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Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Counting Filtered Rows.
John has applied a filter to the contents of one of his worksheets. He wants to determine the count of rows visible in the filtered data, but when he tries to count them using the COUNT function, Excel returns the overall number of rows, including those not displayed in the filtered list.
This is actually normal behavior—the COUNT function returns all the rows in a range, whether they are visible or not. If you want to determine the number of rows that meet the criteria of your filter, there are a variety of techniques you can use.
If you don't need to get your count in a cell, then you can simply rely upon Excel to inform you of the count. When you apply a filter, the Excel status bar contains a count of how many rows are displayed by the filter. This count disappears as soon as you start editing other information in your worksheet, but it will reappear if you reapply the filter.
You could also select all the visible cells in a particular column and just look in the "totals" area of the status bar. By default Excel displays the sum of whatever cells you've selected, but you can right-click on this sum and instead instruct Excel to display a count of the selected cells.
If you want to use a formula to determine the row count, you could use the COUNTIF function. All you would need to do is make sure that the criteria specified in the function is the same criteria that you used in your filter. The drawback to this, of course, is that if you change your filter criteria you will also need to change the COUNTIF criteria to get an accurate count.
You can also use the SUBTOTAL function to determine the count of rows. For instance, if your filtered information was in A2:A500, you could use this formula to display a count of the rows displayed by the filter:
The first parameter, 2, indicates that you want Excel to use the COUNT function to determine the formula result. If you change this parameter to 3 then SUBTOTAL will use COUNTA instead. Either way, SUBTOTAL only counts those rows displayed by the filter.
ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3831) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Counting Filtered Rows.
Tame Your Data! ExcelTips: Filters and Filtering provides all the details necessary to let you manage large sets of data with confidence and ease. Its information-packed pages demonstrate how to use the two types of filters provided by Excel: AutoFilters and advanced filters. Check out ExcelTips: Filters and Filtering today!