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Column Formatting

Columns are central to your worksheet in Excel and as such, can be formatted as a unit to change how they are displayed. Use the following articles about Excel's column formatting capabilities to make your columns appear just right.

Tips, Tricks, and Answers

The following articles are available for the 'Column Formatting' topic. Click the article's title (shown in bold) to see the associated article.

Centering Across Columns
Have a heading you need centered across a few columns? It's easy to do using the tool described in this tip.

Changing Column Width
When creating a worksheet, you often need to adjust the width of columns so your data looks great. Here's how to quickly and easily modify the width of those columns.

Countering Compressed Columns
If you open a workbook and find that the width of some of your columns has been changed, the discovery can be frustrating. Here's some ideas on why this might occur in some workbooks.

Double-Clicking to Widen Columns Won't Work
One way you can widen the columns in a worksheet to fit whatever is in the column is by double-clicking the right edge of the column header for that column. This may not always work, however. Here's why.

Hiding and Unhiding Columns
Want to hide a column so it doesn't appear in the worksheet? It's easy to do using the formatting capabilities of Excel.

Hiding Columns Not within a Date Range
Want to automatically hide some columns that don't meet a date criteria that you set? You can't do it automatically, but you can make the manual hiding of the columns easier by using a macro.

Setting the Standard Column Width
Using Excel's menu option to set the standard column width for an Excel worksheet.

Understanding Column Widths
Ever wonder why column widths are expressed in characters? The answer is rooted in history, as discussed in this tip.

Unhiding a Single Column
In a worksheet with lots of hidden columns it is a real pain to try to unhide just one or two columns. The best solution is to use a macro to do the unhiding, as described in this tip.

Unhiding Columns that are Persistently Hidden
If you were trying to format a worksheet and nothing you did could make the first two columns appear, would you be frustrated? (I know I would.) There are many potential reasons why those columns might not be visible, as described in this tip.

 

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