78

I would like to use a conditional formatting rule in an excel file that would color any box with a question mark in it red. It seems that Excel is using a question mark as a wild card and will turn all cells with at least one character in them red. How can i escape the question mark?

These don't seem to work:

  • "?"
  • \?
  • '?'
  • ??

3 Answers 3

110

Prefix it with tilde

~?

The tilde (~) is an escape character for special and wildcard characters in Excel. You can use escape characters to provide literal representations of characters that otherwise have a special meaning. You can also use tilde (~) followed by ?, *, or ~ to find question marks, asterisks, or other tilde characters — for example, fy91~? finds "fy91?"

1
  • 32
    Prefix with a ~ ? Seriously ? What the rofl... Does anyone have an idea why ? Anyway, huge thanks. I'd never have figured out such a syntax alone.
    – Balmipour
    Jun 27, 2017 at 15:43
4

Change the rule to "cells ending with" "?". This will color all cells with a question mark assuming it is the last character.

3

Also you can use Specific Text > Contains > ~? This tells excel to ignore symbol command and treats the cell as text.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.