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I would like a 'cell' to show how many days have lapsed since the start of a period which is contained in another cell... ie..

page 1, cell A1 contains a date of '01/03/12' page 1, cell A2 contains a date of '02/03/12' page 1, cell A3 contains a date of '03/03/12' page 1, cell A4 contains a date of '04/03/12'

is it possible for page 3, cell C5 to auto show the amount/number '4' days have passed??

Keep it simple im a newbie!!

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Relevant reading: – Oliver Salzburg Mar 14 '12 at 18:56
up vote 0 down vote accepted

It's as simple as subtraction...

Enter the formula


in the cell on page (sheet) 5 - or anywhere.

It's not clear from your question whether you want the difference between the first and last dates or between the first date and the present time. If you want the difference between a date and the time now, enter


To show the number of days difference, be sure the cell with the formula is formatted as a number and not a date.

In your example, from the first date (1) to the last date (4) is actually a difference of 3 days, not 4. If you want to include the first date as a day that has passed, then use


Minus one at the end causes the earlier date to count as elapsed by making it one day earlier.

Edit - Page Names:

In your question, you refer to "Page 1". In the formulas I cite, "Sheet1" is the name of the first "page" or worksheet in the file. Sheet 1, Sheet 2, etc. is the default name in Excel. If yours are actually named "Page1" then you need to use that name in the formula.

Edit - Starter Edition:

Turns out the original poster is using Excel Starter Edition and getting the error message "Excel Starter does not support external data connections". So - can't reference across pages with Starter edition.

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great thanks.. i'll try it ;-) – Barry Mar 14 '12 at 19:39
OK.. ive tried all the variants that were offered BUT :-( a box appears and say 'Excel does not support external data connections' ??? – Barry Mar 15 '12 at 10:05
Are your "pages" named "Sheet1", "Sheet2"? I have edited my answer to cover the possibility that you are using names other than the default. – Dave Becker Mar 15 '12 at 17:51

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