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  Saturday, December 12, 2009 – Permalink –

Display Row, Column Headings

User Function



Here's an odd little use of functions.

If you want to display the Row number on a spreadsheet, the formula
=Row()
works just fine.
You could then hide the Row and Column headings and format the Row numbers any way you want. If a Row is deleted the numbers will automatically update.

Column headings are a little harder. The formula =Column() will show the number of the Column, not the letter, i.e. "2" instead of "B".

The following formula extracts the Column letter:

=SUBSTITUTE(ADDRESS(1,COLUMN(),4),"1","")


To break it down:

=ADDRESS(row_num,column_num,abs_num)

This finds the address at Row number "1" and current Column number. The abs_num of "4 " says make the result a relative address.

The formula will produce a result such as "AA1".

SUBSTITUTE(text,old_text,new_text)

This function looks at the address, i.e. "AA1".
It replaces the Row number character ("1") with a null or empty value ("").
The formula will produce a result such as "AA".

Also see Daily Dose of Excel by Dick Kusleika.

Dick mused:'

"Sometime before the year 3,000, Microsoft will hopefully increase the number of columns in Excel (Hey, I can dream can't I). The challenge before you is to write a function that converts a column number to its letter equivalent assuming columns go to ZZZZ. That’s about 450,000 columns - maybe more than I need."


Of course Office 2007-10 has taken it up to 16,284 columns.




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<Doug Klippert@ 3:11 AM

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