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: Linking Comments to Multiple Cells.

Linking Comments to Multiple Cells

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated July 30, 2021)
This tip applies to Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


When you insert a comment into a worksheet, that comment is associated with a single cell. There may be times when you want to have a single comment associated with two or more cells. Unfortunately, Excel doesn't provide this capability—there is a strict one-to-one correspondence between comments and cells.

You can, however, use a workaround—create your own comments. You can do this using a text box to contain your comment, and then draw lines between the text box and whatever cells the comment applies to. If you normally want your comments hidden, then you will need to use a macro that takes care of making the text box and lines visible or invisible.

For instance, assume that you create a comment in a text box named Text Box 1. Further, assume that you have two lines leading from the text box to the cells to which the comment applies. The first line, named Line 1, leads to cell C15. The second line, named Line 2, leads to cell F7. You could add the following macro to the worksheet's object:

Private Sub Worksheet_SelectionChange(ByVal Target As Excel.Range)
    Shapes("Text Box 1").Visible = False
    Shapes("Line 1").Visible = False
    Shapes("Line 2").Visible = False

    If Target.Address = "$C$15" Then
        Shapes("Text Box 1").Visible = True
        Shapes("Line 1").Visible = True
    End If
    If Target.Address = "$F$7" Then
        Shapes("Text Box 1").Visible = True
        Shapes("Line 2").Visible = True
    End If
End Sub

Anytime a selection is made on the worksheet, the three objects are hidden. If cell C15 is selected, the textbox and the line appropriate line are made visible. Similarly, if cell F7 is selected, the textbox and its line are made visible.

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the ExcelTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2393) 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: Linking Comments to Multiple Cells.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

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. ...

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