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Thread: Newbie Question about thin blue cell selection lines

  1. #1

    Question Newbie Question about thin blue cell selection lines

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    I don't know what they're called they appear to move around the cell. I can see there is some kind of linking to the cell that I WANTED to select but I get stuck with these strange selections that I have trouble getting rid of. I don't know what I did to get them and I don't know how to get out of that "mode" but it's causing me considerable frustration. Please help me to learn to control them.


  2. #2
    Can you post a workbook so that we can see them?

  3. #3
    Thanks so MUCH for taking the time to read my question. I guess I should have been clearer. The problem is NOT with the workbook itself. It's just that sometimes when I'm working with the formulas in one cell and "ENTER" doesn't get me out of it, I click elsewhere on the sheet and that's about when the blue selection box shows up around the cell that I inadvertently clicked on to escape the cell with the formula that I just entered. Somehow that blue selection link that new cell with my previous selection and I'm stuck again but in another problem. It is NOT a cell formatting problem. I just have not yet learned how to enter formulas in a cell and ALWAYS get my "ENTER" key to get me out of the cell. So that's when I have to click somewhere else and THAT leads to trouble. If you can tell me what that blue selection to link values of cells is called, I'd be happy to research it to learn exactly what it is that I do to get into that mode (so that I can avoid it in the future). Not to mention learning how to get OUT of that mode. I'm sure that it's a "Feature" of some kind. It's just beyond me at this point.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Phillips View Post
    Can you post a workbook so that we can see them?

  4. #4
    It sounds as though you have type an equal sign and then moved to another cell, so Excel thinks that cell is a cell that you are referencing in your formula. Can you give an example of what you have typed, and what is in the formula bar, when you cannot hit Enter to complete the formula?

  5. #5
    Conjurer Simi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Utah, USA
    When exiting a formula bar, you need to hit either enter or ctr+shift+enter to "activate" the formula.
    if you are just viewing a formula and don't intend to edit or change the formula you can hit the esc key to exit the cell without saving any changes to it.

    Usually if you are entering a formula, and the next step in your input is to input a "range" of cells or a single cell "A1" you can click somewhere in the sheet to manually select the range.
    for example if you are in cell A1 and hit the "=" key the next item could be a range so now you can click the sheet somewhere say "B1" and a blue box will appear around it.
    then you can hit the "+" key and click the sheet somewhere else again say "C1" this will put a green box around it (excel keeps rotating colors so you can keep track of what values you are changing in your formula)
    so your final formula will be "=B1+C1" where you only typed the = and the +.

    Next your "ENTER" key not working needs some explanation.
    1. Do you receive an error when you hit "ENTER" to get out of a cell?
    2. Is your keyboard functioning properly?

    Also it may help someone it is a good idea to put what version of Excel you are using.

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