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: Diagonal Borders in a Conditional Format.

Diagonal Borders in a Conditional Format

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated July 9, 2016)

Parin likes using the diagonal border on some cells to show the value as "crossed out." She would like to use diagonal borders in a conditional format, however. When she tries, she can set other types of borders, but not a diagonal border—it is not selectable in the conditional format. She wonders if there is a way to use diagonal borders with conditional formats.

There is no direct way to do this when setting up a conditional format—Excel simply won't allow you to use diagonal borders with a conditional format. That means that you may want to look for and use an acceptable workaround. Here are a few ideas for the conditional format:

  • Set the conditional format to use a font color that is the same as cell background color. That way the contents will seem to disappear if your condition is met.
  • Set the conditional format to use one of the cell patterns. There a some that look like multiple diagonal lines through the cell.
  • Set the conditional format to use strikethrough formatting for any text that appears in the cell.

If you actually want to use the diagonal borders, then the only way to do it is to apply an explicit format to the cell and not rely on a conditional format. This can be done through the use of a macro, such as the following:

Private Sub Worksheet_Change(ByVal Target As Range)
    Dim c As Variant
    Dim addr As String

    Set Target = Range("C12:C20")

    If Intersect(Target, ActiveCell) Is Nothing Then Exit Sub
    For Each c In Target
        If c = 0 And Len(c) <> 0 Then
            addr = c.Address
            With Range(addr).Borders(xlDiagonalUp)
                .LineStyle = xlContinuous
            End With
        ElseIf c > 0 And Len(c) > 0 Then
            addr = ActiveCell.Address
            With Range(addr).Borders(xlDiagonalUp)
                .LineStyle = xlNone
            End With
        End If
    Next
End Sub

You should right-click on a worksheet tab, display the code window from the resulting Context menu, and then paste this macro into the code window. The macro is executed any time a cell is changed in the worksheet. It checks the cells in C12:C20, and if any of them contain a zero value, then the diagonal border is set for that cell.

You can easily change the macro to apply to a different range of cells or to check for a different condition when applying the borders. If you prefer, you can change the xlDiagonalUp constant to xlDiagonalDown, depending on which diagonal border you want applied.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (10692) 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: Diagonal Borders in a Conditional Format.

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

Entering Data as Thousands

There are many different ways you may need to enter data in a worksheet. For instance, you might want to enter data in ...

Discover More

The Changing Relationship of WordArt and Text Boxes

Two of the long-time features in Word are text boxes and WordArt. You might not think these two are related, but they are ...

Discover More

Importing Based on a Partial File Name

A common task for macros is to open and process a file you want imported into your workbook. If you need to identify the ...

Discover More

Solve Real Business Problems Master business modeling and analysis techniques with Excel and transform data into bottom-line results. This hands-on, scenario-focused guide shows you how to use the latest Excel tools to integrate data from multiple tables. Check out Microsoft Excel 2013 Data Analysis and Business Modeling today!

MORE EXCELTIPS (MENU)

Conditional Formatting for Errant Phone Numbers

Conditional formatting can be used to draw attention to all sorts of data based upon the criteria you specify. Here's how you ...

Discover More

Changing Coordinate Colors

Tired of the default colors that Excel uses to display the row and column coordinates? You can modify the colors, but only if ...

Discover More

Conditionally Formatting Non-Integers

The conditional formatting capabilities of Excel are very helpful when you want to call attention to different values ...

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