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I was working on an Excel document and realised that some of the cells were locked (the grey areas in the image. I was wondering how this is accomplished.

enter image description here

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do you mean locked in an excel sense, or just you cannot see or select them? – nutsch Oct 24 '12 at 19:06
up vote 1 down vote accepted

All columns to the right have been hidden (using Ctrl+0 for instance)

All columns at the bottom have been hidden (using Ctrl+9 for instance)

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Locking cells is done when the sheet is protected and the cell has a locked value. All cells are locked by default, so you are really looking at which ones to leave unlocked when the sheet is protected.

To do this, select the cells you want unlocked, right click, then choose Format Cells. On the Format Cells window choose the Protection tab. You will see the Locked check box. If you remove the check the cells will not be locked when the sheet is protected.

enter image description here

This will result in cells, like the grey area you referenced, being locked when the sheet is protected.

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How can I make it so that the spreadsheet ends at a specific column, almost restricting the work area in a sense? – methuselah Oct 24 '12 at 15:07
this might lock the cells but it doesn't change the display as in the screenshot. – nutsch Oct 24 '12 at 16:09
@nutsch the question was about locking cells, not formatting. – CharlieRB Oct 24 '12 at 18:39
While the letter of the question was about locked cells - as in non-accessible, I don't believe from the screenshot that the actual question was about what excel defines as locked cells. – nutsch Oct 24 '12 at 18:49
@nutsch If you feel the question was asked wrong, why not comment on the question to get clarification rather than post disagreement with other answers. This would be more helpful to future readers. – CharlieRB Oct 24 '12 at 18:56

I was wondering how this is accomplished.

The cells are Locked by the protect option. If you right click the tab to the work sheet, you will see an option "Protect Sheet".

All cells that had "Locked" checked will be locked once the sheet is Protected" locked

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this locks the cells but it doesn't change the display as in the screenshot. – nutsch Oct 24 '12 at 16:08

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