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: Text Truncated in PivotTable.

Text Truncated in PivotTable

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated December 31, 2015)

Anil complained that when he created a PivotTable, some of the text in some of the source cells was truncated when it was placed in the PivotTable. He wondered if there were a way around this.

The first thing to do is make sure that the text is actually being truncated. When text is transferred to a cell in a PivotTable, it works much the same as text in the original worksheet. This means that the text is "cut off" when there is data in the cell to the right of the text cell. The full text is still there, but it cannot be displayed because there is not enough room to do so within the cell.

Testing has shown, however, that PivotTables will only transfer up to 255 characters from a source cell. Anything after that is truncated. This limit seems to be hard-coded into Excel, and there is no way around it that I could discover. The limit of 255 characters may seem arbitrary, and it is. I can only surmise that Microsoft needed to establish a length limit on text, and figured that 255 characters should be sufficient for most purposes.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3394) 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: Text Truncated in PivotTable.

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

Mail Merge and Data Source Documents become Unattached

When you create a mail merge document, you attach it to a data source that is the basis for the information to be merged with ...

Discover More

Multi-Page Print Preview

Many users rely on Print Preview to show them what their printout will look like. When using Print Preview, you aren't ...

Discover More

Default Numbering Format for Endnotes

The default format for endnote numbers is lowercase Roman numerals. If you want the numbers to use a different format, such ...

Discover More

Save Time and Supercharge Excel! Automate virtually any routine task and save yourself hours, days, maybe even weeks. Then, learn how to make Excel do things you thought were simply impossible! Mastering advanced Excel macros has never been easier. Check out Excel 2010 VBA and Macros today!

MORE EXCELTIPS (MENU)

Editing PivotTables without Underlying Data

If you ever try to edit a PivotTable and get an error that tells you that the "underlying data was not included," it can be ...

Discover More

Bogging Down with Calculated Items

Create a complex PivotTable and you may find that your system slows to a crawl. The reason for this may be due to the way in ...

Discover More

Changing the Default PivotTable Functions

When you create a PivotTable, Excel automatically sums the data that you place into the Data Items area of the table. This ...

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 for this tip:

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)

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.

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.

Links and Sharing
Share