# Making Squares

One of the (many) frustrating things about Excel is that it uses different units of measurement to specify the height of rows and the width of columns.

Row height is pretty straightforward—it is measured in points. Column width, however, is measured in character widths. If your Standard style is set to Courier 10, then a column width of 12 means that you can fit exactly twelve characters in a given column. For proportional fonts, the character 0 is used to count the characters. (Yup, it's absurd.)

This leads to problems if you want the height and width of a particular cell to match, thereby making a square. Fortunately, with a little macro wizardry you can bypass this oddity of Excel and achieve the desired results. Consider the MakeSquare macro:

```Sub MakeSquare()
Dim WPChar As Double
Dim DInch As Double
Dim Temp As String

Temp = InputBox("Height and width in inches?")
DInch = Val(Temp)
If DInch > 0 And DInch < 2.5 Then
For Each c In ActiveWindow.RangeSelection.Columns
WPChar = c.Width / c.ColumnWidth
c.ColumnWidth = ((DInch * 72) / WPChar)
Next c
For Each r In ActiveWindow.RangeSelection.Rows
r.RowHeight = (DInch * 72)
Next r
End If
End Sub
```

This macro prompts you for the dimension of the square you want to create, and then calculates exactly how wide and high to set each cell. You can run the macro with a single cell selected, or you can make a larger selection set.

The "math magic" is done in the calculating of the WPChar variable. This is set to a value derived by dividing the width of the column in points (returned by the Width property) by the width of the column in characters (returned by the ColumnWidth property). This value, which is the number of points in a character at the current settings, is then used to calculate how many characters should be used to set the width in the next program line.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (1943) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

Related Tips:

Save Time and Supercharge Excel! Automate virtually any routine task and save yourself hours, days, maybe even weeks. Then, learn how to make Excel do things you thought were simply impossible! Mastering advanced Excel macros has never been easier. Check out Excel 2010 VBA and Macros today!

### Leave your own comment:

 *Name: Email: Notify me about new comments ONLY FOR THIS TIP Notify me about new comments ANYWHERE ON THIS SITE Hide my email address *Text: *What is 5+3 (To prevent automated submissions and spam.)

### Comments for this tip:

Kelly Runyon    17 Nov 2014, 12:16
Ray, thanks for the caution. If you need a workaround, try selecting just one cell, then use the resulting height & width values to set the other columns and rows.
Ray Austin    15 Nov 2014, 06:58
If you select the whole sheet this macro runs forever

# Our Company

Sharon Parq Associates, Inc.

# Our Sites

Tips.Net

Beauty and Style

Cars

Cleaning

Cooking

ExcelTips (Excel 97–2003)

ExcelTips (Excel 2007–2016)

Gardening

Health

Home Improvement

Money and Finances

Organizing

Pests and Bugs

Pets and Animals

WindowsTips (Microsoft Windows)

WordTips (Word 97–2003)

WordTips (Word 2007–2016)

Excel Products

Word Products

# Our Authors

Author Index

Write for Tips.Net

Copyright © 2017 Sharon Parq Associates, Inc.