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How to Use AutoFill in Microsoft Excel

Do you use Excel frequently? Are you looking for a way to shorten the time you spend on your spreadsheets? Instead of entering all your data manually, you can use the AutoFill feature to fill cells with data that follows a pattern or that is based on data in other cells.

Essentially, Microsoft Excel's AutoFill lets you create spreadsheets more efficiently, allowing you to quickly fill cells with a series of data.

Here’s how to speed through your spreadsheets by using the AutoFill feature of Excel 2016.

NOTE: This feature is best for copying formats and formulas, filling in lists, dates, numbers and more.

  1. Begin a new spreadsheet. Add initial data that is needed.

  2. Select the cell that you wish to AutoFill. Move the cursor to the bottom right corner of the cell. It will turn into a solid cross. This is called the Fill Handle.

  3. Notice how Excel fills the series of months for you automatically. Drag the cursor across the cells to as many as you need. If you exceed the number of cells needed, data will be repeated.

    You can easily erase this data by dragging the cells back to the end.


Filling in Cells

  1. In the example below, one cell is already filled. Make the others match by selecting the filled cell and click the Fill Handle.

    Drag to end of line.

  2. The now selected cells will most likely copy the data in the first cell.

    Click the Smart Tag and select the option Fill Formatting Only.

  3. For numbers in a series, follow step 1 listed above. Click the Smart Tag and select Fill Series The numbers will then be in numeric order.

Congratulations! You now know how to utilize AutoFill in Microsoft Excel.

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NH Learning SolutionsDebra Novara

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