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: Setting the Width for Row Labels.

Setting the Width for Row Labels

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 29, 2019)

Lars has a worksheet that has a large amount of data—approximately 5,000 rows. At the top of the worksheet he has a graph based on that data, with the data itself starting at row 30. He has the top 30 rows frozen so that he can always see the graph and column headings. When he scrolls down through the data and gets to row 100, the row labels (left side of screen) become wider and this forces Excel to redraw the graph. This happens again when he scrolls down to row 1000. The redrawing slows down scrolling and would be unnecessary if Lars could find a way to set a width for the row labels, so they were wide enough to accommodate the four digits necessary for these "upper" rows.

There are a few ways you can approach this issue. The first to simply turn off the row and column headings. Follow these steps:

  1. Choose Options from the Tools menu.
  2. Make sure the View tab is selected. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The View tab of the Options dialog box.

  4. Make sure the Row & Column Headers check box is selected. If cleared, then the header area is not displayed.
  5. Click on OK.

Now you won't have the problem because Excel doesn't display the row headers at the left of the screen. If you really need to have some indication as to row number, you could always insert a blank column A, then insert numbers representing the row numbers, 1 through 5,000 (or however many rows there are). This column could be made as wide as necessary, so there won't be any redrawing as you scroll.

Another approach is to actually start your data and graph below row 1000. Insert enough blank rows above your graph and data to move them down into the four-digit row number range, and then hide rows 1 through 999.

A variant on this approach is to keep your graph where it is and insert enough rows to move just the data downward, so it starts at row 1000. Hide rows 30 through 999 and you should see no redrawing occur as you scroll.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (11676) 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: Setting the Width for Row Labels.

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

Notification when Caps Lock is Active

You're typing along, look up at your screen, and notice that everything is in ALL CAPS. Drat! You activated the Caps Lock ...

Discover More

Creating a List

You can format both numbered and bulleted lists very easily in Word. The tools available on the Formatting toolbar make ...

Discover More

Determining a Random Value

Random values are often needed when working with certain types of data. When you need to generate a random value in a ...

Discover More

Professional Development Guidance! Four world-class developers offer start-to-finish guidance for building powerful, robust, and secure applications with Excel. The authors show how to consistently make the right design decisions and make the most of Excel's powerful features. Check out Professional Excel Development today!

More ExcelTips (menu)

Determining Your Serial Number

The serial number assigned to your copy of Excel is valuable. It allows you to get support and is necessary for some ...

Discover More

Running Out of Memory

Do you get an error when you try to insert just one more chart in your workbook? It could be because of an obscure ...

Discover More

Inserting Cells

When developing worksheets, you often need to make room in your existing information for new information. One of the ...

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}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. 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 1?

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.

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.