Got a version of Excel that uses the menu interface (Excel 97, Excel 2000, Excel 2002, or Excel 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.
With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company.
Learn more about Allen...
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: Merge and Center Not Available.
Paul has a worksheet in which he wants to apply Merge and Center to a selection. However, the tool is continually grayed out on his worksheet and Paul can't figure out why. He wonders if there is some combination of formats or settings that disables the tool.
Actually, there are two conditions that can cause the Merge and Center tool to be unavailable. You should check, first, to see if your worksheet is protected. Second, you should check to see if the workbook is shared. Both protection and sharing have been discussed in other issues of ExcelTips, and both of them happen to disable Merge and Center. (Actually, they disable a lot of other commands in addition to Merge and Center.)
If you turn off sharing (if it is on) and disable protection (if the worksheet is protected), then the tool should once again be available.
ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (5398) 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: Merge and Center Not Available.
Excel Smarts for Beginners! Featuring the friendly and trusted For Dummies style, this popular guide shows beginners how to get up and running with Excel while also helping more experienced users get comfortable with the newest features. Check out Excel 2013 For Dummies today!