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Questions tagged [microsoft-excel]

A spreadsheet application by Microsoft. Use this tag along with [vba] if your question involves programming Excel in VBA, and with [worksheet-function] if it involves an Excel formula or worksheet function.

264
votes
6answers
758k views

How do I get the distinct/unique values in a column in Excel?

If I have a column with values, and I want to find out what distinct values are in there (not how many - but the actual distinct values), how can I do that? In SQL Server I would do something like ...
188
votes
13answers
475k views

Easiest way to open CSV with commas in Excel

CSV files are automatically associated with Excel but when I open them, all the rows are basically in the first column, like this: It's probably because when Excel thinks "comma-separated values", it ...
133
votes
9answers
279k views

How to easily reorder rows in excel with drag and drop or move-up or move-down?

I have to do some manual reordering or rows in Excel and cut/paste is too hard to use. I'm looking for something that would enable me to use drag'n'drop or to add some buttons to move-up/down move-top/...
132
votes
9answers
576k views

How can I “group by” and sum a column in excel?

I'm trying to figure out how to "group by" values in an Excel spreadsheet. Given the following example (this is an inventory sheet I use at my restaurant:) At the far right of the spreadsheet there ...
125
votes
6answers
107k views

How can I stop Excel from eating my delicious CSV files and excreting useless data?

I have a database which tracks sales of widgets by serial number. Users enter purchaser data and quantity, and scan each widget into a custom client program. They then finalize the order. This all ...
120
votes
5answers
69k views

Is it possible to paste CSV formatted data into Excel 2007?

I want to copy and paste CSV formatted text into Excel 2007. Is there a way of doing this without saving it to a temporary file first? I'm sure in previous versions of Excel there was a way to ...
112
votes
10answers
270k views

How do I join two worksheets in Excel as I would in SQL?

I have two worksheets in two different Excel files. They both contain a list of names, id numbers, and associated data. One is a master list that includes general demographic fields, and the other is ...
109
votes
13answers
610k views

Convert a column into a comma separated list

I have the task of creating a simple Excel sheet that takes an unspecified number of rows in Column A like this: 1234 123461 123151 11321 And make them into a comma-separated list in another cell ...
101
votes
4answers
240k views

How to expand all columns in Excel spreadsheet?

I have a spreadsheet with many columns. The columns are all a small standard width. Double-clicking the partition line between columns will expand the column width to encompass the longest string in ...
100
votes
14answers
154k views

Open Excel files in new window

When I have Excel running and I double click an Excel file in Windows explorer, I'd like it to launch in a new window by default so that I can move documents to separate monitors. Is there any way to ...
97
votes
13answers
265k views

Why does Excel treat long numeric strings as scientific notation even after changing cell format to text

I'm trying to process some data in Excel. The data includes numeric account numbers and other long numeric strings (like cell phone MEIDs). I am not doing math operations on these strings, so I want ...
93
votes
11answers
18k views

Why does =-x^2+x for x=3 in Excel result in 12 instead of -6?

Suppose my cell A1 in an Excel spreadsheet holds the number 3. If I enter the formula = - A1^2 + A1 in A2, then A2 shows the number 12, when it should show -6 (or -9+3) Why is that? How can I ...
92
votes
7answers
618k views

Cells not updating automatically

I have a formula in a cell which counts the values in 2 other cells. Normally, after entering in the values in these 2 other cells, the formula cell updates automatically when Enter is pressed or when ...
91
votes
5answers
713k views

How to write multi lines in one Excel cell?

I want to write multi-lines in one MS Excel cell. But whenever I press the Enter key, the cell editing ends and the cursor moves to next cell. How can I avoid this?
89
votes
3answers
36k views

Excel: how to undo in current file only?

Microsoft Excel's undo / redo feature behaves unlike any other program I know. The undo stack seems to be global across all open files, so that undoing sometimes switches to another file and undoes ...
87
votes
6answers
151k views

How to open semicolon delimited CSV-files in US-version of Excel

When I double-click on a .csv file, it is opened in Excel. The csv-files have columns delimited with semicolons (not commas, but also a valid format). Using a German Windows/Excel setup, the opened ...
86
votes
9answers
713k views

In Excel, how do I check if a cell is in a list of values (a range of cells)

I've got a range (A3:A10) that contains names, and I'd like to check if the contents of another cell (D1) matches one of the names in my list. I've named the range A3:A10 'some_names', and I'd like ...
84
votes
16answers
656k views

How to make Excel's “Auto Fit Row Height” feature actually auto fit the row height?

For every generation of Excel I can remember (including 2010, which I'm using now), Excel's "Auto Size Row" features sometimes fails to actually auto size a row when the cell contains wrapped text. ...
81
votes
8answers
100k views

How do you view the bottom of really tall cells in Excel?

When there are very tall cells in Microsoft Excel, trying to scroll via mouse or even via scrollbar (clicking on "<-" "->" pointers) just jumps below to the next cell, hiding the bottom content of ...
80
votes
8answers
270k views

How to get Excel to interpret the comma as a default delimiter in CSV files?

I have a number of .csv files. Some of them are comma delimited, some are tab delimited (maybe they should be called .tsv ...) The csv extension gets associated with Excel when Excel is installed. ...
79
votes
8answers
344k views

Find Items in one column that are not in another column

I have two columns in Excel, and I want to find (preferably highlight) the items that are in column B but not in column A. What's the quickest way to do this?
79
votes
16answers
343k views

How do you force excel to quote all columns of a CSV file?

Excel only places quotes around certain fields, how do I force excel to save a CSV file with quotes around every column?
77
votes
7answers
443k views

How do you auto resize cells in Excel? [duplicate]

I have copied some data into Excel 2010. I have found that some of the cells need to be widened to allow the data to fit. How do I automatically adjust the height of the cells to fit the content?
72
votes
5answers
330k views

How to set character encoding when opening Excel

Is it possible to set the default encoding for Excel (any version, e.g. 2010) when opening files like csv files (like you can in Open Office Calc)? I When I try to open a csv file encoded in Japanese ...
69
votes
14answers
157k views

Format a number with optional decimal places in Excel

I have numbers in cells in Excel. I want the numbers formatted so that if they have decimal places they show to a maximum of two, and if they have no decimal places it doesn't show any. For example. ...
68
votes
8answers
343k views

How to remove the print preview lines in Excel 2010?

Somehow or other I have managed to switch on the print margin lines in Excel 2010. I cannot seem to turn them off. I went to Page Layout->Page Setup->Print Area->Clear Print Area but the lines remain ...
67
votes
2answers
114k views

How to search for ? (question mark) in Excel

When I try to find the question mark character (?) in an Excel sheet, Excel cannot locate the cells containing them. How can I search for ? in Excel?
67
votes
4answers
282k views

Turn off scientific notation in Excel

I would like to prevent Excel behavior that any large number I enter is stored as a number, then abbreviated to scientific notation. Is it possible to tell Excel 2007 to stop doing this?
66
votes
15answers
116k views

How to copy multi-line text from Excel without quotes?

When you create a multi-line string in an excel cell (by using Alt-Enter), if you copy that cell to a text editor, excel will automatically add double quotes (") around the full string, ie: Cell1 | ...
64
votes
11answers
106k views

How to “unpivot” or “reverse pivot” in Excel?

I have data that looks like this: Id | Loc1 | Loc2 | Loc3 | Loc4 ---+------+------+------+----- 1 | NY | CA | TX | IL 2 | WA | OR | NH | RI And I want to convert it to this: Id | ...
64
votes
10answers
151k views

How can I set Excel to always import all columns of CSV files as Text?

Though I try to avoid it, I occasionally have to open a CSV file in Excel. When I do, it formats columns containing numbers, which makes them useless for my purposes. As far as I can tell, the only ...
62
votes
2answers
346k views

Comparing two strings in Excel?

I need to compare two strings in excel and determine if they are equal, the strings are in adjacent cells. For example, given: apple apple water water pear carrot apple water dog dog ...
61
votes
2answers
5k views

Excel - can I set a cell to equal a certain value, no matter what is typed in it?

This is to play a joke on someone...not sure if it's possible to do what I want. We are circulating an Excel file among friends to select players for a golf tournament. I would like to set a cell (...
60
votes
3answers
273k views
58
votes
10answers
155k views

Formula for updated currency exchange rates in Excel or other spreadsheets?

What kind of spreadsheets support a formula like the following: =exchangeCurrency("USD"; "EUR"; 3000) The result should be 3000 USD exchanged into Euros. Possibly a date could be provided for a ...
58
votes
6answers
170k views

Excel - Prevent cell text from overflowing into next (empty) cell

When you have text in an Excel cell that is too long to be shown in the visible area of that cell, and the next cell on the right is empty, Excel lets the text be displayed in that next cell (and the ...
57
votes
4answers
334k views

How to split a string based on “:” in MS-Excel?

My excel column is filled with words like this: 1.) ABC:DCF 2.) DCF:FED I want to split each word based on " : " and put the result in adjacent columns such that "ABC:DCF" in cell "A:1" becomes "ABC"...
57
votes
4answers
138k views

Is it possible to sum an entire column without setting explicit cell boundaries in Excel?

I'd like to sum all the values in a column starting from a certain minimum value, but I don't want to give an upper bound because any value in the table will be appropriate for summing (minus the ...
56
votes
3answers
8k views

Why does the same data take more space in a text file than in an Excel file?

I have around 100000 rows of data. If I store this data in a text file format, it takes more space than if I store it in an Excel file format. Why is that?
55
votes
16answers
340k views

Excel Auto-Fill a Series Without Mouse (Keyboard Only)

So when I want to extend a series or something along those lines, I can highlight a group of cells, then click on the bottom right corner of the highlighting box and drag down. Excel will then ...
52
votes
2answers
217k views

Go to specific row number in excel

Is there a way in Excel to go to a specific row number? For example I need to find an alternate way to not have to scroll but rather can immediately go to row # 3000
51
votes
2answers
7k views

Excel number type changes 1.25 to 43125

When I open a plain new Excel sheet (2016), change the type of the cell to Number and enter the number 1.25, it will change the entered number to the value 43125,00. I get similar results when I ...
50
votes
5answers
153k views

Formatting a comma-delimited CSV to force Excel to interpret value as a string

I've been searching around for a while trying to figure out how to output a CSV file in such a way to force Excel to interpret the values as a string and not try to convert them to numbers or dates. ...
50
votes
2answers
387k views

What is the Excel hotkey to re-calculate all formula in sheet?

I have a sheet that contains many formulas. But they do not recalculate automatically when I change input. I'm looking for a hotkey, that can re-calculate the sheet. According to this page, F9 ...
50
votes
1answer
5k views

What exactly is Excel's Auto Fill algorithm?

What is the algorithm used by Auto Fill in Excel? For example, when I enter the numbers 3,4,5,7,8 into a column and then use Auto Fill, I get the following result: 3 4 5 7 8 9.3 10.6 11.9 13....
48
votes
3answers
17k views

Excel Conditional Formatting Escaping a Question Mark

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 ...
47
votes
13answers
125k views

Shortcut in Word or Excel for Special Paste?

If I want to paste without any formatting, I have to go to the "Paste" button on the ribbon and click "Paste Special" and then "unformatted text". Is there a shortcut like Ctrl+V that'll ...
46
votes
5answers
10k views

Is there a concise Excel formula to calculate (A1*A6)+(B1*B6)+(C1*C6)…?

I want to know how to give a concise formula for the following long formula in Excel sheet: = (A1*A6)+(B1*B6)+(C1*C6)... Do I use a sum function or is there another function for this? I think using ...
45
votes
3answers
8k views

How can I create a sophisticated table like the one attached?

I'm writing a paper where I systemize knowledge. At the moment I have a very big excel file. In order to fit this table into an A4 paper, I would have to create a table similar to the one attached. As ...
45
votes
11answers
685k views

How to compare two columns and find differences in Excel?

I have two columns in Excel that I want to compare and find the differences between them. Suppose: Col A has 50 numbers, i.e. 0511234567 Col B has 100 numbers in the same format