Data in Excel 2016 2013 2010 2007 2003

Excel AutoComplete to automate data entry

The Excel AutoComplete feature allows you to automate entering the same text into multiple cells. With AutoComplete, you enter the first few letters of a text entry into a cell, and Excel automatically completes the entry based on other entries that have already been in the current column:

Check invalid data

Excel has a useful Data Validation feature to display messages and prevent incorrect cell entry. This feature works fine with manual data typing. However, validation messages will not be displayed if invalid data is entered into a cell by copying or filling; a formula in a cell evaluates to an invalid result; a macro enters invalid data into a cell; etc.

Using a form for data entry

Usually, the data in Excel spreadsheets is presented in lists of rows, and each row represents a data record. Excel offers an easy way to work with this data type through a data entry form that Excel can automatically generate. This form of data works with a normal data range or a table.

Splitting text strings without using formulas

When working with data in Excel spreadsheets, it is sometimes necessary to split text lines into columns. Excel offers many different functions for working with text strings, but you don't have to use formulas for this task:

Check data entry for invalid entries

You can greatly reduce data-entry problems in your workbooks by making Excel check entries before entering them in specific cells. To do so, you need to define restrictions and data-validation rules for those cells.

Creating and using named ranges

Named ranges (also known as defined ranges) are a powerful feature in Excel that allows you to assign a symbolic name to a cell, range of cells, or formula. These defined names are a convenient replacement for the address of a cell, data range, or formula in other formulas, charts, diagrams, shapes, etc.

How to remove the diamond with question mark symbol

When you paste or import data into the Excel spreadsheet, you might notice unusual symbols like a diamond with a question mark. The replacement character � (often a black diamond with a white question mark or an empty square box) represents an unknown, unrecognized, or unrepresentable character:

How to create a dependent drop-down list

The drop-down list is a handy feature provided by Excel data validation tools. Drop-down menus limit the possible choices and help to avoid mistakes. However, not so many Excel users know the Source field of the Data Validation dialog is a formula field. Formulas in the Source field should return the list of the values, but they are not necessarily a range or a list of options.

How to create a computable drop-down list

Dynamic, dependable, conditional, or calculated drop-down list in Excel implies that the contents of the drop-down list for the current cell should depend on values in the other cell and change dynamically when the value of the controlling cell changes.

Creating a drop-down list in a cell

Manual data entry into spreadsheets and especially entering data into text cells leads to many errors. Excel data validation tools allow you to reduce the inaccuracy of Excel data entry by restricting the set of possible values to a pre-defined list. Users can select the item from a drop-down list with few choices instead of typing text into the data entry form template.

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