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: Nifty Zooming.

Nifty Zooming

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated April 29, 2022)
This tip applies to Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


If you zoom in and out of your documents quite a bit, you may get tired of using the pull-down Zoom control on the toolbar. If you have one of the mice that has a small wheel between the left and right mouse buttons, you can do a neat trick. All you need to do is hold down the Ctrl key as you turn the small wheel. Each click up or down increases or decreases the zoom factor by 15%.

You can use this method of zooming for any magnification between 10% and 100%. If you want to zoom over 100%, you must use the Zoom control on the toolbar or use the Zoom option from the View menu.

If you like this feature so much that you want to use it all the time, you can instruct Excel to always use the mouse's wheel to zoom. Follow these steps:

  1. Choose Options from the Tools menu. Excel displays the Options dialog box.
  2. Make sure the General tab is displayed. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The General tab of the Options dialog box.

  4. Select the Zoom On Roll with IntelliMouse check box.
  5. Click OK.

Now you can zoom by rolling the mouse wheel, or scroll through the worksheet by holding down the Ctrl key as you turn the wheel.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2966) 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: Nifty Zooming.

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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