Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Use Absolute References
Figure 18-3:
Checking for
errors.
When there are errors, the dialog box appears and sticks around while you
work on each error. The Next and Previous buttons let you cycle through all
the errors before the dialog box closes. For each error it finds, you choose
what action to take:
Help On This Error: This leads to the Help system and displays the
topic for the particular type of error.
Show Calculation Steps: The Evaluate Formula dialog box opens, and
you can watch step by step how the formula is calculated. This lets you
identify the particular step that caused the error.
Ignore Error: Maybe Excel is wrong? Ignore the error.
Edit in Formula Bar: This is a quick way to just fix the formula yourself
if you don’t need any other help.
The Error Checking dialog box also has an Options button. Clicking the
button opens the Formulas tab from the Excel Options dialog box. In the
Formulas tab you can select settings and rules for how errors are recognized
and triggered.
Use Absolute References
If you are going to use the same formula for a bunch of cells, such as those
going down a column, the best method is to write the formula once and then
drag it down to the other cells by using the fill handle. The problem is that
when you drag the formula to new locations, any relative references change.
Often this is the intention. When there is one column of data and an adjacent
column of formulas, typically each cell in the formula column refers to its
neighbor in the data column. But if the formulas all reference a cell that is
not adjacent, usually the intention is for all the formula cells to reference an
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