Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Sorting Data Lists
When specifying search criteria that fit a number of records, you may have to
click the Find Next or Find Prev button several times to locate the record you
want. If no record fits the search criteria you enter, the computer beeps at
you when you click these buttons.
To change the search criteria, first clear the data form by clicking the Criteria
button again and then clicking the Clear button.
To switch back to the current record without using the search criteria you
enter, click the Form button. (This button replaces the Criteria button as
soon as you click the Criteria button.)
Sorting Data Lists
Every data list you put together in Excel will have some kind of preferred
order for maintaining and viewing the records. Depending on the list, you
may want to see the records in alphabetical order by last name. In the case of
a client data table, you may want to see the records arranged alphabetically
by company name. In the case of the Employee Data list, the preferred order
is in numerical order by the ID number assigned to each employee when he
or she is hired.
When you initially enter records for a new data list, you no doubt enter them
in either the preferred order or the order in which you retrieve their records.
However you start out, as you will soon discover, you don’t have the option
of adding subsequent records in that preferred order. Whenever you add
a new record, Excel tacks that record onto the bottom of the database by
adding a new row.
Suppose you originally enter all the records in a client data list in
alphabetical order by company (from Acme Pet Supplies to Zastrow and Sons),
and then you add the record for a new client: Pammy’s Pasta Palace Excel .
puts the new record at the bottom of the barrel — in the last row right after
Zastrow and Sons — instead of inserting it in its proper position, which is
somewhere after Acme Pet Supplies but definitely well ahead of Zastrow and
his wonderful boys!
This isn’t the only problem you can have with the original record order. Even
if the records in the data list remain stable, the preferred order merely
represents the order you use most of the time. What about those times when you
need to see the records in another, special order?
For example, if you usually work with a client data list in numerical order
by case number, you might instead need to see the records in alphabetical
order by the client’s last name to quickly locate a client and look up his or
her balance due in a printout. When using records to generate mailing labels
for a mass mailing, you want the records in zip code order. When generating
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