Microsoft Office Tutorials and References

In Depth Information

**Error Checking**

Solving Formula

Errors

Tip:
Nothing prevents you from tracing the precedents for a bunch of different cells: just move to another

cell and repeat the process for each cell you want to trace, one after the other. You can see all the arrows

at once, which can make for a tangled worksheet. When you click Remove Arrows, Excel removes all the

precedent arrows and any dependent arrows for every cell you’ve traced. You can remove the arrows for

just one cell by moving to it, and then choosing Formulas➝Formula Auditing➝Remove Precedent Arrows.

You can trace dependents in the same way that you trace precedents—just choose

Formulas
➝
Formula Auditing
➝
Trace Dependents (see Figure 18-5). If you click Trace

Dependents and cell A1 is selected, Excel adds an arrow connecting A1 to any other

cells that
refer
to A1.

Figure 18-5:

If you click Trace

Dependents on cell H2,

Excel indicates that

this cell is used in the

average calculation

in cell H15. However,

it isn’t the only value

that cell H15 uses. To

see all the precedents,

you’d need to move

to H15, and then click

Trace Precedents.

There really isn’t a difference between precedent and dependent arrows—they’re just

two different ways of looking at the same idea. In fact, every arrow Excel draws

connects one precedent to one dependent. Finally, Excel’s tracing tools also work

with formulas that
aren’t
working (which is important, after all, when it comes to

troubleshooting). Figure 18-6 shows how the tool works when your formulas are

generating error codes.

Error Checking

Sometimes, you may have a large worksheet containing a number of errors that are

widely distributed. Rather than hunt for these errors by scrolling endlessly, you can

jump straight to the offending cells using Excel’s error-checking feature.