Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Ranges: A Select Tool
You’ll know it means that all the numbers in cells A34 through C57 are to be added (And by the way
– this formula: =SUM(A:A) – would add all the cells in the A column).
One more point (for now) about ranges. Consider this possibility, shown in Figure 2–14:
Figure 2–14. Two ranges selected at the same time
So what’s going on here? In this case, two ranges seem to have been selected at the same time.
How’s that done? Truth to be told, rather easily. First, select one range as per the usual techniques. Then,
keep the Ctrl key down, and with your mouse, drag across a second set of cells. You can even select three
or more sets of cells with this approach—and if you’re wondering why you would want to do such a
thing, the answer is that you may wish to subject all these cells to the same change—you may want to
alter the font size in just these selected cells, for example. Or you may want to delete the contents of a
range or two of cells. If you do, select the range(s), and just press the Delete key. (And let’s pass on the
question about whether the screen shot above depicts two different ranges, or merely one range
consisting of two non-adjacent sets of cells. In reality either answer could apply depending on your
purposes, but in the great majority of cases you’d be regarding these as two distinct ranges.)
And if you want to try something a bit more exotic, you can also type something like this in the good
old name box, followed by pressing Enter:
A3:D34,E6:H23
Note the comma. The above instruction will select cells A3 through D34, as well as E6 through H23.
And if you mess up—that is, if you select the wrong set of cells—the easiest thing to do is simply
click anywhere on the worksheet. Doing so “turns off” the blue color scheme for the selected range, and
you can start range-selecting again. And in any case, you’re going to need to turn off the range sooner or
later if you plan on doing work anywhere else on the worksheet.
Now if you really need to change the font for 50 million or so cells—or something even more
global—try this. It’s easy to overlook, but observe the button wedged between the A column and row 1
headings…Click it and all 17 billion cells turn blue (excepting A1 above. You can also press Ctrl-A to
select all the worksheet cells). You’ve thereby selected the entire worksheet, and you might opt for this
 
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