When you are developing a file for a report, budget or forecast you may need to keep track of certain cells. They could be validations or profits or some other important value. The Watch Window can help you monitor multiple cells in one place.
In the Formulas tab in the Formula Auditing section is the Watch Window icon.
Clicking the icon opens the Watch Window. It will be blank.
You can click the Add Watch button to add a cell to monitor. You can chose cells from any sheet.
Click Add to watch the cell. You can widen the Watch Window and change column widths as well.
You can click the column headings to sort by the column.
You can also select a range to watch. but it will list the range as a series of cells – see images below.
When you save and close the file the watch entries are saved. When you open the file the Watch Window won’t be open, you will have to re-open it.
The shortcut Alt M W (pressed in sequence, not held down) will open the Watch Window. The same shortcut also closes the Watch Window.
In Australia our financial year starts in July. Excel is set up to work with calendar years and we need to do some date gymnastics to have our reports start in July. Here is a hack for Custom Lists that can make some things better in Excel.
The IBM PC was launched 12 August 1981 – 40 years ago – wow!
When I was looking at my first Excel articles I found this article from 20 years ago.
Its amazing that PC’s are roughly the same price these days.
I remember using an IBM PC at college in the early 80’s for word processing. Instead of using a typewriter for your assignments you could use the PC and printer.
You had to book times to use it because there were only two PC’s available and they were used 24 hours a day. There were dual floppy drives – one was for the operating system and one was for data storage – your files. You carried around a floppy drive with all your assignments on it.
My first article was published on 10 August 2001 in the Accountants Weekly magazine.
I have scanned the original article and it is shown below.
20 years later I thought I would update the 10 points from the article.
The right mouse button is still a time saver and now has even more options. You can now Filter and Sort using the right click. Try right clicking the navigation icons on the left of the sheet tabs for a complete list of sheets. I drag with the right mouse button to copy formats only, or values only.
Yes, I still use the Ctrl key to copy quickly. Try dragging a sheet tab with the mouse whilst holding the Ctrl key down – it copies the sheet – woohoo!
Selecting multiple ranges with the Ctrl key and mouse is even better now. In the more recent Excel versions you can de-select ranges. In the old days you had to start from scratch if you wanted to change a selection.