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: Copying Formats to a New Worksheet.

Copying Formats to a New Worksheet

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 18, 2015)

2

While developing your worksheets, you may wonder if there is a way to copy all formats—including row and column dimensions—to a new worksheet. Fortunately, this is quite easy to do, and there are a couple ways to go about it.

The biggest point to remember is that column widths are attributes of columns, not of individual cells. Likewise, row height is an attribute of rows, not of cells. This means that if you want to copy the width of a column to another worksheet, you need to select the entire column before clicking on the Format Painter. Likewise, if you want to copy the height of a row, you need to first select the entire row whose format you want to copy.

To put these guidelines in perspective, try this:

  1. Display a source worksheet that has non-default formatting for rows and columns.
  2. Select a row or range of rows in the worksheet. You need to select the entire rows, not just cells within the rows. (Click on the row numbers of the rows you want to select.)
  3. Click on the Format Painter.
  4. Display a target worksheet.
  5. Select the rows to which you want the formats applied.

At this point, the rows in the target worksheet should be formatted exactly the same as the rows you selected in the source worksheet. If you selected more rows in the target worksheet than you did in the source worksheet, then the formats of the rows are repeated in the target. These same steps could be applied to columns, as well.

If you want to format the entire target worksheet so it is formatted just like the source worksheet, simply select all columns and rows (press Ctrl+A or click on the gray junction block above row 1 and to the left of column A) in step 2.

Another way to copy the formatting of the entire worksheet is to make a copy of the worksheet itself. When the copy is created, you can simply delete any information you don't need.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2567) 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: Copying Formats to a New Worksheet.

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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Getting Context-Sensitive Help

Need help on a particular topic, dialog box, or command? You can use Excel's powerful help system to get just the information ...

Discover More

Duplex Printing from Multiple Trays

Printing in duplex has not always been easy in Word, particularly when you want that printing to be controlled by a macro. ...

Discover More

Converting Lists to Text

If you have a numbered list in a document, you might want to convert it to regular, non-dynamic text and not lose the numbers ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

More ExcelTips (menu)

Dates with Periods

You may want Excel to format your dates using a pattern it doesn't normally use—such as using periods instead of ...

Discover More

Sorting ZIP Codes

Sorting ZIP Codes can be painless, provided all the codes are formatted the same. Here's how to do the sorting if you have ...

Discover More

Changing Font Color

There are any number of reasons to format different cells in different colors. Excel allows you to easily change the color ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is nine minus 5?

2015-04-18 10:44:41

Morris Manning

djq, The Format Painter is the paint brush icon on the Menu & Home Tabs


2015-04-18 08:25:06

djq

This does me no good if you don't tell me where FORMAT PAINTER is.


This Site

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.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.