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Microsoft Excel 'Quick Tip'

The Trouble With Editing

Here's something that has been annoying Excel users 'forever'. How many times do you find yourself working in dialog boxes and, while attempting to move the cursor to edit a formula by pressing an arrow key, instead a reference to a cell on the worksheet gets inserted in your formula?

If you don't know what's going on here, you may conclude that the only way to edit your formula is to point/select with the mouse pointer, since pressing the arrow keys keeps adding cells from your worksheet.

Annoyance editing formulas in dialog box results in selecting another cell

When you are editing a formula in a dialog box, look to the far left edge of the Status Bar. You will probably see the word Enter or Point. Using the arrow key at this point will insert a cell reference in your formula. To avoid this, you first need to press the F2 key on your keyboard to go into Edit mode (notice the word Edit on the left of the Status Bar). In Edit mode, you can use the arrow keys to edit your formula.

So, the solution is simple. Remember this and save yourself a lot of frustration.

Press F2 to enter Edit mode whenever you need to edit a formula in a dialog box.

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