

But, did you know that there’s a difference in the way each of them treats formulas with relative cell references?

(Note: Relative cell references are formula references to other cells based on… Continue reading

Easy Add Columns and Rows

Monday, October 5th, 2009

Do you frequently work in MS Excel?

If so, do you find yourself annoyed when trying to add columns or rows that just take so much time?

I mean, highlight the column(s) or row(s), then go to the Insert menu and choose Rows or Columns, etc., etc.

Too much time and too much mouse work, right?

If you… Continue reading

Select Multiple Columns in Excel

Friday, October 2nd, 2009

Here’s a quick little tip that may come is very useful for those of you who aren’t necessarily experts with MS Excel and yet spend much of your day trying desperately to efficiently use it.

Let’s talk about row heights and column widths.

I’m sure that most of you have found that you can resize a column with a click and drag of the… Continue reading

Quicker Data Entry in Excel

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

I don’t know about you but I often find that when entering data into an Excel worksheet I’m frequently entering data at a rapid rate only to stop at the end of the column or row to move to the next.

For example, let’s say that I have information about customers such as name, address and phone number set up in columns A, B and C. I… Continue reading

Excel Months Days Rules

Monday, September 28th, 2009

Okay, so, you’re in MS Excel and you’ve got a piece of data. You’re about to use the fill handle to get Excel to copy and paste the data down the column.

That’s a good idea and as we all know, just dragging the fill handle will copy the data item exactly into all the other cells. But, if we also hold down the Ctrl key while… Continue reading

Expanding Cell Selections the Easy Way

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

When I select a range of cells in MS Excel, whether I use the mouse or keyboard, it’s not uncommon for me to discover that I’ve not quite got it all.

Many times that’s not a big deal since I know enough to hold down the Shift key and keep expanding in the direction I was already going.

But what if you’ve realized that… Continue reading

Draw Boarders in Excel

Tuesday, September 8th, 2009

Use a lot of borders in MS Excel?

Tired of the old routine of selecting cells, choosing border from the borders button… or, worse yet, going into the Format Cells dialog box to set borders in there… then repeating the same process for each and every place we need them?

I personally, use MS Word 2007 a lot and I really like that I… Continue reading

Autofill in MS Excel

Tuesday, September 1st, 2009

If you’re like me then part of your usual work in MS Excel is to use fill series quite frequently.

Fill series?

Yeah – you know when you enter the first piece of data then use the fill handle to drag across several cells and then let Excel complete the data pattern.

Of course, once you finish you often find yourself… Continue reading

Shrink Excel Cells to Fit

Tuesday, August 25th, 2009

Ever have data in MS Excel that’s just a bit too long for the cell?

What happened?

Did the column widen to accommodate? Or, maybe you got the infamous ##### to let you know that the number didn’t fit. Oh, and let’s not forget everyone’s favorite: the old “convert the number to scientific notation.”

If the results of Excel’s attempt to… Continue reading

Excel Formula Explanations

Wednesday, August 19th, 2009

Ever find yourself working on an Excel formula and wondering how in the world the person you’re handing this off to will ever understand some of the more complex calculations?

Short of writing lengthy documentation or spending a whole lot of time walking them through things piece by piece there probably isn’t much you can do… or is there?

What if we could put… Continue reading

Paste Only Column Width in Excel

Thursday, August 6th, 2009

Ever find that you need the column with from one column transferred to others without all the data and other formatting?

Maybe the width you need is in a column formatted as bolded text and, while the width needs to be transferred, the rest doesn’t. In a case such as this the old Format Painter won’t help as much as we’d like since it transfers all formatting… Continue reading

Pictures in Excel Chart Elements

Wednesday, August 5th, 2009

So, when you’re working with charts in MS Excel are you looking for a way to make your audience take notice?

I’d bet that by now you’ve tried just about every color combination you can think of to give your creation a look that grabs attention.

If this is you and you’re looking for yet another way to make those charts “pop” in the… Continue reading

Ever wish for an easy way to select just the text in your MS Excel worksheet?

Let’s say, maybe you need to change the formatting of all of it, but only the text and none of the data.

Or, maybe you are looking to select only the data, so you can delete it all at once.

Whatever your need, you are… Continue reading

Tweak Excel Templates

Thursday, July 23rd, 2009

The other day we looked at customizing and saving templates in MS Word. I’m sure that by now there’s a few of you out there who are wondering what can be done in Excel.

In fact, I’d even bet that some of you have gone looking through your Template window looking for the Create New Template option. Too bad it didn’t work out, huh?… Continue reading

So, we all know about the recently used file list found on the File menu / Office Button in the MS Office Suite programs.

It’s automatically there and I know that I personally use it a lot. But what if someone else is going to use the computer and you don’t want them to see the list… for whatever reason you may have.

The… Continue reading

Find Merged Cells in Excel

Monday, July 13th, 2009

I don’t know about you but when I’m using MS Excel I’m always merging cells to make everything look “just right”.

The problem is that once cells are formatted that way there are a lot of things you may try to do with your worksheet that will not work with cells merged.

So, now what?

Well, I usually find myself separating… Continue reading

Duplicates in Excel 2007

Tuesday, June 30th, 2009

Have a lot of Excel data with a possibility of unwanted duplicates?

Looking for a quick way to locate the duplicates? (Maybe a way that doesn’t involve sorting the data differently – after all sometimes we just need the information ordered the way it is. Or the worse yet, the scenario where you spend endless time searching through each one hoping to catch all of them.)

Are you using Excel… Continue reading

Analyzing Filtered Data With Charts

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2009

So, you like to use MS Excel’s AutoFilter to take a look at your data?

Ever find yourself thinking that it would be nice to see the filtered data as a graphic?

Did you try it?

Yes, you can create a chart of the filtered data to truly “see” what the data has to show you.

But, did you know that the single chart you created can be used over… Continue reading

Recent Text in Excel

Monday, June 22nd, 2009

So, you’ve found yourself once again entering a bunch of text into an Excel worksheet… and once again, the text is getting repetitive.

Let’s say that you’ve got a list of employees and need to enter the department they work in for each one. This means that you’re in column B typing the same things over and over again – after all, there are a finite number of departments and… Continue reading

Excel Has Equal Sign Issues?

Friday, June 19th, 2009

Well, sort of…

I’d say that Excel has an issue when you’re actually trying to type an equal sign into a cell without starting a formula – in other words you need to treat the equal sign like text instead of a formula starter.

(I found that my Excel 2007 would let me create a cell with just an = with no problems but the moment I added any text… Continue reading

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