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The AutoSum With More

Tuesday, December 6th, 2005 by | Filed Under: MS Excel

The AutoSum With More

I’m sure we’re all aware of Excel’s handy little AutoSum button and the way it will quickly insert the formula to sum any range of data we happen to have lying around. But… wouldn’t it be nice if we could get it to do a little more than sums without a lot of extra work?

Good idea! Fortunately for all of us, AutoSum can be used for more than sums. Interested?

Yeah, I thought you might be.

The key to getting more from your AutoSum button is to notice the little down arrow just to the right of the button

Go ahead – give it a click.

You should find that a list of common functions is available – allowing you to use this button for more than just sums.

As usual, to get this to work for you simply select a cell either below or to the right of your data range.

Next click the down arrow of the AutoSum button and choose a function from the list.

Instantly, Excel will create the requested formula using the most obvious data range relative to the selected cell.

If you accept the data range selected by Excel then hit the Enter key.

If you need to adjust the data range for the formula you can use the Shift key in combination with the arrow keys to enlarge or shrink the selection size.

If you’re looking to simply move the data range without adjusting its size you can use the mouse. Run the mouse pointer over the blue dotted rectangle until it becomes a 4-way arrow. Now click, hold and drag the selection to the correct location on the worksheet and release the mouse button.

And there you have it! Who knew we had an AutoSum button with talents beyond addition at our disposal the whole time?

~ April

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